How to Register for an Illinois Sportsbook

Thanks to the pandemic and executive order, it’s been confusing to know whether you can register for a sportsbook in Illinois entirely online. We at PlayIllinois can offer some clarity on how to sign up for a sportsbook in Illinois.

Can I register for an Illinois sportsbook online?

Yes, you can download and register online for the best sportsbooks in Illinois that operate legally in the Prairie State.

In-person registration is in effect in Illinois; however, it doesn’t mean you should miss out on any free bets and bonuses you can get by signing up online. Let’s walk through the steps on how to sign up for one of the six online sportsbooks in Illinois — DraftKings, FanDuel, PointsBet, Caesars and Barstool — and have the best experience:

 DraftKings Sportsbook

DraftKings Sportsbook

Bonus: $50 + $1,000

Bonus Code: None - Use Links

  1. Download the DraftKings App: First, download the DraftKings Sportsbook app to ensure you receive the $50 free bet.
  2. Create Your Account: Click on the green “Sign Me Up” button. Create a username and password and enter your email address. Then, read and agree to the Terms of Use. Enter your details, including your name, date of birth, address, and the last four digits of your Social Security number.
  3. Verify Your Account: Finalize your registration by visiting DraftKings’ retail partner DraftKings at Casino Queen in East St. Louis. You can verify your location via the app anywhere on the Casino Queen property, including the parking lot.

DraftKings Sportsbook Location: 200 South Front St., East St. Louis

Distance from Chicago: 309 miles


 

FanDuel Sportsbook

Fanduel sportsbook

Bonus: $1,000

Promo Code: None - Use Links

  1. Download the FanDuel App: To ensure you get the $1,000 risk-free bet, download the FanDuel app onto your phone/tablet.
  2. Create Your Account: Click the “Bet Now” button and then choose “Illinois.” Create a username and password, and enter your email address. Enter your details, including the last four digits of your Social Security number.
  3. Validate Your Account: Before you can bet, you’ll need to verify your FanDuel account by visiting FanDuel Sportsbook & Horse Racing, formerly known as Fairmount Park. Be sure to have your state-issued ID on hand. The person at the retail counter will check your ID to validate your account. You will need to sign out and sign back into your FanDuel account. FanDuel asks customers to sign a log as proof of in-person registration.

FanDuel Sportsbook Location: 9301 Collinsville Road, Collinsville

Distance from Chicago: 284 miles

FAQ: Can I sign up at Par-A-Dice Casino instead?

Even though the Par-A-Dice has a FanDuel retail sportsbook, you can’t sign up at Par-A-Dice Casino in East Peoria because FanDuel transferred its mobile license to the horse racetrack.


 

BetRivers Sportsbook

Bonus: $250

Use promo code: PLAY250

 

  1. Download the BetRivers App: If you download the BetRivers app using our link, you’ll receive a 100% deposit match up to $250. BetRivers is an official betting partner of the Chicago Bears. You can bet on exclusive Bears’ markets soon, but first, you’ll need to create a screen name and enter your email address. Once you’re done, click “Join Now.”
  2. Create Your Account: Create a screen name and password, and enter your email address. Then enter PLAY250 into the promo code box to receive the deposit match. You can register faster if you already have a Rush Rewards or Play4Fun account. Enter your personal information as prompted — this will include your name, date of birth, address, phone number, and the last four digits of your Social Security number.
  3. Validate Your Account: Once you have created your sportsbook account, you’ll need to visit the BetRivers retail location at Rivers Casino. An employee at the sportsbook counter will validate your online account. Make sure to have your ID ready.

BetRivers Sportsbook Location: 3000 S. River Road, Des Plaines

Distance from Chicago: 17 miles


 

 PointsBet Sportsbook

PointsBet sportsbook

Bonus: $2,000

Bonus code: BETBONUS

  1. Download the PointsBet App: Be sure to download the PointsBet app to ensure you get two risk-free bets up to $2,000.
  2. Create Your Account: Click the “Sign Up Now” button and then choose Illinois. Then enter your name and email address. PointsBet notes that your name should match the name on your driver’s license or passport. After clicking “Continue,” you’ll need to enter further personal details, including the last four digitals of your Social Security number. Then create a password and check the “Terms and Conditions” box.
  3. Validate Your Account: PointsBet notes during the sign-up process that you will need to bring your ID to one of the three retail PointsBet Sportsbook retail locations to finalize your online sports betting account:

Hawthorne Race Course

  • PointsBet Sportsbook Location: 3501 S. Laramie Ave., Stickney
  • Distance from Chicago: 10 miles

Club Hawthorne Crestwood

  • PointsBet Sportsbook Location: 13148 Rivercrest Drive, Crestwood
  • Distance from Chicago: 26 miles

Player’s Pub & Grill

  • PointsBet Sportsbook Location: 1250 River Road, Prospect Heights
  • Distance from Chicago: 17 miles

 

 Caesars Sportsbook

Bonus: $5,000 

Use bonus code: LEGALRF

  1. Download the Caesars App: Be sure to download the Caesars by William Hill Sportsbook app for Illinois sports betting, and don’t miss out on the $5,000 deposit match.
  2. Create Your Account: Click the “Join Now” button and follow the registration prompts. Caesars will ask for your details, including the last four digits of your Social Security number. Don’t forget to enter the promo code LEGALRF.
  3. Validate Your Account: Once you have created your Caesars account, you’ll need to visit Caesars’ retail location at Grand Victoria Casino in Elgin. The sportsbook requires that you take a selfie inside the casino. If you need assistance, the staff at Grand Victoria can help.

Caesars Sportsbook Location: 250 S. Grove Ave., Elgin

Distance from Chicago: 40 miles


 

Barstool Sportsbook

Bonus: $500

Bonus code: None – Use Links

  1. Download the Barstool App: Download the Barstool app onto your mobile device. Barstool gives all new sign-ups a $10 bonus.
  2. Create Your Account: Click the “Register Now” button to fill out the presented form with your email address, and create a username and password. The next page asks for your address, phone number, and the last four digits of your Social Security number. Be sure to set up the security settings how you prefer. Barstool has five “Terms and Conditions” boxes you must agree to before you can “Accept & Register.”
  3. Validate Your Account: Once you’ve set up your account on the app, you must visit Barstool’s casino partner Hollywood Casino Aurora to validate your account. No face-to-face interaction or extra steps are necessary; confirm that you are on the casino property by sharing your location through the Barstool app.

Barstool Sportsbook Location: 1 W. New York St., Aurora

Distance from Chicago: 41 miles

Can I get around the geolocation requirement?

Do I have to go inside an Illinois casino or OTB site to register for a sportsbook account?

It depends on the sportsbook from which you’re registering. Illinois law doesn’t explicitly state that you must register from inside the four walls of a brick-and-mortar casino.

Barstool and DraftKings Sportsbook in Illinois allows you to register on your phone from the parking lot. Barstool at Hollywood Casino in Aurora and DraftKings at Casino Queen in East St. Louis have set up Bluetooth beacons and WiFi in its parking lot to satisfy the state’s requirement for you to be on-site when you register.

The other four online sportsbooks in Illinois use a traditional route to registration. For example, BetRivers, FanDuel Sportsbook & Horse Racing, PointsBet and Caesars by William Hill Sportsbook customers have to go into the related casinos or off-track betting sites to complete account registration.

Either way, it’s a quick process. It may take you longer to get to and from the casino or OTB than the amount of time you spend there. Here are the addresses you will need for in-person registration and each Illinois sportsbook operator.

Retail sportsbook locations in Illinois

Online sportsbookLaunch dateCasino/OTBAddressDistance from Chicago
BarstoolOnline: March 11, 2021
Retail: March 11, 20201
Hollywood Casino Aurora1 W. New York St., Aurora 41 miles
BetRiversRetail: March 9, 2020
Online: June 18, 2020
Rivers Casino3000 S. River Road, Des Plaines17 miles
DraftKingsRetail: Aug. 5, 2020
Online: Aug. 5, 2020
DraftKings at Casino Queen200 S. Front St., East St. Louis309 miles
FanDuelOnline: Aug. 28, 2020
Retail: March 1, 2021
FanDuel Sportsbook & Horse Racing9301 Collinsville Road, Collinsville284 miles
PointsBetRetail: Oct. 1, 2020
Online: Sept. 12, 2020
Hawthorne Race Course3501 S. Laramie Ave., Stickney10 miles
PointsBetRetail: Oct. 1, 2020
Online: Sept. 12, 2020
Club Hawthorne Crestwood13148 Rivercrest Drive, Crestwood23 miles
PointsBetRetail: March 16, 2021
Online: Sept. 12, 2020
Club Hawthorne Player's Pub & Grill1250 S. River Road, Prospect Heights26 miles
Caesars by William HillRetail: Aug. 3, 2020
Online: Aug. 4, 2021
Grand Victoria Casino250 S. Grove Ave., Elgin40 miles

Now that you know where to go, you need to know what to take when you register. It’s a simple process, and even when in-person registration in Illinois is in effect, you can do most of the process online.

What information do I need to share to register for a sportsbook?

For the most part, registering for an Illinois sportsbook is no more complicated than signing up for an account on any number of online shopping apps/websites. It’s also standard across all the sportsbooks in IL.

You can start the process on your computer, smartphone or tablet. If you’re using a mobile device, make sure the app you’re downloading is for the sportsbook in Illinois. Some sportsbooks have apps specific to other jurisdictions.

The same goes for desktop website users. Regardless of what device you’re using, you’ll have to agree to let the website use location services to identify your position.

You’ll also have to share the following identifying information:

  • Legal name
  • Mailing address
  • Date of birth
  • Social Security number (for tax purposes)
  • Email address

After you’ve gone through all the registration steps you can complete online; you’ll need to visit the retail sportsbook location. Present your government-issued photo ID to the attendant, and they will click the computer mouse a few times and you’re good to go.

After you have completed your registration, you can deposit funds into your account and place bets right there. Alternatively, you can use your computer or mobile device as well.

History of sportsbook registration in Illinois

Despite that legal sports betting in Illinois began in March 2020, there is already an interesting history of the registration component to this entertainment form, primarily because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Here’s a timeline of events surrounding sports betting and the pandemic:

  • April 2, 2021: Gov. JB Pritzker allows Executive Order 2020-41 to expire, and the in-person registration mandate returns on April 4.
  • March 5, 2021: Pritzker renews the executive order again until April 3.
  • Feb. 5, 2021: Pritzker renews the executive order to allow online registration until March 6.
  • Jan. 8, 2021: Pritzker renews the executive order until Feb. 6.
  • Dec. 11, 2020: Pritzker renews the executive order again until Jan. 9, 2021.
  • Nov. 13, 2020: Due to high COVID-19 case numbers, Pritzker allows mobile sports betting registration through Dec. 12.
  • Oct. 16, 2020: Pritzker extends executive order to allow online sportsbook registration through Nov. 14.
  • Sept. 14, 2020: Pritzker extends the order through Oct. 17.
  • Aug. 21, 2020: Pritzker issues a new executive order suspending physical registration again.
  • July 27, 2020: Pritzker lets the executive order expire and in-person mandate returns.
  • July 9, 2019: Pritzker signs law legalizing sports betting in IL with in-person registration requirement for online wagering.
  • June 18, 2020: BetRivers becomes the first legal online sportsbook in Illinois.
  • June 5, 2020: Pritzker signs executive order suspending in-person registration requirement.
  • March 9, 2020: BetRivers becomes the first legal retail sportsbook in IL.

IL Sportsbook Registration FAQ

Why does the in-person registration mandate exist?

The short answer is that the state included this mandate to keep DraftKings and FanDuel from having an advantage over competitors because of their large rolls of daily fantasy sports (DFS) customers. What other states require bettors to register for online wagering in person? Currently, only Nevada has such a mandate. Iowa’s mandate expired on New Year’s Day 2021, however. Rhode Island originally had a similar requirement but has since repealed it.

Why do some people criticize in-person registration?

Opponents argue it creates an incentive for bettors to continue to use illegal, offshore sports betting websites. Additionally, there is no evidence that face-to-face registration improves outcomes on preventing match-fixing or increasing responsible gambling.

Will I need to re-register when the in-person mandate returns?

No, if you registered online while the in-person mandate was suspended, you will not have to register again when it goes back into effect. Your registration met all the state’s requirements at the time you registered.

Do I have to be a legal resident of Illinois to register?

No, you must be at least 21 years old and supply the sportsbook with all requested identifying documents/information.

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