NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) – Sports wagering may still be illegal in New York, but that’s not stopping locals from finding ways around that minor inconvenience — and New Jersey is turning out to be the big winners on those bets.
Mobile sports betting is big; so popular that New Yorkers travel from the Empire State where it is not legal to a place where it is.
“You have to come to New Jersey,” Randy from the Bronx.
If you open the betting app and try, the app knows you are not in New Jersey.
“We are unable to place your wagers.”
“It’s a geo-location fence around New Jersey,” another bettor said.
“If that’s what you gotta do, that’s what you gotta do right now,” Zach Weidhorn of Rockville Centre said.
Weidhorn drove across the George Washington Bridge to get in on the action. Others take a PATH trains, finding it to be the fastest way to bet and bolt.
They call them “carpetbagging gamblers,” popping in to the Garden State just long enough to place bets.
“It’s just a five minute ride just to come on the on the train and then go back over,” Raphael Denicola said.
“Earn it in New York and waste it in New Jersey,” one bettor joked.
FanDuel is the most popular betting app in New Jersey and over the summer revealed 25 percent of its users registered with New York addresses.
The bets are made in New Jersey parking lots, service stations, train platforms, and at the new FanDuel Sportsbook at the Meadowlands.
“New York is missing out on all the money there’s so much money they can make right now,” Weidhorn added.
Betters will keep blazing across the Hudson and back – raising billions in revenue for another state.
The state Division of Gaming Enforcement reported the New Jersey casinos and racetracks made nearly $38 million on their September bets after winning wagers and expenses were paid. The total was boosted by the return of NFL and college football, which always generate heavy betting action.
Gamblers wagered a record-breaking $445 million on sports in New Jersey in September, the largest monthly total in the state since legal sports betting began in June 2018.
(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)