Is Sports Betting Legal in Iowa?
Yes, sports betting is now live and legal throughout the state of Iowa. The law was changed in 2019 in the wake of the Supreme Court overturning the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act in 2018. Since then, states have been free to set their own regulations on sports betting, and Iowa legislators wasted little time in establishing a legal betting market.
In May 2019, Iowa became the 11th state in the country to offer legal sports betting. The state put the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission in charge of licensing and regulating both online and retail sportsbooks, ensuring that all betting is safe, fair, and fun. Since then, numerous betting sites have launched, with up to 57 allowed in total.
Iowa Sports Betting Timeline
- February 2019 – The SF 366 bill is introduced to the Iowa Senate. It sets out provisions for legal sports betting in the state, including a tax and regulatory framework. Despite significant backing, it ultimately fails.
- April 2019 – Not long after SF 366 fails, bill SF 617 is introduced in its place. On April 22, it's approved by the House and passed to the Iowa Senate.
- May 2019 – Bill SF 617 is approved by the Senate and sent to the desk of Governor Kim Reynolds, who signed it into law on May 13.
- August 15, 2019 – The first legal sportsbooks in Iowa start taking bets, with both retail and online sportsbooks launching on the same day.
IA Betting at a Glance
|Iowa retail sports betting legal status||Legal and live|
|Iowa online sports betting legal status||Legal and live|
|Iowa online sports betting launch date||August 15, 2019|
|Iowa sports betting regulator||Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission|
|Number of sportsbook licenses available||57|
|Total bets placed in first month||$40 million|
|Sportsbook tax rate||6.75%|
Top Iowa Sportsbooks
Here are some of the best sportsbooks currently available in Iowa:
- BetMGM – Exclusive live streams
- FanDuel – Excellent mobile app
- DraftKings – Very accessible site
- Caesars – Great welcome offer
- PointsBet – Lots of unique markets
- Bet365 – Great live betting
- Barstool – Excellent regular offers
- Unibet – Regular odds boosts
- Betrivers – Fun loyalty rewards
Choosing the Right IA Betting Site
To start betting in Iowa, you can visit a retail sportsbook or choose an online betting site. Online sportsbooks are far more convenient because you can log in and place bets whenever you want. They’re also a lot easier to use, although you will need to create an account first.
Before you create your account, it’s important to choose a site that offers the best possible betting experience. You can choose one of our top-rated sites above or consider the following criteria:
Checking sportsbook reviews is the fastest way to find out what each site has to offer. We review all legal and licensed Iowa betting sites, signing up to each one and testing them out. By reading our reviews, you can save yourself a lot of time and effort and get an objective, unbiased view of what’s available. All of our reviews are also updated regularly, so you’ll always get the latest information on promos and features.
Bonuses and promotions are a great reason to join an online sportsbook rather than bet at a retail location. You can find lots of great offers at Iowa sportsbooks, including the following:
- Free bets/bet credits
- Risk-free bets
- No deposit offers
- Matched deposit offers
- Odds boosts
These will help you get more out of your betting experience, boosting your bankroll when you first sign up. All of the Iowa sportsbooks we’ve tested offer promos to new bettors, and most also provide regular offers and bonuses too. Before you join a betting site, check to see what kind of promos are available and how easy they are to claim.
Odds and Lines
Odds and lines make a big difference to how much profit you can make in the long run. If you’re placing bets at the best possible odds, you’re also maximizing your potential profit. When deciding on which Iowa sportsbook to choose, we recommend looking at the data on odds and lines. You can compare odds between sites, and focus on the sports you prefer to bet on.
Sports and Markets
Iowa sportsbooks offer betting on a wide range of sports, including popular events in the US and around the world. While all betting sites that we’ve tested include the four major leagues, there’s a lot of variety when it comes to less popular sports. Popular sports you can bet on in Iowa include:
- College Sports
- Premier League Soccer
- Champions League Soccer
In addition, you should look at the markets on offer too, as these will have an impact on your ability to find value and give you more options to choose from. In most cases, bigger and more popular events will have more markets, though the amount of variety depends on the betting site you use. Popular markets at Iowa sportsbooks include:
- Point spread
- Point total
- Player props
- Game props
- Same game parlays
When you sign up to a betting site, you want the process to be as straightforward as possible. The best sportsbooks are those that let you sign up quickly without jumping through a lot of hoops. Not only that but once you’ve created your account, it should ideally be easy to find events and sports to bet on. Before you join, check out the sign up process and take a look at how easy it is to use the menus to place bets.
It takes real money to place bets at Iowa sportsbooks, so you’re going to need a way to conveniently add funds to your account. Ideally, betting sites should support a wide range of payment methods and make it as simple as possible for you to get started. In addition, you should look at how simple the withdrawal process is. The best Iowa sportsbooks offer fast and free payouts with few limits on when you can get your money.
If you’re betting at a licensed sportsbook, it’s rare that you’ll encounter a problem. However, if you do have any issues or questions, you’ll want to speak to the customer support team. They’re on hand to deal with anything that comes up, and contacting them should be simple and convenient. Commonly used customer support channels include:
- FAQ pages
- Live chat
- Phone support
- Email address
Before you join, check to see which contact methods are available at your Iowa sportsbook and how fast and helpful response times are.
Joining a Legal Iowa Sportsbook
Once you’ve decided on a sportsbook to join, all that’s left is to create your account. Don’t worry, it’s a lot simpler than you might think, and you’ll be ready to go in just a few simple steps:
- Visit the site in your browser or download the sportsbook app
- Choose the Sign Up option and enter all of your requested details
- Agree to the terms and conditions
- Verify your ID and location to fully set up your account
Making a Deposit at an IA Betting Site
Of course, you won’t be able to start betting straight after making your account. You’ll need to have some funds available first. While some Iowa sportsbooks may offer no deposit promos, you’ll need to make a deposit to start betting in the majority of cases.
To deposit funds, simply log into your account and go to the cashier section of the betting site. Then it’s simply a case of choosing your preferred payment method and entering your details. Your deposit should be credited to your account instantly, so you’ll be able to start betting straight after.
Popular deposit methods at Iowa sportsbooks include:
- Online banking
- Debit/credit cards
- Wire transfer
Claiming Your Iowa Betting Promo
When you make your first deposit at your new sportsbook account, don’t forget to check out the welcome bonus. All of the IA betting sites we’ve tested and reviewed have promos on offer for new players, and claiming these is normally pretty simple.
In most cases, getting your hands on the welcome offer is as simple as making your first deposit. However, all sportsbook promos come with terms and conditions, and it’s important to read and understand these before you try to claim the offer. The terms will affect how you can use the bonus, and understanding them will help you get the maximum value out of it.
Here are some common terms and conditions that our research has found at IA sportsbooks:
|Terms and Conditions||Example||Explanation|
|Wagering requirement/rollover||25x||Complete the wagering to withdraw your bonus|
|Promo code||BONUS10||Enter the promo code when making a deposit to claim your bonus|
|Minimum deposit||$20||Deposit at least this amount to claim the bonus|
|Minimum bet||$10||Make a bet of at least this amount to claim the bonus|
|Minimum odds||-200||Make a bet at these odds or greater to claim the bonus|
Iowa Sportsbook Payouts Explained
There’s not much point in winning bets unless you’re going to enjoy your winnings, and therefore, you need to know how to make withdrawals too. All IA sportsbooks have a minimum withdrawal amount, but provided you have this amount or more in your account, you’ll be able to request a withdrawal.
The withdrawal process can vary depending on the site, but following these steps should help you claim your payout successfully:
- Log into your account and open up the cashier section
- Choose your payment method
- Enter the amount you’d like to withdraw and confirm it
- Wait for the sportsbook to process your request and for your funds to arrive
Most sportsbooks require that you can only withdraw funds using a payment method you previously used to deposit with, but bank transfers are also possible. The time it takes for your money to reach you will depend both on the sportsbook itself and the payment method you use.
Here are some common payout times for popular payment methods based on the data we’ve collected from Iowa sportsbooks:
|Payment Method||Withdrawal Time|
|Debit card||1-5 days|
|PayPal||30 minutes to 1 day|
|Bank transfer||1-7 days|
A Guide to Mobile Betting in Iowa
As long as you’re within the state borders, you’re not restricted to where you bet at Iowa sportsbooks. All of the licensed betting sites in the Hawkeye State are fully compatible with mobile devices. This means you can log into your betting account, make payments and place bets while on the go.
Using your sportsbook from your smartphone or tablet is as simple as visiting the site through your mobile browser and logging into your account. However, most of the sites we’ve tested also offer a mobile app that you can download. These apps make betting even more convenient and enjoyable, and you can use them while watching the game at the bar or stadium.
The Most Popular Sports to Bet on in Iowa
Iowa is filled with sports fans of every type imaginable. There are diehard fanatics who go to every game as well as those more casual fans who enjoy watching the game on TV. Unusually, Iowa doesn’t have any teams in the major leagues, but that doesn’t stop people from following the most exciting teams and leagues across the country.
Football remains the country’s most popular sport, with the Super Bowl attracting over one hundred million viewers. Iowa may not have its own NFL franchise, but that hasn’t stopped the state from being completely football mad. Fans typically support one of the big teams in neighboring states, such as the Minnesota Vikings, Chicago Bears, or Green Bay Packers. While none have won the Super Bowl in recent years, that’s done nothing to falter the support of fans.
The NBA also has a big following in Iowa, with the NBA playoffs being one of the most exciting times of the year to be a sports fan. Even though Iowa isn’t home to an NBA franchise, fans are more than willing to follow teams from neighboring states. The Minnesota Timberwolves are currently the most popular, although the Milwaukee Bucks and Chicago Bulls also have a strong following.
Baseball is still one of the most popular sports in the US, and the MLB is, without a doubt, the number one baseball organization in the world. Lots of fans across Iowa follow the league, even if they don’t have a home team to root for. Still, many support the Chicago Cubs, a team that is affiliated with minor league team, the Iowa Cubs, who play out of Principal Park in Des Moines.
Hockey is growing in popularity across the US, with the NHL taking on several expansion franchises in recent years. The sport may not be number one in Iowa, but it’s still very popular. Fans follow AHL teams such as Iowa Wild and the Des Moines Buccaneers. However, the Chicago Blackhawks in the NHL are the most popular option.
Soccer may have been dismissed by sports fans over the years, but it’s become more popular than ever across the US. The quality of the MLS has been improving every year, with some of the biggest stars in the world now coming here. There’s no MLS team in Iowa, but many fans follow the Chicago Fire or USL team Des Moines Menace.
Without a major league team to support, many fans in Iowa prefer to follow their local college teams. College sports are huge here, and it’s fully legal to bet on them. Whether you prefer college football, basketball, or anything else, most IA sportsbooks will allow you to wager on everything except for player props.
Why Sign up to Multiple IA Betting Sites
With so many Iowa sportsbooks to choose from, you’re missing out if you decide to only join one. We recommend that you sign up to as many of the licensed betting sites as you can because there are lots of great benefits to having accounts with more than one sportsbook. Here are some of the most important:
Bonuses are an exciting part of signing up to a new sportsbook, with all IA betting sites giving new customers a welcome offer. Unfortunately, you can only claim one welcome bonus per site. However, there’s nothing to prevent you from joining multiple sportsbooks and claiming each welcome bonus available.
The key to making long-term profits when sports betting is to always make sure you get the best possible odds. This will mean more winnings in your pocket, and it makes a big difference over time. It’s always a good idea to compare odds before you bet, and having an account at all the major betting sites will allow you to do this faster and more easily.
While all sportsbooks offer betting on sports, many sites offer different features that create a unique betting experience. For example, some sites focus on the live betting experience, while others ensure you can always bet easily from your mobile. By trying out different sportsbooks, you can work out which features are most important to you.
Iowa Sports Betting FAQ
Is sports betting legal in Iowa?
Yes, sports betting is completely legal in Iowa, with the state agreeing to legalize and regulate betting in 2019. Since then, both retail and online sports betting has gone live, allowing those in the state to place real money bets on their favorite sports.
What are the legal requirements to start betting in Iowa?
Before you can start betting legally in Iowa, it’s important to note that you need to be at least 21 years old. Not only that, but you’ll need to be present in the state when you place bets. Online sportsbooks perform ID and location checks to confirm this.
Are there bonuses available at Iowa online sportsbooks?
Yes, all Iowa sportsbooks offer promos and bonuses to make your time betting even more enjoyable. You can claim welcome offers as a new customer, and many sites also provide regular promotions like weekly odds boosts and competitions.
Can I bet from my mobile in Iowa?
All of the Iowa sportsbooks we’ve tested and reviewed are fully compatible with mobile devices. This means you can easily log in and place bets from your phone. Most sites also offer a mobile app that you can download to make it even simpler.