Illinois Online Casino Update: 2023-2024 Launch Possible
Online casino gambling isn’t legal in the state of Illinois. However, IL gambling laws could very well change in the next few years. Recent reports suggest lawmakers are considering legalizing online gambling to help offset incurred debt in the state.
Illinois is currently home to various gambling activities, from sports betting and horse racing to brick-and-mortar casinos. But online casinos have remained unavailable to this day, giving some state lawmakers have plans to legalize online casinos in the Land of Lincoln next year.
There’s a decent amount of resistance in Illinois right now, specifically from video game terminal operators. These brands believe that the availability of online casino gaming could significantly eat into their current betting market. While there is some massive potential revenue with Illinois online casino gaming, there are definitely some hurdles on the road to full legality.
Illinois online casinos might not be legal, but IL online sports betting is — and the industry has been widely successful. The AGA recently reported that Illinois recorded the second-highest GGR from sports betting in the country in 2022, behind only New York. It produced $775 million in GGR (10.6% market share). If this is any indication of the lucrative potential of Illinois online betting, then iGaming could be even bigger.
Once Illinois online casinos roll out, anyone of legal betting age in the state can play their favorite casino games right from their smart devices. Plenty of online casinos would likely make a move to the area after legalization, such as BetMGM Casino, FanDuel Casino, Caesars Casino, BetRivers Casino, and DraftKings Casino. Check out this Illinois online casino guide for all the up-to-date info on the future of casino gaming in the state.
Illinois Online Casino Legal Details
A key development making online casino advocates hopeful of a sooner-than-later approval is the 2019 Illinois Gambling Act – SB 690. This legislation has been in place for a few years now, but the Illinois Gaming Board is still working through the details of how regulations would apply to online casinos.
The Illinois Gaming Board regulates all gambling operations in Illinois. This includes riverboat casinos and commercial gaming establishments, as well as sports betting.
Top Illinois Online Casino Games
When online casinos become legal in Illinois, you can expect plenty of different games to be available on each platform. Online table games are always popular with bettors, as you can play blackjack, roulette, craps, and baccarat on your tablet or smartphone. Many of the top online casinos even offer live dealer versions of different table games, delivering all the energy and excitement of a retail casino. Plus, certain online casino apps let you play games such as slingo and even game show games.
And of course, online slot machines are a huge draw for online casino players. Each mobile casino site showcases hundreds of slots, meaning you can look around for the slot machine right for you. Certain online casinos even let you play in demo mode, meaning you can try out different slot games before fully playing them.
BetMGM Online Casino
In addition to having one of the top online sports betting apps with BetMGM Sportsbook, MGM Resorts International and Roar Digital have also collaborated on an excellent iGaming platform with BetMGM Casino Online. The online casino site is well regarded for its excellent design, which keeps new casino players in mind without alienating experienced casino players.
All of the top games are available with BetMGM Casino Online, such as blackjack, baccarat, roulette, and craps. There are even live dealer options available for certain games. If you’re more of a slot machine fan, you’re in luck, as hundreds of slots are available with BetMGM Online Casino. Popular slot games include Dragon Power, Defenders of Asgard, and Hyper Gold.
Plus, thanks to MGM Rewards, the more you play, the more reward points you earn. You can use these points for everything from hotel stays at MGM Resorts to different entertainment experiences and much more.
BetRivers Online Casino
Another popular IL online casino gaming site is BetRivers Casino Online. The platform from Rush Street Interactive is well regarded for its simple design and welcome bonus, which mirrors its sports wagering app BetRivers Sportsbook.
You can play BetRivers Casino games on the mobile app or desktop site at home or on the go. The mobile app is available for both Android devices and iOS devices.
If you have a favorite casino game, you should be able to find it with BetRivers Casino Online easily. The online casino offers table games, video poker, slot machines, and slingo. Plus, live dealer games are available with the casino platform.
Caesars is ready to bring its stellar reputation into the Illinois online casino market. They have an established presence at Harrah’s Metropolis on the banks of the Ohio River. Caesars online casino offers one of the most extensive game boards in the industry.
Caesars’ reputation and existing brand reputation in Illinois will be huge factors in gaining access to the online casino market. Their online casino record is strong. Caesars online casino offers over 400 slot games, 10 Blackjack games, and 21 poker choices.
Caesars online also has virtual sports betting games. Caesars has a tremendous rewards program to show their devotion to their players. Online casino players can also transfer winnings to any of Caesar’s 40 physical casino locations.
New Illinois Caesar online casino accounts should expect the same outstanding bonuses. New accounts get $10 just for registering. Once you make your first deposit, Caesars will match it 100%, up to $300. Caesar’s $2,500 Bonus Play Giveaway is a regular promotion that every online casino player should take advantage of.
FanDuel Online Casino
FanDuel began making an online impact nationwide as a daily fantasy sports platform. They have used a massive customer base to build success in sports betting. The recent launch of the FanDuel sportsbook app is encouraging for its online casino outlook.
One key reason is the attachment to the Pair-A-Dice Casino in East Peoria. Handling the sportsbook at Pair-A-Dice and gaining access to the online sports betting market doesn’t guarantee FanDuel will be one of the online casino approvals, but it helps.
However, another event for FanDuel may have an even greater impact on their online casino potential. FanDuel has an association with longstanding London-based betting icon Paddy Power Betfair.
An agreement merged Betfair and FanDuel’s U.S. operations. The FanDuel Group is now the instrumental arm of both the sportsbook and online casino games. This partnership gives the FanDuel online casino inroads into online gambling.
FanDuel is ready to welcome new Illinois online casino players. They do not require a bonus code to get up to a $1,000 no-sweat first bet. All that’s required is an initial deposit of at least $10.
There aren’t any additional FanDuel online casino bonuses currently, but we expect that could change as they enter more states where online casino games are launched.
DraftKings Online Casino
DraftKings opened its pathway into sportsbooks and online games, becoming one of the most successful daily fantasy sports platforms. They will bring a massive customer base to the Illinois online casino games market.
The DraftKings online casino app provides its trademark user-friendly visuals with a smooth game platform. DraftKings will offer new Illinois online casino accounts a welcome diverse bonus package.
New accounts will receive up to $500 in a matching deposit bonus. DraftKings matches these first deposits at 50 percent value. DraftKings is also extending a $100 credit on the first game of Blackjack if it’s not a winner.
Promo codes are available for a $5 sportsbook bonus bet when you participate in a $20 game of Blackjack. The partnership with the Casino Queen in East St. Louis will help boost DraftKings’ potential as an early approval for online casino games.
Illinois Online Casino Welcome Bonuses
When the Illinois online casino gaming market launches, you can enter LINEUPS.com promo codes to start out with a major bonus. In other states where mobile casino gaming is available, there are a variety of different signup promos available. Let’s take nearby Michigan for example. When it comes to Michigan online casinos, there are a variety of different welcome bonuses available. If you’re signing up with a FanDuel Casino Online Promo Code, you get $1,000 in play it again credits to go with an extra $100 in betting credits. With BetMGM Casino Online, you get a $25 bonus bet as well as a $1,000 deposit match. DraftKings Casino offers a major $2,000 deposit match bonus to go with an $85 bonus. Caesars Casino has a particularly interesting signup bonus, with a $1,000 deposit match to go with a $100 gas card. BetRivers Casino Online offers the exact same welcome bonus as BetRivers Sportsbook, a 100% deposit match bonus capped at $250. Once Illinois online casinos launch, we’ll have updated promo information on the different platforms.
Illinois Land-Based Casinos
While online casino gaming isn’t available in Illinois quite yet, you can still stop by a retail casino to check out the different slot machines and table games. Most of these locations feature retail sportsbooks for placing in-person wagers as well. There are plenty of different Illinois retail casinos available right now, and even more on the way in the future, such as Bally’s Casino Chicago, which is scheduled to open in 2025. Here are some of the most popular land-based casinos in Illinois right now:
- Grand Victoria Casino
- Hard Rock Rockford Casino
- Casino Queen
- Argosy Casino Alton
- Hollywood Casino Joliet
- Par-A-Dice Casino
- Rivers Casino Des Plaines
- Hollywood Casino Aurora
Illinois Retail Casino and Online Casino History
Illinois casino history dates back to the 1880s when the traffic of unlicensed riverboat casinos began to boom. For the next half-century, while illegal, these venues for gambling were deemed socially acceptable and, therefore, rarely prosecuted.
The first step towards legal gambling in the state began in the 1920s. After multiple attempts by legislators, Illinois legalized horse track betting in 1927. Like many other states, Illinois envisioned the revenue that state-run lotteries could generate.
They launched the Illinois lottery in 1974, one of the first states in the Midwest to do so. However, there was a big gap in the Land of Lincoln between legal horse tracks, a lottery, and legislation that would open up a wider array of gambling options.
Oddly enough, the shift brought with it the longstanding tradition of riverboat gambling. The Riverboat Gambling Act passed in 1990, and the state opened the first legal operation the following year.
Boats were initially required to be moving for gambling to be legal. However, in 1999, that restriction was lifted, and casino activities could take place while the boats were still at the dock. This got minimal attention, but it opened the door to a few land-based brick-and-mortar facilities.
Today, 10 licensed casinos are operating in Illinois. A key event that helped boost the chances of online casinos was the 2009 Video Gaming Act. This law permitted video gaming terminals to be legal at certain types of licensed locations.
The profits were proof that Illinois had made a lucrative decision. By 2017, the more than 6,000 video gaming terminals had built over $110 million in profits. The similarities between the video terminals and online casino games are striking.
It also helped to establish a financial incentive for allowing online casino games. One interesting thing missing from the legislation is the failure to include the state’s horse racing venues as part of the deal. Horse tracks in Illinois are still pressing to be permitted to allow gaming machines.
One piece of legislation that damaged the Illinois casino industry was the 2008 ban on smoking inside these facilities. It created a wave of Illinois residents who chose to cross state lines to neighboring states that permitted smoking in their casinos.
However, the ban on smoking at brick-and-mortar casinos could have a silver lining for the state’s efforts to open up online casino games. You can bet on horse races online in Illinois, adding another precedent to support opening up online casinos.
There is some pushback against allowing online casino games. Some feel it will detract from the viability of the physical locations, especially those with video gaming terminals. Others believe that including an online casino option will have multiple positive effects that will offset any issues.
Online Casinos Impact on Illinois
One Illinois law that directly affected casino revenue was the 2008 casino smoking ban. Once enacted, the ban essentially carved 20 percent off the casino business’s profits. However, video gaming terminals have stayed consistently profitable.
Online casinos would be a sure win for players who oppose the in-person smoking ban as well as operators looking to recoup some of their lost profits. As more support grows for online casino approval, many envision legalization to come earlier than they had previously expected.
A launch of online casino games would also cement Illinois’ spot as the leader in gambling options across the Midwestern states. The impact would erase the need for casino players to drift across state lines to play at smoking casinos or online in states that allow online casino games.
Illinois Sports Betting
The Illinois sports betting market has been around for a few years and has been very successful so far. In-person betting at retail sportsbooks started in March of 2020, with online sports betting coming shortly after in June. The area is home to plenty of major sports fans who cheer on the Chicago Bears, Chicago Blackhawks, Chicago Bulls, Chicago Cubs, and Chicago White Sox. The top names in online sports betting have expanded into the Land of Lincoln, including DraftKings Sportsbook IL, BetRivers Sportsbook IL, FanDuel Sportsbook IL, and PointsBet Sportsbook IL.
Illinois Casino FAQ
- Are online casinos legal in Illinois?
- Is any kind of online wagering legal in Illinois?
- Can I bet on DraftKings in Illinois?
- When will Illinois online casinos launch?
- Are there physical casinos in Illinois?
- Can I bet on racing in Illinois?
- What is the closest state to Illinois that has online casinos?
- Are online casinos legal under Federal law?
- What online sportsbooks are available in Illinois?
- Is online poker available in Illinois?
Are online casinos legal in Illinois?
No, currently, online casinos are not legal in the state of Illinois. There is no law, regulation, or licensing currently available for online casinos in the state. This means that you cannot gamble on slots, table games, and other casino games from your computer or mobile device in the state.
Is any kind of online wagering legal in Illinois?
Yes, Illinois allows for online sports betting within the state. You can bet with online sportsbooks anywhere in Illinois from your computer or mobile device with geolocation turned on. There are a number of licensed sportsbooks within the state at this moment.
Can I bet on DraftKings in Illinois?
You can bet on the daily fantasy platform or online sportsbook with DraftKings in Illinois. However, the DraftKings Online Casino is not currently licensed in Illinois, as Illinois has yet to legalize online or mobile casinos. DraftKings will most likely launch its online casino whenever Illinois decides to legalize such activities.
When will Illinois online casinos launch?
There is no current timeline for online casinos in Illinois. There have been previous attempts, but no current piece of law or bill being worked on will legalize online gaming in the state. Lawmakers in Illinois are looking to work on the legislation of online casinos further in 2023.
Are there physical casinos in Illinois?
Yes, there are several brick and mortar casinos in the state of Illinois that offer a full range of casino games, from tables to slots. These casinos are completely legal due to them being regulated and licensed by the state of Illinois.
Can I bet on racing in Illinois?
Yes, Illinois has had legal wagering on horse racing for a very long time. You can bet on horse racing both online and at the physical casinos within the state. These wagers are all completely legal under the current law in Illinois.
What is the closest state to Illinois that has online casinos?
Currently, Michigan fully allows online casino gaming, making it the closest state to wager on casino games online. It is completely legal to visit Michigan and use the online casino games there as there is no law prohibiting non-residents from betting and playing online.
Are online casinos legal under Federal law?
Yes, Federal law does not prohibit states from legalizing online casinos. This means that each state has the right to legalize or ban online casino gaming from its state. Therefore, it is possible that Illinois decides to legalize online casino games in the future.
What online sportsbooks are available in Illinois?
Illinois has several online sportsbooks within the state, including major companies DraftKings, FanDuel, and BetRivers, the three current market leaders. There are also up and coming sportsbooks like PointsBet available in the Prairie State. These sportsbooks are all licensed and regulated within the state.
Is online poker available in Illinois?
Yes and no, there are certain poker sites online that are technically allowed in Illinois; however, these are not regulated by the state like the sportsbooks. Therefore, if you want a completely safe and regulated environment, there are no options for online poker in Illinois.