Caesars Sportsbook has become one of the favorites amongst patrons after their purchase of William Hill last year. Caesars Sportsbook now provides new joiners with an alluring welcome bonus as well as a wide range of promotions. During a major league season, Caesar’s always offer enhanced odds and promotions for IL patrons. Additionally, apart from a great welcome bonus, odds and betting markets, Caesar’s also has an app that can be downloaded on both iOS and Android.
Illinois Sports Betting Sites
Online registration for sports betting is now available in Illinois. Patrons can join any of the more than five great sportsbooks in Illinois. Major betting sites like BetMGM and Ceasars are just some of the sportsbooks in Illinois.
In our guide below we only recommend the best IL sports betting sites and apps according to their welcome bonuses, odds and betting markets.
Best Illinois Online Betting Sites December 2023
Illinois Betting Site Winners by Category
In Illinois, well-known sportsbooks like BetMGM, Caesars and FanDuel dominate the market. So far, no local sportsbooks nor smaller sportsbooks have launched. Patrons in Illinois have a choice of more than five great sportsbooks, all of which have a betting app that can be downloaded on iOS and Android.
After carefully trying out all the available betting sites in Illinois we selected a specific sportsbook for each of the categories below. All of the sportsbooks we recommend in our top list offer a great welcome bonus and odds, however, some excel even further in certain categories.
For example, we selected FanDuel Sportsbook as the best betting app in Illinois as it offers competitive odds, a great user interface and an in-app live streaming option. The app did not crash at any point during our testing of live betting and early cashout, which is rare for a betting app.
Top 3 Illinois Sports Betting Sites
Selecting the top three sportsbooks in Illinois was quite difficult as there were a lot of major sportsbooks which offer great welcome bonuses, odds and betting markets. However, after carefully analyzing each sportsbook we selected our top three sports betting sites in Illinois.
Caesars Sportsbook #1
Fanduel Sportsbook #2
Although FanDuel is well known for their daily fantasy sports, their sportsbook is likely the subject of the same praise right now. FanDuel Sportsbook offers competitive odds as well as unique betting markets that you won’t find elsewhere. They also have a live streaming option available for a couple of sports such as tennis, and best of all it’s also available on their mobile app. The FanDuel Sportsbook app can be downloaded on iOS and Android devices and you can start betting straight away after you’ve downloaded it.
BetMGM Sportsbook #3
What distinguishes BetMGM Sportsbook from the other Illinois betting sites is their free bet welcome bonus. BetMGM Sportsbook offers an excellent welcome bonus and it’s also one of the largest available in Illinois. The terms and conditions are simple, and there aren’t any wagering requirements for the free bets that you receive. Keep in mind that it’s a risk-free bet, therefore the team you bet on must lose for you to receive the free bets. Apart from the great welcome bonus BetMGM offer a variety of unique betting markets and betting features that you cannot find anywhere else.
How We Rate the Best Illinois Sportsbooks
When we are selecting the best Illinois sportsbooks we make sure that they have all the qualities we are looking for in a betting site.
Below we listed the five factors we used to rate any of the Illinois sportsbooks that we chose. You can also use these five factors to examine any other sportsbook of your choice that you would like to join.
Safety and licenses
For an Illinois sports betting site to be legal, it must always be licensed by the Illinois Gaming Board. The IGB is in charge of overseeing all gambling in Illinois and so far has given a total of 10 sportsbook licenses so far in Illinois. Each casino in Illinois partner up with only one online sportsbook. So far, there are currently seven online sportsbooks available in the state.
The range of sign-up offers in IL is between $200 all the way up to $2000. However, the most common sportsbook bonus in IL is a free bet bonus between $1000-$1500. BetRivers is the only sportsbook that offers a match deposit bonus, however, the amount this bonus offers is significantly lower than the free bet bonuses.
Quality of odds
You have a wide range of odds to choose from, the sportsbooks that we selected as being the best options for IL patrons. We made sure to only choose those sportsbooks that offered a good margin on odds. We found that the odds provided by IL sportsbooks were similar to each other when we compared them. However, some sportsbooks did offer enhanced odds which would boost your earnings. For example, BetMGM and Caesars Sportsbook offered either odds boost promotions or boosted odds for a specific betting market.
It is crucial for a sports betting site to have a good working app available. The majority of IL bettors prefer using a mobile app over a desktop to place their bets online. Luckily there are numerous sportsbook apps in Illinois that you can download on iOS and Android devices. It’s also very rare that the betting features a sportsbook offers on a desktop aren’t offered on the app.
There are a total number of 9 payment methods available on online sportsbooks in Illinois. Of course, not all sportsbooks would have all of these payment methods available. However, you can always join the sportsbook that accepts your selected payment method. We highly suggest you try out PayPal or Play+ for your IL betting. Both of them are e-wallets that you can top up easily using your credit/debit card. When using PayPal and Play+ you can easily and conveniently deposit and withdraw online.
How to Sign Up at an Illinois Sportsbook
You can now create your Illinois sportsbook account online as in-person registration is no longer needed. The fact that Illinois patrons can now register on any online IL sportsbook is a major benefit. To create a new sportsbook account you must be 21 years or older and hold a valid identification document.
Below you can find the main steps on how you can sign up at an Illinois sportsbook.
Check out our top IL sportsbooks list and visit one of them.
Start your registration process by tapping on the ‘sign in’ button.
Fill in all your personal details to create a new account on the sportsbook.
Make sure you claim the sportsbooks welcome bonus.
In the cashier section of the sports betting site tap on deposit and place your first deposit.
To create a new Illinois sportsbook account you need the following details:
- Email address
- Full name
- Last four digits of your social security number
- Date of birth
- Address including city, state and zip code
- Phone number
Any IL sportsbook needs to follow a set of laws and regulations set by the IGB. One of these laws is the requirement to keep any data from patrons securely. Remember that any data the sportsbook asks you for is for your own security. For example, they must only accept patrons who are older than 21 years old and they ask for your ID to confirm your identity.
Illinois Betting Bonuses
The sportsbooks that we selected in our top Illinois list all offer great bonuses, however, some in our opinion excel even further. After examining each sportsbook’s current offers, we created the table below recommending a sportsbook for a specific bonus.
We selected BetMGM Sportsbook as the best sign-up offer in Illinois for various reasons. For starters, it’s one of the largest welcome bonuses that you can find in Illinois. Secondly, it can be used on any sports of your choice and there aren’t any wagering requirements on the free bets that you receive.
Fanduel Sportsbook offers a variety of promotions, but their free bet welcome bonus is hands done the best. It’s great since the welcome bonus is one of the largest available and you must only wager the free bet once.
Betting on Local Teams in Illinois
Apart from a great variety of sportsbooks, patrons in Illinois have a good range of professional local sports teams to bet on.
If you support any of the Illinois local teams you can find our below guide very useful, as we recommend a specific sportsbook for each IL sports team. We carefully looked at the betting markets, bonuses and odds before recommending a sportsbook for a specific local IL team.
FanDuel Sportsbook knows that Chicago Bulls fans are the most loyal and passionate which is why they are in talks to open a sportsbook lounger in the United Center. This way FanDuel can offer a unique and exclusive betting experience for Chicago Bulls fans. FanDuel offers competitive odds for Chicago Bulls games and during NBA season they tend to offer a promotion for the matches. Apart from that, FanDuel have a great app that can be downloaded on iOS or Android.
DraftKings Sportsbook partnered with the Chicago Cubs in 2020 and since then has started construction on a retail sportsbook in Chicago’s Wrigley Field. The co-founder of DraftKings said they want to create a revolutionary sports betting experience for Chicago Cubs fans with this sportsbook. Apart from this partnership, DraftKings offers market-leading odds on numerous MLB matches which is why it’s one of the best sportsbooks for MLB betting. You can also download the DraftKings Sportsbook app which allows you to bet and use their early cashout feature during a live MLB match.
BetRivers is the first multi-year partnership the Chicago Bears have signed. This partnership has opened the door for a more exclusive and unique betting experience for Chicago Bears fans. Apart from that, BetRivers patrons can make use of the collaborative promotions being offered Chicago Bears matches. Although BetRivers doesn’t have the largest welcome bonus in Illinois it is one of the best sportsbooks for NFL betting. You can find a lot of great odds as well as a vast market range for NFL matches.
Illinois Payment Methods and Banking
The table below is the result of our research into the various betting payment methods offered by Illinois sportsbooks. The following payment methods might not be available at all Illinois sportsbooks. Although some like BetMGM Sportsbook can provide you with a wide variety of payment options.
You can easily deposit online for Illinois sports betting with the payment methods in the table below. For withdrawals on IL sportsbooks, the payout speed varies according to which payment option you use. For instance, when using PayPal as your payout payment method it only takes 1-2 days, whereas VIP Preferred payouts can take up to 5 days.
The deposit and withdrawal limits vary according to the sports betting site that you’re using. Therefore, you should always check in the cashier section of the sportsbook for the exact limits and payment methods available.
We highly suggest you give PayPal or Play+ a try as they are both e-wallets that can be funded with your credit/debit card. Both of these payment methods are widely accepted at sportsbooks in Illinois and both of them offer very quick withdrawals.
How to Deposit at Illinois Betting Sites
After you completed your sportsbook account you can finally deposit and place your first bet. Depositing at an Illinois sports betting site is simple and everything can be done conveniently online.
It doesn’t matter if you use your phone or desktop to deposit money into your sportsbook account as both are accepted. We highly suggest you try using PayPal or Play+ for mobile depositing, as you simply need to input your email and password to complete a deposit.
Below we created a step-by-step guide on how to deposit at an online Illinois sportsbook.
Best Sports Betting Apps in Illinois
Mobile betting apps are available and legal in Illinois. All the sportsbooks that we mentioned in our top Illinois sportsbooks list have a betting app that you can download on your phone.
Illinois betting apps are available on both iOS and Android devices and they can be downloaded through Google Play Store or the App Store. Some sportsbooks even offer a direct download link for their sportsbook app on their main site.
FanDuel Sportsbook offers one of the few sportsbook apps that doesn’t crash even during live betting for Illinois patrons. Apart from not crashing during a critical time, FanDuel have a great selection of betting markets for all major sports leagues as well as for niche sports. On the FanDuel Sportsbook app, there is also a live streaming option, primarily for tennis and table tennis.
After reviewing and evaluating all the Illinois sports betting apps, we determined that the top three sportsbook apps are the ones below.
Geo-location on Mobile Betting Apps
It is very important that a sportsbook confirms that your location is in Illinois, as that is where they hold a license. This is why sportsbooks require you to switch on your GPS while using their betting app to confirm you are inside IL state lines.
Sportsbooks require you to follow a set of guidelines to have a successful mobile betting experience. We’ve listed the three guidelines you should always follow when using an Illinois betting app.
Like every other US state which has legalized sports betting, you can only place a bet while you’re inside Illinois where the sportsbook holds a license. The sportsbook won’t allow you to place any bets if you’re located outside of Illinois.
Illinois sports betting sites need to confirm your location is inside state lines. This is why you must switch on your GPS on your phone while using a betting app. If you decide to switch the GPS off the sportsbook won’t allow you to place any bets.
Some Illinois sports betting apps don’t have a geo-locater incorporated in the app itself, and therefore you might have to download an extra geo-locator app. This geo-locator software is used by the online sportsbook to confirm your location within state lines.
Sports Betting in Illinois
Sports betting in Illinois was legalized in 2019, it was a bit of a rocky start as bettors had to go in person to register for an online Illinois sports betting account. Luckily you can now register at any legal online sportsbook in Illinois on your mobile or desktop at home.
The Illinois Gaming Board is the current state regulator in Illinois. The main mission of this board is to protect Illinois bettors from false promotions as well as audit sportsbooks for fairness and security.
Illinois Gambling Laws
To be able to place a bet on any online sportsbooks in Illinois you must be older than 21. There is no need for you to be a resident in Illinois to be allowed to place a bet, however, you do need to be physically present in the state when betting online.
Betting online on an in-state college team is not allowed in Illinois. However, you can place an online bet on other college teams which aren’t from Illinois. If you would like to bet on an in-state college team you can place a bet in person only before the game starts.
Fantasy sports is available in Illinois and you can choose from two sportsbooks DraftKings Sportsbook or Fanduel Sportsbook.
Betting Sites in Illinois to Avoid
Although there are a lot of sports betting sites that allow you to place bets on them doesn’t mean you should. If you want to keep your funds safe, we highly suggest you don’t use offshore sports betting sites.
There are multiple disadvantages to using these offshore sportsbooks, the primary disadvantage being that they don’t need to comply with US laws. They also don’t have to follow a set of guidelines like licensed sportsbooks do.
Illinois sports betting sites are safe as they are regulated by the Illinois Gaming Board. This means that they make sure that the IL sportsbooks are following a set of rules and laws, unlike offshore sportsbooks. There is no reason for you to use any of these offshore sportsbooks since you have a lot of safe and legit sportsbooks that you can join in Illinois.
History of Sports Betting in Illinois
Illinois lawmakers first expressed interest in legalizing sports betting in the state in 2018. It then only took one year to legalize sports betting in Illinois. Neighboring states Iowa and Indiana both legalized sports betting in the same year as Illinois.
The major sports betting-related events that occurred in Illinois are listed below.
Legalization of online lottery tickets
Illinois becomes the first state to legalize the purchasing of an online lottery ticket in the US.
Riverboat Gambling Act is passed
Illinois was the second state to legalize riverboat casinos and the first riverboat casino opened in 1991.
Riverboat Casinos docked
Riverboat Casinos were finally given permission to be permanently docked in Illinois.
New legislation in Illinois
Bar video poker and slot machines become legal in Illinois
Sports betting legislation
Sports betting is legalized in Illinois and the first sports bets were taken in 2020.
Pros and Cons of Online Betting in Illinois
If you’re still contemplating if sports betting in Illinois is worth it or not, we’re here to help you make that decision. However, the advantages outdo the disadvantages of sports betting in IL as patrons are very lucky with the large choice of sportsbooks in the state.
Betting sites in Illinois offer great betting bonuses which can help you kickstart your betting experience. There are numerous sportsbooks that you can join, there are also betting apps that can be downloaded on iOS or Android.
- Great welcome bonuses available
- Good variety of sports betting sites
- Great selection of mobile apps
- No online betting on in-state college teams
You cannot place any online bets on in-state college teams in IL, however, this isn’t a significant concern unless you’re a big fan of the state’s college team. You can still place online NCAA bets on other college teams, not in the state. Or you can even place your IL college team bet in person at a sportsbook before the game starts, as this is allowed.
List of all Illinois Betting Sites
The Illinois Gaming Board requires sportsbooks to partner with an Illinois casino to get a license. In the table below you can find all the licensed Illinois sports betting sites, alongside their casino partner.
|Sportsbook||License Partner||Date Launched|
|Barstool||Hollywood Casino Aurora||2021|
|BetRivers Sportsbook||Rivers Casino||2020|
|BetMGM Sportsbook||Par-A-Dice Hotel casino||2022|
|DraftKings Sportsbook||DraftKings at Casino Queen||2020|
|FanDuel Sportsbook||Fanduel Sportsbook and Horse Racing||2020|
|Caesars Sportsbook||Grand Victoria Casino||2021|
|PointsBet||Hawthorne Race Course||2020|
Ever since in-person registration was removed in Illinois many patrons have joined the sports betting scene in the state. Patrons can finally join any IL sportsbook they would like online, at any time.
There are numerous welcome bonuses that can be redeemed from IL sportsbooks, most of which are free bets. Patrons also have a variety of odds to choose from as well thanks to the competition between major sportsbooks in Illinois.
You can join any of the sportsbooks in our top list to claim your welcome bonus, you can rest assured that we only recommend betting sites that reach our high standards.
Is sports betting legal in Illinois?
Yes, sports betting became legal in 2019 when the sports wagering act was passed. Multiple sportsbooks have since been applying for licenses to become legal in Illinois.
Is online sports betting legal in Illinois?
Yes, online sports betting is legal in Illinois as it was passed along with the sports wagering act in 2019. There is no need for in-person registering anymore, so now you can register online at any of the legal sportsbooks in Illinois.
Are there any sports betting apps?
Mobile sports betting in Illinois is legal and you can find multiple sportsbook apps available that you can download on your iOS and Android. Most betting apps have the same features the sports betting site has, so you shouldn’t find any missing features.
Who regulates sports betting in Illinois?
Since 1990 the Illinois Gaming Board has been in charge of regulating and overseeing all the gambling in Illinois. All the sports betting in Illinois is regulated by this same board, if you encounter any issues with a sportsbook, you can open a dispute with them for assistance.
How can I place a deposit on an Illinois sport betting site?
If it’s your first time placing a deposit it may seem intimidating, however, placing a deposit is not complicated. First, you should check out our favorite sports betting sites in Illinois then create an account and place your first deposit.