Disclaimer: Unibet Sportsbook has not yet launched in Illinois. This review is speculative based on what we know now and will be updated once they go live.
In 2019, Illinois became one of many states allowing online sports betting as a means of increasing its revenue. Unibet is soon to launch in the state, following the sports betting operators DraftKings, FanDuel, PointsBet and BetRivers. The Swedish gambling company is already running in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Indiana and Iowa, but the Prairie State has the potential to be its biggest yet.
Unibet brings a solid reputation to the states, with a huge slate of available wagers on about any sporting event around the world. It offers competitive bonuses for first-time bettors and initial deposits. The site is easy to navigate to find games, place bets and manage your account. It provides a variety of betting options and some exciting promotions.
Unibet’s risk-free welcome bonus requires a deposit but offers high value with zero risk to your bankroll. Once you fund your account and are ready to bet, Unibet backs your first wager. If you lose your first settled cash bet on any event, you will receive a refund to your account for the wager amount. The first-bet bonus minimum is $10 and capped at $500.
|Online Sportsbook||Unibet Sportsbook|
|Deposit Bonus||Up to $500 risk-free first bet|
|Last Updated||January 2022|
Once you are ready to begin placing bets, Unibet will likely have several promotions to help increase your value while keeping things interesting. They may include:
The Illinois Legislature passed a bill in the spring of 2019 to allow sports betting within the state, and the governor signed it into law in June. The first legal sports bet in Illinois was placed in March 2020, and online betting went live in June 2020. During 2020, BetRivers, DraftKings, PointsBet and FanDuel became partners with brick-and-mortar operators to launch their sportsbooks.
Unibet entered into a 10-year agreement with Penn National Gaming to bring its product to the Illinois market, and it is licensed in the state through Argosy Casino Alton.
Initially, the Sports Wagering Act requires state bettors to register at the casino in person to create their mobile account. However, Gov. JB Pritzker suspended that requirement due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
You must be 21 years or older and physically within state lines to place a wager.
To join Unibet in Illinois, you can register for an account either on its website or via the app, and it is a simple two-step process.
The site will first require you to enter a valid email address and create a password. After that is complete, click the checkbox to indicate that you are 21 years or older and agree to the terms and conditions.
The second step includes entering your first name, last name, date of birth, phone number, security question, last four digits of your Social Security number and your address. Next up, click the checkbox indicating the information you entered is true and accurate. At this point, you will also have the option to use two-factor authentication, which is a good idea to secure your account.
If accessing Unibet via its website, you will need to verify that you are within state lines via geolocation software.
Once you have your account set up online, you can download the Unibet Sportsbook application to your mobile device. The app is available for iOS and Android phones and tablets. Simply go to the Unibet Illinois website and follow the installation instructions, and you are good to go. Log in from there, and you can place a bet from anywhere within the state, which is especially convenient if you are taking part in live betting during games.
Unibet utilizes the Kambi sports betting platform for its user interface, and the app has an easy-to-use feel as soon as you load it. Kambi is a well-known, trusted provider and sets the lines for all events live for wagering. Navigation within the application is simple; it is laid out by leagues/events, with games broken down into the specific bets for each.
Now that you are all set to start placing some bets, there are a seemingly endless number of options that might be daunting at first look. But there’s no need to worry, all the standards wagers are there to get you underway.
Every event has the usual lines ready for your action. Moneyline, point spread and over/under (totals) wagers are right there when you first pull up a game, and you can place a bet with the click of a button. Then you can dig further into a game and find some more exotic gems or live bet on a nearly play-by-play basis.
Using a Chicago Bears game as an example, you will find wagers for the moneyline, point spread and total broken down per quarter. You can bet each quarter whether the Bears will be ahead, behind or tied when it comes to an end, with a wager on the total score for both teams, as well. And those are some of the more vanilla offerings until you click the “Live Right Now” button.
This is where you will find new lines during the game with the odds constantly updated. You can drop a bet that the next drive will result in a touchdown, field goal attempt, safety, punt or turnover. Digging even deeper, you can choose if the next play will be a pass attempt or run. On the player side, you can bet on the next player to score a touchdown in the game on either side.
That is a lot of action out there for the taking.
Unibet takes it even further with Major League Baseball; Chicago baseball fans can bet on the outcome of every single pitch during a game. With the average MLB game having nearly 150 pitches per team per game, that’s roughly 300 wagers and live bets available for a regular-length baseball game, along with the standard moneyline, run line (that’s the point spread for baseball games) and total runs.
In addition to gameday betting, you can also predict the outcome or performance of teams and players. Each sport has a futures section that has a line for the odds of each team winning its division, conference or league, along with a selection of specific players with over/under bets on their statistics at the end of the year.
Parlays are another way to put your money in play, especially when you have confidence in multiple wagers. A parlay ticket is a combination of multiple bets; if all the bets in a parlay are correct, you collect based on the odds of each wager along with a parlay bonus multiplier. Bets are not restricted to the same sport or even category, which means you can have a parlay slip with a Bears moneyline, Bulls over/under and Cubs run line spread all on the same ticket.
If you want to bet on something, chances are you will find a place for it on Unibet.
If you can think of a sport, chances are Unibet has a line on it.
Other top sports include European soccer and Major League Soccer in the US, all four golf majors plus most tour events, tennis Grand Slam tournaments, and nearly every UFC fight. It also provides a series market once a sport gets into the playoffs, allowing you to bet on the outcome over a best-of-five or best-of-seven series.
From there, you can get creative.
Do you have a good feeling about the Australian cricket club Brisbane Heat winning the Big Bash League at +600? That line is available. Do you think it’s a lock that Gary Anderson will defeat Glen Durrant in Unibet Premier League Darts? Go for it at -125.
Those are only two examples of Unibet’s wide selection of events, and it also has Australian rules football, rugby league and union, cycling, boxing, motorsports, handball and table tennis.
Before you lay down one of those interesting bets, you’ll need to fund your account. Unibet provides several options:
The withdrawal process is just as easy. With the exception of Visa, Mastercard and PayNearMe, you can withdraw funds from your account with any of the methods above, plus you can request a physical check. Unibet has a $10 minimum for an online withdrawal and a $100 minimum for a check. However, at the casino cage, you can withdraw any amount.
Unibet Sportsbook makes it easy to find answers to your sports betting questions with its customer support. On the website and app, there is a help button that will launch the customer support form.
You can search for help with your account, registration issues, bonuses and promotions, deposits and withdrawals and tech support. If you cannot find the solution there, click “Submit a Request” to send an email to customer support.
To promote responsible gambling, Unibet has several ways you can control your access to the site.
You can set limits on your spending, depositing, betting amounts and session time. You can also choose a cool-off period of between three and 30 days, during which you will only have access to withdraw funds.
Self-exclusion is at the top of the responsible gambling list, allowing you to shut down your betting account for one year, five years or permanently. After closing your account, Unibet will return any remaining funds via check within four to six weeks.
Unibet is partners with Argosy Casino Alton, which sits across the Mississippi River from St. Louis. The sportsbook features 36 big-screen HDTVs throughout the facility, including individual viewing stations and odds display monitors.
Sportsbooks hours are from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m., seven days a week, but might change for special events. The casino also has self-service kiosks for betting during the off-hours.
Unibet was later to the Illinois online sportsbook game than some other sites but is already making a name for itself. That can be mostly accredited to the huge number of lines by Kambi and a well-honed online app.
The major obstacle to success is the physical distance between its brick-and-mortar partner and the Chicago metro area. It is roughly a 300-mile drive from Chicago to Alton, a tough sell if in-person registration is once again a requirement. The upside to the location is that it’s nearby for any St. Louis bettors.
Unibet is a trusted name in sports betting, and it has a solid platform and a massive lineup of markets to wager on. It will certainly get bigger if it can manage to increase its access to the Chicago market.