Retail Sportsbook William Hill Surpasses GambetDC Online In Washington, DC

Posted on September 17, 2020 - Last Updated on October 6, 2020

It didn’t take William Hill long to supplant GambetDC as the most popular Washington, DC, sportsbook.

North of the Virginia border, William Hill raked in $9,130,409.60 in bets (handle) during August. The retail-only sportsbook is at Capital One Arena, and it isn’t permitted to offer online wagering through a website or app.

Meanwhile, the district’s only online sportsbook continues to sputter. GambetDC took just $2,132,032.38 in bets in August despite a monopoly on online betting in the nation’s capital.

For DC residents and northern Virginians, the competition is long overdue, despite the logistical headaches.

New Washington, DC, sportsbook leader

So, how did a retail-only option crush a competitor who has a massive advantage with online betting?

A quick look at the odds that GambetDC offers will give you a big clue. GambetDC, which is on an Intralot platform, launched in May. However, bad odds have been a hallmark of the DC Lottery-operated sportsbook (and other Intralot sites).

While William Hill usually offers the standard -110 odds (20 cent lines), GambetDC mostly offers -118 odds on both sides of a bet.

So, for example, let’s say you place a $100 bet on the Washington Football Team (+6.5) over the Arizona Cardinals on this weekend’s NFL slate.

If your bet is a winner with William Hill, you’ll pocket $90.90 in profit with -110 odds. However, at GambetDC, you’d net just $84.70 because of its -118 odds. Multiply that $6.20 in savings over a month’s or season’s worth of bets, and it adds up substantially.

Is it any surprise why even casual and recreational bettors are taking their action downtown to William Hill and Capital One Arena? The online convenience of GambetDC apparently isn’t enough of a motivating factor.

Inside William Hill’s August revenue in DC

Of the $9.1 million in handle for August, William Hill reported $1.4 million as revenue. That accounts for a 15.6% hold.

GambetDC, meanwhile, had revenue of $278,141 on the $2.1 million wagered (13% hold). GambetDC had slightly higher holds in June (16.5% on $223,730.09 wagered) and July (19.2% on $741,499.63 wagered).

William Hill opened for bets on July 31. GambetDC, which launched on May 28, had a two-month head start.

Not only are Washington, DC, and Virginia bettors wagering more often at William Hill, but they’re also placing bigger bets.

In August, the average William Hill wager was $132.16. However, GambetDC’s average bet was a meager $31.90.

Capital One Arena, which is in downtown DC, is currently empty without any live sports or entertainment. Still, it’s quickly becoming a go-to destination for DC sports bettors.

However, it will likely soon lose much of its northern Virginia customer base. After all, the commonwealth will begin opening Virginia sportsbooks beginning in January.

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Dann Stupp

Dann Stupp is a longtime sports journalist who’s written and edited for The Athletic, USA Today, ESPN and other outlets. He lives in Lexington, Virginia.

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