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Online Sports Betting in Iowa


The state of Iowa allows both retail and online sports betting sites to operate there. As of January 1st, 2021, all Iowans had the freedom to sign up for an online betting account with a bookie of their choice from any location within the state. Before then, it meant that in-person registration required bettors to visit casinos of their choice before placing bets with mobile betting apps in Iowa.

The rise of remote registration does suggest a promising year ahead, especially for Iowa sports betting apps. This page features some of the best Iowa sportsbooks currently in business, along with all the key information that players –both old and new- need to be aware of before engaging themselves in sports wagering in the Hawkeye State. In short, this is a comprehensive review to the what, who, when, and where of Iowa sports betting.

Best Online Sports Betting Sites in Iowa

Sports bettors from Iowa don’t have any shortage of options when it comes to choosing sports betting operators that they would like to bet with anytime they feel like doing so. Iowa is home to 18 licensed casinos with sports wagering, nearly all of which offer mobile and online sports betting. Even though there are more than a dozen operators in Iowa, the following are some of the most notable ones:

  • DraftKings – DraftKings offers its customers up to $1,000 deposit bonus, along with a $50 matched free bet upon deposit.
  • William Hill – When you sign up here, you can expect a $500 bet free of any risk upon the first deposit in addition to weekly promotions.
  • FanDuel – At FanDuel, you can expect up to $1,000 refund in the event that you lose your first bet. They also have an app that’s available on iOS, Desktop, and Android devices.
  • BetMGM – Besides its $600 risk-free bet, bettors with accounts here stand a chance of enjoying $10 free weekly bets.
  • Betfred – Betfred will offer you $15 free bet just for signing up with them. They also offer 100% wager match up to $1,000.
  • POINTSBET – At POINTSBET, you can expect 2 free bets up to $2,000 upon your initial deposit.

Sports Betting Laws in Iowa

Legislators from Iowa recently passed a law that set the entire state up to get maximum benefits from legal sports betting, but with a few minor exceptions. The SF617 law has a series of amendments to the Gambling Games Regulations that are currently in place. The main sports betting laws in Iowa are:

  • Iowa allows mobile sports betting
  • Licensing fees for operators in the state stand at $45,000, along with a $10,000 renewal fee.
  • Bettors with the intention of opening their sports betting accounts must register or rather open their accounts at a casino of their choice or do so personally.
  • Players can’t place in-game or live bets on in-state college teams. However, Iowa allows wagering on other college games.
  • Operators must pay a gambling tax of up to 6.75% of their gross gaming revenue. This matches the rate in Nevada.

As the America’s original bellwether, residents of Iowa have an admiration for their common sense approach when it comes to policies and regulations. Sports betting laws in Iowa strike the middle ground between business-friendly legislation and consumer protection. This cuts costs and red tape for online sports gambling and other operators in the state.

Sports Betting Events to bet on in Iowa

Bookmakers in Iowa must receive some approval for every type of sporting activity that they plan to offer their customers to wager on. The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission has a comprehensive list of sports that are eligible to wager on in Iowa. The list gets an update frequently.

Some categories of sporting activities that aren’t eligible for wagering in Iowa. For instance, bettors can’t wager on player or coaches awards. Futures betting on players awards such as Player or Rookie of the Year isn’t possible in Iowa. Even though other forms of futures wagering are fair game, the bets have to be tied to a given sporting activity itself as opposed to awards that the panel or the public decides.

While wagering on Iowa sportsbooks, players don’t stand a chance of betting on the NFL Draft. While other drafts haven’t received any approval to date, there’s no reason to suspect that bookies in Iowa will get permission to offer their customers wagers on draft for any sport. Iowa allows wagering mostly on some of the most popular sports.

There several big leagues that you wager on in Iowa. With the exception of NCAA collegiate completion and the Olympics, both amateur sports and “tier 2” or “minor league” activities are off-limits. In other words, you can only wager on major or ‘premiere’ leagues for professional sports and not subordinate development competitions. For example, MLB wagers are permissible but not MiLB wagers. You can wager on NBA but not on NBA G-League.

As a bettor in Iowa with an interest in politics or eSports, you don’t stand a chance on wagering on such events at Iowa sportsbooks. The law makes it clear that bookies in Iowa should offer their customers a chance to wager on sports only. Like plenty of other states, political and eSports betting are off-limits in Iowa.

While there are plenty of sports that you can wager on in Iowa, the following are the most popular ones that can guarantee you some winnings:

  • NCAA – without any major professional sports teams, the Iowa State Cyclones and the University of Iowa Hawkeyes are some of the big draws.
  • NFL – with football being a popular sport in Iowa, you can bet on several clubs such as Green Bay Packers, the Minnesota Vikings, or Chicago Bears.
  • MLB – baseball has a special place in Iowa and you can wager on several local teams that take part in baseball in Iowa.
  • NBA – Iowa has several basketball teams that participate in professional sports basketball leagues in the state.
  • NHL – even though Iowa isn’t an ideal place for ice hockey, NHL seems to be gaining popularity recently. Several clubs participate here and you can wager on as a bettor in Iowa.

Types of Wagering Allowed on Sports Betting Events in Iowa

Popular wagering types that you can find at legal online betting sites operating in Iowa include the following:

  • Moneyline bets – The moneyline are the easiest of them all. Here, you just select which team will win the match. The odds are in positive or negative. For example, you may see -150 or +140. Minus means less money while plus means more cash. Odds of -150 mean that you have to wager $150 to win $100.
  • Parlay – Parlays link two or more wagers/bets into a single bet. A big advantage here is that a player can increase his or her bankroll than wagering on each match independently. The downside is that in parlays all the bets have to win so that you get your funds.
  • Spreads – This is another popular form of wagering not only in Iowa, but also in many places across the United States. For you to win, you must beat the spread which is a line that the bookmaker This form of wagering is ideal for matches where both teams score many points.
  • Futures – This is the placing on wagers on an event in the future, but not the near future. For example, you can’t bet on a match scheduled to take place tomorrow, but on events well into the future such as which team will win the Super Bowl when the season ends.
  • Totals – This involves betting on the score of both teams paired together. After the bookmaker sets the line, you can choose to wager on the “under” or the “over.”
  • Teasers – These are points spread wagers where there’s the adjustment of the spread by points in a bettor’s favor on more than a single game. You’ll mostly find them on professional sporting activities such as football and basketball.
  • Round Robin- This is also another popular type of betting, especially in online sports gambling. Round Robin allows a bettor to lay several parlay wagers at the same time in a single wager. Unlike standard parlays, bettors don’t need to win every wager for their bet to win.

Top Local Teams to Wager on in Iowa

After you’ve settled for an Iowa sportsbook or a betting app of your choice, now it’s time to begin thinking about finding some of the biggest or top Iowa teams worth betting on for a chance to increase your bankroll. Plenty of clubs take part in different sports leagues in Iowa from NCAA to NHL, and MLB, to mention but a few. Some local teams worth wagering on in Iowa include:

  • Iowa State Cyclones (NCAA)
  • Iowa Hawkeyes (USL)
  • Minnesota Vikings (NFL)
  • LA Dodgers (MLB)

Bonuses Available at Iowa Sportsbooks

Operators in Iowa have several attractive bonuses to its customers. Some of the most common ones include the following:

  • No deposit bonus – Sign up and receive a small amount of free money to place a bet with.
  • Odds boosts – These are improved odds on a match or player performance.
  • Deposit bonus – Fund your account and get some funds that you can wager with any way you desire.
  • Risk free wagers – Fund your account and receive a free bet matched up to the amount that you deposited.

Sports Betting in Iowa FAQ

What does sports betting law says about the age of gambling in Iowa?

Based on the law, you need to be 21 years and above if you want to engage in betting.

Are offshore bookies legal in Iowa?

Offshore bookies that operate in IA aren’t safe since they violate several federal and state laws.

What’s the legality of daily fantasy sports in Iowa?

DFS are legal in Iowa. With a huge sports betting market, rest assured of find DFS in Iowa.

Is mobile sports betting possible in Iowa?

Absolutely! You can place wagers on several sports betting apps through several betting apps that are ready for download. Almost all online betting sites have their own native apps.

Are there any sign-up bonuses for Iowa sportsbooks?

Yes. Most of them apply to first-time bettors and they range from deposit matches, to matched free wagers, or risk-free wagers.

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Brandon Moore

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