Betting on sports is not a new thing in Canada, though it has been facing an increase in popularity over the last few years. Today we will be covering Alberta sports betting in Canada and trying to compare the old local betting companies with modern international sportsbooks. We’ll list all the popular options available in Alberta, mention their benefits and drawbacks, explain the betting markets and the odds available as well as cover lots of other details.
Proline Western Canada
Let us rush straight into the topic and start with the first option available for betting. Pro line Alberta is a betting system provided by the Western Canada Lottery Corporation. Such local companies are very common in the country and have decades of successful operation behind them. Proline allows you to select from three to six predictions and have a combined wager. If all your predictions were correct, you can grab your winnings, while if at least one of them fails, the bet is lost.
This is a betting option in Proline that allows you to predict the score difference between the teams, in other words, the handicap. Unlike a simple Proline hockey tie, for example, you have several options for each of the teams. The point spread has better odds than an ordinary victory bet, but they are still lower than with the international bookmaker companies.
A prop bet is short for “proposition bet” and typically refers to predicting whether or not a certain event will take place during the match. Unlike with betting on a Proline football tie, here you will be able to bet on whether or not a certain player will score twice, for example.
Markets at WCLC
The markets available for betting is another important criterion to assess. At WCLC, you will find most major and local events, but there will not be as many matches as with international bookmakers. You will find Alberta sports teams there, but not the second division teams from foreign leagues.
Promotions and Bonuses
Unfortunately, there are currently no promotions available at WCLC. You won’t even get a small welcome bonus for your first cash-in, while at an offshore sportsbook you’d get much more. The absence of such additional features makes betting simpler but less entertaining.
Customer support is another positive feature of WCLC. The whole service is designed for locals, so the support treats players like neighbours. They are always ready to help you out in case you have any issues, you can ask your questions online or visit a local department. The support is always friendly, which positively affects the general impression about the service. They also have a pretty good FAQ, which contains the solutions for most of the popular issues.
We have tested the platform and every feature they have and were fairly satisfied with the results. The features work exactly as described, the performance is well on mobile devices and desktops and the local departments are comfortable to visit. The terms and conditions, unlike with most offshore sportsbooks, are clear and easy to understand and the company always follows them. It is a popular issue with international companies: they usually put some tricks and pitfalls in the terms, so that inattentive players will get their funds lost. Here everything is player-oriented and fair.
Which Option Should You Choose?
Comparing the local provider of betting with offshore companies is tough as they serve a bit different aims. For an experienced player, WCLC will feel like a demo version of a sportsbook as it has very limited features. Foreign bookmakers offer more events to choose from and more markets for each match. They also typically have bonuses and their odds are better. However, there is one strong advantage of WCLC, which is especially useful for inexperienced players. The service is super easy to use, there are not so many markets and features to get lost in, the conditions are clear and fair. The security is also on a perfect level, eliminating the possibility of a scam, fraud or data breach. Our suggestion would be to try the service since it is easy to opt in and if it feels like it’s not enough, switch to an offshore sportsbook.
Online Casinos in Alberta
Now that we have dealt with sports betting, we can also analyze the gambling opportunities. Just like with the sportsbooks, there are no online casinos in Alberta, except for the sole official gambling company. Let us review it and compare it to the international gambling sites.
This is the analogue of British Columbia’s PlayNow, Alberta’s platform for online gambling. The situation with this site is much better than with the sportsbooks as it has almost the same features as a typical online casino, but let us review the site in detail before making the conclusions.
There are not so many games available, but the diversity of the game types is on an acceptable level. You will find both the casino classics and the trending games in their collection, which is great for such a local site. The list of game types includes:
- table games;
- live games;
- other games.
Moreover, almost every game has a free demo version, allowing you to try it before making any real money bets. All in all, the games are on a decent level for a local casino but compared to international online gambling, Alberta’s place lacks the number of games and variety of software providers behind them.
The best casino in Calgary and the only one actually regulated there has some free value to offer. There is a welcome bonus of $20 for your first deposit of at least $10. The bonus is subject to wagering requirements of x20, which is a lot lower than at offshore sites. There are also some exclusive promotions that sometimes appear in your account, but they are still way less generous than with international casinos, which sometimes give out thousands of dollars as deposit bonuses.
There are only three banking options available for deposits at Play Alberta: Visa, MasterCard and American Express. The withdrawals are exclusively processed via bank transfers. The limits are comfortable and the operations are handled quickly. However, if you compare the banking system of Play Alberta with an offshore site, you’ll see that abroad they have lots of other options on the list with the same conditions. The only advantage of Play Alberta here is the security of transactions that is on a top-notch level.
The mobile optimization here is fine, but it is not very surprising. There is no app available, but the browser version does the job well. The interface is comfortable for pocket-sized screens, while the games run smoothly even on budget smartphones. It is a simple but working mobile version that has most of the games from desktops available. Of course, downloadable apps typically perform better and you can test it at international casinos, but Play Alberta does not really need one: there are not enough games to develop the whole app.
The security is perfect here both with the data and the transactions. As it is the only regulated gambling site, they store all user information safely and accept only super secure payment methods to ensure the safety of your funds. There are no scams or tricks in the terms and conditions, which is also a good thing to have.
Again we have obvious parallels with WCLC. The service is made for Albertans and the treatment at the support department corresponds to that principle. The assistants are always ready to help, do their best to react quickly and resolve any issues you have. The difference is that here the service is online, so you will have to contact them through live chat, call them by phone or leave a contact form at their website. They also have a good FAQ section with popular questions answered.
Play Alberta or an Offshore Casino?
Being the best casino in Edmonton is easy when you’re the only one that is regulated. However, such a lack of competition and the locality of the casino negatively affects its quality compared to offshore casinos. We’re not saying Play Alberta is a bad place: all the features available work perfectly and it is a fair place with high-security standards. We are saying there are not enough features to compete with international casinos. The situation here is almost exactly the same as with the sportsbooks: you can enjoy the basic features of online gambling here, but for a more comprehensive experience you will need to look for an offshore casino.
Other Local Casinos
There are some other local online casinos available in Alberta, such as Casino Edmonton, Cash Casino Palace and others. They are more similar to international casinos, but in the article, we were focusing on officially regulated services, so we won’t review these places in detail either. We can only say they are more similar to foreign sites than Play Alberta, but they are not regulated. In case you’re going to play at an unregulated site, why not choose a foreign one? The local sites are semi-good, but the best international casinos will definitely provide a better experience.
Summing up, we can say that the situations with sports betting and online gambling in Alberta are similar. There is a government-regulated company that provides the service for locals, guarantees a decent level of security and lets the income stay in the region. However, these services lack features if compared to international alternatives. Both WCLC and Play Alberta are good choices for you if you have no experience in sports betting and gambling correspondingly. The sites will allow you to use the basic features without getting scammed or having your data exposed. Though if you are looking for a comprehensive experience designed for dedicated players, you should probably find yourself an offshore site.