Welcome to legal Iowa sports betting.
Take a look around: There are 17 online sportsbooks in Iowa to choose from, including DraftKings, Caesars, FanDuel, Unibet and BetMGM. Of course, there are multiple retail IA sportsbooks, too.
Each one is regulated by the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission. Thanks to Iowa’s regulated market, you can bet on the NFL playoffs, the NBA, NHL or even a March Madness run by Iowa or Iowa State.
At PlayIA.com, we share how to place bets on your favorite teams and inform you of the best Iowa sports betting apps and bonuses.
There’s an abundance of sportsbooks in Iowa. The plus side of the extra competition is you can tap better bonuses and promos.
Jan. 21, 2022
There is plenty of NFL excitement in the Upper Midwest. The divisional round is underway starting Saturday when the Green Bay Packers host the San Francisco 49ers. The game is at 7:15 p.m. on Fox.
The Kansas City Chiefs have a primetime spotlight, too. They await the Buffalo Bills at Arrowhead Stadium. That AFC divisional-round game is at 5:30 p.m. Sunday on CBS.
Basketball fans have about a week left to take advantage of the NBA jersey offer at Caesars Sportsbook. That promotion is available to both new and existing Iowa customers in good standing until the end of the. month.
MMA has a major card slated for the weekend headlined by Francis Ngannou and Ciryl Gane in UFC 270. PlayIA has a betting guide for the PPV event on ESPN+.
The Hawkeye State is home to online and retail sportsbooks. Iowa has seen more than a dozen sportsbooks go live since the legalization of sports betting.
Here are reviews of the top 5 best Iowa sportsbooks:
Bonus: $50 + $1,000
Bonus Code: Click to Claim Promo
DraftKings has become a go-to spot for scores of online sports bettors here in Iowa. A slick app that’s chock full of bells and whistles is a big part of the reason why. Among the top attractions is a live betting experience.
While nearly all mobile sportsbooks offer it these days, DraftKings has taken it to a whole other level with lightning-fast tech doing the legwork behind the scenes. Odds and lines are constantly updating while winning wagers are paid out in a flash.
The DraftKings IA sports betting app is available for both iOS and Android devices. If you’re looking for a great user experience with a sportsbook that’s not shy about dishing out exciting promo offerings, you’ll want to check out DraftKings.
Use bonus code PLAYBONUS
The BetMGM online sportsbook is among the many companies battling to be at the top of the charts with sports betting. The company is off to a fantastic start.
The recognizable brand name has certainly helped, but there’s much more to see once you look under the hood. Users of BetMGM IA Sportsbook, which is available for Apple and Android devices, quickly learn that everything they need is right at their fingertips.
The list of available sports to watch on is incredibility deep. While plenty of competitors offer up niche sports as well, BetMGM goes the extra mile with things you won’t find everywhere. There’s a lot to love here, so you should check it out.
Bonus Code: Click to Claim Promo
FanDuel remains a titan in the world of daily fantasy sports. The company has also evolved into one of the top online sports betting sites in the nation. It offers up a user-friendly iOS and Android app that looks great and works like a charm.
There are always enticing promotional opportunities to take advantage of, and FanDuel has also been an innovator in new ways to play. One of its biggest contributions has been the same game parlay, a feature that has caught on like wildfire across the industry.
FanDuel Sportsbook in Iowa is super clean and easy to navigate around. You can be up and running quickly and easily and never miss a beat with all the games and sporting events.
Bonus: $1,001 free bet
Bonus code LEGALRF
Caesars Sportsbook comes with all the experience of decades of betting in legal markets.
You can access the app on mobile or bet on your computer browser. Either way, bets are available on all the popular leagues along with live betting, a slate of promos and bonuses, and an easy-to-navigate app.
You can place bets on all the top US and international leagues and even take advantage of a steady array of promos.
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Betway is an international gaming company that continues to grow its presence in the US. The sportsbook made its debut in Iowa in October 2021 off of an access deal with Diamond Jo Casino in Dubuque.
While Betway may not have the name recognition of some of the industry heavyweights, they make up for that with a platform that’s both smooth and simple to use. There’s a huge selection of available betting markets, as well as all of the bet types you could ask for.
Betway also has all of the features you would expect to see at a top shop, including same-game parlays, early cashouts, and live betting. If you’re looking for something a little different from the sports betting giants, Betway is an excellent option.
Bally Bet arrived in Iowa in the summer of 2021 through Grand Falls Casino in northwest Iowa near Sioux Falls, SD. Fans who watch MLB, NHL and NBA games will be familiar with the Bally brand. As of March 31, 2021, 19 Fox Sports regional networks became Bally Sports networks. The partnership makes the Bally Bet Sportsbook a natural fit.
You no longer need to cross the Mississippi River to wager at BetRivers online sportsbook. Like BetMGM, no retail book bears this branding in Iowa, but it’s fully functional online. The book offers a great volume of alternate lines on many events, delivering the lines you want on the game you want to bet.
Caesars is partners with six Iowa casinos, which means you can bet with Caesars online or on-site, e.g., Prairie Meadows in Altoona. You can take advantage of the risk-free bet of up to $1,001 as a new Caesars customer.
Circa Sports is one of the biggest names in Vegas, and Iowa became its third mobile sports betting state in the fall of 2021. The sportsbook specializes in low-hold percentages for futures and golf tournament pool bets. They pride themselves as an option for customers who want to make large bets as well. They worked with Wild Rose Jefferson to go live.
Elite Sportsbook is partners with Rhythm City Casino Resort in Davenport and Riverside Casino & Golf Resort in Riverside and offers retail and online betting. Bet.Works created this platform.
After two full years without an online sportsbook, Casino Queen Marquette entered the sports betting fray by adding Fubo Sportsbook in the fall of 2021. Fubo integrates its sportsbook with its sports-first live TV streaming platform, fuboTV, including the “Watching Now” feature.
The Hard Rock online sportsbook went live in December 2019. Its retail partner is the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Sioux City.
A couple of years ago, the PointsBet name wasn’t part of the sports betting industry lexicon. Today, the Australia-based sportsbook has become a huge hit in legal states, including Iowa. PointsBet attracts attention with a wide array of promo offerings and innovative features, include “PointsBetting.” The new way to wager affords you the chance to have more of a say on the risk-to-reward ratio.
Another way that this Iowa online sportsbook has managed to stand out is by offering up odds and lines that are always on point. They’re among the most appealing and competitive across the industry. PointsBet is available for Apple and Android devices.
Q Sportsbook launched in December 2019 at the Q Casino in Dubuque. The Q app is available for both Android and Apple devices. It is the product of a partnership between the casino and sportsbook provider IGT.
TheScore Bet launched its online-only sportsbook in February 2021 in preparation for March Madness betting. It is partners with the Ameristar Casino in Council Bluffs. New customers at theScore Bet can receive a first deposit match of up to $1,000 and a risk-free first bet of up to $500.
Unibet, a product of Kindred Group, arrived in Iowa in September 2021 via a partnership with Harrah’s Casino in Council Bluffs. You can get up to $500 risk free when you sign up at Unibet using bonus code BETBONUS.
Online sportsbooks in Iowa always have to be on their guard. After all, the competition is always the press of a button away, so sportsbooks offer a variety of bonuses and promotions, both as an incentive for you to play and a reason for you to stay.
Bonus rewards typically come as either free sportsbook bets or site credits. Free bets are essentially vouchers for wagers of a certain value. They are not divisible, and you lose any amount you don’t bet, so you should always bet the face value of the free bet. Site credits, on the other hand, act more or less like cash. You can use them or divide them for wagers however you wish.
Here are some of the most common sports betting bonus types that you’ll see:
No matter the type of sportsbook bonus you redeem, you need to read through the terms and conditions listed with each bonus before you claim it. If there are no terms and conditions, then do not claim the bonus.
The first thing to look for is the playthrough requirement. As we mentioned, books will give you either free bets or site credits as rewards. Although these will work for betting on-site, you will not be able to cash them out.
Instead, you will have to play through an amount of the bonus a specified number of times before converting it into actual money. In some cases, the playthrough requirement is only a single run through the cash. However, for other bonuses (particularly deposit bonuses), you could see a requirement of 25x your bonus amount or more. In such a case, to release a $10 bonus as cash, you’d have to bet $250 or more. You don’t have to lose, per se, but you do have to put that amount at risk.
The other thing to look for is the time limit. Along with the money you’ll spend on the playthrough requirement, you’ll also have to commit to a certain amount of time to reach the mark. In the example above, if you have to bet $250 and you usually wager in $5 increments, it’s going to take a while. Usually, bonuses come with time limits, and any unredeemed amounts are forfeit if time runs out.
|Casino||Location||Retail Sportsbook||Online Sportsbook No. 1 (Launch Date)||Online Sportsbook No. 2||Online Sportsbook #3|
|Ameristar Casino||Council Bluffs||Sportsbook at Ameristar||theScore Bet (Feb. 2021)||Barstool Sportsbook (Nov. 2021)|
|Casino Queen||Marquette||Fubo Sportsbook||Fubo Sportsbook (Sept. 2021)|
|Catfish Bend Casino (Caesars)||Burlington||PointsBet Sportsbook||PointsBet (Nov. 2019)|
|Diamond Jo Casino||Dubuque||FanDuel Sportsbook (Sept. 2020)||BetMGM Sportsbook (Jan. 2021)||FanDuel Sportsbook (Sept. 2020)||Betway Sportsbook (Oct. 2021)|
|Diamond Jo Worth Casino||Northwood||FanDuel Sportsbook (Sept. 2020)||BetMGM Sportsbook (Jan. 2021)||FanDuel Sportsbook (Sept. 2020)|
|Grand Falls Casino||Larchwood (Sioux Falls)||Betfred Sports (Sept. 2020)||Betfred Sports (Sept. 2020)||Bally Bet (June 2020)|
|Hard Rock Casino||Sioux City||Hard Rock Sportsbook (Dec. 2019)||Hard Rock Sportsbook (Dec. 2019)|
|Harrah's Casino||Council Bluffs||Caesars Sportsbook||Caesars Sportsbook||Unibet Sportsbook (Sept. 2021)|
|Horseshoe Casino||Council Bluffs||Caesars Sportsbook||Caesars Sportsbook|
|Isle Casino Hotel||Bettendorf||Caesars Sportsbook||Caesars Sportsbook|
|Isle Casino Hotel||Waterloo||Caesars Sportsbook||Caesars Sportsbook|
|Lakeside Hotel & Casino||Osceola||Caesars Sportsbook||Caesars Sportsbook|
|Prairie Meadows Racetrack and Casino||Altoona||Caesars Sportsbook (August 2021)||Caesars Sportsbook (August 2021)|
|Q Casino||Dubuque||Q Sportsbook (Dec. 2019)||Q Sportsbook (Dec. 2019)|
|Rhythm City Casino Resort||Davenport||Elite Sportsbook||Elite Sportsbook|
|Riverside Casino & Golf Resort||Riverside||Elite Sportsbook (Aug. 2019)|
|Wild Rose Casino||Clinton||DraftKings (Feb. 2020)||DraftKings (Feb. 2020)||BetRivers (Jan. 2021)|
|Wild Rose Casino||Emmetsburg||DraftKings (Feb. 2020)||DraftKings (Feb. 2020)||BetRivers (Jan. 2021)|
|Wild Rose Casino||Jefferson||DraftKings (Feb. 2020)||DraftKings (Feb. 2020)||BetRivers (Jan. 2021)||Circa Sports (Oct. 2021)|
|DraftKings Sportsbook||$1,050 bonus|
|BetMGM Sportsbook||$1,000 risk-free bonus|
|Caesars Sportsbook||Risk-free bet up to $1,001|
|FanDuel Sportsbook||Risk-free bet up to $1,000|
|Betfred Sportsbook||$500 wager match|
|PointsBet Sportsbook||Risk-free bets up to $2,000|
|BetRivers Sportsbook||$250 deposit bonus|
|Unibet Sportsbook||Up to $500 risk-free|
Online sports betting is available to Iowa bettors. Once you’ve downloaded a sports betting app, you’ll need to complete the registration form and use one of the bonus codes above to lock in the special promotions. While the details will vary, all sportsbooks will require the following information:
You’ll also need to accept the terms and conditions, including the stipulation that you are 21 years or older.
To place a bet, you must be within IA state lines. Any doubts regarding your location and the mobile sportsbook won’t allow you to wager. Sports betting apps require access to your phone’s location services, while web-based sportsbooks will require you to download a geolocation app from your device’s app store. Using a VPN or proxy server will not allow you to place sports bets.
Before you can place a bet, you’ll need to deposit money. In Iowa, you cannot fund your sports betting account with a credit card. However, a range of safe payment options are available:
Sports fans in Iowa have a lot of ways to bet. We explain the main types of wagers, which include live betting.
When using a sports betting app, you’ll find it easy to locate the games and bet types. Starting with the most popular and straightforward bets (moneyline, totals or spreads) is a great strategy. Here are the basics:
Mobile betting apps make new formats possible. Live betting covers many of the bet types above but takes place while games are underway. The odds will change via a feed as the action unfolds and these can change quickly.
You’ll have an opportunity to assess the action and place extra bets if you find an opportunity. Using apps means you’ll be able to do this from the stadium, the bar or at home while enjoying the game.
Some apps use a cash-out feature for early redemption bets. You can redeem a bet at any time; the sportsbook will give you a price, and you choose whether to accept it.
Neighboring states host the pro leagues that Iowans love. For NFL followers, regional favorites are:
NBA lovers won’t miss a Chicago Bulls game or even the Minnesota Timberwolves or the Milwaukee Bucks. You can wager a variety of NBA bets; however, you can’t bet on the NBA Draft in Iowa.
Those who track the NHL follow the Minnesota Wild, St. Louis Blues or the Chicago Blackhawks.
Horse race betting was already legal in Iowa before bill SF 617 was signed. This type of betting got a carve-out in the 2006 UIGEA and is well-established online.
Betting on horses follows a different format to sports betting. Instead of taking odds offered by the books, bets are organized into pools. Pari-mutuel betting takes the wagers on all the horses, with the total fund paid out to the winning tickets only (minus a fee for the tracks). There are various pools for win, show, place and the various multiple horse bets.
Here are the main bets you can place:
You can “box” multiple horse wagers, which means you bet numerous times, allowing your selections to finish in any order. The final type of bet covers several races. With a Pick 5 or Pick 6 bet, you choose.
You’ll only find one horse racetrack in Iowa. Prairie Meadows Racetrack & Casino in Altoona offers a calendar of thoroughbred and quarter horse racing, as well as its big casino and sportsbook.
You can find more information here on our Iowa horse racing betting page.
Iowa’s history with sports betting is not very long, to be sure. However, the Hawkeye State’s actions are a great example of moving legislation along efficiently and taking advantage of new opportunities. Here is how Iowa sports betting came to pass:
The decades-old federal prohibition on sports betting, PASPA, comes crashing down by virtue of a 6-3 Supreme Court decision in May. All of a sudden, sports betting on the state level becomes possible throughout the US. New Jersey, which had led the charge in the fight against PASPA, is the first state outside of Nevada to launch sports betting.
Iowa Rep. Jake Highfill introduced a bill to legalize sports betting in Iowa early in 2018. The idea is that Iowa will have its law in place if PASPA falls, even if the ruling occurs after the end of the legislative session. The bill never passes, but it looks eerily similar to the bill that arrives in 2019.
Iowa’s Legislature and governor approve SF 617, a bill to legalize sports betting, almost a year to the day after the Supreme Court’s action on PASPA. The bill legalizes both online and retail sports betting in the Hawkeye State.
Features of the bill include the following:
The commission wastes little time pumping out rules for operators and issuing licenses. In August, the first mobile and retail sportsbooks in Iowa appeared only three months later.
All forms of sports betting begin expanding and flourishing in Iowa in earnest. By the end of the first full year, nearly all of Iowa’s casinos have sports betting in some form, whether retail, online or both.
In response, residents of and visitors to the Hawkeye State wager increasing amounts of money each month, culminating in a record $104.1 million in handle in December. Of that figure, more than $78 million comes from online sports betting.
Both overall handle and online sports betting’s share of handle are likely to increase in 2021. The state’s prohibition on remote registration ended on the last day of 2020.
Now players no longer have to travel to a retail facility to complete their registration for an online account. Residents can stay in their homes and play from their couches. Visitors need only cross the state lines from Missouri, Nebraska, Minnesota and Wisconsin. Illinois bettors come, too, since they cannot bet on Illinois college games while in the Land of Lincoln.
Yes, Gov. Kim Reynolds signed bill SF 617 in May 2019, which legalized retail and mobile sports betting. Each casino is allowed to license up to two mobile sportsbooks in addition to a retail one.
To legally bet, you need to be 21 years or older and inside state lines.
No, offshore sites are not regulated on a state or federal level. While they claim to be legal, the licenses are issued by governments on Caribbean Island-states, and minimal oversight on the companies involved. If an offshore book closes overnight and takes your bankroll with it, you have no legal recourse. There is no reason to risk betting at an offshore book now that legal options are available in Iowa.
Yes, you can bet on college sports; however, prop bets on in-state college athletes are not allowed.