One of the most established brands in the betting space, DraftKings (commonly referred to as DK), was one of the first major players in the daily fantasy sports scene, beginning its operations in 2012, and used that momentum to become one of the largest sportsbooks, beginning in 2018 in New Jersey. DraftKings is now legal in Illinois, bringing its premier sports betting platform to the Land of Lincoln.
We've reviewed every inch of the DraftKings Illinois online gambling site and mobile app. From their competitive daily fantasy sports and comprehensive sportsbook app, we'll give you the scoop on what we like about its product, what to look for when you're considering signing up, any DraftKings sportsbook promo code you might need to unlock a welcome bonus and how to make the most of your sports betting experience.
|+ Max bonus offer||X Live support chat function|
|+ User experience|
|+ Mobile app|
|+ Variety of sports betting markets|
Like many of the competitive Illinois sportsbooks available to users, DK features offers a solid first deposit match bonus. Its welcome promotion includes a 20% deposit bonus up to a max bonus amount of $1,000, meaning players must deposit $5,000 to max out their reward. The $1,000 deposit bonus is issued in the form of bonus funds, with $1 in bonus funds released into their account for every $25 wagered on DraftKings (meaning you would need to wager $25,000 to attain the max bonus of $1,000, essentially a 5x playthrough on your deposit). These requirements must be met 90 days from the date of initial deposit to maximize the bonus.
DraftKings also may feature additional bonuses for new customers specific to games that add significant value to the sports betting experience. These bonuses change based on which major sport is in season: For example, new users can place a $1 bet on NBA team and win $100 in Illinois free bets if that team makes a single 3-pointer. Other examples include an NFL team scoring a single point or an NHL team producing one shot on goal. These unique features make DraftKings one of the most competitive in terms of bonuses among all major sportsbooks.
DraftKings' welcome bonus is substantial, the playthrough requirements can met for bettors who wager often enough, and it also has referral bonuses that benefit both the player referring someone and the new user. If you're a new player starting to bet on DraftKings, you'll have some sort of free bet or first deposit match bonus waiting for you.
|DraftKings Online Sportsbook Welcome Promo|
|Free Bet Offer||None|
|Deposit Bonus||20% up to $1000|
|Total Bonus||Up to $1000|
|Promo Code||None, Play Now!|
Looking to deposit money into DraftKings? The process couldn't be simpler. No matter which page you're on, there is always a large green box on the top right side of the screen with the word "deposit" in it. You can also access the deposit section of the DraftKings website by hovering over your username and clicking on "account information." That brings bettors to a screen where they can see their total balance broken down into their cash balance, DK dollars and daily fantasy balance. There's yet another green box for bettors to click on to deposit funds.
Once on the page to deposit money into your account, users can select the amount they'd like to add ($50, $100, $250 and $500) or manually enter in an amount. DraftKings requires a minimum deposit of $5 and has a max deposit limit of $20,000.
Once users have decided how much they'd like to deposit, they can choose between seven different payment options, including: credit or debit card; online banking (recommended by DraftKings); PayPal; eCheck; Play+; wire transfers; or a DraftKings gift card. Most options are added immediately for use, though DraftKings does note that wire transfers are only processed during regular banking hours and could take 1-2 business days to be processed and accessible on DraftKings. Once you've chosen your payment method, your funds will show up and are ready to be used immediately.
DraftKings also makes it easy for users to set deposit limits. There is a specific page that is accessible through the deposit page or under "account information" that allows users to set limits on the amount of money they can deposit per day, week or month at the sportsbook and daily fantasy site. DraftKings takes its responsible gaming seriously, allowing users easy access to finding and setting these deposit limits.
One of the benefits to using legal sports betting is the ease of withdrawals. Unlike shadowy offshore betting websites, there are no hoops to jump through and no eligibility restrictions for users that would otherwise make getting money out a difficult process. DraftKings is no different, with a seamless withdrawal experience for players looking to cash out. Most forms of withdrawals happen in a matter of days. It's one of the main benefits of betting with a major sportsbook like DraftKings.
If you're a player looking to bet on just about any sport, DraftKings has you covered. It's that simple. DraftKings has created a sportsbook that provides something for everyone, no matter your level of gambling experience, no matter how much you're looking to wager, or whether you're looking to bet on a single live game or want to find a long-term future. DraftKings offers thousands of different betting options in Illinois on major sports such as the NFL, NBA, MLB and NHL, but has also created markets for a dozen other sports.
Whether you think the Chicago Bears have a chance to upset the Green Bay Packers on Monday Night Football or think this is the year the Chicago White Sox finally get back to the World Series, DraftKings has you covered. If you're confident in your fantasy football team in a given week, you can place a bet on an individual player's rushing yards or passing touchdowns. If there's a tennis match on halfway around the world, the Illinois DraftKings online sportsbook will be there with a betting market.
Sports betting comes in all shapes and sizes. Some players are interested in simply betting on a single game. Others want to put together a potentially lucrative parlay involving multiple games, spreads, and totals. Long-term bettors are looking for value with their sports betting and may want to look at futures. Maybe bettors are interested in fantasy sports and want to bet on a specific to player to score a certain number of points or gain a certain number of yards. DraftKings understands this and has put together a comprehensive list of sports betting markets for all its bettors, whether you're playing on the website or the sportsbook mobile app.
Among the most basic sports betting markets are game spreads, totals, game props, player props, alternate lines and futures. DraftKings makes these readily accessible and listed in an easy-to-read format. Bettors can seamlessly click through all the different options for a specific game or league that DraftKings provides and can mix and match those bets for parlays and round robins.
DraftKings offers betting markets 16 different sports: Australian rules, baseball, basketball, boxing, cricket, cycling, darts, football, golf, hockey, MMA, motorsports, rugby league, rugby union, soccer, and tennis. And while most of its sports bettors are interested in the major leagues within those sports, DraftKings has broken out all its available sports betting markets into different leagues across the globe. Not interested in the NBA but love basketball? DraftKings has 11 different basketball leagues to choose from. They have multiple baseball league, nearly 100 different soccer leagues and multiple cycling, hockey and golf tours available.
This breadth of options at DraftKings can come especially in handy during off-hours when major leagues like the NFL, NBA and MLB have stopped playing but there are still sports teams playing on the other side of the globe. If you're a player looking for non-stop betting action, the sportsbook DraftKings has you covered.
Single-game events and individual bets are the most common forms of sports betting, but DraftKings knows that's not the only type of sports betting. It's why DK offers dozens of different tournaments, head-to-head games and contests for sports bettors to play at any given time.
Most DraftKings' contests are free to play. Bettors join the league or contest, make their predictions and try to climb to the top of the leaderboard to win a cash prize. A unique feature on DraftKings is the ability to create your own leagues or fantasy contests to play directly with friends and other DraftKings bettors. The biggest contests of the year include NFL Pick'Em and March Madness, though there are ongoing contests for baseball, basketball and golf throughout the calendar year (including fantasy sports contests).
In addition to the typical sportsbook offerings, DraftKings boats a handful of additional features that turn the sportsbook from a traditional sports betting platform into a live, interactive experience.
DraftKings online sportsbook is among the fastest, cleanest and most responsive of any we've reviewed. That can make a significant difference for sports bettors who are interested in live betting. While DraftKings provides a clean layout for events and games that have not yet started, their live betting experience is similar in that odds are constantly being updated in real-time, bet slips populate quickly, live odds are changed in real-time with no lag and bettors can see their bet slips as soon as they have completed them under DraftKings' "my bets" section. Sports betting doesn't end when a game begins, and DraftKings' responsive and thorough website and mobile app make live betting one of the most enjoyable available to players.
Nervous about losing a bet on a backdoor cover? Or do you think one of your bets has no real chance of winning? Online sports betting is all about knowing the status of your bets in real time to decide on when to take the cash and run. Lucky for bettors, DraftKings provides a cash out option for bettors who want to get out of a bet while the game or event.
While this option isn't always available, there are plenty of options for DraftKings bettors to utilize this function to add more flexibility to their betting experience. Like live betting, DraftKings' responsive website and mobile app mean bettors can quickly cash out of a game without having to wait too long when, in some cases, odds and cash out prices change frequently. A split second can make all the difference here, and DraftKings makes it easy for sportsbook users to take advantage.
Because DraftKings makes their bonuses and promo codes so prevalent on its site and mobile app, it's no surprise that it does the same for odds boosts. Not only does DraftKings offer odds boosts that can be found on their promos page, but they also make it known what available markets have odds boosts by attaching a green megaphone icon next to the sport or league. If bettors click into a particular sports betting market, odds boosts for that market are indicated at the top of the page.
DraftKings wants you to use its odds boosts and highlights them better than any other sportsbook we've come across. It may not seem like a lot, but the difference between getting a bet at -110 or +125 is the difference between betting $110 to win $100 (at -110) and $137.50 (at +125). These odds boosts are updated each day, which is another nice feature not found at every online sportsbook.
Same-game parlays - placing two or more bets on the same game - has become more commonplace among major sportsbooks, but DraftKings is easily the most thorough of any we've reviewed. Players can build same-game parlays on most of the major markets such as NFL, MLB, NBA and soccer. There may be restrictions, but it's available at DraftKings more than your typical online sportsbook.
The DraftKings desktop website is among the most user-friendly of all the sportsbooks we've reviewed. It has a distinguishable style and layout to it that make finding games, selecting bets and checking on the status of those games a simple task.
The first thing sports bettors will notice when logging onto the sportsbook is its banner atop the front of the home page. Unlike other sportsbooks, DraftKings has taken the most important navigation tools that bettors will need most and locked the toggle navigation to the top of every page. They include Home, My Bets, Live In-Game, Promos, Help, Pools, VIP and Social. Selecting any of those items will take players to that page while all options remain atop the banner. Players can easily access the DraftKings home page, see their settled and unsettled bets, find in-game action, ask for help and locate any existing DraftKings promo offers with the click of a button. It couldn't be easier.
In addition to such a helpful navigation tool, DraftKings also has the standard, left-rail betting options for all the different available leagues, sports, and games to bet on. Sports bettors will have their choice of all major sports as well as some lesser known (like rugby, motorsports, cricket and darts). DraftKings also bumps up the most popular sports for a given day atop that rail, so players won't need to dig through all the available options to find the ones they're most likely to bet on. Futures bets are also accessible on that left rail toward the bottom and can be accessed through a simple scroll.
Placing a bet on the DK desktop app is also simple. Like so many of their features, DraftKings has made it easy for players to place a bet. Available markets populate in the middle of the screen in an easy-to-read format, with bet slips populating on the right side of the page. If players select more than one wager, DraftKings automatically populates the bet slip containing the odds for a parlay while also giving bettors the option of betting on each game individually. That bet slip also contains a round robin option, so players can mix and match all different types of bets on the sportsbook. It's a clean layout, has excellent response time and wagers are accepted automatically and logged .
It can be difficult to keep track of all bets during a busy sports night, so DraftKings keeps all bets in a simple player account tab labeled "my bets." That page includes all wagers, and bettors can toggle between settled bets, unsettled bets, wins and losses. It's a bonus feature that not every sportsbook provides, so players can know immediately and easily the status of each of their individual or parlay bets.
DraftKings' setup here is better than some of the other sportsbooks we've reviewed, where players needing to go to their account information to find the status of their plays may find the process cumbersome. If you're someone who wants to locate and view their bets often, it doesn't get better than DraftKings' desktop experience. It's the sign of a healthy online sportsbook, and DraftKings knocks it out of the park.
And whereas some sportsbooks will attempt to hide their promotions or make it difficult for players to access, DraftKings keeps all their bonuses front and center. Within that top banner, clicking on "promos" shows all available DraftKings promotions, when they expire, rules on how to use each promotion and an option to directly deposit funds to qualify. The same goes for its contest pools and leagues, which can be accessed through the "pools" function on the top banner. They're simple to find, easy to understand and effortless to play. It's not surprising given how long DraftKings has been around, but you won't find an easier online sports betting site to navigate.
Still, issues arise from time to time, and DraftKings understands that, making its help function easy to find and use. While there is a more in-depth help section, clicking on "help" from the top banner gives players a Frequently Asked Questions section to understand bet types, an explanation of free bets and promotions, an understanding of account management and responsible gaming, clarification on how geolocators are used and a full explanation of withdrawals and deposits.
Players can dig further for more resources on DraftKings' website, but the majority of their questions can be answered on this page, which is laid out in a dropdown format that is compact and written in easy-to-understand language. Sportsbook bettors can also learn more about the basics of betting, read about rules for the major leagues of available betting markets and find a glossary of betting terms they may come across on the DrafKings sportsbook page.
If players still can't find what they're looking for in the help section, DraftKings has a "contact us" button at the bottom of the help page. Clicking on that button brings players to a page with multiple delivery methods to send questions, including a form, an email or mailing address. A 24-hour chat option is not available on DraftKings sportsbook, which is one of the only real downsides. Still, their customer service is attentive and usually quick to respond, and players can also reach out on social media to the DK Twitter account for additional help. We'll touch on it in the next section, but DraftKings sportsbook desktop page is nearly identical to its DraftKings sportsbook app counterpart, making it a seamless transition for players looking to play on the go.
DraftKings truly sets the standard in the sports betting industry with its sportsbook app, which is among the most comprehensive and easy to use of any that we've reviewed. As noted above, it's nearly identical to the DraftKings online sportsbook on desktop, which players shouldn't take for granted. The sportsbook app is available both for IOS and Android devices, and we've noticed the experience is the same on both (which also is not the case for all sportsbooks).
DraftKings' geolocator, which is required function to place a bet, is also one of the more accurate and seamless of all the sportsbooks we've reviewed, so players won't have any issues placing their bets. It may not seem like a big deal, but the DraftKings sportsbook app having a well-functioning geolocator is a real advantage.
The homepage of the DraftKings sportsbook app features quick links to all the major sporting events and current leagues, and all promotions are highlighted at the very top of the page. Though it's naturally more compact than sportsbook users will find on the desktop website, the mobile app is comprehensive and easy to navigate.
Bet slips populate on the DraftKings sportsbook app from the bottom of the app once a bet is chosen, though it takes up most of the screen and forces bettors to click out of the pop-up to add more wagers to their bet slip. While this isn't too much of an inconvenience, it is an added step that can become burdensome for players who make frequent bets.
Once players click out of the bet slip, they can add additional picks, and a preview of the parlay odds will populate at the bottom of the page. Once they've chosen all of their picks, they can click back on the bet slip, which again populates from the bottom, and can choose how much to wager on either the individual picks, in a parlay or in a round robin, just like the DraftKings sportsbook website.
Account information is available at the top left of DraftKings' home screen on the mobile app, and it includes all the same features as the desktop. Bettors can access their rewards, track their deposit bonuses, and access all the same help center options they can on the desktop.
The DraftKings sportsbook app has perfected the accessibility and ease for all players, which is why it is a giant in the legal sports betting industry. There is very little lag time, bet slips populate quickly which can help during live betting and a player will know where their bets stand through all the navigation tools available to them.
Signing up for a DraftKings sportsbook account is a seamless one. Typical with other major sportsbooks, DraftKings will ask you for an email address and password to create your account. There are eligibility restrictions, so bettors will have to provide identification to prove they are of legal betting age, which can be the last four digits of their Social Security number and a government-issued photo ID. They will also need to verify they are in a state that allows DraftKings betting to place wagers.
This is also where bettors can take advantage of DraftKings' bonus offer. Though these bonuses and sign-up offers are constantly changing, and sometimes a DraftKings sportsbook promo code may be required. Bookmark this review for the latest promo and bonus codes for DraftKings Illinois.
Welcome offers may sometimes be based on the major sports happening at that time; a typical one is placing a $1 bet on any moneyline and earning $100 in free bets if that team wins the game, gets a hit or scores a run. All DraftKings customers can receive a $100 free bet bonus if they refer a friend (who will also earn a $100 free bet), and new users can also earn a 20% bonus on their first deposit, with a max bonus up to $1,000 based on their initial deposit amount (see above for more details on how the first deposit bonus works).
These bonuses and sign-up offers, which at times include a deposit match bonus, are always offered at DraftKings. First-time depositors will want to carefully read the terms and conditions to take full advantage.
Already have an account because you signed up for DraftKings' daily fantasy games? Players with an existing DraftKings DFS account are already signed up for the sportsbook. Though you will still need to confirm your identity and location in the same manner new customers do, you will not need to make a new username and password. This is important to note because users who attempt to make an account and who already have a DraftKings DFS account will be locked out of both, and the process of removing that lock can be a time-consuming and frustrating one.
DraftKings has a solid loyalty program for bettors who choose to use them as their online sportsbook of choice. Players can earn "crowns" with every bet they place, and those tokens can eventually be redeemed as promotional dollars that can be used anywhere on the online DraftKings sportsbook, including their DraftKings casino or daily fantasy games. They can also use these crowns to boost odds on certain wagers to receive a higher return and can also earn tickets to be used on a contest entry and pools for cash prizes. The more you play on DraftKings, the more you earn. There are different tiers available based on the number of bets you place and, thus, the crowns you earn: bronze, silver, gold, platinum, diamond and black.
Responsible gaming resources are a staple for all major sportsbooks, and DraftKings is no different. Bettors can access all the options available to them three different ways. The easiest is through the "Help" section on the top banner of the website and app. Clicking on that button brings them to a FAQ page that includes a section on "account management and responsible gaming."
Clicking on that dropdown brings them to a quick blurb from DraftKings about how they want users to play safely and responsibly at its sportsbook. There's a link in that blurb that brings customers to a "responsible gaming and patron protection page." That page lists myriad options for players to educate themselves on how to gamble responsibly; what do if they feel they have a problem; and ample national and local resources to choose from, including gambling hotlines and links to self-help tools.
That section also includes information on how a player can set deposit, wager and time limits on DraftKings, how to enter a self-exclusion program, and privacy and protection information to keep their accounts safe and secure.
DraftKings also makes these resources accessible through a players' account information section as well as a Responsible Gaming badge it displays on all pages of the website. Players who feel they need help or need to set limits for themselves have plenty of options that DraftKings makes easily accessible.
Whether you're looking for daily fantasy sports, sports betting, IL casino games, or contests, it's difficult to find a better spot to place your bets than DraftKings. Because DraftKings has been around for so long, they seem to have perfected the blend of functionality, perks, and variety. They're one of the largest sportsbook brands in the United States, and their established brand allows them to offer an unparalleled number of markets and games. They're accessible in many states, so bettors won't be confined to their home state to access DraftKings.
DraftKings is constantly looking for ways to help their players have a better experience. From highlighting odds boosts to providing daily leagues and contests, there's something for everyone. They take their responsible gaming seriously, their mobile app is responsive and a mirrored image of its desktop experience, and deposits and withdrawals are typically seamless. It's a good sign when our biggest red flag is that the bet slip in the mobile app is a bit too large. Outside of small tweaks that may not even apply to the typical bettor, DraftKings has come seriously close to perfecting experience across the board. Add in the fact that they have such incredible daily fantasy sports options and a casino experience that gets the job done, and it's clear why so many have chosen DraftKings sportsbook as their betting home. It's hard to disagree with those who have.
Yes, DraftKings sportsbook is legal in Illinois. DraftKings established a legal sportsbook in Illinois in August 2020 by partnering with Casino Queen in East St. Louis. While users cannot play at the casino legally in Illinois, all DraftKings sportsbook and daily fantasy sports are legal in the state, both on the desktop website and mobile app.
No. DraftKings' daily fantasy sports is separate from its sports betting site in that bettors are unable to use their deposits and winnings from the sportsbook on those DraftKings daily fantasy games and vice versa. They can, however, use their sportsbooks winnings at the DraftKings casino in states that allow it.
Yes, all DraftKings sportsbook winnings are considered taxable income, so bettors will need to report those gambling winnings as such, according to the IRS.
Yes, though there are exceptions in some states, including in Illinois. In Illinois, college sports betting is legal except for games involving state schools and games played within the state.
Yes, as of May 2021, DraftKings is legal in the following states: Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, Arkansas, Delaware, Montana, Nevada, North Carolina, Oregon, Rhode Island, Washington, Connecticut and New York.
You can contact DraftKings through several different avenues. You can email them at [email protected] or fill out a form found on the DraftKings website. Their customer service support is available 24/7, though there is currently no live chat function.
Lou Monaco had been East Coast Scene columnist for Gaming Today in Las Vegas since June 2019, covering the East Coast sportsbook scene with emphasis on NJ and PA. He also currently is a part-time writer for the high school sports department for NJ Advanced Media (NJ.com) in Iselin, NJ. Lou has over 30 years sports experience with previous stints at ESPN SportsTicker, Daily Racing Form and Oddschecker.