BookMaker is a US-facing sportsbook of long-standing that has been accepting wagers since 1996, which goes to show the owners of this operation are clearly doing something right. The website has accepted millions of wagers since its launch.
To say the history of BookMaker is a colorful one would be an understatement. BookMaker has strong ties with the Costa Rica-based sportsbook BetCRIS (est. 1985), but nevertheless, these are two separate entities.
The original BookMaker was founded by Mike Hale and Scott Barrett. The two left the United States for Costa Rica in 1996 where they set up a bookmaking shop that targeted punters from the US. This was originally a telephone-based betting operation but it was taken to the web in February 1997. By May 2000, the sportsbook had already reached a yearly turnover of more than $100 million and had more than 31,000 customers.
Today, BookMaker remains the biggest US-friendly betting site. Registered punters are presented with a rich selection of sports, including ever-popular options like football, soccer, basketball, hockey, tennis, and martial arts.
Additionally, the website offers a separate section for horse racing as well as an online casino with a collection of slots and table games. BookMaker accommodates both professional and casual gamblers regardless of their betting needs.
It provides round-the-clock customer support via a live chat facility and works with several US-friendly banking solutions, including cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Stellar, and Ripple. The sportsbook is home to a generous rewards program, called BetPoints, but players are also treated to a variety of regular reload bonuses.
Betting Features at Bookmaker
The online sportsbook operated by BookMaker is powered by the privately-held software company Digital Gaming Solutions. While browsing the sportsbook, we were pleased to find its interface is intuitive enough to allow for quick and easy navigation from section to section.
On the left side of the main sportsbook page, you have featured all the sporting events available for the respective day. Here you will also find quick links to the live betting markets for the day as well as the most popular events.
Below you have a tab that leads you to the markets where betting is about to close soon. The section is incredibly well-organized, showing you the leagues, the teams, and how much time you have until the respective market closes.
All available markets are listed below, you simply need to click on your chosen sport to reveal the drop-down menu with its corresponding sports. BookMaker supports a broad range of bet types, including the moneyline, halves, futures, teasers, pleasers, and props.
The odds are set by default in the American format, which makes sense for a betting site that whose main target audience consists of punters from the USA. However, there is an odds converter feature built into the sportsbook that works to the benefit of punters from other countries. The live chat button is pinned to the lower right corner of the sportsbook so that you can always reach out to the customer support staff.
The Sportsbook of Bookmaker
If you are from the United States and are looking for a diverse selection of markets for your favorite local sports, BookMaker is your spot. The website focuses on sports popular in the USA, offering some of the earliest lines in the industry. It covers all events from major US leagues like the NFL, the NBA, and the NHL. There is plenty of choice for all sporting fans from the country.
On the negative side, the odds on offer are not always the best you can find out there. BookMaker compensates with high betting limits, in fact, the highest veteran sports bettors could hope for.
This may be a US-focused sportsbook but it still delivers enough options for customers from other countries. Sports like cricket, tennis, soccer, snooker, handball, and rugby all receive great coverage at BookMaker. Politics odds for prop bets are also available.
If you grow tired of sports betting, you can navigate to BookMaker’s racebook. There you will find a good selection of markets for horse races held at some of the biggest tracks in the world, including US tracks like Hoosier Park and Harrah’s Philadelphia.
American Football at BookMaker
BookMaker shines in this department offering US punters a heavy coverage of all major football leagues and events. You just have to click on the football tab and the drop-down menu will open, showing you the range of available leagues and markets.
Both amateur and professional leagues are covered throughout the football season. Some of the leagues you will find here include the NFL, the AFC, the NFC, the NCAA, and the Canadian Football League. The NFL events are covered every week, with the sportsbook offering weekly matchup odds.
The possibilities are seemingly endless where bet types are concerned. You can bet the moneyline or place a prop, future, over/under or halves wager. Moreover, there is extensive information on the website that can help punters make informed decisions with their bets. They also show you the best approaches for handicappers and point what mistakes you should avoid.
Basketball at BookMaker
The coverage of basketball events is just as extensive at BookMaker. Americans looking to back their favorite local team can make punts on events from the NBA and the NCAA. Less seasoned bettors are provided with the latest basketball news and are offered picks for the upcoming events featured at BookMaker.
Some of the bet types you will find in this section of the sportsbook include the moneyline, totals, 1st halves, props, and teasers. If you wish, you can also parlay your bets for the chance to pocket bigger profits.
International games and competitions are not left out, either. These are going throughout the year. There is always some betting action for punters who are keen on the hoops. The sportsbook’s selection of international basketball features countries like Argentina, Finland, France, Germany, Poland, Italy, and the Philippines. Bets on the Eurocup and the Euroleague are also accepted.
Hockey at BookMaker
BookMaker offers a strong selection of hockey markets, with a good choice of NHL events although making punts on college hockey is also possible here. The lines for in-play markets are updated every minute which gives punters an accurate outlook, increasing their chances of placing a successful bet.
The types of bets are identical to those available for the other sports. These include point spreads, moneyline, and totals. If you are looking to experiment with more advanced types of wagers, you have a choice from futures, teasers, and pleasers.
The sportsbook caters to less experienced hockey fans with an entire section full of articles about the latest hockey games. It also features picks for those who are unable to make up their minds.
BookMaker does not restrict bettors’ choice to North American hockey events only. On the contrary, here you will find international options as well including events from the Deutschland Cup and the Russian Hockey Championship.
Martial Arts at BookMaker
Everyone knows US sporting fans are quite keen on mixed martial arts, so it makes sense for a US-friendly sportsbook to cater to this demand by offering a decent range of MMA markets. This is precisely what you will find at Bookmaker.
Punters have a choice from a nice array of live matches and moneylines for the UFC betting action. Of course, making punts on other MMA leagues is also possible at BookMaker. There is extensive information about MMA fighters and past events in the sportsbook’s article section.
Horse Racing at BookMaker
BookMaker gives its racebook section less priority but it still features diverse options for those who prefer to bet on horses and greyhounds. Greater stress is placed on locally held races, with heavy coverage of North American tracks like Dover Downs, Golden Gate Fields, Penn National, Hawthorne Park, Harrah’s Hoosier Park, and Churchill Downs where the annual Kentucky Derby is hosted.
The racebook also features international competitions like those held at the Thurles Greyhound Stadium in Ireland, the Turffontein Racecourse in South Africa, Toronto’s Woodbine Racetrack, and the English Chelmsford City Racecourse. Events that take place on Australian soil are also well covered.
You have all the information you could need at your fingertips. When you select a track from the main racebook tab, you are presented with details about the track itself like its class level and the maximum bet profit.
Further information is provided when you click on a specific race. The software shows you the gate numbers of all horses, their names, the names of the jockeys, and the moneyline odds for each competing equine. The starting times of the races are listed as well.
BookMaker may be one of the oldest and longest-running online sportsbooks in the industry but it still manages to move with the times. The sportsbook is fully optimized to run on mobile devices. It performs rather decent on iOS and Android.
No download is necessary if you want to access BookMaker on the go. You can load it straight in your mobile browser whatever it happens to be. The sportsbook works well in all popular browsers including Chrome, Firefox, Opera, and Explorer.
Navigation was easy in our experience. When you load the website on mobile, the first thing you see is an oversized promotional banner that prompts you to join the betting action and opt in for a welcome bonus.
Below, we have several tabs that lead you to the main menu, the promotional offers, the help center, and the contact page. The green chat button is pinned to the lower right corner no matter which section of the sportsbook you browse. You can get in touch with support even if you are not logged-in your BookMaker account.
In the main menu, you will find the current odds for all sporting events that are to take place during the day. This also leads you to the in-play section where you can punt on games as they progress. Here you will find a long schedule of live televised sporting events, with odds updated by the minute. BookMaker grades and credits mobile punters’ accounts in real time.
The mobile version of BookMaker offers an equally diverse selection of markets, with heavy coverage of football, basketball, soccer, tennis, hockey, golf, martial arts, boxing, and snooker, among others.
There is also an extensive Help Center section with information wager types, cryptocurrencies, and technical issues. Account holders can choose between moneyline and decimal odds. Similarly to the desktop version, the web app is available only in English.
Bonuses and Promotional Offers
BookMaker is not short of promotional offers, incentivizing new players to join the sportsbook with four different welcome bonuses. Those who already hold accounts are rewarded with reload bonuses on their subsequent payments.
Bonuses are granted for friend referrals as well. Punters keen on horse racing are treated to racebook rebates. BookMaker also runs the BetPoints rewards program, crediting punters with comps each time they bet in the sportsbook or at the casino.
Welcome Bonuses Assortment at BookMaker
Welcome bonuses are one area in which BookMaker really stands out from the competition. Some of the welcome offers are redeemable with cryptocurrency deposits only. Below is a quick rundown of the four offers new members can pick from.
- A 25% first-deposit cryptocurrency bonus up to $500 (8x rollover)
- A 50% first-deposit cryptocurrency bonus up to $500 (15x rollover)
- A 100% first-deposit cryptocurrency bonus up to $300 (30x rollover)
Punters who deposit with any of the other supported banking methods can redeem a 15% welcome sports bonus up to $600 plus a 50% bonus up to $1,000 for the casino (5x rollover for the sports bonus and 80x rollover for the casino offer).
After you make up your mind which welcome offer you want to redeem, you must proceed to the cashier and opt in for your chosen bonus with a minimum deposit of $100.
The terms and conditions state that the bonuses apply to recreational bettors only, so we take it professional punters are excluded from participation. Before you send a cashout request, you must clear the rollover of your bonus by betting on events from the sportsbook.
Racebook bets do not contribute. The rollover applies to both the bonus and the deposit amount. All four bonuses are available only to customers who register from Canada or the United States.
Refer a Friend Offer
Existing customers are rewarded with referral bonuses for each person they bring to the sportsbook. The maximum value of this 10% bonus is $500 per friend. There is no restriction on the number of people you refer.
To become eligible, you need to invite one or more of your friends by sharing a link to the sportsbook via email, text or on social media. The referred person must sign up at BookMaker, top up their new account with $100 or more within 30 days, and roll over their first deposit at least once in the sportsbook.
The referral bonus remains valid for 30 days after redemption and comes with a rollover of 3x before a withdrawal. The sportsbook’s team takes between 24 and 48 hours to evaluate the referring punter and their referred friend before they credit the bonus.
Reload Bonuses for Existing Customers
There are tons of reload bonuses for existing customers of BookMaker. Some of these are available to punters who process their payments with cryptocurrencies while the rest can be claimed with the other available deposit methods. Let’s first check out the offers for cryptocurrency depositors:
- A 25% reload bonus up to $5,000 for Diamond-level customers
- A 15% reload bonus up to $600 for Gold-level customers
- A 25% reload bonus up to $2,500 for Platinum-level customers
These are all cash bonuses, meaning that you can withdraw their value once you clear the 8x rollover requirements (on both the deposit and the bonus amounts). You qualify with a deposit of $10 or more. Once again, these offers are available only to BookMaker customers who are based in Canada and the United States.
Returning members from the two countries who use the other supported banking options have a choice from the following reload offers:
- A 10% reload bonus in cash up to $400 for Gold-level members
- A 15% reload cash bonus up to $600 for Platinum-level members
- A 20% reload cash bonus up to $800 for Diamond-level customers
All of these offers are granted for subsequent deposits of $50 or more. You can cash them out after you cover a rollover of 4x for the 10% reload bonus and 5x for the other two offers. The rollover includes both the deposit and the value of the cash bonus.
Rebates for Horse Racing Fans
Fans of horse racing are not left out, either. There are fewer promotions for the racebook which makes sense considering it is the less popular section of BookMaker. Nevertheless, race bettors have the chance to claim a daily rebate on their racing wagers.
The cool thing about this offer is that it applies to all customers regardless of whether their wagers win or lose. Your weekly betting volume is irrelevant in this case, the promotion is open to everyone. However, rebates are not granted for canceled bets or payouts of $2.20 or less.
The offer applies to horse racing wagers like place, win, show, and exotic bets. Exotic wagers are eligible for an 8% cashback while win, place, and show bets can earn you a 3% cashback.
These percentages apply to online bettors only. Those who make their punts over the telephone receive a 2% rebate for win, place, and show wagers and 5% rebate for exotic bets. Not all racetracks qualify for the rebates. The exceptions are the harness horse races at Meadowlands, Yonkers, and all racetracks from the E and D categories.
The BetPoints Rewards Program
BookMaker rewards its loyal customers through the BetPoints program where they earn comp points each time they wager on eligible sporting events or make a bet in the casino section. The points are redeemable for cash.
Once you sign up and deposit, you automatically receive Gold membership status. The number of points you collect determines your status and the perks you are entitled to. Below are the specifics for all three BetPoints tiers.
|Rewards Status||Number of Points Needed||Cryptocurrency Reload Bonus||Bonuses for Other Available Methods|
|Gold||0 to 29,999 points||A 15% cash bonus up to $600 (8x rollover)||10% up to $400 (4x rollover)|
|Platinum||30,000 to 299,999 points||A 25% cash bonus up to $2,500 (8x rollover)||15% up to $600 (5x rollover)|
|Diamond||300,000 points or more||A 25% cash bonus up to $5,000 (8x rollover)||20% up to $800 (5x rollover)|
Live betting and line bets on the NFL, the NBA, and NCAA basketball or football are excluded from the program and will not earn you any BetPoints. The rate at which you accumulate points depends on the type of wagers you place.
You get 1 point for straight wagers, 2 points for accumulators with 2 to 15 selections, 1.5 points for teasers, and 1 point for if bets and reverse bets.
Like most online sportsbooks that target the betting audience from the United States, BookMaker is short of banking options. Punters do not have much of a choice where payments at this betting site are concerned. What is available to you also depends on which country you register from.
BookMaker offers several types of deposit methods, but cryptocurrencies are the most popular solution. Punters can use Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, EOS, Ripple, Ethereum, Litecoin, and Stellar. Cryptocurrency deposits are the quickest, generally taking between ten and sixty minutes.
The sportsbook charges extra on deposits but if you load $100 or more into your balance with a cryptocurrency, they will lift the additional fees. You can deposit with credit and debit cards as well but things are a bit tricky if you are from the United States. Your bank may block transactions to foreign gambling sites like BookMaker. The sportsbook reimburses overcharges on card payments within 60 minutes after the deposit was made.
Person-to-person deposits are also accepted, with the sportsbook reimbursing agency fees for payments over $300. Punters who deposit less than that with this method are charged $7 extra by BookMaker. This method is also less time-efficient as deposits may take up to 30 minutes.
The minimum and maximum limits on payments are method-specific. Unfortunately, the sports betting operator has chosen to keep this information secretive. There is no payment section on the website where punters can check and compare the limits of different deposit methods. The only way to gain this information is to sign up, open the cashier, and hope there will be a suitable method for you.
As for withdrawals, these are possible with a variety of cryptocurrencies, person-to-person transfers, paper checks, and bank wire transfers. The exact limits are again based on the method you use, as you can see below. The fees imposed on some methods are ludicrous, though.
|Withdrawal Solution||Minimum per Request||Maximum per Request||Applicable Fees|
|Bank Wire Transfer||$10,000.00||$20,000.00||$600.00|
|MoneyGram P2P||$100.00||$350 ($1,400 per month)||Between $25 and $50|
|Western Union P2P||$100.00||$450 ($1,800 per month)||Between $25 and $50|
|Ria P2P||$100.00||$500 ($2,000 per month)||Between $25 and $50|
Waiting times vary between different solutions but BookMaker generally evaluates the requests within 24 to 72 hours. Check the exact timeframes below.
- Up to 48 hours for cryptocurrency withdrawals and paper checks
- Between 24 and 72 hours for person-to-person transfers
- Between 3 and 5 working days for bank wire transfers
The sportsbook processes withdrawals on business days only. Punters who use cryptocurrencies are entitled to up to five withdrawals per week (i.e. one request per day). Those who cash out with other methods can send only one request every seven days.
BookMaker gives customers an incredibly broad range of supported currencies. These include USD, SEK, NOK, GBP, EUR, CAD, DKK, BRL, JPY, CHY, PEN, PAB, GTQ, PLN, AUD, THB, RWF, VEF, NIO, COP, ARS, PYG, HNL, PHP, BOB, JMD, KRW, and SRD.
Customer Support and Security
BookMaker customers have unlimited access to the support service which is available at all times via the chat facility. You simply must click the green chat icon in the lower right part of the screen and choose your query’s category from the drop-down menu.
One downside of the chat support is that it is available only in English, which works to the detriment of international customers who need assistance. This is partially understandable considering BookMaker is aimed mostly at US punters.
The chat representatives provide a very quick response. Each time we resorted to their services, they answered back within a few seconds and gave us information on all follow-up questions we had. One chat representative even took the time to walk us through the registration process.
The operator also offers assistance via email but the email addresses are different for the different website sections. They have posted firstname.lastname@example.org for the horse racing department. Toll-free telephone lines are available for customers calling from the United States and Canada.
- Call 1-877-827-3978 for general customer service
- Dial 1-855-535-4947 to reach the Bitcoin team
- Call 1-888-218-4629 for sports wagering on the phone and 1-877-833-0813 for racebook phone wagering
As for security, the website relies on SSL encryptions to keep its punters’ details private and protected. An additional level of security is ensured with the unique identification PIN code each customer receives upon registration.
The website’s footer also contains a link to a responsible gambling page where punters can find the numbers of several help telephone lines (for the US and Canada). The sports betting operator can close customers’ accounts temporarily or permanently at their request. You need to get in touch with the support team for this purpose.
Licenses and Restricted Countries
BookMaker is licensed under the jurisdiction of Costa Rica, with its main offices headquartered in this country as well. As some punters may already know, this licensing jurisdiction has very lax gambling regulations, if any.
Pretty much, the only requirements to obtain one such license are to have your company’s registered offices based in the country, to provide some basic information about its owners, and pay a license fee of $15,000.
To our knowledge, gambling businesses licensed there are not even taxed for their operations. They can provide their services to everyone except for Costa Rica residents.
Considering all this, it makes sense that some punters are reluctant to register and transfer money to Costa Rica-licensed online sportsbooks. With that said, you should not hold its license against BookMaker. This is a gambling company with over twenty years of experience in the industry.
While it is true that the website changed ownerships on multiple occasions, BookMaker has been enjoying a consistently good reputation among bettors throughout its existence, with most customers from the USA reporting generally positive experiences.
There are very few country restrictions here. You cannot register if you are based in Australia, the UK or France.