Hard Rock Launches Iowa Online Sportsbook In Time For Bowl Season

Posted on December 16, 2019 - Last Updated on January 2, 2020

Just in time for the college football bowl season, there is a new option for legal online sports betting in Iowa. The Hard Rock mobile sportsbook is now live.

Although the state’s current regulations hamstring the market, online betting is popular in the Hawkeye State. A new operator could increase that popularity.

Details on the Hard Rock online sportsbook in Iowa

As of Monday, Hard Rock’s online sportsbook is accepting wagers in Iowa. The odds will be similar to those which bettors can access at the retail location.

Sports bettors in Iowa can place their bets using Hard Rock’s desktop or mobile websites. Hard Rock also offers apps for the Android and iOS marketplaces.

Just like in New Jersey, the Gaming Innovation Group Inc. operates the book in Iowa. The legal requirements for placing a bet online are the same as doing so in person.

The minimum age to place a bet is 21. Even using the app, bettors have to be physically located within the borders of Iowa. Legal residency in the Hawkeye State isn’t required, however.

Those with existing Hard Rock sportsbooks accounts can log in with their current credentials. For new bettors, though, Iowa adds a wrinkle to the process.

Plan your trip to Sioux City if you’re a new customer

Until New Year’s Day 2021, legal sportsbooks in Iowa can’t accept online registrations. All bettors have to register for new accounts in person.

That includes those who have already registered for other Iowa online sportsbooks within state lines. Hard Rock joins William Hill and Elite Sportsbook in Iowa’s online betting market.

The Hard Rock Casino is located at 111 3rd St. in Sioux City. Once bettors are registered, they will never have to visit the brick-and-mortar location again. From that point forward, bettors can conduct the entire process online.

That not only includes filling out your betting slip but making deposits and collecting winnings as well. Hard Rock’s online book offers many payment options, including debit cards, PayPal, e-checks and bank transfers.

The in-person registration requirement has limited the growth of sports betting in Iowa. Despite that, the industry is growing in the Hawkeye State.

How the state’s landscape could change in a few months

The revenue numbers from November 2019 is proof that there is demand for Iowa legal sports betting. Handle grew by almost $13 million compared to the previous month.

The question of how much more and quickly that handle would have grown if not for the in-person registration requirement is a fair one to ask. Those numbers also benefited from two situations that won’t last forever.

The first situation is the current seasonality. The current betting slate contains college basketball, college football, NBA, NFL and NHL games. Other months won’t offer as many popular contests.

The other is that Iowa will soon no longer be a legal sports betting island. Illinois has already legalized and expects to launch next year. Missouri is also moving toward legalization.

Until that happens, however, the Hard Rock mobile sportsbook will be one of a few ways Iowa residents and visitors can legally bet without leaving their homes. Because of that, more Iowans can have skin in the game when the Hawkeyes and Cyclones look to win their upcoming bowl games on Dec. 27 and Dec. 28, respectively.

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Derek Helling

Derek Helling is a freelance journalist who resides in Kansas City, Mo. He is a 2013 graduate of the University of Iowa and covers the intersections of sports with business and the law.

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