By David Caraviello | | 12 mins
Mobile Sports Betting Goes Live In Louisiana
When the clock struck 9 a.m. CT on Friday, sports betting in Louisiana took a great leap forward.
That’s when mobile sports betting launched in the Pelican State, opening up the practice to the vast number of customers who aren’t near a retail sportsbook, but can wager on their phones through betting apps. And given that states with legal mobile sports betting regularly see 90 percent of wagers or more placed via mobile phones or online platforms, Louisiana is almost surely going to experience major increases in handle and revenue.
“It’s going to be huge,” Ronny Johns, chairman of the Louisiana Gaming Control Board, told reporter Greg Hilburn of the Lafayette Daily Advertiser. “… Our goal was to have it available before the Super Bowl (on Feb. 13), so we were able to beat that target. It will be ready for this weekend’s NFL conference championship games.”
Launch part of a staggered rollout
Major players like Caesars Sportsbook LA, BetMGM LA, DraftKings LA, FanDuel LA and BetRivers LA are all part of the launch. As of December, 13 candidates had applied for mobile sports gaming licenses, and each of those candidates was being vetted by state law enforcement.
Given that it fell to state police to vet each candidate, Louisiana officials have anticipated that mobile sports betting will be rolled out on a staggered basis. With each of the state’s 20 casino license holders allowed two “skins”—industry parlance for an online bookmaker’s website and accompanying mobile app—as well as one allowed to the Louisiana Lottery, up to 41 mobile platforms could eventually be OK’d in the state.
Mobile sports betting won’t be legal in the entire state, only the parishes (Louisiana-speak for counties) which voted to approve the measure in a 2021 referendum. Still, that covers the vast majority of the state—only nine parishes voted down the referendum, and the ones that approved it include the major metro areas of New Orleans, Shreveport, Baton Rouge and Lafayette.
An edge over regional rivals
Friday’s mobile launch also gives Louisiana a distinct edge over the neighboring states of Arkansas and Mississippi, whose mobile betting plans remain in flux. Proposed rules for mobile sports betting in Arkansas were recently withdrawn due to disagreements over language and tax rates, and Mississippi has been slow to expand its law which allows mobile sports betting only within the physical grounds of a casino.
Those two states are almost certain to drive sports bettors to Louisiana, similar to how New York sports betting fans frequently crossed bridges into mobile-friendly New Jersey before the Empire State finally adopted the practice in January. Retail sports books in Louisiana brought in $27.639 million in handle in November and $39.495 million in handle in December, according to state numbers, the first two months since Gov. John Bel Edwards signed sports betting into law.
Louisiana Promo Codes Available
Following the launch, major mobile sportsbook operators are offering promotions for new account holders that include hundreds of dollars in free bets and more. Caesars Sportsbook Louisiana is offering a deposit match worth up to $1,500 when you deposit at least $50 using the promo code “BOOKIESCZR”.
BetMGM is offering a risk-free bet worth up to $1,000, also with the promo code “BOOKIES”. FanDuel is also offering a risk-free first bet worth up to $1,000, while DraftKings Louisiana is giving new sign-ups a 20% deposit bonus worth up to $1,000. At BetRivers, you can get a first bet match worth up to $250.