Illinois Sports Betting 2021

Best Illinois Sports Betting Sites

Is sports betting legal in Illinois? Yes, online sports betting in Illinois is legal, meaning you can wager from a desktop, laptop, or mobile. BetRivers and DraftKings were the first apps to go live in Illinois, 2020.

Illinois has since acquired a few sportsbook giants. So, if you need to choose one, what do you base your choice on? There are many components that make a sportsbook good and not so good. We want to show you what all of these are and provide our own recommendations so you’ll know what to look for in the future.

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Sportsbook of the month
Sportsbook of the month
98/100
Rating
Caesars Bonus
Caesars Highlights
  • Exceptional range of betting markets
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Accepts Players in:
Virginia
Virginia
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Caesars Review
***** Visit Provider
97/100
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FanDuel Bonus
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FanDuel Highlights
  • A site credit bonus of up to $1000
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Accepts Players in:
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PayPal
Play+
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FanDuel Review
***** Visit Provider
95/100
Rating
DraftKings Bonus
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DraftKings Highlights
  • Superb range of different sporting leagues
  • Effective in-play betting feature
  • Exciting fantasy team building
Accepts Players in:
Virginia
Virginia
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Skrill
PayPal
Neteller
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DraftKings Review
***** Visit Provider
94/100
Rating
BetMGM Bonus
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BetMGM Highlights
  • Excellent range of sports betting markets
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Accepts Players in:
Virginia
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PayNearMe
Skrill
PayPal
100% up to
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BetMGM Review
***** Visit Provider
91/100
Rating
Unibet Bonus
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Unibet Highlights
  • 22 different sports to bet on
  • Over 40,000 streams annually
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Accepts Players in:
Virginia
Virginia
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PayNearMe
Skrill
Neteller
100% up to
$500
Unibet Review
***** Visit Provider
Rating
BetRivers.com Bonus
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BetRivers.com Highlights
  • 100% first deposit match bonus
  • Payments via PayPal accepted
  • Reasonable wagering requirements
Accepts Players in:
Virginia
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PayNearMe
Bank Transfer
VIP Preferred
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Barstool Bonus
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Barstool Highlights
  • First-time bettors can look forward to 100% up to $1,000 risk-free bets.
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Accepts Players in:
Virginia
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up to
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Who’ll find this article about sports betting in Illinois useful?

This review focuses on all sports betting operators in Illinois, what makes them legit, what makes them the best or not the best, do they pay Illinois sports betting taxes, and what a sports bettor, whether you are a beginner or a seasoned player, should look at when choosing a provider. It is important to know as much as possible about U.S. betting sites, especially if you are interested in making sports betting a long-term hobby.

This review will help all sports bettors finetune their ability to spot the best sportsbook operators in Illinois so they can enjoy playing, experience convenience, and win big. If this is what you are looking for, then read on, ‘cause there’s a whole lot of tips and tricks coming your way. Stay tuned to become an Illinois sportsbook expert.

In March 2020, legal sports hit a home run in Illinois, but the timing could not have been worse. The COVID-19 pandemic put everything to a halt almost immediately after they started looking up. At that point, there were a few brick-and-mortar sportsbooks open for less than one week before the statewide closure of casinos was announced by Gov. Pritzker.

Luckily, there was a silver lining for disappointed Illinois sports bettors. This sliver of light was that remote and online registration became available on an on-and-off basis since early June, set in place specifically because of the unique circumstances this pandemic caused.

Ultimately, Illinois residents and visitors alike would then already have access to a small selection of the country’s leading online sportsbooks, including BetRivers, BetMGM, and Caesars Sportsbook.  Sportsbook giants FanDuel and DraftKings have also joined in since — and a lot sooner than originally intended or expected.

That is what we would like to call history, and may it remain so. Today, Illinois has a roaring lineup of world-class operators who are fighting to get sports bettors’ attention. The question is, who deserves it most?

The shift from brick-and-mortar to online means that security needs to be super-tight, and operations should be regulated with the Illinois sports betting bill. Moreover, most statewide customers are now going to be looking for the perfect operator because they can from the comfort of their own homes. This has made competition between operators a lot more serious, leading to massive sign-up deals, advertising campaigns, and gimmicks to help them stand out from the sportsbook crowd.

And that’s where we are now. There are great bonus deals and promotions everywhere you look, but which are the better ones and for you, specifically? Going digital means approaching an Illinois sportsbook review differently, and that’s what we’re going to do. So, how’s that for an Illinois sports betting update?

Editor’s recommendation – the best sports betting operator for users in Illinois: DraftKings

DraftKings Sportsbook is one of the best all-around online sportsbooks in the US. It offers a modern app, a wide range of betting options, instantly updated lines, and, in some states, casino games. This operator is available in many US states, and DraftKings Sportsbook Illinois is currently our sportsbook of choice. Here‘s a rundown of all the perks you’ll enjoy if you sign up at DraftKings Illinois:

The operator accepts all expected deposit options, like credit card and PayPal, and the sportsbook’s payouts are quick and efficient. The sportsbook has respectable odds and a broad sports betting market. Overall, DraftKings offers a fantastic sports betting app, which is available for both iOS and Android. It’s putting its best foot forward by offering a deposit bonus of up to $1,000. Those of you in Illinois who are looking to make an impression won’t get much better than this!

The DraftKings DFS interface is one of the best in the industry — and as you might expect, that expertise has carried over to the Illinois sportsbook interface.

Just like the majority of online casinos across the world, DraftKings Sportsbook Illinois uses SSL protocol to protect users’ information, and so does DraftKings Casino Illinois. SSL technology triggers an instant and thorough security review if any suspicious activity is reported in your account.

You just can’t go wrong with this big boy. So many operators are very close in the race, but DraftKings Illinois just has that small but significant lead.

95/100
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20% up to $1000
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Five tips for a secure and fair gambling experience in Illinois

Is sports betting legal in Illinois? It is, but you need to look for reputable operators. These tips are here and will stay here for your perusal, even if you don’t need them right now. Forget about Sports betting New Jersey and sports betting Pennsylvania for now — you’ll find just as many tips for other states, but now we’re focusing on how you can gamble safely in Illinois. Just as long as you know that using them can make a difference in choosing between a good and a bad operator or even between a mediocre and a great operator.

Trust customer reviews

You know what customers are like. Some of them are drama queens, especially if they’re rage-reviewing, but most of them are just brutally honest. This is why customer reviews are one of your most valuable tools when looking for a reputable sportsbook. For example, if the same topic comes up in several reviews, you know that this may be an ongoing issue. An example can be withdrawing issues, bad customer service, problems with the online interface, and more.

If the review interface allows the sportsbook to respond, see if they do and look at what they say. Customer reviews are a treasure chest of valuable information operators may want to keep hidden for obvious reasons. 

Look at the operator’s deposit and withdrawal methods

Let’s put it this way. If an operator accepts cash only, then there’s something weird going on. The reputability level of the payment methods is a fair indication of how reputable the Illinois sports betting platform would be. For example, PayPal has strict rules about the type of casinos they’ll provide their services for, so you can take this as a small nod of approval if you see PayPal as an accepted payment method. However, what you also want to look for is a wide variety of payment methods—the more support from financial institutions, the better.

Check the operator’s security credentials

These credentials are usually at the bottom of a sportsbook’s main page. In addition, the Illinois Gaming Board holds the authority to ban certain activities and casinos so that any Illinois online sportsbook would need its approval.

Check for operator contact details or a legit customer support service

Look for the operator’s contact details and a customer service chatbox/number on its online platform. They want your details, so why shouldn’t you have theirs?

Look for signs of online encryption

This is as simple as “HTTP:” versus “HTTPS:” The version with the added “s” indicates that the site is secure and that your information is secure. A must-know for all web surfers!

What do experts at TheGruelingTruth.com look for when evaluating operators for Illinois residents?

Fast Payouts

Fast withdrawal is one of the main focal points of our review. We evaluate how quickly the money transfers from the online casino into your account.

Sports betting markets

How’s the market looking? If you have to choose between a bookie where you can wager on 100 different sports and one that offers over 200, what will be your first reaction?

Security and license

We scrutinize the fast payout casinos in terms of their security protocols to ensure that gamblers’ personal information remains safe and that the operator is properly licensed.

Welcome bonus

Illinois online sportsbooks that offer online casino sign-up bonuses and promotions receive higher ratings than those that don’t. And, we check out the bonus itself for usability, especially for any unreasonable wagering requirements.

Software

The best Illinois online sportsbook needs to have the best software available from reputable developers. This allows for high-quality sound and visuals.

Deposit & withdrawal methods

Sports bettors don’t like to be limited by deposit and withdrawal methods. Moreover, a wide variety of payment methods can help in faster and flexible payouts.

Terms & conditions

Even the online casino with the fastest payout can trip themselves with complicated T&Cs that confuses or exasperates gamblers. So we look for straightforward T&Cs that users can easily understand instead of causing more confusion.

Customer support

It’s essential that support can be easily reached should there be any issues with the site or payouts.

The best betting providers for 2021

98/100
Rating
Credit Card
New Jersey (US)
Caesars Sports Bonus
Caesars Review
***** Visit Provider
Highlights
  • Exceptional range of betting markets
  • A fluid in-play betting section
  • Competitive odds
97/100
Rating
Credit Card
New Jersey (US)
100% up to
$1000
FanDuel Sports Bonus
100% up to $1000
FanDuel Review
***** Visit Provider
Highlights
  • A site credit bonus of up to $1000
  • Win your bet, receive your stake plus winnings. Lose your bet, get another bet back!
  • Winnings from your promotional funds are immediately withdrawable
95/100
Rating
Credit Card
New Jersey (US)
20% up to
$1000
DraftKings Sports Bonus
20% up to $1000
DraftKings Review
***** Visit Provider
Highlights
  • Superb range of different sporting leagues
  • Effective in-play betting feature
  • Exciting fantasy team building
94/100
Rating
Credit Card
New Jersey (US)
100% up to
$1000
BetMGM Sports Bonus
100% up to $1000
BetMGM Review
***** Visit Provider
Highlights
  • Excellent range of sports betting markets
  • Quality risk-free welcome bet
  • Competitive odds
91/100
Rating
Credit Card
New Jersey (US)
100% up to
$500
Unibet Sports Bonus
100% up to $500
Unibet Review
***** Visit Provider
Highlights
  • 22 different sports to bet on
  • Over 40,000 streams annually
  • No-deposit new player offer of $40

Finding the right operator for you — online sports betting Illinois

It’s QA time! We’ve made our recommendation, but what would you base your own recommendation on? If you are not currently sure, consider the following ideas and put yourself in those positions. Trust us, you’ll immediately get a “yes” or “no” feeling.

  • How likely is a sportsbook’s reputation going to affect your choice versus facts?
  • Is the security of your details and money a top priority for you?
  • Do you find yourself gambling during the day or night?
  • Do you prefer sportsbook operators to have low or high bet limits?
  • Do you prefer mobile gambling, or do you like using your PC?
  • Do you prefer U.S. online casino bonuses with no deposits?
  • Are you a risk-loving gambler, or do you play it safe?
  • Do you make high wagers, or are you modest in this regard?
  • Do you like visiting brick-and-mortar casinos, or would you prefer an online-only operator?
  • Would you choose an online casino with limited payment methods?
  • Are you a fan of American sports only, or do you like international or exotic sports?
  • Do large welcome bonuses appeal to you upfront?

Each of these answers holds a clue as to what kind of sportsbook operator you are looking for. For example, If you’re a big spender when it comes to wagering generally, you’re going to eliminate operators with low limits from your choice pool. Anyhow, irrespective of the operator you choose, don’t forget to check out its review at TheGruelingTruth.com before signing up.

Our verdict on online sports betting in Illinois

Illinois is already an established sportsbook-rockin state with numerous existing operators. Furthermore, its growth potential is also indicated in the capital gaming bill by giving horse racing tracks the potential to add “racinos” and more betting options to the mix. If you are a sports bettor looking for an Illinois online sportsbook, you are really, truly lucky because you are spoilt for choice. That, however, doesn’t mean that you just have to accept the first one you find. Remember the tips you found in this review, and ask yourself some questions about your own habits and personality to find the perfect Illinois online sportsbook partner. Thanks for joining us for this Illinois sports betting update. Now, get out there and start winning!

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Illinois sports betting FAQ

👍Can I legally bet on sports in Illinois?

Sports betting in the U.S is completely dependent on individual state laws. You can bet on sports online in Illinois legally and safely as long as you take your business to a legally regulated operator. So, get browsing’ on TheGruelingTruth.com to know if sportsbooks are legal in the state.

💲Which Illinois sports betting operator have the quickest payouts?

Once a game or contest is final, online sportsbooks and betting apps settle bets as fast as they can. However, in the case of payouts for withdrawal, it can vary depending on various factors. Moreover, any good operator will have fast withdrawal methods, so take a look at our expert guides on TheGruelingTruth.com to know more about the same.

❓What do I do if I need help with a gambling problem?

There are plenty of resources out there for those who may need help. Problem gambling can impact people from all walks of life, and it’s a serious issue. Legal and regulated sportsbooks must provide information for customers on their sites and apps. Additionally, the Illinois Gaming Board has a dedicated section on its website for help for problem gamblers. You’ll find a wealth of resources on TheGruelingTruth.com if you need any help with the same.

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