Legal Sports Betting In Michigan
After four years of effort, legal sports betting in Michigan finally became a reality when Governor Grethen Whitmer signed a sports betting & online gaming bill into law. Effective December 20, 2019, any brick-and-mortar casino or online gambling site can accept sports bets.
Don’t get overly excited, though. No venues are currently taking wagers – not yet, that is. According to inside sources, the first live sportsbooks are targeting to open by the start of the football season. Following quickly on their heels will be online sports betting apps.
What should you expect when Michigan sports betting arrives for real? We’ll let you know in this comprehensive review.
MI Betting Apps
With a state population of just under ten million people, Michigan’s online sports betting market will be huge. On opening day, though, choice may be limited. We’ve heard three names mentioned behind the scenes – DraftKings Sportsbook, FanDuel Sportsbook, and William Hill. In other words, the usual suspects.
Here’s how the betting apps will likely to look like in the start:
|WV Sportsbook||Betting App||Software|
|FanDuel||Not available yet||iOS / Android|
|DraftKings||Not available yet||iOS / Android|
|William Hill||Not available yet||iOS / Android|
Note, however, that the Michigan sports betting market is in its infancy. Once its growth matures, we expect scores of players to compete for the business of sport-loving Michiganders. One very likely to join the party is MGM Grand brand BetMGM, which is already operating in multiple online sports betting states. They’ve got the MGM Grand in Detroit, making it a smooth entry to the market.
Another one is likely Barstool Sportsbook, which should launch by the end of 2020 – at the latest. Barstool’s owner Penn National owns Greektown Casino just few blocks off Comerica Park, making the market entry in Michigan easy as BetMGM’s.
That being said, let’s return our attention to the “Big Three.” What can we expect to see from their apps? All three cater to both Android and iOS devices. iOS installs are routine – find the relevant app in the App Store, and click to download.
Those with Android phones/tablets may run into issues, though. Because Google bans real-money gaming apps from the Play Store, you’ll have to download from your sportsbook. The problem? Many phones restrict downloads from “unknown sources” by default. To get around this, go into your security settings and enable downloading from unknown sources.
Finally, be aware that it might NOT work near state borders. Michigan sports betting sites are not permitted to take wagers from out-of-state. Thus, to comply with state law, sportsbooks will need to track your location. For instance, if your phone connects to a tower in Ohio, the app will not take any bets.
If this happens to you, simply find a wi-fi connection. If this isn’t possible, move away from the border until your device connects to a Michigan tower.
Free Bets, Risk-Free Bets & Deposit Matches in Michigan
Because of its sizable population, we expect Michigan to be a highly competitive sports betting market. As such, online sportsbooks will need to be aggressive to attract/retain customers.
In this section, we’ll talk about the welcome offers and ongoing promotions that will likely be offered by Michigan sportsbooks.
Let’s start with welcome offers. When it comes to these attention-grabbing promos, sportsbooks offer three main types:
- Free bets
- Risk-free bets
- Deposit bonuses
The legal sports betting in Michigan has tons of potential. However, like in Indiana, it will start small. As such, you’ll likely encounter lots of “risk-free” bet offers in a few months. Example: Sign up with XYZ Sportsbook and get up to a $500 risk-free wager!
In this case, they are “guaranteeing” your first bet with them. If you win, you collect your prize winnings as per usual. If you lose, though, they’ll give back your losses in part or full. Usually, this is in the form of bonus cash – more on this later.
As competition ramps up, though, you’ll see two promos that are FAR more generous. The first of these is the free bet. This offer comes precisely as advertised – the site GIVES you money to wager with. If it is unsuccessful, you lose the site’s money, not your own. If you win, though, you collect the profit, but NOT the original stake.
Finally, there’s the tried-but-true deposit bonus. Similar to casino deposit bonuses, your sportsbook will match deposits to a specific dollar amount in BONUS CASH. For example, a 100% up to $500 deposit bonus will get you $500 in bonus cash when you deposit $500 of your own funds.
All these bonuses sound so incredibly generous, the next question becomes, “What’s the catch?” The catch, which protects sportsbook operators from “hit-and-runners,” are wagering requirements.
How do they work? When you capitalize on a deposit bonus or get a risk-free bet paid back, the app redeems you in bonus funds. Unlike real cash, you CANNOT immediately withdraw bonus cash. Instead, you must turn over the amount a set number of times first.
This factor varies from one sportsbook to the next, but usually, it is substantially less than online casinos. Now, it is far too early to say what playthrough requirements will be for Michigan online sportsbooks. However, if wagering requirements out east are any guide, expect a 1-6x standard for deposit bonuses and 1x for risk-free bets.
Legal Sports Betting In Michigan – Promos
Getting sports bettors in the door is only half the battle. To make a consistent profit, bookies need to keep them there, week after week.
Ongoing promos are the most effective retention tool a sportsbook has. These offers allow gamers to make extra money or avoid risk. A good site refreshes these offers regularly and targets them at special events like the Super Bowl.
What offers will you usually find on sportsbooks? We’ve listed the most common types below.
- Reload bonuses
- Profit boosts
- Odds boosts
- Insurance promos
- And many more…
Of all the ongoing promotions you’ll see, reload bonuses are by far the most common. They are simple to understand – refresh your bankroll with new funds, and your site will match them. For instance, a 50% up to $150 reload bonus will give you $50 extra when you do a $100 reload. To maximize your earnings, though, you’d need to deposit $300 in this example (to get the full $150.)
Then, there are profit boosts. These promos are a long-time favorite of seasoned sports bettors. When applied to a successful wager, they magnify your overall take. Use a 20% profit boost on a bet that earns you $100, and you’ll get an extra $20! Odds boosts achieve the same goal by working on a different part of the equation. By “changing” the game odds from -150 to -200, you increase your potential take by 25%!
What about insurance promotions? Have you ever had a “sure” victory snatched away from you at the last second by a “historic” comeback? Yeah, it stings! An insurance promo protects against this by guaranteeing success. If you lose, they pay you back partially/entirely – in bonus cash.
Banking at a Michigan Online Bookie
Ready to give legal sports betting in Michigan a shot? You’ll need to make a deposit first. Now, it isn’t clear yet who will offer sports betting in MI. However, it’s quite certain all the banking methods will be available to Michiganders that are available in other online gambling states like New Jersey and Indiana. Based on that, here’s what things could look like in Michigan.
- Credit cards (Visa/MasterCard)
- ACH/online banking
Credit cards and online bank transfers are no-brainer methods you’re most likely to see. Universally accepted across all major sportsbooks, Visa and MasterCard holders will find it easiest to make a deposit. In some states, online gambling sites sometimes accept AMEX/Discover cards.
Even so, some banks still view sportsbook deposits as a “prohibited” transaction, despite the death of PASPA. Should your financial institution block your deposit attempt, there is another way.
The vast majority of sportsbooks support PayPal deposits. To initiate them, start by moving the amount you want to deposit over to PayPal from your bank. Then, activate the PayPal deposit option on your sports betting site of choice. Make the second transfer, and BAM – you have a bankroll online.
Then, there are deposit options we are less sure about. However, some sportsbooks do offer them in other states. These include:
- Prepaid cards
- Cash at the Cage
Prepaid cards allow players to store a balance on them, rather than in their bank. Depositing is as easy as entering the card’s code, and the amount you want to move on-site.
Want to bet on sports, but have privacy concerns? If your sportsbook takes PayNearMe, you’re in luck. Offered by retailers like 7-Eleven and Family Dollar, it allows you to deposit using the cash in your pocket.
Start by initiating a PayNearMe deposit on your sports betting site. Taking this step will give you a PayCode. Take it to a PayNearMe location, along with the money you wish to deposit. Give both to the cashier, and in seconds, you have a sports betting bankroll, minus a paper trail.
Lastly, it appears Michigan’s new sports betting law requires sportsbooks to be associated with an existing brick-and-mortar casino. This requirement opens the door to Cash at the Cage deposits.
When selected, you’ll get a transaction number. Take it, your deposit, and government-issued photo ID to the land-based casino in question. Present it to the cashier, and in minutes, you’ll have a betting bankroll online!
Not all deposit methods can be used to withdraw from a sportsbook (i.e., credit cards). As such, you may need to use an alternative option. According to what we’ve seen in other states, here’s what you can expect to see in Michigan.
- ACH (e-checks)
- Paper checks
- Prepaid cards
- Cash at the Cage
For most, ACH/e-checks will be the method of choice. Subject to the whims of the banking system, though, this method can take three to five business days.
PayPal is the best choice for the privacy-minded but is no faster. It can take up to 48 hours for deposits to land in your PayPal balance. From there, expect an additional three to five-day transfer from PayPal to your bank.
Need your money quicker than that? If your sportsbook offers one, get a prepaid card. After processing completes (usually a few hours at most), the balance ends up on your card immediately. From there, you can spend it or withdraw at an ATM. Cash at the Cage is similarly fast, unanticipated delays notwithstanding.
What if you can’t use any of these choices? Paper check delivery is your last option. Be prepared to wait, though – delivery time frames average seven to ten business days.
Legal Online Sports Betting In Michigan – Conclusion
The story of legal sports betting in Michigan has just begun. When the online bookies finally do open, it should get as
Michigan Betting FAQ
- Can you bet on sports online in Michigan?
As of December 20, 2019, it is legal to bet on sports in Michigan. In practice, though, betting venues will take a while to set up. The first launch date used to be March 11th but that's long gone now, and still a new date hasn't been set. Betting apps are expected to launch by football season, but the exact launch date is yet to be determined.
- Will I be able to place bets in Michigan using a VPN?
Don’t do this. To comply with state law, sportsbooks will track your location with geolocation software. For years, gamers have used VPNs to defeat these measures. However, sportsbooks are aware of this, so they constantly check for IPs associated with these programs. If you are caught using one, your account may be frozen, and funds seized.
Use a VPN for privacy reasons? Make sure it is disabled before logging on to your sportsbook.
- How old do I have to be to bet on sports in Michigan?
You must be 21 years of age to wager in a Michigan sportsbook once the online bookmakers start their operations.
- Are there sports betting apps in Michigan?
Not just yet. Sports betting apps will start to appear in App Store when online betting launches in Michigan, which should be in time for football season. The exact launch date is still undetermined, but Michiganders will be able to download sports betting apps certainly later on in the year.