The 2020 legislative session came and went for the state of Missouri without a sports betting bill signed into law. The expectation is that 2021 will be a big year for the Show Me State with regards to legalized sports betting, so the wait should not be too much longer. For those that are willing to travel, there is no wait.
Neighboring states Illinois, Iowa and Tennessee have sports betting. Arkansas has sports betting, but only at retail locations, so it a lot less convenient to bet there than in Illinois, Iowa, or Tennessee, but it is still an option.
For now, the options for Missouri for those looking to bet on sports are Illinois and Iowa. These sportsbooks are the best available:
When Missouri does get started on the sports betting front, it will be with online and mobile wagering from the jump. Legislators had agreed to that much before COVID-19 took center stage with the important deliberations on the House and Senate floors.
Until that happens, however, Missourians can still get their bets in. They will just have to commute in order to do it. For those in St. Louis, the commute is easy. Because of the pandemic, Governor J.B. Pritzker in Illinois temporarily (and perhaps permanently) turned off the in-person registration requirement. We’ll explain more about that when we take a look at Illinois and also talk about why it will be a good thing when the calendar hits January 1, 2021 in the state of Iowa.
As mentioned, it is easy for St. Louis residents to get access to sports betting. For Kansas City on the western border of the state, it requires a drive north into Iowa because Kansas is not on board with sports betting yet. However, they, too, got stopped in their tracks by COVID-19. A sports betting bill got through the Senate in 2020, but was delayed in the House and there are still some particulars to hammer out. That process should be done early in 2021 as Kansas, like so many other years, needs an influx of cash post-pandemic and sports betting tax revenue will be a good one.
For now, the options for Missouri for those looking to bet on sports are Illinois and Iowa.
Like we discussed, the in-person registration requirement has temporarily been lifted in the state of Illinois due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The hope is that due to common sense, it will be lifted permanently. Illinois offers several sports betting options for those in Missouri, including DraftKings, BetRivers, PointsBet, Barstool, and William Hill, with more operators soon to come.
How easy is it to legally bet on sports if you live in St. Louis? Extremely easy. From Gateway Arch National Park, you can basically see the Casino Queen. Located within the Casino Queen is the DraftKings Sportsbook at Casino Queen in East St. Louis, Illinois. Even if Illinois reapplies the in-person registration requirement, you can even walk across the Eads Bridge and then down South Front Street to get to the sportsbook and get signed up.
In the meantime, though, all you have to do is sign up and register your account remotely. Remote registration means that you can sign up and access your account from anywhere inside the state borders. Geolocation technology will ensure that you are in a legal jurisdiction for betting and then you will have access to your account.
You can get up to $1,000 with a deposit match bonus and a risk-free bet for signing up through us at ATS.
DraftKings Sportsbook at Casino Queen is not the only option, though, at least as long as the in-person registration requirement is lifted or you are willing to drive a little bit it if is reactivated. BetRivers has a retail sportsbook in Des Plaines, Illinois, just outside of Chicago proper. BetRivers was actually the first sportsbook to set up shop and take a wager in the state of Illinois.
They offer a 100% Deposit Match Bonus up to $250 for new sign-ups and fair odds that allow for good competition with the DFS turned sports betting operators.
PointsBet Sportsbook opened its retail location at Hawthorne Race Course in Cicero, Illinois on September 30, 2020. PointsBet is gaining steam as one of the major players in U.S. sports betting. Their unique PointsBetting system features higher risk, but higher reward and they offer tons of daily and weekly promotions for all users.
Two sign-up bonuses are available with a 100% Deposit Match Bonus up to $250 and up to $1,500 in risk-free bets for bigger depositors, which includes a risk-free bet on your first fixed odds wager and a risk-free bet on your first PointsBetting wager.
The Argosy Casino in Alton is another good option for those in St. Louis as this is a riverboat that sits on the mighty Mississippi about 25 minutes north of St. Louis and right on the state border. This was originally a Penn National location, but with the merger of Barstool and Penn National, this will be branded as a Barstool Sportsbook.
Barstool and Penn National also operate the sportsbook at the Hollywood Casino Joliet, again on the outskirts of Chicago.
As Barstool gains more traction in the market, we’ll see what bonuses they have to offer.
William Hill has set up shop at the Grand Victoria Casino located right on the Fox River in Elgin, Illinois. William Hill and Caesars recently completed a huge acquisition deal, so this will become a Caesars sportsbook at some point, but it is William Hill for now. The global leader in sports betting offers $10 for free simply for registering and then a Deposit Match bonus up to $500.
Iowa is no longer an in-person registration state as of January 1, 2021, so you dont have to visit the retail sportsbooks to activate your account anymore. Now its a lot easier for Iowans and those in neighboring states to get on board and start wagering if they could simply sign up and deposit from anywhere.
There are multiple operators in Iowa, including some local ones like the Q Casino that operates its own sportsbook and the Elite Casinos that do the same through Bet.Works. There are also some industry heavy hitters as well, including FanDuel, who has not yet launched a mobile app, and Unibet, who is waiting until remote registration ends to start an app. Find out more how to bet in Iowa here.
DraftKings Sportsbook set up shop through the Wild Rose Casinos in Iowa. They launched in February 2020 and even accept PayPal as a deposit method. DraftKings is the most popular sports betting app in Iowa and the sign-up bonus remains the same with up to $1,000 in a deposit match bonus and a risk-free bet.
PointsBet is also very popular in Iowa through its license with Catfish Bend Casino in Burlington. The Australia-based operator actually started in the United States in New Jersey, but made Iowa its second state of operations in November 2019. The same deposit bonus from Illinois applies here as well with a Deposit Match Bonus up to $250 or up to $1,500 in risk-free bets.
The first sportsbook app to launch in Iowa was William Hill, who has licensing through multiple properties. In states with remote registration, sportsbooks really only need one license and one brick-and-mortar partner. In Iowa, where users have to commute to the sportsbook in order to register their accounts, we see more locations for the different operators.
William Hill has partners with the Riverside Casino & Golf Resort, Rhythm City Casino, and the Grand Falls Casino. Their sign-up bonus is also the same with a $10 Free Bet just for registering and then a Deposit Match Bonus up to $500. These William Hill books will also become Caesars sportsbooks with the September acquisition deal.
There is a Hard Rock betting app in Iowa through the company’s license with its Hard Rock Sioux City property. This one is still trying to gain some steam in the market, but its location in one of Iowa’s bigger cities has helped with the in-person registration requirement.
Even though Missouri has not yet adopted its own sports betting legislation, there are a lot of options across Iowa and Illinois. Iowa will become even easier to use for sports betting on January 1, 2021 when the in-person registration requirement is relaxed and Illinois should be seeing how beneficial it is to not have that requirement since it has been lifted as well.
If nothing else, take a Sunday drive and get set up at these sportsbooks and make sure that you use the exclusive bonus offers from us at ATS to get you started.