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Illinois Sports Betting

Joey Shadeck

Are you an Illinois resident who wants to bet on the Chicago Bears, Chicago Blackhawks, Chicago Cubs, or Chicago White Sox winning their next game? If so, you will need an online sports betting account.

Using a sports betting app, also known as an online sportsbook, is required to place bets. Residents of the Prairie State can bet on sports at brick-and-mortar casinos, or on their mobile phones or computers.

This guide will break down the best Illinois sports betting sites by comparing the total number of sports and bets offered, odds, live betting features, mobile apps, educational resources, ease of use, as well as current bonuses and promotions.

Best Online Sports Betting Apps in Illinois 2021

  • DraftKings Sportsbook – Best Overall
  • PointsBet – Best Bonuses and Promotions
  • FanDuel Sportsbook – Best Live Betting
  • Barstool Sportsbook – Best for Stoolies
  • William Hill – Good Odds
  • BetRivers – Good Bet Variety, Poor Mobile App
fetchBrokerByName("draftkings-sportsbook"); ?> DraftKings Sportsbook

Best Overall
5stars
DraftKings is the complete package for both new and experienced sports bettors and daily fantasy sports players. While the live betting, education, and mobile app are all great, I found the unique bets and pre-game statistics DraftKings offers to be the best in the state. Read full review

fetchBrokerByName("pointsbet"); ?> PointsBet

Best Bonuses and Promotions
5stars
PointsBet is going to be a game-changer for U.S. sports betting. The sportsbook combines traditional sports betting with a unique and, honestly, thrilling way to wager — points betting. With points betting your potential earnings (and losses) are multiplied by how many points you won or lost your bet. PointsBet is currently the only sportsbook in the U.S. that offers this twist on betting. Read full review

fetchBrokerByName("fanduelsportsbook"); ?> FanDuel Sportsbook

Best Live Betting
5stars
Rattle off any feature you want in a sports betting app and it’s likely FanDuel Sportsbook has got it… and then some. From top-of-the-line live betting and an impressive laundry list of bet types and sports to industry-leading promotions, competitive odds, and innovative live play-by-play contests, FanDuel is a sportsbook for all bettors. Read full review

fetchBrokerByName("barstoolsportsbook"); ?> Barstool Sportsbook

Best for Stoolies
4.5stars
Online sports betting got a lot more entertaining late last year when Barstool Sportsbook entered the field. Brand loyalists will get a kick out of the Barstool-themed bet types and promotions concocted by the company’s popular personalities. But even if you’re not a diehard Stoolie and just want to lay some action, you’ll find everything the best traditional sportsbooks offer on the Barstool app. Read full review

fetchBrokerByName("williamhill"); ?> WilliamHill

Good Odds
4stars
William Hill combines excellent odds and new customer bonus offers with an above-average mobile app. While I wish the sportsbook offered more education and ongoing promotions, there is a lot to like about William Hill. Read full review

fetchBrokerByName("betrivers"); ?> BetRivers

BetRivers
4stars
BetRivers has the foundation of a great sports betting site. It’s one of the premier services for live betting, has a wide variety of sports (the most of any app), and offers great promotions. Mobile bettors, however, will find the slow and clunky app a frustrating user experience. Read full review

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Best Betting Odds in Illinois

To determine which Illinois sports betting sites offer the best odds, I recorded and analyzed data from hundreds of games for spread, moneyline, and total bets. The sportsbooks that provide the best odds for each sport are listed below.

Feature DraftKings Sportsbook FanDuel Sportsbook
Bet Now
PointsBet Barstool Sportsbook William Hill BetRivers Sportsbook
NFL Moneyline Best Average Below Average Good Good Best
NFL Spread Below Average Below Average Good Below Average Average Below Average
NFL Total Below Average Below Average Average Below Average Average Below Average
NBA Moneyline Average Average Average Average Best Average
NBA Spread Below Average Good Best Below Average Average Below Average
NBA Total Below Average Average Average Average Average Below Average
NHL Moneyline Best Average Below Average Below Average Good Best
NHL Spread Average Good Average Worst Best N/A
NHL Total Below Average Average Good Below Average Average N/A
Soccer Moneyline Average Average Below Average Best Average N/A
NCAAF Moneyline Below Average Below Average Average Below Average Good Below Average
NCAAB Moneyline Average Good Average Average Best Good
Odds 3 3.5 4 2.5 5 3.5



Deposit Options

Here is a comparison of deposit options amongst top Illinois sports betting apps.

Feature DraftKings Sportsbook FanDuel Sportsbook
Bet Now
PointsBet Barstool Sportsbook William Hill BetRivers Sportsbook
Minimum Deposit $5 $10 $5 $10 $5 $10
Total Deposit Methods 8 8 4 7 5 8
Deposit Min/Max - Debit/Credit Card $5/$2,000 $10/Varies $5/Varies $10/N/A $20/$1,000 $10/Varies
Deposit Min/Max - PayPal $5/$2,000 $10/Varies $5/Varies $10/N/A $5 N/A
PayPal Yes Yes No Yes Yes No
Debit/Credit Card Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Online Bank Transfer Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes



Withdrawal Options

Here is a comparison of withdrawal options amongst top Illinois sports betting apps.

Feature DraftKings Sportsbook FanDuel Sportsbook
Bet Now
PointsBet Barstool Sportsbook William Hill BetRivers Sportsbook
Minimum Withdrawal $1 - $15 None Listed None Listed $10 $20 $10
Total Withdrawal Methods 4 4 2 5 6 4
Withdrawal Min/Max - PayPal $5/Varies None listed $5/Varies $10/N/A $20 N/A
Online Bank Transfer Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
PayPal Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No
Prepaid Gift Card No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes




Illinois Sports Betting Timeline

Here is a short timeline of how Illinois sports betting became a reality:

  • 2018 - Five bills surrounding sports betting were introduced in Illinois Congress. Not much progress was made on any particular bill in 2018.
  • 2019 - After many provisions in Illinois Congress, Senate Bill 690 was passed on June 2nd, with Governor Pritzker signing the bill shortly afterward. The bill legalized sports betting at Illinois casinos, online sports betting apps and websites, and Illinois professional sports stadiums. The bill also required residents to register for online sports betting accounts at casinos, instead of online, for 18 months. The purpose of this in-person registration was to give the in-state operators a head start over companies like DraftKings and FanDuel.
  • 2020 - Governor Pritzker lifted the in-person signup restriction in May at the apex of the COVID-19 pandemic. Pritzker then reinstated the restriction in June, only to remove it again just before the start of the 2020 NFL season. As of December 2020, there are five online sportsbooks available in Illinois.
  • 2021 - Governor Pritzker reinstated the in-person signup, meaning new sports bettors must go to the casino that is partnered with the sportsbook they want to sign up with to register. This restriction is in place until 2022 and has seen a negative response from citizens and sportsbooks.

Best Illinois Sportsbooks Summary

Below is a summary of the best online sportsbooks currently available in Illinois.

SportsbookMinimum DepositSports & Bets OfferedOddsMobile BettingBonuses & PromotionsLive BettingOverallBet Now
DraftKings Sportsbook$5 5 Stars 3 Stars 5 Stars 4.5 Stars 5 Stars 5 Stars N/A
PointsBet$5 5 Stars 4 Stars 5 Stars 5 Stars 3.5 Stars 5 Stars N/A
FanDuel Sportsbook$10 4.5 Stars 3.5 Stars 4.5 Stars 5 Stars 5 Stars 5 Stars Bet Now
Barstool Sportsbook $10 4.5 Stars 2.5 Stars 5 Stars 4.5 Stars 3.5 Stars 4.5 Stars N/A
William Hill$5 4 Stars 5 Stars 4 Stars 4 Stars 3.5 Stars 4 Stars N/A
BetRivers Sportsbook$10 4.5 Stars 3.5 Stars 2.5 Stars 4 Stars 4.5 Stars 4 Stars N/A


DraftKings Sportsbook 5stars

DraftKings

DraftKings delivers the ultimate package for sports bettors, including unique contests and bet types, industry-leading pre-game statistics, excellent education for beginners, Daily Fantasy contests, and private pools with friends. This outstanding all-round experience makes DraftKings our top overall sportsbook in 2021. Read full review

Minimum deposit: $5

Why choose DraftKings Sportsbook:


  • Great for beginners. DraftKings’ noteworthy educational materials include guidance on how to bet and different bet types, as well as sport-specific guides that cover common strategies for betting success.
  • Unique bets and contests. The variety of sports and bets offered —one of the largest selections of unique bet types and contests we’ve seen — and an excellent live betting experience makes DraftKings one heck of a sportsbook.
  • Bonuses: Promotions change throughout the year, but typical ones include risk-free bets up to $1,000 for new bettors, and deposit matches, among others. Keep in mind there are typically rollover requirements attached to each bonus.

Gallery



PointsBet5stars

PointsBet

PointsBet is going to be a game-changer for U.S. sports betting. The sportsbook combines traditional sports betting with a unique and, honestly, thrilling way to wager — points betting. With points betting your potential earnings (and losses) are multiplied by how many points you won or lost your bet. PointsBet is currently the only sportsbook in the U.S. that offers this twist on betting.Read full review

Minimum Deposit: $5

Why Choose PointsBet:


  • You’re interested in PointsBetting. PointsBetting takes a spread, total, or prop bet and makes it a variable bet until the end of the game. The idea is, the more correct a bettor is, the more they win, and vice versa.
    For example, let's say you bet $10 on the Dallas Cowboys (-3) against the Jacksonville Jaguars (+3). If Dallas wins 24-20, you covered the spread and won by one point. For this example, you multiply your $10 wager by one, for a total win of $10. If Dallas wins 26-20, you covered the spread and won by three points. For this example, you multiply your $10 wager by three, for a total win of $30. If Dallas loses 17-20, you lost the spread by six points (the three Jacksonville won by plus the three Dallas was favored). For this example, you multiply your $10 wager by six, for a total loss of $60.
  • Bonuses: Typically, PointsBet offers two risk-free bets up to $2,000 in combined value, as well as various seasonal promotions. Keep in mind there are typically rollover requirements attached to each bonus.

Gallery



FanDuel 5stars

FanDuel

Rattle off any feature you want in a sports betting app and it’s likely FanDuel Sportsbook has got it… and then some. From top-of-the-line live betting and an impressive laundry list of bet types and sports to industry-leading promotions, competitive odds, and innovative live play-by-play contests, FanDuel is a sportsbook for all bettors. Read full review

Minimum deposit: $10

Why choose FanDuel Sportsbook:


  • Excellent mobile app. With its focus on usability, we found the FanDuel Sportsbook app to be one the best-designed apps overall.
  • Great for bettors. High-quality live betting, variety of bets offered, and noteworthy odds are all features new and experienced bettors will appreciate.
  • Bonuses: Promotions change throughout the year, but typically FanDuel offers a risk-free bet up to $1,000, and several other smaller seasonal offerings. Keep in mind there are typically rollover requirements attached to each bonus.

Gallery




What Illinois Casinos Offer in Person Sports Betting?

Residents of Illinois can bet on sports in-person at the following casinos.


How do I bet online in Illinois?

Illinois lawmakers changed laws in April of 2021. Now, until 2022 residents must physically drive to the casino that has partnered with the sportsbook they are interested in and register at that casino to bet online. The change in law makes it much harder to signup to bet online and instead pushes people to gamble at brick-and-mortar casinos. Frankly, I'm not a fan.

What Online Sportsbooks are Available in Illinois?

Residents of Illinois can register to bet online at the following casinos and racetracks.

  • Barstool Sportsbook Hollywood Casino Joliet
  • BetRivers - Rivers Casino
  • DraftKings Sportsbook - Casino Queen
  • FanDuel Sportsbook - Fairmount Park
  • PointsBet - Hawthorne Race Course
  • William Hill - Grand Victoria Casino

What types of gambling are legal in Illinois?

Illinois has a large selection of online gaming products to choose from. Here are the forms of gambling legal in Illinois:

  • Online sports betting - Legal (launch - May of 2020)
  • Online horse betting - Legal
  • Daily fantasy sports - Legal
  • iGaming (online slots) - Not Legal
  • Online poker - Not Legal
  • Online lottery - Legal
  • Offshore sportsbooks - Not Legal

Sports betting at stadiums: Illinois has one of the most unique sports betting laws in the country. One of the more interesting provisions of Illinois sports wagering is the sports facilities' ability to offer betting.

Stadiums such as Wrigley Field and Soldier Field can apply for a master sports wagering license. A master license grants stadiums access to offer sports betting in-house or within a five-block radius of the facility. It is unclear whether this type of sports betting would be done by a betting kiosk, mobile app, or another medium. Licenses cost 5% of gross gaming revenue, up to a maximum of $10 million in four years. At the time of publication, no stadiums have applied yet for a masters license.

Sports betting at racetracks: Illinois racetracks will be able to add slot machines and table games to their facilities, in addition to sports betting.

New casinos: The Illinois sports betting bill also cleared the way for six new casinos throughout the state. These casinos will be located in Chicago, Danville, Rockford, Waukegan, and Williamson.

Popular Illinois Sports Teams

Illinois is fortunate enough to have eight professional sports teams. Residents of Illinois can bet on all professional teams, which includes the following:


What sports leagues can I bet on in Illinois?

Illinois sports wagering laws prohibit betting on games with Illinois schools involved, meaning you will not be able to bet on Illinois college teams such as Northwestern. Aside from that, almost all domestic and international leagues are available to bet on with Illinois sportsbooks:

  • Football - NFL, NCAA, CFL
  • Basketball - NBA, NCAA, WNBA, International Leagues
  • Soccer - English Premier League, MLS, International Leagues
  • Baseball - MLB + International Leagues
  • Hockey - NHL + International Leagues
  • Golf - PGA Tour, LPGA Tour, International Leagues
  • Tennis - All Major U.S. Tournaments + International Matches
  • Other Sports - UFC/MMA, Motor Sports, Boxing, Cricket, etc.

How to Read Odds

Odds represent the likelihood of an outcome occurring. In sports betting, each team is assigned odds that represent the likelihood of them winning the game. American odds are what you will see displayed on every U.S. sportsbook and sports betting app.

The first thing you will notice when reading odds will be that:

  • Odds have either a plus or minus in front of them.
  • Odds are in terms of 100.

Betting Odds are written in terms of 100 as an industry standard. The easiest way to think of the plus and minus signs is as follows: If it is a plus, you will receive more than a $100 payout on a $100 bet. If it is a minus, you will have to bet more than $100 to win a $100 payout.

Thankfully, you can view your potential winnings on each bet before placing it at an online sportsbook. That said, it is beneficial to understand the betting odds.

Keep in mind for both spreads and totals, if the game ends in a draw for the bet, you get your stake back but do not win or lose any additional money.


What is a Moneyline bet?

A moneyline bet is a wager on which team will win the game outright. Both the favorite and the underdog are given odds to win the game. View sample bet slip.

Moneyline Odds How to Read it What it Means
Lions +130 Lions plus 130 By betting $100 you will win $130 if the Lions win
Packers -150 Packers minus 150 To win $100, you must wager $150 on the Packers to win

What is a Spread bet?

A spread bet is a wager on which team will cover the spread or point spread. Underdogs will be given additional points with the spread, while the favorite will have to win by a certain amount of points to cover the spread. View sample bet slip.

Spread Odds How to Read it What it Means
Lakers + 5 (-110) Lakers plus 5 points at minus 110 odds The Lakers must win the game, or lose by less than 5 for you to win your bet
Rockets -5 (-110) Rockets minus 5 points at minus 110 odds The Rockets must win the game by more than 5 points for you to win your bet. A tie is a push, meaning you don't win or lose.

What is an Over/Under (Total) bet?

An over/under bet focuses on how many points are scored, regardless of who wins the game. After a total point score has been set, bettors can wager whether the game's actual score will be over or under the preset point score. View sample bet slip.

Total Odds How to Read it
Over 7 (-115) In order to win $100, you must bet $115 on the overall combined run score to be higher than 7
Under 7 (-110) In order to win $100, you must wager $110 on the total combined run score to be less than 7

More of a visual person? Here's a YouTube video covering moneyline, spread, and total bets.

What is a Parlay bet?

A parlay bet is a group of bets, typically spread, moneyline, or total bets, combined into one bet to increase the payout odds. Every separate bet must win to win a parlay bet. View example bet slip.


What is a Future bet?

A futures bet is a bet on an event that takes place in days, weeks, or months. The most common future bets are placed on what team will win the finals before the season starts. View example bet slip.

What are Bonus Rollover Requirements?

Rollover requirements are requirements bettors MUST fulfill before they can withdraw the bonus money. Each type of bonus has different terms and conditions, which you should examine before accepting.

Rollover requirements for sports betting often range between 1X-10X, with some extreme requirements going all the way up to 15X. For example, let’s say you deposit $100 and receive a $50 bonus with a 5X rollover. Before you can withdraw the $50 in bonus funds, you have to wager $750 (($100 + $50)x5). Clearly, the $50 bonus is a lot harder to obtain if you don’t bet frequently.

This table gives you an idea of how much you will have to wager before withdrawing your bonus at multiple rollover rates. We will assume each deposit made is $100.

Bonus Percentage ($100 Deposit) Bonus Amount Bonus Withdrawal with 1X Rollover Bonus Withdrawal with 3X Rollover Bonus Withdrawal with 5X Rollover Bonus Withdrawal with 10X Rollover
25% Deposit Match $25 (100+25)x1 = $125 (100+25)x3 = $375 (100+25)x5 = $625 (100+25)x10 = $1,250
50% Deposit Match $50 (100+50)x1 = $150 (100+50)x3 = $450 (100+50)x5 = $750 (100+50)x10 = $1,500
100% Deposit Match $100 (100+100)x1 = $200 (100+100)x3 = $600 (100+100)x5 = $1,000 (100+100)x10 = $2,000



Is Sports Betting Legal in Illinois?

Sports betting is now legal in Illinois at retail locations and online. Residents of the Land of Lincoln can bet on sports at brick-and-mortar casinos, or on their mobile phones or laptops.

Illinois passed sports betting legislation at the 11th hour of their 2019 legislative session, surprising many people who doubted the bill would reach the Governor's desk. Members of the Illinois General Assembly worked overtime to get Senate Bill 690 passed on June 2nd, 2019. Governor J.B. Pritzker signed the bill shortly afterward.

One unique provision with Senate Bill 690 is that sports betting operators will be mandated to purchase official league data for all in-play wagers, alongside wagers that aren't dependent on the event's final score. As a consumer, this could ultimately limit betting options and make lines more expensive. On the other hand, league data could offer new types of bets based on next-gen stats. It will take time to see whether or not this mandate benefits or harms consumers.

How old do you have to be to bet on sports in Illinois?

Anybody who is 21 years or older can bet on sports in Illinois. As long as you are 21 and within state lines, you do not have to be a resident of Illinois to bet on sports.

If you live in Illinois and travel to a state that does not have legal betting, you will not be able to bet. Your phone or laptop uses geo-technology to make sure you are within state lines. The only people prohibited from betting on sports include athletes, coaches, refs, and other related personnel.


Do you have to pay taxes on sports betting in Illinois?

According to the IRS, “Gambling winnings are fully taxable, and you must report the income on your tax return.” Form W-2G is used to report gambling winnings and gambling losses, which may be deduced if adequately itemized.

For online gambling winnings, residents must send in Form W-2G when certain winning thresholds are reached. For example, if a player wins more than $600 or at least 300 times the wager amount, the form must be filled out.


Is it legal to bet on horse racing in Illinois?

It is legal to bet on horse racing in Illinois. Residents can bet with legal online providers such as TVG, BetAmerica, and TwinSpires. You can not bet on horses from Illinois sportsbooks.


Does Illinois offer an online lottery?

Yes, the Illinois Lottery does offer online lottery games. Games offered include jackpot games such as Mega Millions and daily games such as pick three. Illinois Lottery money goes to the following causes: 64% is paid to winners, 5.5% is paid to retailers as commissions, 25% is transferred to the Common School Fund, Capital Projects Fund, and Specialty Tickets, and 5.5% goes towards operating expenses.


Is DraftKings sportsbook legal in Illinois?

DraftKings is a safe and legal sports betting option for residents of Illinois. DraftKings obtained its license from Casino Queen.


Is FanDuel sportsbook legal in Illinois?

FanDuel is a safe and legal sports betting option for residents of Illinois. FanDuel obtained its license from Par-A-Dice Casino.


Is Bovada legal in Illinois?

Bovada, BetOnline, and MyBookie are considered offshore sportsbooks and are illegal. These sportsbooks are not approved by the Illinois Gaming Board, which regulates all legal Illinois sportsbooks.


Methodology

For Moneyline.com’s annual best online sportsbooks review, we collected more than 36,000 data points over five months from 20 sportsbooks that serve 11 states where full-scale mobile betting is legalized. Hundreds of hours were spent testing and scoring each sportsbook (mobile and online/desktop) in seven core categories: sports and bets offered, odds, live betting, mobile betting, education, ease of use, and bonuses and promotions. The results determined each sportsbook’s overall rating.

Data from more than 1,700 bets (including moneyline, spread and total bets) was used to generate each sportsbook’s comparative odds ranking. Leagues and bet types collected include NCAA football moneyline bets, NCAA basketball moneyline bets, NFL moneyline, spread and total bets, NBA spread, moneyline and total bets, NHL moneyline, puckline and total bets, and soccer 3-way result (moneyline) bets. When collecting odds, we made sure to collect the same games at the same time for each sportsbook, ensuring data accuracy.

About Moneyline.com’s chief sportsbook researcher, Joey Shadeck: I’ve been a hobby sports bettor for more than six years, placing hundreds of bets on my favorite sports (football, basketball, MMA) and teams (Packers, Spartans, and whoever is playing the Lions). Beyond sports betting, I’m known for saying “Wanna bet on it?” in almost any situation and that is how I found out I can eat 42 chicken nuggets in less than 20 minutes.

As of February 2021, 22 different states have legalized sports betting to some capacity. Of those 22 states, the following 11 have legalized full-scale mobile betting: Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada (must register in-person), New Hampshire, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia.



Learn more about how we test.

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Joey Shadeck

About the author: Joey Shadeck is the lead writer for Moneyline.com and content strategist for Reink Media Group. He has closely tracked sports betting in the United States for the last two years, compiling hundreds of data points across dozens of sportsbooks. He has 6 years of online betting experience with hundreds of bets placed during that time.




BetRivers: MUST BE 21+ • PLAY IN ILLINOIS AND IOWA ONLY • GAMBLING PROBLEM? CALL 1-800-GAMBLER

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