Colorado Sports Betting
Colorado sports betting has been legal and available since May 2020. The state now features more than two dozen legal sports betting apps including some local brands more native to the market.
Colorado sports betting law granted each of the state’s 30-plus casinos the ability to offer online betting inside state lines via authorized sportsbooks. So far, the majority of them have taken the opportunity.
For Colorado sports bettors, the volume of options, bonuses, and promotions might be a bit overwhelming. Read on for a comprehensive look at sportsbook apps and legal betting in Colorado.
Best Colorado sports betting sites 2023
What’s happening in Colorado sports betting right now?
- May 23, 2023 – The Denver Nuggets advanced to the NBA Finals after sweeping the Los Angeles Lakers with a 113-111 win in Game 4.
- May 15, 2023 – Colorado Rapids midfielder Max Alves has been suspended due to a Major League Soccer investigation into allegations of illegal use of online sports betting sites.
- May 8, 2023 – Colorado sports betting handle rebounded in March to $494.4 million, a 16% rise from February. Revenue for the state was also up, more than doubling from $22.6 million in February to $45.9 million in March.
- May 2, 2023 – The Colorado Department of Revenue, in part funded by Colorado sports betting, approved $215,000 in grant money for Kindbridge Research Institute to develop a program for college athletes to receive mental health support.
- April 24, 2023 – Colorado approved more than $14 million in tax credits for a currently unidentified online sports betting operator. The company is reportedly based in the U.K., but is considering the Denver area for a new headquarters.
- April 17, 2023 – The Colorado Rockies reached a sports betting sponsorship deal with bet365. Colorado is one of four states where bet365 operates as a legal online sportsbook.
- April 4, 2023 – Colorado sports betting handle reached $425.1 million in February, a 22% drop from January. That was also a 3.49% drop year-over-year.
Comparing top Colorado sportsbooks
Deciding where to place a bet in Colorado is a subjective choice. Elements like a site’s navigation might bother some but not others. Here’s a brief look at where Colorado apps shine, plus mini-reviews of the top sites in the state.
- Best sportsbook for betting on the go: DraftKings, FanDuel. These apps are among the highest rated for sportsbooks on iOS (4.8) and Android (4.7). A 2021 independent study by Eilers & Krejcik Gaming notes that both apps consistently score high for their betting interfaces and key features.
- Best sportsbook for sports variety: BetMGM. BetMGM has more diverse options than almost any other sportsbook in Colorado. Alongside the standards like football and basketball, you can find betting options like Gaelic sports, handball and snooker.
- Best sportsbook for Colorado connections: PointsBet. PointsBet has more links to Colorado entities than any other sportsbook in the state. It has partnerships with the Colorado Avalanche, Denver Nuggets and University of Colorado Buffaloes.
- Best sportsbook for navigation: FanDuel. FanDuel offers the smoothest navigation out of any active sportsbook. It is intuitively designed and incredibly quick to get you to where you want to go.
- Best sportsbook for new players: MaximBet. Although not a major sportsbook player yet, MaximBet has come through for new players and has $1,000 in site credits available.
1. DraftKings Sportsbook
DraftKings Sportsbook has one of the most innovative apps in Colorado sports betting. It features a betting carousel that presents wagering options based on your preferences and betting history. In one sense, no one has quite the same DraftKings experience. It could, however, stand to improve its bonuses for recurring players, but that’s a minor nitpick.
- App rating: 4.8 (iOS), 4.7 (Android)
- Key takeaway: An easy-to-use app that you can tailor itself to your preferences.
- Best feature: Betting carousel
- Bonus offer: $1,200
2. Caesars Sportsbook
Caesars has a deep list of available sports, too, and long experience in the space. Caesars players can also take part in the Caesars Rewards program, which provides redeemable points for rewards at Caesars locations. However, Caesars could stand to spiff up its app presentation and navigation a bit.
- App rating: 4.6 (iOS), 4.4 (Android)
- Key takeaway: A solid app with plenty of sports and experience.
- Best feature: Caesars Rewards
- Bonus offer: $1,250
3. BetMGM Sportsbook
BetMGM offers more sports to bet on than almost any other sportsbook app. Furthermore, the “edit my bet” function allows you to increase your wagers, change the teams on the bet, or even add legs to a parlay. The only issue is that BetMGM can be a bit unwieldy to navigate.
- App rating: 4.8 (iOS), 4.4 (Android)
- Key takeaway: More options for sports to bet on than almost any app.
- Best feature: Edit my bet
- Bonus offer: $1,000
4. BetRivers Sportsbook
BetRivers is the sportsbook brand for Rush Street Interactive, a casino company primarily focused in the northeastern United States. BetRivers players can take part in one of the only rewards programs specifically for sports bettors. BetRivers also trumpets players’ big wins in its main lobby. However, as you can see from its app ratings, it could stand to improve navigation and usability.
- App rating: 3.1 (iOS), 3.1 (Android)
- Key takeaway: A solid sportsbook with plenty of experience and options for Coloradans.
- Best feature: iRush Rewards
- Bonus offer: $500
5. FanDuel Sportsbook
FanDuel Sportsbook has risen to the top in many states because of the ease with which players can navigate its app. There are also plenty of betting options and promotions, including same-game parlays. FanDuel still has a few rough spots in the smaller corners of its app, but these are minor issues.
- App rating: 4.8 (iOS), 4.7 (Android)
- Key takeaway: Likely the smoothest app available to Colorado bettors.
- Best feature: Same-game parlays
- Bonus offer: $1,000
6. Bet365 Sportsbook
Well-known European sports betting brand Bet365 arrived in Colorado in September 2022. With live in-game betting features, bet boosts and super boosts, and a personalized display, the app and sportsbook site offer users a unique experience. The betting markets are plentiful and the odds are competitive. The app itself gets favorable ratings from customer reviews, though occasional hiccups can happen when navigating between the betting sections.
- App rating: 4.6 (iOS), 2.7 (Android)
- Key takeaway: A strong brand with an easy-to-use app and competitive odds.
- Best feature: Personalized display
- Bonus offer: Bet $1, Get $200
7. Tipico Sportsbook
European sportsbook Tipico has jumped into the US sports betting market in recent years, including in Colorado. The app is notable for its long list of available sports to bet and its ease of navigation. Tipico also produces fairly competitive odds and a solid welcome bonus for new players to use. The only downside about Tipico is its sometimes-slow customer support. However, the experienced provider continues to grow its options steadily as its time in Colorado increases.
- App rating: 4.6 (iOS), 4.2 (Android)
- Key takeaway: A deeply-experienced sportsbook with a slick app and a vast number of available sports
- Best feature: Ease of navigation
- Bonus offer: Get up to a $100 bonus
How to get started with best Colorado sportsbook bonuses
Getting started at a Colorado online sportsbook is pretty easy. Once you register for an account, you can make your first deposit and be off and running. The only thing to add is that you might have to provide additional documentation to withdraw funds. Be aware that verifying a joint bank account likely requires ID from everyone on the account.
With so many Colorado sportsbook apps available, competition is fierce. Apps offer bonuses and promotions to attract new players and keep them coming back. Here are some of the best welcome bonuses available to Colorado sports bettors at the moment:
- DraftKings Promo Code: Get up to $1,200 in bonus bets.
- Caesars Promo Code: Up to $1,250 on Caesars.
- BetMGM Bonus Code: Up to $1,000 paid back in bonus bets.
- BetRivers Bonus Code: 2nd chance bet up to $500.
Just as a refresher, here’s how these bonuses work:
- Deposit bonuses: Sportsbooks will match all or a portion of your deposit. You may also see these appear as match bonuses.
- First bet offers: For a first bet offer, you will first have to place a wager that meets the sportsbook’s conditions. If you win, then you simply collect the profit from your win. If you lose, however, the site will issue you site credits equivalent to a percentage of your lost bet.
- Odds boosts — These bonuses are so common that they are often not identified as promotions, but rather another feature on the app. An odds boost pumps the potential payout on certain bets in favor of the bettor in order to generate interest in wagering. The boost is usually somewhere between 15% and 35%. Odds boosts often have their own tab, possibly separate from the main promotions page.
- Loyalty programs — Most sportsbooks with some sort of brand connection with a larger casino chain let you participate in the company-wide loyalty program. Programs like BetMGM’s MGM Rewards or Caesars’ Caesars Rewards give points and tier placement for every dollar you wager. These points and statuses can often lead to benefits like free meals, free hotel stays and exclusive event invitations. There is no cost to join, and you’ll probably enroll automatically when you register.
10 quick facts about Colorado sports betting
- Colorado legalized sports betting in November 2019.
- Legalization required voter approval via referendum due to Colorado’s Taxpayer Bill of Rights.
- Colorado sports betting launched in both online and retail formats in May 2020.
- All sportsbook apps must be partnered with casinos located in Colorado.
- You must be 21 or older to bet on sports in the state.
- Principal actors in sports — players, referees, coaches, etc. — cannot legally bet on their sports.
- You can bet on table tennis and cornhole, but not the Oscars or other awards events.
- Colorado does not permit esports betting, nor does it allow betting on high school sports or any event where the majority of participants are younger than 18.
- With the exception of sportsbooks at tribal casinos, all retail sportsbooks in Colorado are available in one of three towns — Black Hawk, Central City and Cripple Creek.
- Colorado sportsbooks booked more than $5 billion in wagers in their first 18 months.
What to expect at a legal Colorado sports betting site
With so many legal sportsbooks in Colorado, there is no reason to visit illegal offshore sites. The sports betting industry is under the oversight of the Division of Gaming in the Colorado Department of Revenue — Specialized Business Group. The regulator keeps an updated list of every online sportsbook cleared to operate in the state.
Colorado online sportsbooks offer convenience, and regulators have standards in place that work to ensure safety, fairness and security. They are also safer than retail books on a broader level since they don’t require you to navigate the state’s (sometimes) icy and treacherous roads to bet at a retail sportsbook.
Colorado sports betting law and regulations
The Colorado General Assembly approved statewide sports betting in May 2019, but the vote essentially moved the final decision to voters in November. A voter-approved constitutional amendment requires that any legislative vote to raise taxes go to the ballot for approval. HB 1327 was signed by Gov. Jared Polis, approved by voters and became law. It includes the following core tenets:
- The state licenses sportsbooks that partner with casinos in the state.
- Betting can take place both online and at physical sportsbooks.
- The state taxes Colorado sportsbooks at a rate of 10%.
Additionally, the law creates three types of licenses:
- Master license — reserved for the state’s 33 casinos
- Sports betting operator — land-based retail sportsbook operator
- Internet sports betting operator — one online skin per casino
Each of Colorado’s 33 casinos can apply for a master license. There is a $10,000 initial nonrefundable fee, followed by a two-year $125,000 licensing fee. An approved casino then could partner with a land-based sportsbook and an internet sportsbook (or use the same partner for both) and utilize one online platform.
Full list of legal Colorado sports betting apps
There are 25 legal sports betting apps active in Colorado as of 2023:
- Bally Bet
- Barstool Sportsbook
- Betfred Sports
- BetWildwood (ISI)
- Caesars Sports
- Circa Sports
- DraftKings Sportsbook
- Elite Sportsbook
- FanDuel Sportsbook
- FOX Bet
- Play Maverick Sports
- SI Sportsbook
- Sky Ute Sportsbook
- Tipico Sportsbook
Popular sports to bet on in Colorado
Colorado is similar to many states in that it has one large city that commands most of the sports action. All of the major sports teams that call the Centennial State home are based in and around Denver, and they are popular betting options in the state.
- NFL: Denver Broncos
- NBA: Denver Nuggets
- MLB: Colorado Rockies
- NHL: Colorado Avalanche
- MLS: Colorado Rapids
Aside from these big teams in Colorado, there are also major college teams. The Colorado Buffaloes football team is a top draw, as is the gridiron crew at Colorado State. Other options like motorsports, mixed martial arts and rugby are all available to bet on, as well. Table tennis became a popular sport to bet on during the height of the pandemic in 2020 and has remained a cornerstone of CO sportsbooks ever since.
Colorado sports betting history
Colorado sports betting history is relatively short, mostly because the state legalized the activity and went live within a year. In the first year of legal betting, Colorado saw 15 sports betting apps start taking wagers. Here is a timeline of how things have grown:
- 2019: Colorado begins its push to legalize sports betting at the behest of Rep. Alec Garnett, the House majority leader. Garnett produces a bill in 2019 that narrowly passes both chambers of the Colorado General Assembly on the last day of the session. Due to Colorado’s Taxpayer Bill of Rights, the question of sports betting then has to go before the voters before it can become law. Although the vote on Proposition DD is only 20,000 votes apart, the people of Colorado decide to allow the state’s casinos to offer online and retail sports betting.
- 2020: Colorado sports betting starts in earnest in May 2020. Both online and retail books open their doors for business, although the COVID-19 pandemic creates an extra set of challenges for in-person wagering. The online expansion continues unabated, however, and 15 online books launch by the end of the year.
- 2021: Sports betting continues to expand in its first full year of being legal in the state. The number of active sportsbooks nearly doubles. By the time 2022 rolls around, there are 26 sportsbooks doing business in Colorado, including one of the few truly tribal apps, Sky Ute. December 2021’s numbers push the total amount of legal wagering in the state over the $5 billion mark — a gobsmacking figure for roughly 20 months of activity.
Colorado sports betting FAQ
Can I legally bet on sports in Colorado?
Yes. As of May 2020, sports betting is legal in Colorado with all bets placed via authorized and regulated sportsbook apps and operators. The state officially legalized sports betting via a voter referendum in November 2019.
Where can I bet on sports in Colorado?
Of course, with online sports betting, you can wager from anywhere inside the state lines of Colorado. However, if you prefer to experience sports betting in-person, there are several retail sportsbook locations:
- Ameristar Casino Black Hawk
- BetWildwood (ISI)
- Billy’s Casino
- Colorado Grande
- Golden Mardi Gras Casino
- Grand Z Casino
- Isle of Capri Casino
- Johnny Nolon’s
- Johnny Z’s Casino
- Lady Luck Casino
- Monarch Casino Blackhawk
- Red Dolly Casino
- Saratoga Casino
- Sasquatch Casino
- The Lodge Casino at Black Hawk
- Wild Card Casino
- Z Casino
Is BetOnline legal in Colorado?
No. BetOnline is not a legal sportsbook in Colorado. Because it is based outside of the US, BetOnline does not comply with Colorado or US laws, restrictions or business regulations. With so many legal betting options in the Centennial State that are legal, they far outweigh the risk of betting overseas.
What is the minimum age to bet on sports in Colorado?
You need to be 21 or older to place a sports wager in Colorado, either online or in-person.
Do I have to be a resident of Colorado to bet on sports?
Not at all. The only requirements are that you are 21 or older and inside state lines. Be aware, however, that you will have to verify your location with your mobile device or computer before you will be able to wager.
Is horse betting legal in Colorado?
Yes. Colorado is home to a single facility that offers live horse racing. Bally’s Arapahoe Park in Aurora is both a thoroughbred racetrack and a simulcast facility. Live racing and betting are available during August, September and October each year. In addition, there are 10 standalone off-track betting locations scattered around the state. Finally, online horse betting sites like TVG can legally accept wagers from Coloradans.
Is DFS legal in Colorado?
Yes. Daily fantasy sports contests are legal in Colorado. The state legalized them in 2016. You can play on FanDuel, DraftKings or any other licensed DFS site in the state as long as you are 18 or older.
List of Colorado resources
If you want more details about sports betting and other gambling in Colorado, please see the links below. These agencies and businesses are the best resources for more in-depth information about the various subjects related to sports betting in the state.
- Colorado Department of Revenue, Specialized Business Group — Gaming Division — Gambling regulator.
- Colorado General Assembly — Lawmaking body in Colorado.
- Problem Gambling Coalition of Colorado — Top resource for responsible gambling in the state.
- The Denver Post — Primary Denver newspaper, covering pro sports, the Legislature and more.
- The Gazette — Primary Colorado Springs newspaper that covers local sports and the state Legislature.
- The Coloradoan — Primary Fort Collins newspaper that covers local sports.