Iowa online sports betting

Online and retail sports betting has been available in Iowa since 2019 and its popularity continues to rise. We provide you with reviews of betting sites, the most recent promotional offers, and the latest news on Iowa online sports betting.

Table of contents
Bet $5 Get $150 in Bonus Bets
21+ and present in IA. Play responsibly. Gambling problem? Call 1-800-GAMBLER. Iowa Voluntary Self-Exclusion Program: www.irgc.iowa.gov/self-exclusion-program
Second Chance Bet Up To $1000
21+ and present in IA. Play responsibly. Gambling problem? Call 1-800-GAMBLER. Iowa Voluntary Self-Exclusion Program: www.irgc.iowa.gov/self-exclusion-program
Second Chance Bet Up To $1000
21+ and present in IA. Play responsibly. Gambling problem? Call 1-800-GAMBLER. Iowa Voluntary Self-Exclusion Program: www.irgc.iowa.gov/self-exclusion-program
Bet $5 Get $150 in Bonus Bets
21+ and present in IA. Play responsibly. Gambling problem? Call 1-800-GAMBLER. Iowa Voluntary Self-Exclusion Program: www.irgc.iowa.gov/self-exclusion-program
Bet $5 Get $158 in Bonus Bets
21+ and present in IA. Play responsibly. Gambling problem? Call 1-800-GAMBLER. Iowa Voluntary Self-Exclusion Program: www.irgc.iowa.gov/self-exclusion-program

Best Iowa sports betting sites

With so many options available, finding the best betting site can be a daunting task. To assist both newcomers and seasoned gamblers, we've sifted through the multitude to bring you the cream of the crop. Here are the best Iowa sports betting sites that stand out in terms of reliability, user experience, and odds.

  • bet365 Iowa - Best Iowa sports betting site overall
  • Caesars Iowa - Well-known sports betting site with local presence
  • DraftKings Iowa - Competitive odds and excellent customer service
  • FanDuel Iowa - Elite sports betting site with fair odds
  • BetMGM Iowa - Solid online platform & welcome bonuses

bet365 Iowa

1. bet365 Iowa

  • Welcome bonus: Bet $5 Get $150 in Bonus Bets
  • Retail location: Casino Queen Marquette
  • Live in Iowa since: 2023

bet365 Iowa, a leading global online betting platform, officially launched its operations in the state on June 5, 2023. This expansion into Iowa was facilitated through a strategic partnership with Casino Queen Marquette.

Recognized for its vast array of sports betting options, bet365 offers both seasoned and novice bettors a comprehensive betting experience.

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Caesars Iowa

2. Caesars Iowa

  • Welcome bonus: Second Chance Bet Up To $1000
  • Retail location: Isle Casino Hotel Bettendorf
  • Live in Iowa since: 2019

Caesars Entertainment is one of the most well-known and highly respected gaming companies in the United States. They entered the online sports gaming space when they acquired William Hill in April 2021 for $3.7 billion, and they are a major presence on the Iowa sports betting scene.

Caesars owns and operates a number of casinos in Iowa, so they did not have to locate a separate in-state partner. They operate retail sportsbooks at their Isle Casinos in Bettendorf and Waterloo, Harrah’s in Council Bluffs, and the Horseshoe Casino, which is also located in Council Bluffs.

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DraftKings Iowa

3. DraftKings Iowa

  • Welcome bonus: Second Chance Bet Up To $1000
  • Retail location: Wild Rose Casino
  • Live in Iowa since: 2019

DraftKings is unquestionably one of Iowa's top two sports betting sites measured by revenue generation. Simply put, they do everything right, from their bonus structures to their competitive odds to the customer service they provide.

They are partnered with Wild Rose Casinos, and in addition to the online sports betting platform, there are physical sportsbooks at Wild Rose properties in Jefferson, Clinton, and Emmetsburg.

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FanDuel Iowa icon

4. FanDuel Iowa

  • Welcome bonus: Bet $5 Get $150
  • Retail location: Diamond Jo Casino
  • Live in Iowa since: 2021

Not surprisingly, the other most widely used betting site in Iowa is FanDuel. Both of these industry leaders had a foothold among American sports fans via their daily fantasy sports platforms. As a result, they were poised for expansion when the federal prohibition on sports betting was lifted in 2019.

FanDuel’s casino partner is Diamond Jo, and their properties are owned by Boyd Gaming. There is a retail sportsbook at the Diamond Jo Casino in Dubuque, and another outlet at the Diamond Jo Worth location that is technically in Northwood.

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BetMGM Iowa

5. BetMGM Iowa

  • Welcome bonus: Bet $5 Get $158 in Bonus Bets
  • Retail location: Diamond Jo Worth
  • Live in Iowa since: 2021

MGM Resorts International is a name that reverberates loudly throughout the gaming industry in the United States, and they actually have a global reach. BetMGM is the company’s online sports betting product, and it launched in Iowa on January 4, 2021.

This operator sits firmly in the second tier of the sports betting giants in the United States behind FanDuel and DraftKings. They offer a strong welcome bonus, a solid online platform, and a well-developed mobile app.

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Other Iowa sports betting sites

BetRivers Iowa

BetRivers is another operator that has made our list of the best sports betting site in Iowa. This is a name that may not be familiar to some, but it is a well-financed brand that is owned by Chicago-based Rush Street Interactive. They are among the industry leaders at this point with platforms in 15 states.

Each licensed casino operator is permitted to enter into agreements with as many as three online sports betting companies. BetRivers is in operation through a partnership with Wild Rose, but they do not have retail sports betting locations at any of those properties.

Betfred Iowa

Betfred rounds out our list of the preferred betting sites in Iowa. This company was founded in England in 1967, and its first venture into the American sports betting world was in Iowa. They opened up a retail sportsbook at Grand Falls Casino & Golf Resort in January 2020.

This is a state-of-the-art facility with self-service betting kiosks that are open around the clock, and there are ample betting windows as well. In September 2020, they rolled out their online sports betting platform in Iowa, so they have all available bases covered.

PointsBet Iowa

PointsBet, originally hailing from Australia, introduced its innovative "PointsBetting" concept to the U.S. and made its mark in Iowa in August 2019. Expanding rapidly, PointsBet partnered with Catfish Bend Casino in Burlington, Iowa, to offer both online and in-person betting.

However, in a significant move, sports merchandising giant Fanatics acquired PointsBet’s U.S. operations in August 2023, with plans to transition the brand.

ESPN Bet Iowa

ESPN Bet was formed after taking over Barstool Sports, which was founded by David Portnoy in Milton, Massachusetts back in 2003. It was a print publication at that time with a slant toward sports betting, and it became extremely popular over the years.

Their readership was the ideal demographic to target for sports bettors, and it became possible in 2018 after the Supreme Court legalized the activity on the federal level. In 2020, the first Barstool sports betting site was launched in Pennsylvania, and they entered the Iowa market in November 2021. It was then converted to ESPN Bet in 2023.

Betway Iowa

BetWay Launched in Europe in 2006, and it is a subsidiary of Super Group. The company holds sports betting licenses in 16 different countries, so they have an extraordinarily wide global footprint.

On October 21, 2021, they launched their Iowa sports betting site through a partnership with Wild Rose. As we have stated, DraftKings is running the retail sportsbooks for Wild Rose, so there is no Betway retail location in Iowa.

Hard Rock Iowa

The Hard Rock chain has been a household name in the United States for years, and there is a brick-and-mortar Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Sioux City, Iowa. When sports betting became legal in the state, they were ready to take advantage of the opportunity to obtain a license.

There is a retail betting location at the resort that is open until 8 p.m. seven days a week and you can visit their website or download their app to place wagers around the clock.

SuperBook Iowa

SuperBook may not be well-known nationally, but people that have been plugged into the Las Vegas sports betting scene are quite familiar with the name. This operator launched the largest retail betting venue in the world in 1993, and they are still going strong in Vegas.

They also offer a strong online product that is modeled after their existing formula for success. They launched in Iowa in October 2022, and they have entered seven other states at the time of this writing.

Tipico Iowa

Tipico provides yet another option for Iowa sports bettors, and this is another company with European roots. It is a huge operator across the drink, and they are slowly but steadily making their way into the American market.

On January 11, 2023, they announced the rollout of their Iowa sports betting platform after entering the New Jersey, Ohio, and Colorado markets.

Circa Sports Iowa

Circa Sportsbook in Las Vegas is one of the most spectacular sports betting sites on the globe, and they have a player-friendly ethos. They bring this mentality to the online sports betting space as well, and they do not summarily limit winning players.

This company started taking online wagers in Iowa in October 2021 through a partnership that they have established with Wild Rose Casino & Resort.

Bally Bet Iowa

Bally Bet is another operator that made its way into the Iowa sports betting mix in June 2021.

However, they are not operable at the time of this writing because they are transitioning their platform to the Kambi Group’s fully managed sportsbook system.

Fanatics Iowa (coming soon)

Fanatics is a well-known American sports merchandise company with an enormous user base of sports fans. They have name recognition on that level, and they have contact information for millions of fans, so they were well-positioned to enter the sports betting space.

Their sports betting product is currently available in four states, and they have acquired the American interests of Australian sports betting company PointsBet. There is already a PointsBet presence in Iowa, and it will transition to Fanatics Sportsbook in the relatively near future.

Yes, online sports betting is legal in Iowa. On May 13, 2019, Governor Kim Reynolds signed Iowa Senate Bill 617 to legalize sports betting in the state. Adults that are 21 years of age and older can now place bets on college and pro sporting events in person or through mobile applications.

How to start betting online in IA

Now that in-person registration since January 2021 is no longer required, you can easily register a betting account online in Iowa using your smartphone or computer. These are the steps that you need to take:

  1. Choose a legal Iowa betting site from our list: Look through the list of legal betting sites and pick one that suits you the best. Make sure to click the 'Get Bonus' button in order to claim the latest promo.
  2. Register an account with your details. Once you've landed on the betting site, create an account with your personal details. Remember that the legal betting age in Iowa is 21 and you might need to prove this to the operator by sending a copy of your passport or driver's license.
  3. Make a deposit and claim your bonus. Once you have created your new betting account, it is time to make a real money deposit. Head over to the cashier section, input an amount, and choose your preferred payment method. This is also the part where you will be asked if you want to activate the sign-up bonus or not.
  4. Browse through the sportsbook and make your first bet. Now that you have made a deposit that has been reflected in your account, it's time to start getting familiar with the Iowa sportsbook. Browse the different sections or use the search function in order to find the game or event you want to place a bet on.

In the heartland of America, Iowa's passion for sports is undeniable. As sports betting gained legality in the Hawkeye State, residents have eagerly embraced the chance to place wagers on their favorite events. Let's delve into the most popular sports to bet on in Iowa.

  • Football: In the United States, NFL football is the undisputed king of sports betting revenue creation, and college football is huge as well.
  • Basketball: The fast pace of a basketball game and the high scores make the game ideal for sports betting. March Madness is one of the biggest events for sports betting each and every year.
  • Baseball: Baseball is another popular sport to bet on in Iowa. Though there are no MLB teams in the state, there are franchises in nearby cities that are within driving distance.
  • Hockey: Fans of the National Hockey League can place a wide array of wagers at the legal sports betting sites in Iowa. This can be an under-the-radar market to enter if you are a savvy, knowledgeable hockey aficionado.
  • MMA: The UFC events that are held throughout the year are hugely popular. It is a lot of fun to have some money riding on a fighter in the octagon, and this is another popular sport to bet on an Iowa.

Promos & bonuses on IA betting sites

Most betting sites in Iowa have some kind of bonus or promo that is awarded to new players when they sign up. These bonuses come in many different forms and it's important that you understand the difference between them.

These are the most common Iowa sportsbook promos offered to new sign-ups:

  • Bonus bets - A bonus bet offer will give you a bet or bets that you can make as a reward without you using any of your cash balance.
  • No deposit bonus - A no deposit bonus means that you get betting credits without having to make a real money deposit.
  • Deposit match bonus - With this type of promo, you'll get your deposit matched by the betting operator up to a certain percentage.

Local teams to bet on in Iowa

There are no professional sports teams in Iowa, but there are two major Division I college programs in the state.

Iowa Hawkeyes

The Iowa Hawkeyes compete in the Big Ten Conference, and their football team has enjoyed a lot of success over the years. They have 11 Big Ten titles to their credit, and they won the National Championship in 1958.

Iowa State Cyclones

Iowa State is the other major player on the college sports scene in the state, and they do battle in the rough-and-tumble Big 12 Conference. They are not among the elite programs, but they are always competitive, and Jack Trice Stadium in Ames is electric on football Saturdays.

Minnesota Vikings

Though they do not have an NFL team of their own, there are plenty of NFL fans in Iowa and a significant percentage of them root for the Vikings. Minnesota is just north of Iowa, so people in that part of the state gravitate toward Viking fandom.

Green Bay Packers

The other NFL team that is most popular in Iowa is the Green Bay Packers, and why not? Wisconsin is a neighboring state as well, and the Packers are one of the most successful franchises in American sports.

Why you shouldn't use offshore betting sites in IA

Some betting sites try to attract players from Iowa without having a proper license from The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission. These are what we call offshore sports betting sites, and these are the reasons why you should avoid them:

1. Your personal information might be sold

When compared to officially licensed betting operators in Iowa, offshore sports betting sites frequently have inferior digital security. Even worse, these corporations have no real obligation to keep your information secure. Offshore betting sites are renowned for selling customer information to third-party organizations.

2. Your funds may not be secure

Since offshore betting sites do not operate under US laws, your funds may not be secure. These companies are under constant threat of government action, meaning that they could go bankrupt and in the worst case disappear with its customers funds.

3. No legal protection

There is little you can do if you have been a victim of an offshore sports betting site. These operators are often based in tax havens like Malta and Curacao, which means that you are not protected by any state or federal US laws that can protect you from wrongdoings.

Sports betting laws and regulations in Iowa

Iowa was the 11th state in the union to legalize sports betting, so they had some pre-existing models to learn from when they were establishing their regulations. As a result, they do not deviate very much from the standard that exists in other states.

First, you have to be at least 21 years of age to wager on sporting events in Iowa. Secondly, there is the matter of the registration process. Initially, Iowans were required to go to a brick-and-mortar sportsbook to register their accounts.

Even though online sports betting was available, you were not allowed to register online. As you might imagine, this cut into the revenue that the state was receiving from sports betting. On January 1, 2021, this provision in the law expired, and sports betting sites were given the green light to accept online registrations.

As we have stated, you can bet on college and pro sports, but you cannot bet on high school, amateur, or youth sports. For example, you cannot bet on the Little League World Series. Though you can wager on Iowa college teams, you cannot bet on individual player propositions involving Iowa collegiate players.

Iowa sports betting annual revenue

The revenue that has been generated by Iowa sports betting is now considerable after a slow start.

As you can see from the chart below, the total handle took a quantum leap in 2021, reaching over $2 billion per year. This is largely due to the elimination of the in-person registration requirement.

Year

Total Handle

Revenue

State Tax Revenue

2019

$212,389,254

$19,280,285

$1,301,418

2020

$575,239,746

$41,629,263

$2,806,655

2021

$2,041,311,743

$113,884,644

$8,767,942

2022

$2,348,065,963.33

$165,551,990.32

$10,760,879.37

History of Iowa sports betting

Traditionally, all forms of gambling were prohibited in Iowa because of an 1857 constitutional amendment, but the relevant provision was repealed in 1972. Since then, gambling in the state has been possible, and these are the key events that apply to sports betting.

  • 1983: Pari-mutuel wagering at dog and horse racing tracks was legalized, and the Iowa Racing & Gaming Commission was created.
  • April 2019: Iowa Senate Bill 617, a measure that would legalize sports betting, is introduced and it is quickly passed by the Senate and the House.
  • May 2019: Governor Reynolds signs SB 617 to legalize sports betting in Iowa.
  • August 2019: Sports betting is formally launched in Iowa at Waterloo’s Isle Casino.

FAQ

What is the legal betting age in Iowa?

21 is the legal age to bet on sports in Iowa. When you create an account at a sports betting site, they will ask for your date of birth. You might also be asked to prove your age by sending a copy of your passport or driver's license.

Do you need to pay taxes on sports betting winnings in IA?

All winnings that derive from sports betting are taxed, even if the winner is not an Iowa resident. You are responsible of reporting your gambling winnings yourself on form IA 1040.

Can you bet on college sports in Iowa?

Yes, betting on college sports is fully legal in Iowa. However, the state does not allow prop bets on individual college athletes.

Are Daily Fantasy Sports contests legal in IA?

Yes, wagering money on Daily Fantasy Sports was legalized at the same time as sports betting in Iowa. The main DFS sites in the state are DraftKings and FanDuel.

Who oversees sports betting in Iowa?

The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission (IRGC) is in charge of overseeing sports betting in Iowa. The IRGC also oversees pari-mutuel horse wagering and all land-based casinos in the state.

How many sports betting apps are available in IA?

There are currently 18 Iowa sports betting apps available.

Do I have to live in the state of Iowa to bet on sports online?

No, you don’t have to live in Iowa to bet on sports online. However, you do have to be located in Iowa at the time of betting to use their wagering sites legally.

Is horse wagering legal in Iowa?

Yes, horse wagering is legal in Iowa. You can bet on horses both at physical casinos and at the online racebook TVG.