Iowa Sports Betting: How to Bet in IA

Iowa has had legal sports betting for nearly five years, and it’s a growing market. Here is a look at this legal sports betting market and what growth might be coming for the state.

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Iowa was one of the first states to launch sports betting in 2019, joining the growing market of legal sportsbooks in the United States. While the state experienced a quick start, it has also seen significant growth over the past few years.

At one point, Iowa held a strong presence in Midwestern sports betting, but it now faces fierce competition from neighboring states. The lack of professional sports teams has hindered growth and affected overall numbers, though there are still ample options for bettors to choose from.

Since 2018, the US has seen a significant surge in sports betting, with no signs of slowing down. With more states expected to legalize both online and retail sports betting, the industry will only continue to expand.

The History of Betting in Iowa

In the past, all forms of gambling in Iowa were restricted to riverboat casinos until regulations were loosened. With numerous casinos scattered throughout the state, it was relatively easy to establish locations for sports betting.

When the federal ban on sports betting was lifted, states rushed to launch their own legal markets, and Iowa was no exception. Though there were some initial delays, the state eventually joined the growing list of states with legal sports betting.

While Iowa was able to quickly implement sports betting after its legalization, there have been a few hiccups along the way. Changes to regulations and rules have been made, resulting in a thriving and successful sports betting industry in the state. The future looks bright for Iowa’s continued growth in the sports betting market. 

The Legalization of Betting in Iowa: Key Details

In 2018, the first attempt to legalize sports betting in Iowa was made but faced quick opposition. However, a year later in 2019, there was little resistance as both legalization and launch occurred.

Governor Kim Reynolds signed the bill into law in May of that year, and the Iowa Racing and Gaming  Commission promptly worked to establish the industry. In a rare move, both online and retail sports betting were launched simultaneously in August of 2019.

To operate in Iowa, online sportsbooks must partner with existing casinos. Initially, registration had to be done in person, but this requirement was later lifted, resulting in a significant increase in overall numbers.

In addition to traditional sports, bill HF 2497, passed in 2022, also legalized esports betting in the state of Iowa. This move further expanded the options for bettors and solidified Iowa’s position as a leader in the US sports betting market.

Betting Options in Iowa

Iowa offers a diverse range of betting options thanks to the legalization of both online and retail sports betting. While there has been some recent movement in the online sector, most bets are still placed through online platforms or mobile apps. Some of the biggest names in the industry operate in Iowa, making it easy for bettors to find a reputable and popular online sportsbook.

Check out a list of the current online sportsbooks in the state:

  • Barstool Sportsbook
  • Bet365 Sportsbook
  • Betfred Sportsbook
  • BetMGM Sportsbook
  • BetRivers Sportsbook
  • Betway Sportsbook
  • Caesars Sportsbook
  • Circa Sportsbook
  • ClutchBet Sportsbook
  • DraftKings Sportsbook
  • DRF Sportsbook
  • FanDuel Sportsbook
  • Hard Rock Sportsbook
  • PointsBet Sportsbook
  • Q Sportsbook
  • SuperBook Sportsbook
  • Tipico Sportsbook

Thanks to Iowa’s legalization of retail sports betting at all casinos in the state, there are numerous options for bettors to place their wagers. While some casinos have phased out of the industry over time, many still offer this convenient option for bettors. Here is a comprehensive list of locations where retail sports betting is currently allowed in Iowa:

  • Ameristar Casino
  • Blackbird Bend Casino
  • Catfish Bend Casino
  • Diamond Jo Casino
  • Diamond Jo Worth
  • Grand Falls Casino
  • Hard Rock Sioux City
  • Harrah’s Council Bluffs
  • Horseshoe Casino
  • Isle Casino Bettendorf
  • Isle Casino Waterloo
  • Lakeside Casino
  • Prairie Meadows
  • Q Casino
  • Rhythm City Casino
  • Riverside Casino
  • Wild Rose Clinton
  • Wild Rose Emmetsburg
  • Wild Rose Jefferson”

Regulations and Rules for Sports Betting in Iowa

The regulations for sports betting in Iowa have evolved over time, ultimately benefiting both sportsbooks and bettors. Initially, there was an in-person registration requirement, but this has since been eliminated, allowing bettors to register online.

The legal age for sports betting in Iowa is 21 years old, consistent with other states in the Midwest. Residents and visitors within the state can legally place bets on sports, including esports which were previously prohibited but are now allowed. There are few restrictions when it comes to betting in Iowa, with even in-state college teams being open for wagering.

Popular Sports and Events to Bet On in Iowa

Despite not having a professional sports team, Iowa remains a top destination for sports betting. There are many popular teams among bettors in the state, making it an exciting and vibrant market for all types of sports fans.

Baseball enthusiasts can root for the Chicago Cubs or St. Louis Cardinals, both successful and historic franchises in MLB. For football fans, the Kansas City Chiefs and Minnesota Vikings are popular choices for NFL betting.

The state also sees high activity in betting on the NBA and NHL, with split allegiances among sports fans. Additionally, Iowa residents can bet on their own college teams, with the University of Iowa and Iowa State attracting significant attention during basketball and football seasons.

Tips for First-time Sports Bettors in Iowa

Starting out with sports betting can be daunting, and this is no different for those in Iowa. However, there are some tips and tricks to help new bettors find success in the industry and potentially make a profit.

Firstly, creating a solid bankroll management plan is crucial. This includes determining how much money to invest in sports betting and how much to wager on each bet.

It’s also beneficial to utilize a variety of betting types, as this increases the chances of success. Relying on just one type limits options and potential profit.

Remember that research is key when it comes to successful sports betting. While it doesn’t have to be extensive, taking the time to understand the teams, players, and odds can greatly improve chances of winning. In short, a little bit of effort can go a long way in sports betting success.

The Future of Sports Betting in Iowa

While the Iowa sports betting market is currently limited, changes are on the horizon that could bring even more options for bettors. With Barstool and PointsBet leaving the state, new online sportsbooks such as ESPN BET and Fanatics will offer additional choices for placing wagers. These changes may lead to increased activity among sports bettors.

However, it’s important to remember that Iowa may not be able to compete with larger states in terms of sports betting revenue. Nonetheless, the industry has already brought a significant boost in tax revenue for the state.

Additionally, responsible gambling is heavily promoted by all online sportsbooks in Iowa and resources are available for those who may need help. It’s essential to remember that sports betting should be enjoyable and to seek assistance if it ever becomes overwhelming. Ultimately, Iowa’s sports betting market will continue to evolve and provide opportunities for both the state and bettors alike.

Paid in bonus bets if your bet wins.

21+ and present in select states. First online real money wager only. $10 first deposit required. Bonus issued as nonwithdrawable bonus bets that expire 7 days after receipt. See terms at sportsbook.fanduel.com. FanDuel is offering online sports wagering in Kansas under an agreement with Kansas Star Casino, LLC. Gambling Problem? Call 1-800-GAMBLER or visit FanDuel.com/RG (CO, IA, KY, MI, NJ, OH, PA, IL, TN, VA, VT), 1-800-NEXT-STEP or text NEXTSTEP to 53342 (AZ), 1-888-789-7777 or visit ccpg.org/chat (CT), 1-800-9-WITH-IT (IN), 1-800-522-4700 or visit ksgamblinghelp.com (KS), 1-877-770-STOP (LA), visit www.mdgamblinghelp.org (MD), 1-800-522-4700 (WY), or visit www.1800gambler.net (WV).

Betting Ladies members get a bonus! Available in all states but NY, DC, MS, PR and NV.

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Must be 21+ and present in CO, IA, IL, IN, LA, MI, OH, NJ, NY, or VA. Void where prohibited. T&C Apply. If you or someone you know in CO, IL, LA, OH, or NJ has a gambling problem, Call or TEXT 1-800-GAMBLER. In IA, call 1-800-BETS-OFF. IN call 1-800-9-WITH-IT. In MI, call the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Gambling Disorder Help-line at: 800-270-7117. In NY, Call (877-8-HOPENY) or text HOPENY (467369). In VA, call 1-888-532-3500.

Receive $150 as bonus bets. Deposit required. Paid in bonus bets. New customers only. Other Ts&Cs apply.

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