Is Sports Betting Legal in Hawaii?
The chances of sports betting in Hawaii seem pretty unlikely. Hawaii and Utah are the only two states that allow no forms of betting. Sports betting probably won’t be enough to move the needle, but a study bill has been introduced, maybe as more of a token gesture than anything else.
Hawaii is one of six states without a lottery and doesn’t have a casino. Hawaii’s isolation from other states means that they aren’t losing any gambling dollars to the bordering states, so having a lottery is basically irrelevant. The islands, and by proxy, the cities, get a good cut of tourism dollars for education programs and infrastructure, so there simply hasn’t been any kind of push for legalized betting from the lottery or casinos.
It would certainly make University of Hawaii games serving as the “Degenerate Special” for football and basketball a little bit more interesting, but the state is perfectly content to let the continental United States worry about fighting for gambling bucks.
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It won’t happen. The study bill is a nice gesture, but the financial impact for Hawaii isn’t going to be enough. A lot of beachy tourist destinations have casinos. A lot of them don’t. Hawaii is expensive enough that even people vacationing there likely wouldn’t bother with gambling if it was offered.