William Hill Sportsbook is expected to launch a retail sportsbook and statewide mobile betting in Illinois soon through a partnership with Grand Victoria Casino in Elgin.
The William Hill name originates from the UK, where it was founded in 1934 by William Hill himself. William Hill debuted in the US with the purchase of several chains of Nevada sportsbook chains in 2012 and later the launch of a Nevada mobile betting app.
William Hill has since expanded to other states with legal sports betting, where it offers mobile betting and operates retail sportsbooks. In Nevada alone, William Hill US operates 114 retail betting locations.
The company suffers no lack of experience in highly regulated markets both in the US and abroad, so security and professionalism are not concerns at this time. Furthermore, the company is financially stable as one of the world’s largest gaming companies and employer of more than 12,000 people.
With that in mind, our William Hill Illinois review will instead focus on the actual experience from the customer’s point of view. Key topics we will cover in this review include the welcome bonus and other promotions, betting markets offered, mobile betting app, customer service and deposit methods.
The William Hill Rundown
- Established: 1934
- Mobile Apps: iOS and Android
- Website: WilliamHill.com
- Sports Covered: US professional and college sports; international leagues
- Welcome Bonus: Risk-free first bet worth up to $300
- Bonus Code: BUSARF
- License Status: Temporary Operating Permit
William Hill Illinois Launch Date
The launch of William Hill Illinois appears imminent at this stage with licensing requests in place and provisional authorization in hand. Neither William Hill nor Grand Victoria have committed to a hard launch date yet, but all indications are that an announcement is coming soon.
Grand Victoria Casino and William Hill have both applied for the necessary permits to offer sports betting. William Hill has applied for two licenses, both as a supplier and as a management services provider.
The Illinois Gaming Board recently upgraded William Hill’s supplier license to “temporary operating permit” status, which indicates the IGB is close to giving William Hill the go-ahead to commence online betting. All that remains now is for the IGB to approve Grand Victoria Casino’s licensing request and give both entities authorization to go live.
William Hill Illinois Bonus
William Hill changes its bonus offers regularly and often tailors them to individual states, but the welcome bonus that will most likely debut in Illinois is discussed below with the caveat being that some details may change between now and launch day.
New Customers: Get up to $300 Back If Your First Bet Loses
New William Hill customers can place their first wager risk-free after signing up for an account with William Hill. If your first bet wins, the promotion ends and you will collect your winnings as usual. If your first bet loses, William Hill will refund your losing wager with a free bet of equal size for up to $300 back.
Use the promo code BUSARF to claim this offer.
Moving beyond new customer offers, William Hill frequently hosts short-term promotions that are tailored to select sports and major events. William Hill’s promotions change often, but the following examples provide a preview of what to expect on any given day.
- Early Returns Soccer Promo: During this promo, customers who placed five bets of $20 or more on soccer games received a bonus equal to 20% of the total sum of those wagers for up to $50 in bonus funds.
- KO Cashout: Customers who placed a $20 bet on the outcome of any fight on a specific UFC card received a 50% payout boost for up to $50 extra if their fighter won by KO or TKO.
- Right Round Wrong Fighter: This promotion offered a 50% refund paid in bonus dollars to customers who bet on the fighter + round of victory market in a specific UFC fight and picked the right round but wrong fighter.
- Missed Protection for Golf: Customers who placed a $20+ wager on a golfer with odds of +3,000 or higher to win a select golf tournament were refunded with 50% cash back if their golfer failed to make the cut.
- Golden Goals Soccer Promo: This promo offered extra cash bonuses to customers who placed a $20+ wager on the 90 minutes 3-way moneyline on a specific soccer game. Customers who correctly picked the winning team were paid $5 per goal scored by their team during regular time and $10 per goal scored on a penalty kick or during extra time.
- Divisional Dividends NFL Promo: Customers who placed a futures bet on the Divisional Winner in the most recent NFL season earned a free $5 bet for every division game their selected team won during regular season.
- Big Blast Boost MLB Promo: Users who placed a $20+ pregame moneyline bet on a specific MLB game named by William Hill and won the bet also earned a $25 cash boost for every homerun hit by their team’s star players.
William Hill Illinois Mobile App Review
Illinois sports fans can download the official William Hill mobile app for iOS and Android devices.
Users of either device can visit WilliamHIll.com for download links and to sign up for an account. iOS users can also search for the app by name in the App Store, but Android users must download the app from William Hill directly because the Play Store does not list gambling or sports betting apps at this time.
The William Hill app runs well in terms of performance and navigation. Users will have no trouble downloading it and browsing the various sports betting markets as everything is organized in a logical fashion.
Upon logging in, users are taken to the app’s primary home screen where William Hill displays a running list of current odds boosts, popular events and navigation menus to visit specific sports, see all current promotions and so on. Overall, everything is well organized on the app.
Graphically, the app leans toward the simple side of things. Sports are simply listed on the homepage and within the “all sports” menu item, and from there, visiting any specific game brings up a simple list of wagers and odds.
Mobile Betting Screenshots:
In-Play Betting at William Hill
William Hill boasts one of the more prolific in-play betting schedules on the market with widespread coverage of sports and leagues from around the world. It is not uncommon to log on even during the middle of the day on a weekday and find upwards of three dozen events running and open for wagers.
One thing worth noting when comparing the in-play betting options across bookmakers is the quality of data provided. Some sportsbooks cover many events in play but lack access to the data needed to offer many markets or to provide customers with frequent updates on what’s happening in the game.
Data is a strong point for William Hill, which is not particularly surprising given the company’s size and international reach. Even daytime darts tournaments and Faroe Islands Premier League soccer games are covered with live updates, digital data feeds and commendable market depth. The major US sports leagues are of course covered extensively and in detail.
In-Play Betting Screenshots:
Live Streaming Sports Feeds
William Hill does not yet offer streaming sports in the US, but there are two solid reasons to believe that will change in the not-too-distant future.
First, William Hill US CEO Joe Asher told SBC Magazine back in September 2019 that he is very much in favor of bringing live sports feeds to the US market.
“I think live streaming for in-play is going to be really big in the US – one of the big opportunities in US sports, not limited to tennis but for all sports.
“I’m a big believer in streaming where you can watch the video and place the bet right there in the app. There’s no doubt that’s where the future is going to be.”
Second, William Hill is experienced with live streaming sports on the international side of its business. In the UK and elsewhere, William Hill already integrates live streaming video for soccer, basketball, horse racing and other sports right into the mobile app and website. William Hill has the technical know-how to move quickly on this in the US if it can strike a reasonable agreement with any popular US sports leagues.
Betting Markets and Types of Wagers
William Hill has significantly expanded its market depth since launching online betting in the US and is now competitive with other major online sportsbooks in terms of sports covered and the types of wagers offered for each.
To be more specific, William Hill will list more than 200 betting markets for games in mainstream sports leagues and several dozen options for smaller sports. This includes all the standard wagers such as moneylines and point spreads as well as many props and alternative lines.
Sports covered: Australian rules, auto racing, badminton, baseball, basketball, boxing, cricket, cycling, darts, esports, football, golf, handball, hockey, Olympics, rugby league, rugby union, snooker, tennis, soccer, table tennis, tennis, UFC/MMA and volleyball.
Types of wagers offered: Moneyline, point spread, total, futures, props, parlays, alternate lines, alternate handicaps, alternate totals, player to score first/last/anytime, player to score X+ points, player props, team props, game props, double result, double chance, half/quarter/period outcomes and more.
William Hill Deposit Methods
William Hill is not particularly strong in terms of variety of deposit options, but it supports the most common payment methods and users should have no issue getting started.
Currently, bettors may fund their accounts through the following methods.
- Credit and debit cards: Visa and Mastercard
- ACH eCheck: Direct bank transfer from the user’s checking or savings account to William Hill
- Prepaid Play+ Card: William Hill is contracted with Play+ to offer a prepaid debit card and e-wallet solution. Customers can sign up for a Play+ account from within the William Hill website or app and then make an instant deposit through a variety of funding methods (including credit, debit and PayPal). Additionally, users receive a personalized Play+ debit card via mail. This card is connected to their Play+ balance and can be used to make purchases anywhere Discover is accepted and for cash withdrawals at ATMs.
Customers can reach William Hill support seven days a week via phone, live chat, text message and e-mail. The William Hill US website also provides a useful knowledgebase that is kept up to date. The answers to many common questions can be found there, but if not, the aforementioned contact methods can put customers in touch with a human rep fairly quickly.
Responsible Gambling Tools
William Hill’s previous work in regulated markets has it well prepared to comply with Illinois regulations (pg. 109) that require all operators to meet certain responsible gambling standards.
Customers can log in to the William Hill app or website to establish limits for deposits (daily, weekly or monthly), wagers (daily, weekly or monthly) and time spent logged in (daily). Customers may also initiate cooling off periods during which their accounts are deactivated for a period of 3 to 30 days or opt for permanent self-exclusion.