Everything you need to know about sports betting in Malta

Malta, an island country in Southern Europe, is located in the Mediterranean Sea. It is a popular hub for the betting industry, thanks to its welcoming regulatory environment and favorable tax incentives. 


Malta, an island country in Southern Europe, is located in the Mediterranean Sea. It is a popular hub for the betting industry, thanks to its welcoming regulatory environment and favorable tax incentives. 

Both Malta and Curacao offer enticing tax laws for international casino and sportsbook operators, often more lenient than those in their home countries. This attractive setup has led to over 300 companies registering in Malta.

Maltese law allows both online and land-based gambling. Various forms of gambling are permitted, including amusement games, casino gaming, commercial tombola games, commercial communication games, gaming devices, remote gaming, and sports betting

The legal framework

Malta boasts one of the most comprehensive and well-regulated gambling frameworks globally. The Malta Gaming Authority (MGA), established in 2001, oversees all gambling activities on the island, including both land-based casinos and online gambling operators. The MGA is responsible for issuing licenses, ensuring fair play, and protecting players' rights​.

In 2004, Malta became the first EU member state to introduce detailed regulations for online gambling. These regulations have evolved, with significant updates such as the Malta Gaming Act of 2018, further refining the legal landscape for operators and players​.

Types of betting

Sports betting in Malta is extensive, covering many sports and events. Football is the most popular sport for betting, but there is also significant interest in basketball, tennis, golf, table tennis, and field hockey. The diversity of sports available for betting ensures that there is something for every sports fan.

Online sports betting is particularly prominent in Malta. The country is home to numerous online sportsbooks offering various betting options. Major international betting sites operate under MGA licences, providing players a safe and secure environment. These platforms offer competitive odds, live betting options, and various sports markets​.

Choosing a betting site

When selecting an online betting site in Malta, consider the following factors:

  • Licensing and regulation: Ensure the site is licensed by the MGA, which guarantees a certain level of security and fairness. The MGA’s stringent regulatory measures mean that licensed sites adhere to high standards of transparency and player protection. 
  • Bonuses and promotions: Many bookies offer attractive bonuses to attract and retain customers. Common types include welcome bonuses for new sign-ups, free bets, cashback offers, and enhanced odds. The Virgin Bet bonus code is a standout example, offering generous rewards.
  • Range of sports and markets: Look for sites that offer a wide variety of sports and betting markets. A good betting site should provide options for major sports like football and basketball, as well as niche markets.
  • Payment methods: Check the available payment options and their associated fees. Popular methods include Visa, Mastercard, Skrill, Neteller, and bank transfers.

Regulatory framework and taxes

The MGA ensures that all gambling activities are conducted fairly and transparently. This includes regular audits and inspections of licensed operators. Players in Malta are required to pay a gambling tax on their winnings, with the current tax rate set at 5% of the income earned from gambling.

A significant year for online casinos in Malta was 2007. That year, Malta became the European gambling hub. Companies registered in Malta gained the right to offer their services to people worldwide. The situation improved further when the United Kingdom imposed a 15% fee on all gambling profits, prompting many UK gambling businesses to re-register in Malta. 

Malta's tax credit system reduces the real tax rate to 5%, making it one of the most tax-attractive jurisdictions for gambling. Additionally, as an EU member, Malta provides operators with access to a larger market, enhancing its appeal.

In addition to traditional currency transactions, the MGA introduced the Sandbox Regulatory Framework in 2019, allowing the use of cryptocurrency in gambling. This move has attracted a new wave of tech-savvy players and operators to the island, further solidifying Malta's position as a leading destination for the gambling industry.

Popular sports for betting

Football remains the most popular sport for betting in Malta, with numerous local and international matches available for wagers. 

Other popular sports include basketball, with the Basketball Association of Malta overseeing local competitions, and tennis, which has a strong following both at the amateur and professional levels. 

Golf and table tennis also have dedicated betting markets, reflecting their popularity among Maltese punters​.


Malta's well-regulated betting industry, overseen by the MGA, offers a safe and exciting environment for sports betting enthusiasts. Whether you are interested in football, basketball, tennis, or any other sport, there are plenty of options to explore. The combination of comprehensive legal frameworks, diverse sports markets, and attractive bonuses makes Malta an excellent destination for sports betting.

For those looking to start betting in Malta, choosing licensed and reputable sites is essential, understanding the betting options available, and being aware of the legal and tax implications.