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Ian Bruce

There are many ways of shifting money to and from online betting site accounts. Here we look at the best betting payment methods that are currently available in the UK. We’ll explore what’s available, what each method offers and how to choose the best payment method for you.

Legal Betting Payment Methods in a Nutshell

The UK Gambling Commission banned the use of credit cards for gambling purposes in April 2020. That ban was introduced because credit cards made it easy for people to get into debt by gambling more than they could afford to lose. And that’s why you can no longer find any legal credit card betting sites in the UK. Fortunately, there are plenty of alternative sports betting payment methods that can be used to fund an account with an online bookmaker. Some of the most popular options are:

  • Debit Card
  • PayPal
  • Paysafecard
  • Google Pay
  • Apple Pay
  • Skrill
  • Neteller
  • Trustly
  • Pay by Mobile
  • Bank Transfer

Every one of these online betting payment methods is unique, so let’s take a quick look at each one in turn to summarise what they are and how they work.

Betting Payment Methods

Debit Card

Debit cards have been used to make betting site deposits for decades, and they are still the most popular option by far among UK sports bettors. Also known as a bank card, a debit card is linked directly to a bank account. Any purchase or cash transfer made with a debit card is funded at the point of transaction by the linked account. In other words, the cash that you spend with a debit card will be deducted from your bank account straight away. If you don’t have enough money in the account to fund the transaction, it will be declined by the bank.

One of the best things about using debit cards is that most people who have a bank account already have one. They are also accepted at almost all of the safest online betting sites.


PayPal is probably the most famous e-wallet in the world. Millions of people use it for online shopping and cash transfers, and there are now quite a few PayPal betting sites for bettors to choose from. Because it’s a wallet, you will need to transfer funds to your PayPal account or link it to a different payment method before you can use it. Most often, people choose to link it to a credit card or bank account, but if you want to bet, you’ll need to avoid the credit card approach.

A key advantage of using PayPal is that it serves as a middleman between your funding source and the recipient of your cash, so it’s very secure. You don’t have to give your debit card or bank account details to the bookmaker. Just provide your PayPal address, authorise the transaction and the betting site will receive your deposit within a matter of seconds.

Check out our list of recommended PayPal betting sites.


Paysafecard is another e-wallet, but this one doesn’t need to be linked to a bank account or any other funding souce. Instead, you can load the account with cash. Simply buy yourself a Paysafecard from any authorised sales outlet (these include ASDA and WHSmith) with however much cash you want to have on it, and you’ll be ready to go. Paysafecard betting sites are popping up all over the place, and all you have to do to make a deposit is provide your 16-digit code and the amount you want to transfer.

An unregistered card will let you make payments of up to £40. If you want to deposit more than that in one go, you’ll need to register by providing your personal details. That will allow you to make transactions of up to £1,000.

Google Pay

Once upon a time, Google was just a search engine, but today it’s a whole lot more. Google Pay is a payment method that sits on your smartphone and can be used to pay for online purchases, taxi rides, takeaway meals and more. Google Pay betting sites are ones that allow you to make deposits using the same system. Simply link a funding source to your Google Pay account, and you can then use that method to make deposits and withdrawals.

Like e-wallets, Google Pay allows you to bet online without giving the bookmaker your bank account details. Of course, you’ll need to fund your Google Pay account with something other than a credit card due to the UKGC ban on those, but that’s the case right across the board.

While most people associate Google Pay with Android devices, it’s worth noting that the Google Pay app is also available for iOS smartphones running iOS 10.0 or higher.

Apple Pay

Apple Pay was launched in 2014, a few years before Google decided to introduce its own offering. It works in much the same way as the Google Pay method just described, with your account funded by a linked bank account or similar source. The big difference here is that Apple Pay is exclusively available on iOS devices, so you won’t be able to use it if you use an Android smartphone.

Most online bookmakers that accept Google Pay also serve as Apple Pay betting sites. That makes perfect sense when you consider that Android and Apple are the two biggest mobile platforms, and most of us have a device running on one or the other. Again, no financial details are passed onto the betting site, so you can make deposits and withdrawals without worrying about data breaches.


This is an e-wallet that was launched in 2001 as Moneybookers. In 2011 it announced that it would be rebranding as Skrill, and in 2015 it was acquired by Paysafe Limited – the same company that owns Paysafecard. As with most other e-wallets, you can fund your Skrill account in a number of ways, and no details of your chosen funding source will be shared with the Skrill betting sites that you choose to use.


Neteller has been around since 1999. For a long time, Skrill was its main competitor in the e-wallet niche, but Paysafe Limited also acquired Neteller, and so the two rivals now belong to the same family. Probably due to this historical rivalry, Neteller betting sites tend to be those that also accept Skrill, and the two betting payment methods are very similar. In fact, you could think of them as the Pepsi and Coke of the e-wallet world.


Trustly is a betting payment method that is linked directly to an online bank account. Once you’ve set up that link, you can make deposits at Trustly betting sites simply by selecting the method and authorising the transaction. The ability to provide authorisation using biometric data (for example, a fingerprint or facial recognition if your smartphone allows one or both of those options) helps you to make transactions quickly and securely.

To help you choose the right option, we’ve done the research on the best Trustly betting sites.

Pay by Mobile

Another very popular betting payment method these days is Pay by Mobile. We’re not talking about paying via apps or things like Apple Pay or Google Pay but via your mobile contract provider. You make a deposit with a betting site that accepts the Pay by Mobile method, and the cost of that deposit is automatically added to your monthly phone bill. This approach can be very convenient because mobile users already have everything in place to make a deposit. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to make withdrawals the same way, so if you win, you’ll need to make alternative withdrawal arrangements.

Bank Transfer

The bank transfer is a direct transfer of funds from your bank account to the bank account of the bookmaker you intend to bet with, or vice versa if you make withdrawals in the same way.  While many banks now ofter a Faster Transfer option that can see transactions being completed within two hours, regular transactions at bank transfer betting sites can take up to three or four working days. For that reason, bank transfers tend to be viewed as a final option by most online betting fans.

Telegram Betting

Telegram betting is one of the newest ways of wagering with a bookmaker on mobile devices. You’ll need to download the Telegram app to your device before you can do this, and you must register with the bookmaker as a Telegram user. You will then be able to place bets from your funded account. Some Telegram betting sites will allow you to authorise debit card deposits to your account by providing your CV2 number. Of course, this is assuming that the bookmaker already has the rest of your card details on file.

How to Choose Between Betting Payment Methods

Now that we’ve given you an overview of the main betting payment methods that you can expect to find at online bookmakers in the UK, you might be wondering how to pick the one that’s right for you. There are several factors that you need to consider, and the main ones are as follows:

  1. Availability

    Not all of the betting payment methods that we’ve discussed are available at all betting sites. The first thing you need to consider, therefore, is where you want to be able to use the method. If you want access to the widest possible range of betting sites (which is great for shopping around to get the best odds for value betting purposes), then debit cards are a natural choice. However, if you don’t mind being more limited, you can go with an e-wallet or even use Bitcoin to make deposits and withdrawals.
  2. Fees

    Some payment methods are completely free to use, but others will charge you a tiny percentage of the transaction value (or a minimum flat fee if the percentage is lower). We can’t provide a table of exact fees because those will vary depending on how often you use the payment method and whether or not the betting site will impose its own fees on its use. However, you should certainly check to see what a typical deposit or withdrawal will cost if fees are applicable.
  3. Speed

    Most of the payment methods we’ve discussed will process deposits straight away, so your funds will be available for betting within seconds of the transaction being authorised. A few, however (we’re primarily thinking of Bitcoin deposits and bank transfers), will take longer to process. If you want your deposits to be instant, as most bettors usually do, you’ll need to pick a method that is geared up for that.
  4. Bonuses

    Lots of betting sites give new and existing customers free bets and bonuses for promotional purposes. Unfortunately, not all payment methods will always qualify for those bonuses. Debit card deposits will usually qualify for the widest range of offers, but if you want to use an alternative method you may have to skip the bonuses as a result. For example, deposits made via Skrill and Neteller are commonly exempted from welcome offers, and those aren’t the only methods that tend to be excluded by bookmakers.
  5. Limits

    The fifth factor that you need to consider when choosing between betting payment methods is whether their limits on deposits and withdrawals will suit your needs. The limits of most methods will easily accommodate the requirements of the majority of bettors. However, if you’re a high roller, you will want to make sure that a method will allow you to transfer the kind of money that you want to transfer. Bear in mind that some methods might also limit your transfers in some situations. For example, you can’t deposit more than £40 with an unregistered Paysafecard. And some bookmakers might impose their own limits on deposits and withdrawals via certain methods.

We recommend that you use the information on this page to help you narrow down your options and then visit our other payment pages, which go into more detail about the betting sites that accommodate them. If you don’t have time for that, the traditional debit card method is the most widely accepted and is a great default choice suitable for most online betting enthusiasts.


Payment Methods Not Accepted by UKGC Betting Sites

In this guide, we have focused our discussion on betting payment methods that you are likely to come across at sites that are licensed and regulated by the UK Gambling Commission. We never recommend betting with unregulated sites because they may not offer an adequate level of safety, security or reliability. However, for the sake of discussion, here are some of the additional payment methods available at unregulated sites:

Credit Cards

Also known as charge cards in the US, credit cards allow users to borrow money from the card issuer to make purchases and cash transactions. Customers are then billed monthly and can either settle the whole balance or make a smaller payment and pay interest on the remainder. While credit cards were banned in the UK for gambling purposes in 2020, they remain a popular choice at non-UKGC betting sites based elsewhere.


Revolut is a fintech company that was launched in 2015 to change the way people spend and transfer money. It offers a variety of financial services, including banking, trading and virtual cards, and for a while, it was possible for UK bettors to fund their betting accounts with a Revolut card. Because this worked in much the same way as a credit card, the use of Revolut for betting purposes was also banned in the UK in 2020, but the method continues to be accepted by some betting sites that are outside the scope of UKGC regulations.


Cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum give their users a high level of anonymity and have been used to fund online betting accounts for years. There is no law explicitly forbidding the use of cryptocurrencies for betting in the UK, but any gambling site that wants to legally operate in this country must meet UKGC requirements in order to be licensed. Thus far, there are no UKGC-regulated betting sites that accept crypto, but that may well change in the future. In the meantime, Bitcoin betting sites and similar are quite popular in other countries.

Payment Methods in More Detail

We have several pages that discuss the most popular payment methods in more detail. The methods covered are shown in the carousel below. Simply click the logo of the payment method you're interested in to visit its dedicated page.


What is the best payment method for betting?

How do bookies pay you?

Can I bet online using PayPal?

What gambling sites accept credit cards in the UK?

How do I know what payment methods a bookmaker will accept?

Ian Bruce

Ian Bruce joined Safest Betting Sites in 2024 as Senior Sports Editor to oversee the quality and usefulness of its gambling content. He originally developed an interest in betting after landing a winning Yankee on his first attempt. He then spent years figuring out how to replicate that success. Along the way, he became one of the UK’s leading writers on the topic of betting and gaming. Ian’s career has now spanned more than three decades, and his enthusiasm for systematic and responsible betting hasn’t waned one bit. However, his preferred approach to winning these days is Dutching, for the simple reason that “It’s a lot easier than landing Yankees.”