Positive things have started occurring for online gambling in Illinois in 2018. That is when the federal government declared the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) unconstitutional. It took a while for the politicians to act, but sports fans welcomed the bill SB 690 in 2019.
The legislation by Gov. J.B. Pritzker was officially signed in June 2019. That made sports betting legal in the state of Illinois. Sportsbooks are slowly expanding, and operators acquire licenses from the Illinois Gaming Board.
Best IL Betting Sites
Here is the list of providers offering online sports betting in Illinois:
- William Hill
- Sugarhouse Sportsbook
- FanDuel Sportsbook
These platforms are ready to welcome new players at any time. Many operators offer tempting bonuses for newcomers and various promotions for loyal platform users. Before you pick your favorite platform, learn more details about online gambling in Illinois by reading our detailed guide below!
What Can I Bet on in Illinois?
If you are into betting online, you can visit a land-based facility or pick from a variety of sports betting apps available. IGB regulates all Illinois gaming platforms. Although there are some playing restrictions, a regulated market ensures the players are safe and operators reliable.
Horse Racing Bets
Horse racing is popular throughout the United States, and Illinois is no exception. Although only three courses exist in the state, OTB locations are far more common. Whether you enjoy watching thoroughbred racing on the spot or live racing footage, wagering options will meet your expectations.
Daily fantasy sports contests managed to stay legal in Illinois. A professional opinion they should be outlawed shook the market several years ago. However, DFS remained legal, although these platforms don’t have a good relationship with the authorities. That shouldn’t concern players who can bet on DFS without worrying if it is legal.
From Mega Millions and US Powerball to small-scale lotteries, lottery gaming options are impressive in Illinois. We can track lottery gaming history several decades ago. Even some huge jackpot winners originate from this state.
Sportsbetting Online or at Retail Venues
Sports betting is an integral part of online gambling in Indiana. Ever since it became legal in 2019, players have invested thousands of dollars on single-game and parlay wagering.
You have two options – visiting a retail venue or playing online. According to the latest information, these operators have land-based sports wagering licenses in Illinois:
- Alton Casino
- Casino Queen
- Elgin Riverboat Resort
- HC Aurora
- HC Joliet
- Midwest Gaming & Entertainment – Rivers Casino in Des Plaines
- Par-A-Dice Hotel Casino
Playing on the go is an option with mobile sports betting apps. As long as your preferred operator has an app, you can play from any location in Illinois. Providers use geo-location software to determine where you are. If you registered in Illinois, make sure not to cross the border. Otherwise, you are subject to that state’s laws. You might not be able to place a bet if you are beyond the state lines.
You can choose from a wide variety of sports to bet on in Illinois. The gaming commission specified that any professional and college sport could be offered by sportsbooks. Illinois-based sports teams and any other events or leagues outlawed by the board are exemptions.
That means you can enjoy wagering on:
- Soccer, including MLS and top European leagues
- Basketball, such as NBA, NCAA, and other world competitions
- Football, including NFL and college football
- Racing events, such as NASCAR and Formula One
- Fighting sports like boxing and MMA
Check with your preferred sportsbook to see the exact markets available for wagering.
Online Horse Betting in Illinois
Are you a horse racing fan? Illinois offers off-the-track betting for those who prefer watching simulcast race footage. Those who like heading to racetracks will be delighted with three courses organizing live races. Wagering is an option at these facilities, and it is the secret of their popularity.
Visiting a racetrack is an alternative to playing via online gambling sites. It is a nice opportunity to improve your wagering experience. You can watch races live and place bets on your favorites on the spot.
Three racetracks are available in Illinois:
- Fairmount Park – it is situated in Collinsville and has been around for years.
- Arlington Park – located in Arlington Heights, this racetrack also has a long tradition.
- Hawthorn Race Course – you will find this facility in Stickney.
Apart from real money gambling sites offering casino games, you will also find operators that include OTB in their portfolio. OTB or off-track betting is an opportunity to wager on horse racing without being on track.
You can play via the website, or visit a land-based facility to place your bet. You will find multiple properties in Chicago and throughout Illinois offering off-track betting.
Legal Online Casinos in Illinois
According to the Illinois Gaming Commission and current legislation, this is not an officially licensed and regulated market. No gaming operators from this state offer their players to gamble online. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy casino games online.
The secret lies in finding platforms based elsewhere but accepting Illinois players. It is crucial to conduct in-depth research to identify an operator that suits your preference. Consider their reputation and gaming licenses, and make sure your favorite games are listed.
Social Casino Site Options
Social casino sites could be a viable alternative while waiting for Illinois online gambling to expand and cover web-based gaming. These websites might not allow you to play for real money, but that doesn’t mean there are no rewards.
Sweepstakes gambling laws allow operators to offer prizes for members of their sites. Sweepstakes are completely based on luck, but the rewards are tempting. They range from free play coins to actual cash prizes.
Have you ever wondered which online casino games are the best? It is impossible to pronounce a winner because everyone has a unique taste. Some players love slots and their reels spinning, especially when combined with massive jackpots. Others prefer card games like blackjack or Texas Hold’em poker. You will also find roulette fans and those who love bingo or keno.
Illinois online casinos offer all these games. Hundreds of slot machines feature various themes and layouts. You can pick from electronic software for automatic table games or experience live gaming action. Some casinos feature tables with live dealers. It is the closest you can get to playing in a land-based property while staying at home. And if you visit an offline facility, make sure to try video poker or classic slots.
Online Poker Sites
First, let’s take a look at available poker sites in Illinois:
As you can see, the list is modest, and there is a good reason for that. At this moment, the authorities do not consider online poker legal. That doesn’t apply to land-based gaming facilities where poker is usually among the offered casino games.
The solution for playing legal online poker lies in finding operators based elsewhere but offering services to Illinois players. It might seem your choice is limited, but you can still benefit from promotions and bonuses. New players are particularly welcome, and deposit boosts and other incentives could be a part of your welcoming package.
It remains questionable whether poker will be legalized soon. Online gambling in Illinois hasn’t been mentioned in the bill from 2019, which focused on sports betting. We might expect some moves in that area in the coming years. Players can only hope that playing poker over the internet will become available soon.
If you would like to try something different than real money gambling, Illinois Lottery is the right solution for you. The state is a part of both major US lotteries – Powerball and Mega Millions. If you ever dreamed about winning a jackpot, these games could make your dream come true. The grand prizes often go over $100 million, and the tickets cost only $2-$3.
As for state-based lotteries, you can participate in Pick 3, Pick 4, Lucky Day Lotto, or purchase instant tickets. The lotto games are affordable, and rewards vary from $20 to $100K or more. Instant tickets are scratch cards that allow you to see if you won anything on the spot.
It is worth noting you can play Illinois Lottery via your mobile phone. All you need is to download the operator’s app and install it on your device. From there, choose your preferred game to play, purchase tickets, and wait for the draw.
Daily Fantasy Sports in Illinois
Did you know that the authorities tried to outlaw daily fantasy sports in Illinois? The problem occurred because these websites offered services without getting authorized by the state. Fortunately for players, the authorities failed at doing so.
Today, you can enjoy DFS providers like DraftKings and FanDuel without worrying about breaking the law. However, legislators still don’t appreciate these platforms. That is why they are having problems getting operator licenses for sports betting in Illinois.
Does Illinois Have Land-Based Casinos?
Here is the current list of available land-based casinos in Illinois:
- Harrah’s Metropolis
- HC Joliet
- Casino Queen
- HC Aurora
- Harrah’s Joliet
- Grand Victoria
Land-based gaming properties are legal for anyone who meets the age requirement. Many facilities also offer a hotel, dining, and entertainment options at the premises.
How to Deposit and Withdraw from Gambling Sites
The depositing process at real money gambling sites is simple. Here are the steps to follow:
- Register on the desired website and log into your account.
- Find the Cashier section and choose Deposit.
- Select a payment method that suits you and enter the required details.
- Finalize the transaction to deposit funds to your account.
The withdrawing process is identical, except you choose Withdrawals in the cashier. Cashing out might not offer the same methods as depositing, and options are frequently more limited.
Popular Payment Methods
The most popular payment methods include the following:
- Visa and MasterCard
- Bank account transfers
- Cash deposits in land-based facilities
You might also use PayNearMe and other variations if supported by the provider. Most deposit methods are instant, and they add funds to your account immediately. However, bank account transfers might take time.
As for withdrawals, they might be immediate if you are in a land-based facility. For gambling sites, cashing out usually requires 2-3 business days. That’s how long the staff needs to process your request and transfer money from your gaming account to the desired destination.
Minimum Gambling Age
The minimum age requirement for gambling in Illinois is set at 21 years. Users go through age verification processes, and complying with the law is mandatory. Illinois has the same legal age requirement as the majority of the United States.
The restriction when it comes to minimum gaming age applies to all games. That means you can’t place online bets on sports or casino games. The only exemption is a lottery as the Illinois authorities put the limit for purchasing lottery tickets at 18 years old.
Is social gaming allowed in Illinois?
- Yes, you can enjoy social gaming in Illinois. It is an alternative you can consider until Illinois online gambling sites become available. If you prefer playing for real money, you can always consider offshore casinos with tempting bonuses and promo codes.
Are There Taxes on Winnings?
- If you made your winnings in Illinois, you are subject to both state and federal taxes. The state of Illinois might require paying an income tax on your winnings. Federal taxes might also apply depending on the amount you won.
Does Illinois allow off-track betting?
- Yes, Illinois offers licensed and regulated off-track betting for all horse racing fans. You can choose between multiple properties and sit back while watching simulcast footage of the races.
Does Illinois have any legal betting tracks/shops?
- Yes, you will find three racetracks offering live horse racing and betting. Multiple facilities welcome you to place your wagers on their premises, too. From land-based casinos to offshore platforms and legal online sportsbooks, it shouldn’t be a problem to pick your favorite.