Early in 2023, sports betting kiosks will be in hundreds of locations all around the state of Ohio.
Folks will be able to bet on sports in Ohio through apps on their phones and at casinos, racinos, sports stadiums and other retail sportsbook facilities. But the most visible difference from the legalization of sports betting in Ohio will be the addition of hundreds of sports betting kiosks across many local establishments people frequent on a regular basis.
The Ohio Lottery Commission has been releasing a list of pre-qualified sports gaming hosts. It shows the wide variety of places soon to have sports betting offerings. These include not just restaurants and bars, but also bowling alleys, golf courses, hotels, convenience stores, truck stops and supermarkets.
Here’s what Ohioans need to know about the coming deluge of sports betting kiosks.
Where will sports betting kiosks be located?
While not all Ohioans will find retail sportsbooks in their area, no one will have to go far to find a sports betting kiosk.
The Ohio Lottery notified more than 2,000 bars and restaurants that they could be eligible for a sports-gaming host license. Companies that weren’t invited can still declare their interest by filling out a form on the lottery’s website.
To qualify for a license, companies must:
- Be a licensed lottery sales agent.
- Hold a Type D1 (beer only), D2 (wine and mixed drinks only) or D5 (full bar) liquor permit.
- Be a for-profit corporation or association.
- Pay a non-refundable $1,000 application fee to the Ohio Casino Control Commission.
- Select a licensed Type C Sports Gaming Proprietor partner.
Since it’s not just free-standing bars and restaurants that have these liquor licenses, Ohioans might find sports betting kiosks in places they wouldn’t expect. Essentially, where lottery kiosks are located today and alcohol is sold, there could be a sports betting kiosk.
As of Nov. 18, the Ohio Lottery had pre-qualified 1,439 applicants. Each must apply for a license through the Ohio Casino Control Commission.
Only 652 businesses applied for licenses ahead of the Aug. 15 deadline to be guaranteed consideration ahead of the state’s Jan. 1, 2023 universal start date.
Despite the missed deadline, the commission encouraged the remaining pre-approved businesses to continue applying, saying there was still time to get licensed ahead of the universal start date.
“Even though the window has closed, we are strongly encouraging the pre-approved businesses by the Lottery to apply, and we will continue to process them as quickly as possible,” said Matt Schuler, chairman of the OCCC.
The first 931 businesses have already been approved by the OCCC.
Limits on betting types and wagers
Ohioans age 18 and over may participate in other lottery products. But for sports betting, the minimum age is 21.
At kiosks, those of legal age won’t find the full array of sports betting options that they would in a sportsbook. Also, large wagers must be placed at a sportsbook or online.
Ohio lottery sports betting is more for people who want to place a small wager for fun while out watching a game with their friends.
Sports betting kiosks will be limited to taking the following wagers:
- Spread wagers: A bet on the outcome of a game against odds designed to level the playing field.
- Over-under wagers: A bet on whether the game score will be higher or lower than projected.
- Moneyline wagers: A straight-up bet without any point spread where bettors predict the outright winner.
- Parlays: A single bet on two to four outcomes. Each side must win to produce a winning ticket.
Proposition and in-game wagers are not permitted on sports betting kiosks.
Each Ohio bettor can only wager up to $700 in each calendar week across all sports betting kiosks.
Who sets the lines?
Each sports gaming host must partner with a proprietor to place sports betting kiosks in the venue. Proprietors will offer a choice of self-service kiosks or clerk-operated terminals.
Proprietors are required to compensate hosts in some form. This can include a percentage of revenues, flat rental payments, or the provision of goods and services.
- Operate the sportsbook.
- Write house rules.
- Establishes betting odds.
- Provide, install and maintain type-C sports gaming equipment.
- Maintain player accounts if offered.
- Respond to customer complaints.
- Pay prizes of $600 and above.
For a license, proprietors pay a $100,000 license fee, renewable for $25,000. Plus a $15,000 nonrefundable application fee.
The Ohio Casino Control Commission may license as many as 20 proprietors. But the Lottery and OCCC could also limit the market to a single proprietor. Likely, the Lottery will choose enough proprietors to assure a competitive marketplace and provide options for hosts.
Legislation limits the initial installation to two terminals. But the proprietor can request approval for additional units in a particularly busy location. There is no hard cap on units.
Two businesses partnering to deliver and operate sports betting kiosks in Ohio, Elys Game Technology and Dayton-based Wright Bet, announced that they partnered with over 50 businesses during their first month, surpassing expectations.
How will bettors collect winnings?
Expect options to place wagers on sports betting kiosks with cash, credit card, debit card or electronic payment accounts such as PayPal, Apple Pay or Google Pay.
Payouts may be made to the participant’s credit card, debit card or electronic payment account or in cash from a Type C gaming host. The lottery commission has pre-approved over 1,400 Ohio businesses for a Type C license. This would allow them to host a sports betting kiosk.
However, in the initial rule, it was written in a way that led many to believe these bars and restaurants would be required to keep large sums of cash on hand in order to cash out bets. This led to concerns across the state that these businesses may be subject to robbery, among other potential incidents.
In order to address these concerns, the Ohio Lottery Commission amended the cash-out rule to “make explicitly clear that Type C proprietors may allow non-host locations (all lottery retailers) to cash sports gaming prizes if they choose to do so,” Lottery Director Pat McDonald said.
Per the commission, it was always its intention to “offer as many options as possible for customers to cash their sports gaming prizes.”
That new slate of options might not be available from the start on Jan. 1, but at the very least, the Ohio Lottery plans to have the system up and running shortly after.
Prizes of $600 and higher are subject to state and federal tax withholding, child and spousal support intercept, and state debt intercept. Therefore, they must be handled by the proprietor.
When will sports betting kiosks appear?
Before sports betting kiosks come to Ohio, the Ohio Lottery needs to negotiate with prospective proprietors. Then hosts need to negotiate deals with the proprietors.
Both windows to apply for retail and online sports betting licenses in Ohio in time to launch on Jan. 1, 2023 are now closed. The Ohio Casino Control Commission is currently reviewing applications for businesses that want to host kiosks and has already approved 500 businesses.