When talking about sports, Serbia is one of those countries that manage to amaze everyone through a constant supply of top athletes in various disciplines. Novak Djokovic, Branislav Ivanovic, Nemanja Matic, Luka Jovic or Bogdan Bogdanovic are just a few names that you surely recognize. Such a fiercely independent nation with a true inclination for sports is obviously big on betting as well. Actually, over 40% of the adult Serbian citizens take part in betting or other forms of gambling on a weekly basis. When talking about online betting, Serbia made some steps to regulate the landscape, however, the process isn’t still finalized despite two sets of laws already being passed. When it comes to betting sites, Serbia enjoys quite a lot of attention and we’re recommending you the best ones around.
Before 2005, land based and online betting in Serbia followed the somewhat relaxed guidelines set by the 1964 laws of Yugoslavia. The best bookmakers in Serbia had no issues in operating within the region, offering high odds and sign up bonuses and punters took full advantage of this diversity. However, this landscape also attracted a lot of criminal activity and the authorities had to step in for a change. The Games of Chance Act was passed in 2005 and it regulated every land-based betting site Serbia had at the moment it was enforced. Besides regulating the land based betting activity, the law also encouraged a boom in the industry. The number of betting shops tripled in a very short time.
Despite the success they had with land-based operations, the Serbian authorities didn’t address online betting Srbija-centered websites until 2011. By now, all the big names in the betting industry were active in the country and Serbian punters were enjoying their services to the fullest. Besides setting the conditions for these international bookies to function within Serbia from a jurisdictional and taxation point of view, the new law also forced bookies to keep their servers on Serbian territory.
Shortly after the Act of 2011, ISPs were forced to block access to some of the most popular bookies operating in the country. Betfair, Bwin, 888 and William Hill found themselves in this unpleasant situation. However, it turned out to be a one-time thing from the Serbian authorities and the blocks were not sustained. That’s why most of the betting companies kept accepting Serb punters, as usual. This situation is also sustained by a lack of legislation towards punters accessing international betting sites. So, since they’re not risking anything, all Serbs gladly enjoy the world-class services of established bookies.
Every Serbian punter will appreciate the effort put in by bookies to make the entire betting experience as comfortable as possible. And while there are not so many Serbian Dinar bookmakers out there, some of them go the extra mile and also offer their website as well as customer support in Serbian. Also, to stand out from the crowd, Serbija bookmakers should offer high odds on football, basketball and tennis events, fast payouts and a wide offer of other betting markets as well.
Since Serbian online betting laws, including the Act of 2011, weren’t continuously enforced, there are very few domains that can’t be accessed directly. Also, despite talks about a harsher approach towards non-licensed bookies, the government didn’t take any real steps so far. Even if one of the bookies you want to play at gets blocked by the ISPs, having a reliable VPN software will fix the issue in no time. Another thing to keep in mind is that, even though websites are not directly blocked by the government, some big names in the industry decided to pull out of Serbia until things are 100% clear towards regulations.
Several debates took place regarding amendments for the Law on Games of Chance over the years. Some of them focused on payment methods as well and the most recent one happened in 2015. Then, a proposed amendment was to introduce the possibility for banks to refuse transactions towards any unlicensed online betting website. This could have meant that Serbian punters lost bank transfer and credit card deposits, however, just like with most of the talks, this possible amendment was shelved by the authorities. So, Serbia betting companies are happy to accept all types of payment options from cards, bank transfer apps, ewallets or vouchers. Ewallets are favorite since they also allow withdrawals to be processed on them and deliver the fastest processing speed with no fees applied.
With no real enforcing of the gambling laws in Serbia, betting exchanges can be accessed either directly or through a VPN software. However, just as mentioned earlier, the repeated talks about going after operators operating in Serbia without a license, determined some of the biggest names to stop accepting players from Serbia. That’s the case of Betfair as well, since the world’s first and most successful betting exchange is no longer available for Serbian punters starting June 2019. They did the same for a series of markets that have failed to fully regulate the online betting landscape or that proved to be disadvantageous.
In case you’re enjoying the services of a locally-licensed operator, addressing to the Games of Chance Administration is the best way to solve any misunderstanding or conflict. Otherwise, if you’re playing at one of the renowned bookies licensed by respected gambling authorities like the United Kingdom Gambling Commission or the Malta Gaming Authority, contacting these regulatory bodies directly gives you a handy tool to solve any disputes. As always, the HelpBet team is here for you and we encourage you to let us know of any difficulties you may encounter so that we can do our best and contact the bookies on your behalf.