Zimbabwe has not traditionally been a huge online gambling country because of low internet penetration levels and the lack of advanced banking infrastructure.
But with neighbouring countries now stimulating economies with legalised online sports betting, Zimbabwe is beginning to blossom into a growth market for online betting operators.
While the African country is yet to license any online operators it is possible to play at ‘offshore’ sites. This doesn’t mean your money is not safe, it simply means another government is doing the regulation.
This article will explain why the following sites are suitable for Zimbabweans, how to deposit to online bookies from Zimbabwe, popular sport to bet on and everything else you will require to successfully begin betting.
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Zimbabwe sports betting sites
While the majority of Zimbabweans bet at land-based betting shops, things are slowly starting to change in this country as internet penetration gets better and people gain access to safe ways to deposit into online betting accounts.
Click the links to sign up at one of the available bookmakers from above, setting your location to Zimbabwe. This will ensure when you confirm your identity – you need to do this to cash out – the address matches up, which will speed up the withdrawal process. Once you’re all signed up you can take a look at the available markets and even stream events live.
Since there’s not a huge online presence in the country, the Zimbabwean Dollar isn’t a widely available currency at these bookies. But you can opt for USD, AUD, and other currencies to place a bet. There will be an exchange rate fee incurred, but if you’re after the best odds and the most markets in the one place, it’s worth it.
SportPesa: Another brand popular in Africa, has a large following in Zimbabwe, and tends to focus a lot of energy in making sure it has up-to-date football markets for all competitions. Has a UK license and is well respected in markets it serves.
Betway: One of the biggest bookmakers in Europe and the United Kingdom, Betway has shown great growth in Zimbabwe, and is a great place to wager for those interested in International sports. Zimbabwe punters will be able to transfer their balance into USD, EUR, GBP or other international currencies.
Betsson: Another popular global bookmaker which accepts customers from Zimbabwe. Has a great range of soccer, cricket and horse racing markets. Licensed in the UK and Malta among others, Betsson also has nice promotions available to new customers.
Pinnacle: Is one of the most well-know brands in the world and regards itself as also offering some of the best odds. Pinnacle does not cater to the Zimbabwean dollar but they do accept some popular deposit methods like ecoPayz and Neteller.
Promotions at Zimbabwean ZWD bookmakers
Unlike betting shops, the world’s best online bookies offer great promotions so punters can make the most of their online gambling experience. These promotions range from welcome bonuses to special offers on certain games, including football.
New punters at 5Dimes, for example, will receive up to $520 in free-play rewards. All you have to do is deposit between $100 to $400 to receive a 50 per cent matched deposit bonus, or up to $2000 to receive a 70 per cent matched deposit bonus.
Gamblers located outside of North America can only deposit a maximum of $ZWD100 for their first deposit – but this still sees Zimbabwean players scoring $ZWD50 in free cash to use at the sportsbook.
Sportsbook deposit methods Zimbabwean punters
EcoCash is obviously one of the most popular ways to fund betting accounts in Zimbabwe, however there are not any offshore sites that currently support it. This does make it tough for Zimbabwe consumers to deposit money unless you have an alternative payment method. We expect as time goes by this will improve.
Visa and MasterCard are both popular credit cards and available as a deposit method at the bookies listed above.
Some banks have cancelled the use of Visas outside Zimbabwe, including Standard Chartered, so be sure to check with your bank prior to funding your bookmaker account.
If you can’t use Visa or MasterCard credit or debit cards, you can opt for PayPal which is a popular method available at the aforementioned verified sportsbooks. PayPal is a web wallet which allows you to store your funds and then use your email address and a self-generated password to make a deposit. Neteller and Skrill are both available web wallets too.
Mobile betting in Zimbabwe
All of the sites listed above are mobile compatible. Punters can tap the links on their smartphones or tablets and be taken directly to the sites. Log in using your desktop details – or sign up on your mobile device – to access the sports book, as well as other gambling services on the go.
Sports betting apps
Many of the world’s leading online sports betting companies will have apps available for smartphones. These allow you to place bets, facilitate withdrawals and generally are one of the most popular ways to bet on sports.
Several of the land-based gambling shops – notably AfricaBets and ZimBet — have popular Android and iOS applications that are regularly downloaded by locals.
Zimbabwe sports betting laws
Sports betting has become a source of income for Zimbabweans. Due to a decade of financial hardships, many engage in the activity to support their families. Since it is 100 per cent legal there are a number of sports betting shops available. Betting has also developed quite incredibly over the last decade with local bookmaker Zimbet offering great markets on local games.
There was a block in sports betting licenses in 2015 to limit the gambling surge, but the pastime has remained legal.
Horse racing gambling is also quite popular with two major tracks in the country for punters – Borrowdale Park in Harare and Matabeleland Turf Club in Bulawayo. There’s also a number of smaller greyhound tracks too.
Zimbabwe’s gambling facilities
There are around 11 cities in Zimbabwe which offer a total of 21 legal gambling facilities. These range from betting shops to horse tracks, as well as casinos.
The most amount of gambling facilities are situated in the city of Harare, where you will find around five casinos offering a number of table games and slots. Harare also hosts the biggest casino in the country, known as Regency Casino Harare and Rainbow Towers Hotel. Here you will find over 12 table games and around 160 slots.