Comparing NJ And New York Sports Betting

Now that New York has finally launched legalized mobile sports betting, a number of the state’s residents will likely stop crossing nearby borders just to place a wager.

With New York slower to launch than three of the five states that it borders, quick jaunts to New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Connecticut became commonplace. That, however, may all have changed as of the morning of Jan. 8, when four mobile sportsbooks went live in New York.

While a welcome convenience for those who had been crossing the George Washington Bridge just to bet legally, the news isn’t as welcome for the state treasuries of New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Connecticut.

It will be enlightening to see in the months ahead how gambling revenues are impacted in those three states, but that’s likely not a concern to New Yorkers who no longer have to leave home to bet on their favorite sporting events. 

That extra time at home could be spent pondering what, if anything, is different regarding the betting regulations in New York compared to New Jersey. Are things largely the same, or are there enough differences to keep some New Yorkers crossing into New Jersey on occasion?

Conversely, are there appealing aspects of New York’s betting laws that will tempt Jerseyites to head to New York to place wagers now and then?

Here’s a look at how the states are similar — and where they are different.

Also Read: NY Sportsbook Bonus Roundup Bet free with up to $5,350

New York’s Tax Rate Dwarfs New Jersey’s

At first blush, why do residents of either state care about the percentage of tax sportsbooks have to pay states on their gross revenues? It’s a legitimate question, but the tax rate directly impacts the betting options between the states.

New Jersey, which launched mobile sports betting in 2018, decided that variety was important when it was drawing up its laws. With 23 online sportsbooks available to anyone of legal betting age, New Jersey offers something for everyone, and the state is bringing in revenue from a plethora of different entities.

With so many partners, New Jersey settled on a 13.5% tax rate on each sportsbook’s gross revenues. That allows each sportsbook the option of offering any number of promotions designed to attract new bettors to their platforms, while also offering promotions to keep existing customers.

New York chose a different approach — believing that less is more, at least in terms of tax revenue for the state’s coffers.

By limiting the field to nine online sportsbooks, New York maximized its yearly agreements with the casinos, while also imposing a 51% tax on gross revenues.

With only four sportsbooks launching on Jan. 8, it remains to be seen if they’ll continually offer promotions that match those offered by New Jersey sportsbooks. That’s been the case initially, but will the tax rate eventually cause New York’s sportsbooks to offer few incentives?

It’s possible that happens, but that could conceivably drive New Yorkers back across the border to New Jersey. If that happens, bettors might switch to a platform not offered in New York, so the promotions in New York may continually match those available in New Jersey.

Also Read: DraftKings New York Promo Bet $5 on NFL For Chance To Win $280

New Jersey Has Edge In Retail Sportsbooks

In terms of numbers, New Jersey has 12 retail sportsbooks, compared to 11 in New York, but numbers don’t tell the whole story.

New York’s 11 sportsbooks are all located in the state’s upstate casinos, leaving them a lengthy car ride from New York City. And residents of NYC have long been heading to the FanDuel sportsbook at Meadowlands Racetrack rather than going upstate.

The vast majority of New Jersey’s sportsbooks are located in Atlantic City’s casinos, meaning bettors can wager on sporting events when not playing the slots or the casino’s table games. And there are far more New Jersey residents within close proximity to Atlantic City than there are New Yorkers living close to the upstate casinos.

Another advantage for New Jersey is that there are sportsbooks at both Monmouth Park and Freehold Raceway for those who want to wager on the NFL or NBA while also betting on horse racing in person.

Also Read: How To Bet On The Super Bowl In New York

New Jersey Dominates In Mobile Sports Betting Options

With 23 mobile sports betting platforms currently available in the Garden State, you’d be hard-pressed not to find an app to your liking. All of the top platforms are available, as well as less-heralded sites that also offer plenty of wagering options.

For now, New York has four mobile sports betting platforms in Draft Kings, FanDuel, Caesars, and Bet Rivers. Five additional platforms are working their way through the approval process and will launch on a rolling basis.

Nine options, of course, are nothing to sneeze at considering Connecticut has three platforms and Rhode Island has just one mobile sports betting option.

But if you truly crave variety — and aren’t enamored with the “big guns” in mobile sports betting, —New Jersey is the state for you. If you do like playing the most popular platforms, then you can’t go wrong in either state.

Also Read: What types of bets are available with New York online sports betting?

States Share Restrictions On College Sports Betting

If you want to bet on Syracuse, St. John’s, or another collegiate team from New York State, you have to venture outside of the state.

Conversely, if you want to bet on Rutgers, Seton Hall, or any other school based in New Jersey, you’ll have to travel to New York or Pennsylvania.

Neither state allows bets on its in-state teams and that’s not the only similarity between the two states in that regard. For the most part, the New York State Gaming Commission followed New Jersey’s lead when it comes to betting on college sports.

Many New Jersey residents were surprised to learn they couldn’t bet on December’s Army-Navy game, but New Jersey bans betting on any collegiate event happening in the state, even if the game features two out-of-state teams.

It’s the same in New York, meaning residents of New York State won’t be able to bet on the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament games that are held in Buffalo in March.

Prop bets involving in-state collegiate players are banned in both New York and New Jersey. New York also prohibits any prop bets involving players no matter the team or the state in which the game is played.

New Jersey, however, allows player prop bets on games played outside of New Jersey as long as the players aren’t on a New Jersey team. In other words, plenty of player prop bets were available in New Jersey for the College Football Playoff National Championship Game.

About the Author

Mark Ashenfelter

Mark Ashenfelter is a Connecticut-based sportswriter and editor who has covered everything from NASCAR to the Philadelphia Phillies and Eagles. A life-long Philadelphia sports fan, in addition to Penn State football and the Baltimore Orioles, he's previously worked at ESPN, NASCAR Scene magazine, and the Daily Local News in Chester County, PA.

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