What a twist! According to an email from DraftKings, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker will not renew the executive order allowing the state’s bettors to register for sports betting sites completely online. Once the order lapses, bettors in The Praire State will once again be required to visit a land-based property in-person to complete the registration process.
An Unexpected Twist
This development comes as a surprise to many, including yours truly, an Illinois sports bettor who has watched Pritzker’s executive order be renewed time and time again.
Since August 2020, Pritzker has seen fit to renew the order every single month, to the point where many (once again including myself here) thought it was just a simple formality that would occur every 30 days. But now, in a shocking move, the state will not renew the order, letting online-only registration lapse at midnight. As of 12:01 am on April 4, 2021, Illinois sports betting enthusiasts will have to make a trek to sign up for a sports betting account.
What Illinois Sports Bettors Can Do Right Now
First and foremost, if you’ve thought about creating an account but haven’t quite gotten around to it, the time for dilly-dallying is long gone. Unless you want to make a trip to a land-based Illinois casino before you can bet, sign up for Illinois’ sportsbooks right now, or, at the very latest by 11:59 pm on April 3.
Currently, Illinois hosts six online sportsbooks:
If you can’t sign up for an account before the order lapses, you can still easily get an account, but that’ll require a trip to the partner casino/racetrack of your preferred sportsbook. Here’s where you’ll need to go for each of Illinois’ platforms:
- DraftKings: Casino Queen in East St. Louis
- FanDuel: FanDuel Sportsbook and Horse Racing in Collinsville
- PointsBet: Hawthorne Racecourse in Stickney
- Barstool: Hollywood Casinos in either Joliet or Aurora
- William Hill: Grand Victoria Casino in Elgin
- BetRivers: Rivers Casino in Des Plaines
The good news here is Illinois’ land-based properties are fairly spread out. Chicago’s nearest options are PointsBet and BetRivers. Western Chicagoland residents might prefer Grand Victoria or Barstool’s two partnered properties. Southern Illinois bettors have two great options in FanDuel and DraftKings.
A Permanent Reversal?
Though this development could throw a wrench in Illinois’ growth plans, state legislators don’t seem to care. But if the order requiring in-person registration proves detrimental to the state’s revenue, expect a prompt reversal of this reversal that will once again bring online registration to the Land of Lincoln.