Indiana has always been known as a state that loves its sports – its nickname of the Hoosier state confirms the love of college sports specifically. It is no surprise, therefore, that Indiana would be one of the first wave of states to legalize online sports betting. With its proximity to other Midwestern states and cities, Indiana was able to get a boost in revenues with it being first to market with sportsbooks. Below is everything you need to know about online sports betting in Indiana.
A brief history of legalized sports betting in the state
When PASPA was struck down by the Supreme Court in May 2018, there were already states like New Jersey ready to implement previously written online sports betting regulations and start taking legal bets. The question on everyone’s minds was which states would be the next o follow. 2019 saw a flurry of activity across the country, and Indiana was right in the mix.
In May of 2019, Bill H-1015 was voted into law, and within 90 days, the first retail sports bets were being taken in the state. This was of significance for a couple of reasons – first, the state was able to put regulations and licenses in place in advance of football season (when the majority of bets are placed). Second, with the struggle Illinois was having to pass laws of their own, border casinos became very popular for residents of Chicago, one of the biggest cities in the nation.
The laws in Indiana are similar to those passed in New Jersey – 14 land-based licenses were awarded, with each license holder able to launch three “skins” (online brands) under its umbrella. This means that we could see as many as 42 different brands in the state, but it is more likely that we will end up with somewhere in the vicinity of 20. Retail sportsbooks were able to launch as of September 2019, with online and mobile following one month later.
Where you can make online sports bets in Indiana
The Indiana online sportsbook industry is very much in its infancy, having only been open since October 2019. However, the amount of wagering taking place online is dwarfing that of the retail side of the business, which is to be expected, given how easy it is to play online.
There are currently three online sports betting sites open in Indiana, with several more slated to open early in 2020.
Playing at one of the online sportsbooks in Indiana is simple, as the laws do not force you to have to go to a land-based property to open your account. Once you select a site to play with, you can download their app or register on their website. Then, after you give the company a few details about yourself to confirm your identity, you’ll have an account ready for deposit and play!
How to choose the best online sportsbook
With several options available to Indiana residents currently and many more to come in 2020, it is helpful to know what to look for at first glance, so you pick the sports betting site that works best for you. Much of the content will be the same on each site, so if you follow the guidelines below, you can quickly assess the offers and then make your decision.
While it may look like all sportsbooks are the same, when you look under the hood, you will find different engines. Each online sports betting site offers its own list of bets per game, and this can add up to over 100 different wagers depending on the sport. If you are someone who likes to make prop bets, then a site that offers more markets is going to suit you best. However, if you are looking for simple Moneyline and spread bets, then you shouldn’t have an issue at any site.
You also want to see if the sports betting site offers all the sports you might want to bet on. While there is a comprehensive list of sports that all websites can provide, some choose to pass on a few of the fringe sports focusing instead on the core markets.
Finally, you want to look into the Terms and Conditions to see what the maximum payout is for parlay bets if you are a fan of taking longshots. Some sites cap winnings on any one wager, which may be a disadvantage to you placing the bet in the first place.
Bonuses and Promotions
Once you see what bets are available, the next move is to see what incentives an online sports betting site in Indiana is giving you to become a player. The majority of bonuses given out at a site fall into one of these categories:
Free Bet: This is pretty self-explanatory. A site often will give players a Free Bet just for registering an account or for betting a certain amount in a period. These bets typically have restrictions attached to them (like the minimum odds that will be accepted), and there will be restrictions on withdrawing winnings, but who doesn’t like free money?
Deposit Bonus: This is the most common form of bonusing across the online gambling industry. When you make your deposit, you receive an additional amount of cash into your account. However, to turn that bonus money into real money, you have to wager a multiple of the amount. At that point, the cash becomes yours to do with what you please.
Cashback: This type of bonus is one that only rewards players who lose their bets. The concept is pretty simple – a site will offer you a percentage of your losses back to you over a limited period or from a specific sporting event. There will be capped limits on the amount that will be returned, so keep that in mind before you make any bets.
Speed of Bet Settlement
One more attribute of an online sportsbook to take into consideration is how quickly the site settles bets. This is most important for those of you who want to make in-play bets (bets that happen during the game). These bets are typically decided while the action is still ongoing, so making sure you find a site that settles the bets quickly enough to allow you to bet again is a crucial factor when choosing an online sportsbook.
Payments methods for online sports betting sites in Indiana
Thankfully, given the fact that you can download an app and register an account at an online sports betting site from anywhere in Indiana, funding that account is also as easy. These days, the majority of players use credit and debit cards to make deposits. This can sometimes hit a snag depending on which bank you use, as not all banks are accepting online gambling transactions. If that is the case for you, there are lots of alternatives, such as e-wallets (digital accounts), prepaid VISA cards, or wire transfers.
Indiana Online Sports Betting FAQ
Are offshore betting sites illegal in Indiana?
Offshore sports betting sites were the only option for many sports betting enthusiasts in Indiana until 2019. After the passing of legislation, the offshore sites did not stop taking bets from U.S. players, so technically, they are still available to residents of the state. However, while they technically aren’t illegal to play at, we definitely recommend that you choose one of the many sites that are now abiding by the laws of the state.
What is the best place for me to bet on local teams in Indiana?
The good news is that all the sports betting sites in Indiana allow you to bet on local teams. This is a significant piece of where the revenues will come from in the state, and although other states have banned betting activity on local college teams, Indiana did not follow that model. Still, it is wise to see what bets are available on each of the local teams to ensure you find the sites with the most options.
How do I know the games aren’t fixed now that betting is legal?
This has been an ongoing concern voiced by many in the sports betting industry (especially the leagues) since the discussion of repealing PASPA began years ago. The truth of the matter is that it is not 100% possible to ensure no cheating is taking place. However, there are data integrity firms that pour over every statistic from a game and any bets that seem like anomalies in order to protect everyone involved. Also, it is unlikely that a professional athlete making millions of dollars a year will do something that will threaten their livelihood. We think you should feel safe making your bets knowing that the games are not being fixed (even if it feels that way sometimes!).
Can I bet from my mobile device in Indiana?
Absolutely! In fact, we will likely see upwards of over 80% of bets in Indiana taken via mobile devices as the market matures. You can either download an app to your phone, or you can access the mobile website of your online sportsbook and place wagers directly from there.
Can I get my money out of an online site at a land-based property in Indiana?
As of now, you cannot make a withdrawal at a land-based casino in Indiana. This is something that has become an option in other states, so we wouldn’t be shocked if the regulations are changed once more of the land-based operators open their online sportsbooks in 2020.