Romania has a long history of legal gambling and betting, beginning with the establishment of the national lottery in 1906. Betting was temporarily illegal when the country was occupied by the Soviet Union. However, its legality was reestablished in 1990. Romania has over three hundred land-based betting shops, several of them licensed. The country has no established laws on online betting. It is neither legal nor illegal. While several Romanian betting sites exist, none of them are licensed or regulated by the government.

Romania Online Betting Information

Sports betting is one of the most popular forms of betting in the country. Romanians enjoy placing bets on the following sports:

  • Soccer
  • Handball
  • Basketball
  • Rugby
  • Gymnastics
  • Tennis
  • Boxing

Romanian betting sites allow players to bet on both regular games and major events. Romanian bettors can wager on the Olympics, the FIFA World Cup and the Rugby World Cup. In addition, the best Romanian betting sites allow you to place bets while a game is in progress. This is known as live betting. Live betting is an exciting alternative to standard betting. It gives players a second chance if their first bet does not look promising.

Because the Romanian government does not provide licenses to online gambling services, all Romanian betting sites are based in foreign countries. They offer their services in Romanian and allow players to place bets using the Leu, the official currency of the country. Players will want to be extra careful when choosing a Romanian betting site because there is no government body making sure each site is offering quality services.

Attributes Of The Best Romania Betting Sites

The best Romanian betting sites provide fast and accurate payouts. Because the Romanian government does not provide licenses, some betting sites have slow payouts or skip payments altogether. You will want to choose a Romanian betting site that has a reputation for providing accurate payments on a set schedule. Choosing a site that has been around for several years increases the chances you will have a good betting experience.

Players should choose a betting site that provides bonuses and promotions. The best Romanian betting sites give players a bonus just for registering on their site. Players should consult a site’s promotional calendar for information on when special rewards are offered. The best Romanian betting sites give players extra money to bet with for winning a certain number of bets or betting on a specified day.

The best Romanian betting sites give players several deposit and withdrawal options. These usually include bank transfers, credit card deposits and eWallet transactions. Sites should always offer some form of encryption to make sure any information provided during a money transfer is secure.

Romanian betting sites give players a chance to add excitement to their favorite sports by placing wagers on them. Although no site is licensed, the best Romanian betting sites give players a hassle free online experience.

Gambling Laws

Most forms of online betting are legal in Romania thanks to legislative efforts that went into law in 2015. Prior to 2015, Romanian gambling laws were a mess thanks to burdensome regulations and a failure to even establish an agency to enforce the law.

In 2009, Emergency Ordinance No. 77/2009 was passed and replaced previous gaming legislation enacted in 1998. EO 77/2009 made it a criminal offense to organize online gambling although it provided no means for enforcement. Players continued to visit foreign betting sites with no legal risk after this law was passed.

The Romanian government followed up with another set of regulations in 2010 that laid out a licensing process for online betting websites. Law 246/2010 and a secondary set of regulations were implemented in 2010 to provide licensing guidelines for companies wishing to offer fixed-odds sports betting, casino games and real money poker.

The European Commission immediately noted serious problems with the law. Most worrisome was the requirement that any gaming company seeking a license must maintain a physical presence in Romania and hold an offline gaming license. The Commission found these requirements to be contradictory to European Union agreements regarding the free movement of goods and services between member states; the offline license requirement clearly favoured domestic operators.

Even worse, the 2010 laws failed to establish a regulatory body to issue licenses. So even if a betting site wanted to jump through all the hoops necessary to achieve a license, it had no means to do so.

Predictably, these regulations resulted in many betting websites ignoring the law and serving the country in defiance of the law. Players continued to play online despite the law considering it a criminal act to play at unlicensed foreign operators – also due to the lack of a regulatory body.

In 2013, Romanian officials enacted Emergency Ordinance No. 20/2013 to establish the missing regulatory body. The ordinance created the National Office for Gambling (ONJN) to enforce gaming laws, monitor the industry, issue licenses and resolve disputes. The establishment of the ONJN raised fears that Romania would finally begin cracking down on foreign websites and their Romanian customers. Thankfully, these fears never materialized due to a lack of enforcement.

A 2015 law finally addressed the EU’s concerns and streamlined the licensing process for online operators. Emergency Ordinance 92/2014 removed the requirement that licensees establish a presence in Romania. Now, anyone based out of any EU country or any European Free Trade Association country may apply for a Romanian betting site license.

92/2014 also lowered taxes owed by players by implementing a tiered tax system:

  • 1% tax on winnings less than €15,000
  • 16% tax on winnings between €15,000 and €100,000
  • 25% tax on winnings greater than €100,000

Parimutuel Horse Racing Betting in Romania

At one point, the Romanian Lottery operator held a monopoly over all online lottery games and parimutuel horse racing betting. It is unclear if that monopoly remains in effect today, but licensed Romanian betting sites do offer horse fixed-odds horse racing bes.

If you live in Romania and enjoy betting on horse races online, you can visit most licensed gaming websites to place wagers on horses. These are not parimutuel-style wagers (where all wagers are pooled together and payouts are determined by the amount of money taken in). Instead, they offer traditional sports-style wagers in which the oddsmakers set the odds themselves.