An objective look at the pros and cons of all the main payment methods accepted by bookmakers.
The company uses mobile networks to facilitate online payments using carrier billing. This means online payments are not charged to an e-wallet or bank account, but are instead charged directly to a user’s mobile phone account at their mobile carrier.
Boku is available in over 70 countries around the world and processed over 1 billion transactions in 2020.
Betting with Boku
Boku is becoming increasing popular as a payment method amongst punters for two reasons.
Firstly by giving punters the option to put their bookie payments on their mobile phone bill, Boku can generate short term credit for online betting. The cost of betting deposits only become due when users receive their phone bill.
Secondly, because online betting is increasingly taking place on smartphones, using a mobile phone based payment technology is a natural fit for this shift in behaviour.
What are the best Boku betting sites?
Because Boku is a relatively new player on the e-payment scene and mobile phone payments are a relatively modern technology, the list of the best Boku betting sites is quite short.
In fact there is currently only on major UK sports betting brand that offers its customers the option to use Boku for direct deposits.
Boylesports doesn’t get enough credit for being an innovator in the online betting space, and this holds true to its payment methods too. Boylesports is the only major UK bookie that allows for direct deposits and withdrawals using Boku.
This service is currently only available to customers based in the United Kingdom. However, Boylesports is also working towards making Boku payments available to its users in Ireland.
Advantages of using Boku at online sports betting sites
Boku offers a number of benefits for online betting.
Play now pay later
If you prefer to paying your bills at the end of the month, don’t use credit cards or don’t have a bank account at all, Boku is for you.
This payment option puts your deposits on your mobile phone bill instead of deducting funds from your bank accounts. Users can make payments of up to £10 at a time with a daily limit of £30.
Note that if you are on a pay-as-you-go mobile plan, your Boku payments will be deducted form your account balance.
Boku does not require you to submit any of your payment details online. Instead the payments are made via your mobile phone provider using your phone number, which means you don’t need to expose personal banking information when making online bets.
Simple but effective security measures are in place to prevent fraudsters using your number to make Boku deposits online. For a start we have already mentioned that your maximum daily deposit amount is capped at is capped at £30.
However, the real security kicks in when you submit a Boku payment. When this happens a confirmation text is sent to your phone number. The transaction only proceeds if you confirm that the transaction is yours via a free text reply.
Boku does not skim anything off the top when you use it to deposit funds into an account from your mobile phone. That means all deposits made using Boku are free of charge. You also won’t be charged for any of the text messages sent during the transaction verification process.
How to create a Boku account
Boku is incredibly simple to use. You don’t need to download an app, or even open an account with Boku. If Boku is available as a payment method for your region on the website you would like to make a deposit at, then all you need to make a deposit is your mobile phone number – it’s that simple!
How to deposit at online betting sites using BOKU
We’ll use Boylesports as an example to show you how Boku deposits work:
- Open an account at Boylesports or log into your account if you already have one.
- Click on the Deposit button on the top right of the screen.
- You will be taken to the payment methods page. Choose the option that says ‘Pay By Mobile powered by Boku’.
- On the next screen select ‘Sportsbook’ and enter the amount you want to deposit.
5. You will be redirected to Boku once you click the confirmation pop up.
6. Click this option and you will be redirected to Boku’s payment panel. This screen will display the deposit amount and the vendor you are purchasing from. You will then have the option of entering your mobile number to make a payment.
- Once you have done that you can click on the payment confirmation button.
- You will then receive a confirmation text message to your mobile number for security purposes. This is done to ensure that your phone number isn’t used for deposits by random people.
- The text message will ask you to confirm that you wish to proceed with the transaction. You can then send a confirmation text at no cost if you wish to continue with your transaction.
- Your payment credit will be displayed immediately in the account you have deposited into.
Deposit Times, Fees & Limits
One of the big benefits of Boku payments is that successful deposits are instantaneous. Once you have confirmed your Boku transaction the funds should automatically appear in the account you deposited into.
We have also mentioned that fees are simply not something to worry about with Boku. This system was designed to be as simple and cost-effective as possible, which means you won’t pay any fee for your deposit to Boku, or even be charged for the text you send to confirm your transaction.
There is a deposit limit on Boku, which will restrict you to depositing £10 at a time and £30 a day. However, given that Boku payments effectively open a line of credit on post-pay mobile carrier accounts this can be a good thing as it can help put the brakes on problem gambling behaviours.
How to use Boku to withdraw funds from a betting account
It is not possible to make withdrawals from a betting account with Boku.
This is because Boku only offers an e-wallet service to companies accepting Boku payments, but not to the individuals making Boku payments.
If you’re going to use Boku to make payments, it will not store your funds online, but will instead facilitate money transfers from your account with your mobile carrier to the payment receiver using your mobile number.
If you want to make a withdrawal from an account after making a Boku payment you will need to select an alternative method such as a withdrawal into a bank account or e-wallet like NETELLER.
A Short History of the Payment Method
Boku was founded in 2009 by three tech entrepreneurs, Mark Britto, Erich Ringewald and Ron Hirson, combining the assets of existing mobile payments operators Mobilcash and Paymo.
Over the next several years Boku raised almost $100 million in venture capital to fund development and expansion.
Boku’s services debuted in the Philippines in 2012 with Gcash, and by 2014 Boku payments became an option on the Sony PlayStation Store. By 2017 Boku had breached the $1 billion mark for international annual payment volume.
Today Boku payments are available at Apple, Google, Microsoft, Facebook and Spotify, amongst others. Mobile phone carrier partners include Vodafone, Verizon, Deutsche Telekom and Saudi Telecom.
Boku payments are available in 70 countries around the globe, including the United Kingdom, USA, Australia, China, France, Germany, India, The Netherlands and Spain.
Boku Betting FAQ
Am I eligible for betting bonuses with Boku?
Whether or not you qualify for betting bonuses bets at Boku sports betting sites will depend on the bookie in question. Boylesports does currently offer new player bonuses on first time deposits made with Boku as a deposit method.
However, this can easily change. Bookies are generally more restrictive with their free bets when it comes to e-pay options.
What is the min deposit for Boku?
The minimum deposit you can make at the best Boku betting sites will be determined by the bookmaker, not Boku. Boku itself will allow you to deposit any amount up to £10. Fortunately the majority of bookies have a minimum deposit threshold lower than £10.
What are bookmakers that accept Boku?
When it comes to betting sites that accept Boku as a deposit method, your choices are limited. Boylesports is the only major sports betting site that accepts direct Boku payments, along with several casino sites like the GoWin mobile casino. However, the number of Boku betting sites is likely to increase quite rapidly as mobile payment systems become more mainstream.
Can I fund a Boku account with Bitcoin?
No, the only account Boku is linked to is the one you have with your mobile phone carrier. This means the only way you could fund transactions on sites that accept Boku is if in future your mobile phone carrier gives you the option to fund your account using Bitcoin.
Can I use Boku for gambling?
Yes, you can use Boku as a deposit method to fund gambling accounts, provided the gambling website you are using accepts these payments. At the moment there are a small number of Boku betting sites, and Boylesports is the only major sports betting site to accept Boku payments.
Where can I deposit with Boku?
You can deposit with Boku at any website offering ‘Pay By Mobile powered by Boku’ as a payment method. At the moment Boylesports is the only major bookmaker accepting direct deposits from Boku.
Disadvantages of Using Boku at Online Sports Betting Sites
There are three disadvantages to using Boku at online betting sites:
1. Only one major bookmaker, Boylesports, currently accepts Boku payments
2. Boku deposits are capped at £10 per deposit and £30 per day
3. You cannot withdraw funds using Boku.
Is There a maximum deposit using Boku?
Yes, you can only deposit £10 at a time with Boku, and you have a daily deposit limit of £30.
Are there any Boku alternatives for sports betting
Which is best Boku or Skrill?
That really depends on what you want from your e-payment method. While Skrill is accepted at a much wider range of bookies than Boku, it is not as simple to use as Boku and also doesn’t offer you the option of making a deposit into your betting account and paying later when your mobile phone bill arrives.
Does Boku work in my country?
Boku does not offer a list of the 70 and growing countries in which it operates.
To check if Boku works in your country, visit a website that accepts Boku deposits and check if Boku comes up as a payment method when you attempt to make a payment on the website.
A sample of countries which Boku operates in includes Argentina, Australia, Bahrain, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Guatemala, Honduras, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Jordan, Latvia, Lebanon, Lithuania, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Norway, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UAE, UK, US, Venezuela and Vietnam.
Do I need to create a Boku account?
Unless you own a business that wants to accept Boku payments, there is no need to sign up for a Boku account. In fact one of the major perks of paying with Boku is that all you need to make payments is a valid mobile phone number in a country that offers this service. This makes Boku one of the quickest and simplest online payment methods available today.
Do you need to pay any fees to use Boku?
Unless you operate a company that accepts Boku payments, there are no fees associated with Boku payments. Boku was designed to be as cheap as possible for end users, which means there are no fees at all charged by Boku for making deposits or verifying Boku transactions using mobile texts.
Can I withdraw from betting sites using Boku?
No, one of the drawbacks of using Boku is that you currently cannot make a withdrawal from a betting site.
Is it a good idea to use Boku for sports betting?
If you’re a casual punter who doesn’t tend to stake much on your bets, then Boku is a good option. With a daily deposit limit of £30 you can make a couple of modest bets a day and also ensure you don’t overspend on your account. Boku can also be useful if you don’t have a credit card and don’t want to deal with the hassle and delay of making direct bank deposits into you bookie accounts.
Is it safe to use Boku for betting?
If you’re worried about your banking information being stolen online, then Boku is probably the safest online payment method you will find. Boku never requires you to submit any payment information online. Instead your mobile phone number is used to identify you and process payments by linking to your mobile carrier account. And your phone number is protected from misuse by Boku’s authentication process, which requires you to send confirmation texts from your mobile every time you process a Boku transaction.
Do I need a smartphone to use Boku?
No, you can use Boku with any phone provided it is paired with the sim card connected to the mobile number you use to make Boku payments. As long as your phone is able to receive and send text messages, you can make and verify Boku payments.
My phone carrier is not associated with Boku, what can I do?
You will be unable to use Boku as a payment method if your phone carrier is not partnered with the company or Boku is unavailable in your country. If Boku is available in your country, you can check which other mobile phone carrier in your location are partnered with Boku and open an account with them in order to use this service. With Boku expanding its services rapidly, it is likely that your country and carrier will make this service available in future.
Can I use Boku on a pay as you go phone?
Yes, you can use Boku if you are not on a post-pay contract with your mobile carrier. In this case your mobile carrier will not provide you with a line of credit by allowing you to add deposits to your phone bill. Instead any deposits you make using Boku will be deducted from your available balance.
How does Boku pay by mobile work?
Boku pay by mobile betting works by either deducting any payments you have made off your mobile phone balance if you’re on pay as you go, or by adding the payment amount to your bill if you have a mobile contract.