This guide to the best Iowa sports betting sites explores the legal betting landscape in the Hawkeye State. We begin the piece with rankings and overviews of the top five bookmakers licensed in Iowa, then continue with an in-depth overview of betting services and markets available in IA.
Best Iowa Sports Betting Sites 2021
The Best Iowa Sports Betting Sites List 2021
The following providers offer the best online betting in Iowa:
- DraftKings – Best Overall Iowa Sports Betting Site
- BetMGM – Excellent market variety
- TwinSpires – Top Iowa Sportsbook with Great Recurring Promos
- FanDuel – Lowest minimum wager
- BetRivers – Responsive customer support
Best Iowa Sportsbooks Reviewed
1. DraftKings – Best Overall Sports Betting Site
DraftKings, the company that dominated the daily fantasy sports market in the US, runs one of the top sportsbooks that accept wagers from bettors in Iowa.
The bookmaker’s centerpiece is an exquisite mobile app, which makes it a breeze to construct complex parlays. The app neatly collects all of the betting markets for a game into a single page, minimizing the tapping required to create your bet slip.
Of course, DraftKings sportsbook features a range of betting options on the most popular US sports, including football, basketball, hockey, golf, baseball, soccer, and many more. The platform lets you place either pre-match or in-play wagers and offers a multiplicity of lines on local and international markets.
Overall, when it comes to Iowa sports betting, DraftKings is the place to be.
- Exceptional mobile application
- $5.00 min. deposit
- Live streams
- $1,000 welcome bonus
- Odds could be a bit better
DraftKings Sportsbook Promo Code
2. BetMGM – Excellent Market Variety
Known for its expansive network of entertainment venues, BetMGM operates a legal sportsbook in several US states, including Iowa.
BetMGM specializes in excellent lines, especially in the point spread, moneyline, and player prop bet markets, which explains why sharp bettors from all over IA have joined the sportsbook as soon as it launched.
The bookmaker gets all the basics right, hosting lines on every sports discipline popular in the US, in addition to international disciplines. It’s also worth noting that, compared to other bookies, BetMGM focuses heavily on golf, tennis, and martial arts.
Add in a great welcome bonus, a plethora of recurring promotions, and a great betting app, and you’ll quickly see why BetMGm secured a top spot in our rankings of the top Iowa sports betting sites.
- $1,000 welcome bonus
- Parlay same-game markets
- $0.50 minimum bet
- Enhanced odds bonuses
- Main lobby is sometimes cluttered with ads
3. TwinSpires – Top Iowa Sportsbook with Great Recurring Promos
Launched in 2007 as a dedicated race betting service, TwinSpires offers a top Iowa sports betting platform.
The bookmaker sets itself apart from competitors through a range of recurring bonuses, such as the MLB live bet special, a $25 bonus for referring a friend, and loss refunds on specific pro football bets. Twinspires also has a “Super Odds” section that features reduced juice and odds with better-than-usual value.
Another thing we enjoy about TwinSpires is the $1.00 minimum deposit. Along with the fact that the welcome bonus isn’t linked to the size of your deposit, the low limit makes TwinSpires an excellent choice for recreational bettors.
- Lots of recurring promotions
- Same-game parlay
- Great odds
- Mobile app a little dated
Twinspires Welcome Bonus
4. FanDuel – Lowest minimum wager
Eternal DraftKings competitor FanDuel branched out into the sports betting market in late 2018 with the launch of a branded online sportsbook.
Recommending FanDuel without a mention of its mobile betting app would be remiss. You can quickly place complex wagers without constant back-and-forth between several pages using the bookie’s app, optimized for Android and iOS devices. What’s more, the app is equally straightforward to use on small-screen devices as it is to use on iPhones with the largest displays.
If you value the convenience of mobile betting, and especially if you’re an amateur looking to place tiny wagers on international or domestic sports, check out FanDuel.
- Impressive variety of US and international events
- State-of-the-art mobile app
- $1,000 welcome bonus
- $0.09 minimum bet
- Recurring promotions geared toward high rollers
- Glitchy geo-location service on desktop computers
5. BetRivers – Responsive customer support
Like all the other top Iowa online sports betting sites on our list, BetRivers offers excellent coverage of all the major sports, including basketball, football, soccer, ice hockey, darts, martial arts, and golf, to name some.
There’s also no shortage of betting markets to access through the browser-based and mobile applications; whether you’re into moneylines, spreads, totals, halves, player props, or game props, you’ll have it all at your fingertips.
Live betting markets are also adequately represented – including Next-to-score, time-of-next-goal, next-book, time of next booking, and many more – providing bettors capable of making quick betting decisions with opportunities to earn a solid profit.
- Excellent browser-based application
- Extensive sports coverage
- Several recurring promotions
- Underwhelming welcome promotion
- Customer support isn’t available 24/7
Iowa Betting Sites Comparison
|Sportsbook||Promo Code||Welcome Bonus||Available Markets||Live Streaming||Payment Methods|
|DraftKings||Not Available||A free bet bonus of up to $1,000||20+||No||American Express, MasterCard, Discover, Visa, Card Refunds, Check and PayPal|
|BetMGM||Not Available||A risk-free first bet up to $1,000||15+||Yes||PayNearMe, VIP Preferred e-Check, Electronic Transfer, Online Banking|
|Twinspires||Not Available||A risk-free bet up to $1,000||10+||Yes||EZ-Money, PayPal, EZBank, MoneyGram, PayNearMe, Visa, PayPal|
|Fanduel||Not available||Get a risk-free bet up to $1,000||16+||No||MasterCard, Visa, PayPal|
|BetRivers||250MATCH||A 100% up to $250||15+||Yes||Online banking, PayPal, Pay with Cash, MasterCard, Discover, Visa, Cash at Cage.|
Is Sports Betting Legal in Iowa?
Iowa has had legal offline and online sports betting since 2019. There are currently more than 12 sports betting apps in Iowa, and almost all state-based physical casinos offer sports betting services in some capacity.
The Hawkeye State was one of the few that aggressively pushed for legalized sports betting well before the US Supreme Court overturned PAPSA.
An unusual quirk of Iowa’s sports betting regulations was that opening a betting account demanded a personal visit to a land-based casino; luckily, this requirement expired in January 2021.
Here’s a timeline summarizing the road that brought us to state-wide legalization of sports:
- 2019 – Governor Kim Reynolds signed Iowa sports betting bill SF 617 on May 13. Specifics include a 6.75% tax on revenue, legal mobile betting, and a $45,000 licensing fee.
- 2018 – After years of on-and-off legalization attempts, Representative Jake Highfill filed a sports betting bill and declared that legislators were determined to pass the bill in 2019.
- 2010 to 2018 – several attempts at pushing a sports betting bill through committee are unsuccessful.
Gambling Tax in Iowa
Gambling winnings are subject to a 5% state tax and a 24% federal tax. All winnings exceeding $600 in a fiscal year are reportable, and you must include them on your federal tax returns. To report your winnings, use form IA 1041.
Remember that regional laws require casinos to report winnings beyond a specific amount using W2-G forms, so ensure your reporting matches the casino’s.
What Sports Can You Bet On in Iowa?
Iowa sports betting sites offer lines on almost every popular sport. At the very least, you can expect betting options on the following:
- Martial arts
The coverage within each sports discipline is extensive and spans everything from majors such as the NBA, NFL, MBL, and PGA Tour, through semi-pro leagues like the American 7s, MFL, EFL, and AFL, to minor tournaments you’re unlikely to have heard of.
For the broadest availability of sports and competitions to bet on, we recommend that you sign up with at least three of the Iowa sports betting sites we recommend above.
Esports Betting in Iowa
Unfortunately, Iowa’s sports betting bill explicitly bans betting on eSports, and we can’t predict when this will change. To bet on League of Legends, CS:GO, Dota, Overwatch, and other competitive video games, register an account with one of the best offshore betting sites licensed by an overseas jurisdiction.
Keep in mind that by playing at an offshore sportsbook, you violate several Iowa laws. Still, to our knowledge, no Iowa resident has ever been prosecuted by the authorities for this infraction.
Horse Race Betting
Horse race betting is legal in the state. The Prairie Meadows Racetrack in Altoona, which opened in early 1989, remains the state’s lone horse race betting venue. Along with betting on on-site races, the racetrack offers simulcasting of nationwide and international races, with the ability to watch the action unfold in real-time.
Additionally, off-track sports betting in Iowa is alive and well. Here’s a list of prominent OTB locations in the state:
- Prairie Meadows Racetrack & Casino in Altoona
- Catfish Bend Casino in Fort Madison
- MississippiBelle II in Clinton
- Harrah’s Casino in Council Bluffs
- Ameristar Casino* Hotel in Council Bluffs
- Bluffs Run Casino in Council Bluffs
- Dubuque Greyhound Park & Casino in Dubuque
- Diamond Jo Casino in Dubuque
- Wild Rose in Emmetsburg
- Isle of Capri in Marquette
- Terrible’s Lakeside Casino Resort in Osceola
Regarding horse race betting online and via phone, Iowa offers several legal advance-deposit wagering (ADW) services, including TwinSpires and TVG.
Daily Fantasy Sports
The sports betting law signed in May 2019 by Governor Reynolds legalized and regulated daily fantasy sports contests. DraftKings followed on the heels of that legalization, becoming the first DFS provider to receive a license from the Iowa Racing and Wagering Commission. FanDuel soon joined DK, and the rest is history.
Initially, only contests involving professional sports were allowed; however, contests involving collegiate players became legal in 2020 as well.
Types of Betting Markets
What follows is a brief overview of the betting markets you’ll encounter at the top IA betting sites:
Very popular among beginners. You simply bet on who will win the match. If draws are possible in your chosen sport, you’ll be able to select a “draw” as a possible outcome on the moneyline.
Contrary to popular opinion, spreads are great for beginners as well. In spread betting markets, the oddsmaker assigns a handicap to a given team. A bet on the favorite succeeds if they win by more than the handicap spread, while a bet on the underdog succeeds if the underdog either wins outright or loses by less than the value of the handicap.
Examples include predicting the total number of goals or points, predicting the number of passes by a particular player, and so on. Proposition bets are usually not as sharp as moneyline or spread lines, making them a great way to turn a profit.
Examples include betting on the combined total goals scored by both teams in a soccer or hockey match.
Futures markets involve wagering on an event or series that will take place in the future. An example would be attempting to predict who will place first or second in the next NBA season.
A parlay involves combining several wagers into a single bet. The potential parlay payout exceeds the combined potential winnings of its constituents; however, this extra potential profitability is balanced by the difficulty of constructing a successful parlay.
Bonuses at Iowa Sports Betting Sites
You’ll encounter three types of bonuses in your sports betting career:
Matched deposit bonuses
The sportsbook matches your first deposit up to a maximum value. An example of this type of bonus is DraftKings’ welcome promotion, which awards a prize equal to 20% of your initial deposit, up to a maximum of $1,000.
Keep the following possible restrictions in mind when enrolling in a matched deposit bonus:
- Wagering requirements (WR): you won’t be able to withdraw your bonus until you play through it a certain number of times. For example, DraftKings’ welcome bonus comes with a 25x WR, meaning you’ll have to bet $25 to withdraw $1.00 of your bonus. Some bookies, like BetRivers, require you to satisfy the WR within a certain time, e. g. 30 days.
- Validity date: you may have to claim your bonus within a certain time after opening your sports betting account.
- Minimum odds: for example, at DraftKings, only wagers at -300 or longer odds contribute towards meeting WR.
Free bet promotions are distinct from matched deposit bonuses in that the former allows you to place a single bet, whereas the latter can be used to place multiple bets. Several Iowa sportsbooks, including BetMGM, offer free bets equal in size to any losses you incur from placing your first real-money wager.
To avoid accidentally voiding a free bet offer, ask yourself the following questions before enrolling:
- Minimum deposit: do you have to deposit a certain minimum to participate in the promotion?
- Minimum wager: do you have to place a wager using your own money before you can claim the free bet?
- Validity: does the free bet expire?
- Eligible markets: can you use your free bet on any betting market? Parlays are frequently problematic.
- Eligible sports: are there restrictions on the sports you can use your free bet on?
|Sportsbook||Bonus||Promo Code||Min Odds||Expiry Date|
|DraftKings||A free bet bonus of up to $1,000||Not Available||2||8th August 2021 to 13th September 2021|
|BetMGM||A risk-free first bet up to $1,000||Not Available||2.5||9th August 2021 to 31st December 2021|
|Twinspires||A risk-free bet up to $1,000||Not Available||2.8||31st August 2021 to 30th December 2021|
|FanDuel||Get a risk-free bet up to $1,000||Not Available||2||31st August 2020 to 31st December 2021|
|BetRivers||100% up to $250||250MATCH||2.6||15th June 2020 to 31st December 2021|
Deposit & Withdrawal Methods at the Best Iowa Sportsbooks
There’s a lot of variety between the best Iowa sportsbooks when it comes to supported payment options. PayPal and credit cards are omnipresent deposit methods, but the similarities mostly end there.
For instance, if you want to cash out or deposit cash, BetMGM and Betrivers are your best options. Similarly, if PayPal withdrawals are important to you, you’ll want to stick to DraftKings or FanDuel, but avoid BetRivers.
The minimum deposit size also varies. It’s usually between $5.00 and $10.00, but there are outliers. For instance, TwinSpires leads the pack with an unbeatable $1.00 minimum deposit. The story is similar for withdrawals, with some bookies (e.g., TwinSpires) approving payouts as low as $1.00, while others (e.g., $BetMGM) enforcing a $20 minimum withdrawal limit.
The easiest way to decide if a sportsbook meets your deposit and withdrawals needs is to consult the table below:
|Sportsbook||Deposit and Withdrawal Methods||Min Deposit||Min Withdrawal||Payout Time|
|DraftKings||American Express, MasterCard, Discover, Visa, Card Refunds, Check and PayPal||$5||$100||3 to 7 working days|
|BetMGM||PayNearMe, VIP Preferred e-Check, Electronic Transfer, Online Banking||$10||$100||1 to 4 business days|
|Twinspires||EZ-Money, PayPal, EZBank, MoneyGram, PayNearMe, Visa, PayPal||$10||$500||2 to 5 working days|
|FanDuel||MasterCard, Visa, PayPal||$10||$100||1 to 5 working days|
|BetRivers||Online banking, PayPal, Pay with Cash, MasterCard, Discover, Visa, Cash at Cage||$50||$100||1 to 5 business days|
Iowa Mobile Betting Apps
Mobile betting activity is responsible for the bulk of revenues generated by the best Iowa sportsbooks. Nowadays, a bookmaker cannot hope to attract customers unless it offers an Iowa sports betting app that:
- Is optimized for iOS and Android devices
- Works well on smartphones and tablets with different screen sizes and resolutions
- Mirrors the functionality of the browser-based site
So, at the very least, you can expect the perks above when you download and install an Iowa sports betting app from our recommended providers.
Still, there are some differences between individual apps. For instance, DraftKings mobile application is a state-of-the-art piece of software that makes you forget desktop betting exists; all options load blazing fast, creating parlays is a piece of cake, and making deposits and withdrawals is rockets.
Conversely, though functional, BetRivers’ Iowa sports betting app is bogged down by nagging advertisements that detract from the betting experience.
How to Compare Iowa Sportsbooks
When choosing a platform for online sports betting in Iowa, consider the following factors:
Range of Markets
Available Iowa betting markets range from two-way and three-way moneylines, through point spreads, prop bets, and totals, to complex parlays and unique markets available only for specific events.
Of course, sportsbooks differ in several ways, including the range of markets they offer. For example, spread bets and prop bets are more prevalent at DraftKings, while parlays are at the heart of FanDuel’s activities.
The most common bonuses at the best Iowa sportsbooks are free bets and deposit match offers.
When choosing an Iowa sports betting site, ensure it offers a bonus that complements your goals. For example, if you plan to make a large deposit, a deposit match bonus is almost always better than a free bet.
Additionally, most bonuses come with certain restrictions on how and when you can use your bonus; consult the “Bonuses at Iowa Sports Betting Sites” section further up this page for information that will help you make an educated decision.
The safety of your funds should be a top concern, so make sure to only register with sportsbooks that offer banking options hosted by reputable financial institutions.
Verify that your selected bookmaker supports the payment options you intend to use, and remember that deposit and withdrawal options don’t always overlap; just because you can deposit through PayPal doesn’t mean you can withdraw via Paypal as well.
Consult our Deposits & Withdrawals summary table above for helpful information.
Live Betting & Streaming
All the top Iowa sports bookmakers we endorse on this page offer live betting options and streaming services for significant events. Still, available live betting markets vary between sites. For example, DraftKings currently offers live betting on half a dozen soccer games, while TwinSpires doesn’t.
The same rule applies to streaming. For example, right now, TwinSpires is a great place to be if you enjoy horse race streams, but not as good if you’re looking for basketball or baseball live feeds, in which case DraftKings and BetMGM are better choices.
Licensing & Security
Our top sportsbooks are partnered with Iowa-based gambling companies licensed by the Tall Corn State. This affiliation ensures that each bookie’s services adhere to the industry’s highest security and safety standards.
For example, BetMGM and FanDuel partner with Diamond Jo Casinos, while DraftKings and BetRivers piggyback on Wild Rose Casinos’ gambling license.
List of Sportsbooks at Iowa Casinos
Iowa is home to dozens of land-based sports betting parlors:
- Isle Casino Hotel, Bettendorf
- Buffalo Wild Wings, Davenport
- Rhythm City Casino Resort, Davenport
- Buffalo Wild Wings, Burlington
- Buffalo Wild Wings, Clinton
- Buffalo Wild Wings, Coralville
- Buffalo Wild Wings, Iowa City
- Buffalo Wild Wings, Muscatine
- Catfish Bend Casino, Burlington
- Pzazz! Entertainment Complex, Burlington
- Riverside Casino & Golf Resort, Riverside
- Buffalo Wild Wings Merle Hay, Des Moines
- Buffalo Wild Wings SE, Des Moines
- Buffalo Wild Wings West, Des Moines
- Prairie Meadows, Altoona
- Ameristar Council Bluffs, Council Bluffs
- Buffalo Wild Wings, Ames
- Buffalo Wild Wings, Ankeny
- Buffalo Wild Wings, Council Bluffs
- Buffalo Wild Wings, Fort Dodge
- Buffalo Wild Wings, Sioux City
- Grand Falls Casino & Golf Resorts, Larchwood
- Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, Sioux City
- Harrah’s Casino, Council Bluffs
- Horseshoe Casino, Council Bluffs
- Lakeside Hotel Casino, Osceola
- Wild Rose Casino and Resort, Clinton
- Wild Rose Casino & Resort, Emmetsburg
- Wild Rose Casino & Resort, Jefferson
- Buffalo Wild Wings, Dubuque
- Diamond Jo Casino, Dubuque
- Q Casino and Hotel, Dubuque
- Isle Casino Hotel, Waterloo
- Buffalo Wild Wings Blairs Ferry, Cedar Rapids
- Buffalo Wild Wings, Cedar Falls
- Buffalo Wild Wings, Mason City
- Diamond Jo Worth, Northwood
Legal sports betting in Iowa is a maturing industry, with over a dozen sportsbooks skirmishing for online dominance. New promotions pop constantly, and the list of betting markets and sports is ever-expanding.
And the best part? You can join the action in less than 10 minutes! Simply open a free account with our recommended Iowa bookmakers, make an instant deposit, and place your first real-money wager.
DraftKings Sportsbook Promo Code
Is online sports betting legal in Iowa?
Yes, it’s been legal since May 2019.
What is the legal gambling age in Iowa?
Who oversees IO sports betting?
The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission oversees all betting activities in Iowa.
Is mobile sports betting available in Iowa?
Yes, all sportsbooks in Iowa offer a mobile sports betting app.
Where can I bet on sports in Iowa?
You can bet at online and offline regulated bookmakers.