Mobile sports betting is officially live in Pennsylvania. The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) approved SugarHouse PA for three days of testing during which the mobile app and website will be open to the public with limited hours of operation.
- Tuesday May 28: 4 PM to 12 AM EDT
- Wednesday May 29: 2:30 PM to 12 AM
- Thursday May 30: 12 PM to 12 AM
- Friday May 31: Full Launch
If all goes well during the testing phase, the PGCB will give SugarHouse PA final approval to go live 24/7. We do not anticipate any major issues popping up during this time as SugarHouse parent company Rush Street Gaming already runs a successful mobile sportsbook in New Jersey.
You can visit the PlaySugarHouse website to place bets online from your desktop or to download the Android version of the mobile app during the testing phase.
An app for the iPhone is still incoming. For now, iPhone users can still bet online through the mobile-friendly website at PlaySugarHouse.com.
What to Expect from SugarHouse Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania’s sports betting law is modeled similarly to the law passed in New Jersey aside from tax rates and licensing fees. For the most part, SugarHouse PA looks and functions a lot like SugarHouse NJ with a few minor tweaks.
Both are run by Rush Street Gaming with odds services provided by Kambi. SugarHouse has a unique betting platform not run by any of the other established providers (such as DraftKings and William Hill), but the interface is one of the better on the market with diverse wagering options and functional software.
One key difference between the two related to college sports betting rules. In New Jersey, sportsbooks are not allowed to take wagers on local college teams and on college games taking place within the state. That restriction does not exist in Pennsylvania.
In-play wagering is also offered through the Pennsylvania version of the SugarHouse app. This is an important inclusion as many of you will soon find. Although in-play bets have been offered at land-based casinos for quite some time, nothing can match being able to watch a game in real time with mobile phone in hand and placing short-term wagers throughout the duration of the game.
In New Jersey, in-play wagering already accounts for about 80% of total betting handle among the state’s licensed betting sites. It will be absolutely no surprise to see similar numbers eventually come out of Pennsylvania.
Registering for an Account
Anyone 21 or older and located in Pennsylvania may sign up for an account during testing hours (see above) or at any time after SugarHouse receives final approval from the PGCB.
You will still need to sign up for a new account at SugarHouse PA even if you have already crossed into New Jersey to sign up for an account over there. However, existing accountholders have an expedited registration process that will get you up and running quickly.
Making a Deposit
SugarHouse PA has launched with a handful of deposit options during the testing phase. These include credit cards, debit cards, a prepaid card issued by SugarHouse and cash deposits in-person at SugarHouse Casino in Philadelphia.
This is a few options fewer than those offered to SugarHouse NJ customers. Over in New Jersey, customers may deposit with all of the above plus eCheck, online bill pay, PayNearMe, PayPal and Neteller. We expect most of those to be made available in Pennsylvania as well in due time.
New Customer Bonus
SugarHouse Online offers the same welcome bonus in Pennsylvania as it does in New Jersey. That means you can use the bonus code 250MATCH when you make your first deposit to get an extra 100% added to your account for up to $250 in bonus funds.
The bonus comes with a very reasonable 1x rollover, which means you’ll need to place a sum of wagers equal to the amount of the bonus before withdrawing. Example: if you deposit $50 and get a $50 bonus, you will need to wager at least $50 before withdrawing your bonus funds.
Other PA Betting Sites Coming Soon
PGCB Spokesman Richard McGarvey told the Philly Inquirer yesterday that other mobile PA sportsbooks will be launching soon. Although he did not give an exact date for future launches, he confirmed “others are getting close.”
Parx Casino has also confirmed it is close to launching its own sports betting app during a PGCB meeting earlier this month. On May 15th, Parx Casino told the PGCB (pg. 22) its mobile and desktop betting site is under development and should be ready for testing by the end of the month.
Additionally, Parx representatives said they will be ready to launch online casino games during the week of July 15th as planned by the PGCB.
Some of the other casinos that could be close to launching their mobile betting apps include Harrah’s Philadelphia (partnered with William Hill), Valley Forge (partnered with FanDuel), Presque Isle Downs (partnered with BetAmerica), Mohegan Sun Pocono (partnered with Unibet), Mount Airy (partnered with The Stars Group / Fox Bet) and Rivers Casino (Rush Street Gaming).