At most top-tier USA sportsbook sites, there are numerous sportsbook online deposit options to choose from. One of the newest methods that you’ll come across is something called Zelle. A few sites – namely Bovada – support Zelle specifically, but you can actually use the service to fund any betting account, provided the operator accepts Bitcoin (BTC) deposits.
To use Zelle effectively, you’ll need to know how the payment service works and understand its limitations. However, once you do, you may find that Zelle is the perfect way to fund your sports betting account. Best of all, if you do any online banking at all, you probably already have full access to Zelle, so read on to find out how to use this perk to quickly and easily top off your sports betting bankroll.
Top Sports Betting Sites
That Support Zelle Deposits
There is currently only one major USA online sportsbook that specifically accepts Zelle, and that’s Bovada. However, if you’re willing to do a little bit of legwork (which we explain below), you can actually use Zelle to fund any offshore betting site that accepts Bitcoin deposits.
Bovada - The First Zelle Sportsbook For US Bettors
Bovada is nothing if not first. It’s in first place as the number-one sportsbook in the US, its parent brand (Bodog) was among the first to bring online sports betting to the country, and it was one of the first sportsbooks that accept Bitcoin. Now, Bovada can call itself the very first Zelle sportsbook, too.
With support for dozens of sports and thousands of daily betting lines, Bovada is a great choice for new and veteran sports betting enthusiasts. And with Zelle-to-Bitcoin options at the site itself, Bovada makes it simple for first-time BTC buyers to make same-day deposits and start betting on their favorite players and teams. (Note: Bovada does not accept new members from the states of NV, NJ, DE, and MD.)
What Is Zelle?
Zelle is a peer-to-peer payment service that is owned by a consortium of major US banks. While it’s only good for US-based transfers and can’t be used to send money directly to offshore sportsbooks, you can use Zelle to purchase Bitcoin from private sellers via LocalBitcoins.com.
Using Zelle in tandem with LocalBitcoins is a quick way to buy BTC, and it allows first-time crypto users to access Bitcoin without the typical 7-10 day wait that sites like Coinbase levy on their customers. This is especially important for sports bettors who often can’t afford to wait a week or more before betting.
How To Fund Your Sportsbook With Zelle
There are two ways to fund your sportsbook with Zelle. The first method works at any online sports betting site that accepts Bitcoin, while the second method is specific to books that advertise branded Zelle support, like Bovada.
Because Bovada has a dedicated walkthrough for users who select to deposit with Zelle, we’re going to focus on the more general method here. Follow these brief instructions, and you can use Zelle to make deposits at other top USA sportsbook sites like BetOnline, SportsBetting, MyBookie, and more.
- Sign up at the sports betting site of your choice.
- Make sure your bank supports Zelle. If you use a mobile banking app, your bank likely already offers Zelle as one of their customer amenities.
- Register for a free account at LocalBitcoins.com.
- Find a US-based Bitcoin seller at LocalBitcoins, and purchase BTC using Zelle. You can do this from your online or mobile banking account.
- Receive Bitcoin in your LocalBitcoins wallet. (At this step, you can move the BTC to other wallets, exchanges, etc.)
- At your online sportsbook site, log in and select the Bitcoin deposit option. You will be given your sportsbook’s BTC wallet address.
- Send BTC from your wallet to your sportsbook’s wallet.
- Your money will be credited to your account in minutes, and you can start wagering on sports immediately.
Zelle Sportsbook Advantages
The main benefit of using Zelle is that Zelle-to-BTC trading allows you to load up your betting bankroll almost instantly. Remember: Zelle is a way to quickly buy Bitcoin via the LocalBitcoins network. Because other BTC buy-in services like Coinbase can take up to 10 days to process, using Zelle to transfer USD to BTC in just a few minutes opens up a world of opportunity for those new to the cryptocurrency scene.
Zelle Sportsbook Disadvantages
There are no real cons when using Zelle to fund your betting account. Just remember that it can add a bit of complexity, as you have to open a LocalBitcoins account. Of course, doing so is fast and free, and since crypto’s the future, you’re going to need a Bitcoin wallet anyway. By using Zelle to seamlessly transition from your bank account to your crypto account, you can get ahead of the game – and bet on the game – in just a few minutes.
Zelle Pro-Tip: While not a detriment, it is important to remember that Zelle is based on knowing and trusting your seller. Banks will not reimburse or reverse accidental or fraudulent Zelle transfers, so it’s imperative that you trust who you’re sending your money to. Fortunately, it’s safe to use LocalBitcoins, as their transactions are all guaranteed.
Zelle Sportsbook FAQs
Can I use Zelle at any offshore sports betting site?
Yes, you can, albeit indirectly. Remember: Zelle is a way to quickly buy Bitcoin. Whatever you do with that Bitcoin – including using it to fund your offshore sports betting account – is entirely up to you.
Why can’t I deposit USD directly into my sportsbook account with Zelle?
Zelle is limited to US transfers only. Since all the best USA-friendly sportsbooks are offshore, you can’t send them USD straight from Zelle. However, you can use Zelle to buy Bitcoin from a US-based seller, and you can then send that BTC overseas, quickly and safely.
How old do I have to be to use a Zelle sportsbook?
In order to use Zelle, you only have to be 18 years of age. All the top USA sportsbook sites also require their members to be at least 18, so there are no conflicts. (However, please note that Internet sports betting is expressly prohibited in WA and CT, though it has historically been safe to wager online in these states. If you live in WA or CT, proceed at your own risk.)
How can I tell if my bank has Zelle support?
Zelle was developed by several major banks including Bank of America, BB&T, Capital One, Citibank, JPMorgan Chase, PNC Bank, US Bank, and Wells Fargo. That said, most regional and national US banks offer Zelle support, and it’s usually listed as an option in their mobile banking apps. Contact your local bank for more information.
Does Zelle charge any service fees?
While banks are technically able to charge service fees for using Zelle to transfer funds to and from your account, most have opted to waive these in order to support the service and promote adoption. For now, your bank should not charge you any fees to use Zelle.
Can I use Zelle to collect my sportsbook payouts?
Unfortunately, you cannot collect sports betting payouts via Zelle. Remember, Zelle is US-only, so offshore books can’t use it to send you money. However, you can be paid out in Bitcoin, and that BTC can be credited to your LocalBitcoins wallet in just minutes. Cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin are the fastest way to get your winnings from sportsbooks.
Are there any deposit bonuses for using Zelle?
At Bovada, if you use the branded Zelle deposit option and follow the instructions, you cannot claim any special Zelle or Bitcoin bonuses (though all normal bonuses apply). However, if you use Zelle to acquire BTC on your own, you can deposit using the Bitcoin option and claim special BTC rewards and perks.
Is LocalBitcoins.com safe to use?
Yes. LocalBitcoins.com is safe to use, and you can trust BTC sellers on the platform not to cheat you. This is because the site holds the BTC for each sale in escrow. If a seller absconds with your funds, LocalBitcoins simply awards you the BTC already allotted for you.
Can I buy other cryptocurrencies with Zelle?
Yes, but not at LocalBitcoins, which is Bitcoin only. In fact, you can buy almost anything with Zelle, as the banks take a hands-off approach to monitoring Zelle transactions. In many ways, using Zelle is like using cash. However, Zelle is not anonymous, so please limit use of the platform to lawful activities like buying BTC to fund your USA sportsbook account.