Review of FanDuel Daily Fantasy Sports Site
FanDuel is a Daily Fantasy Sports pioneer, and they’ve been around as long as the industry has. In a sense, they were the originators of the industry, as it came to prominence via an ad blitz by Fanduel and their competitor, DraftKings, back in the early 2010s. FanDuel was founded by Tom Griffiths and Nigel Eccles, and they have pioneered many techniques for Daily Fantasy, such as weekly contests, daily contests, and single-game contests.
Our FanDuel review is focused on FanDuel as a DFS provider, although they have branched out into the online sportsbook world in 17 states as well. We’ll cover the basic info on FanDuel, as well as how to use them to play DFS. We’ll also review FanDuel contest types, which range from free plays to huge tournaments.
|FanDuel Location:||New York, N.Y USA|
|Where is FanDuel Legal?||All US States, EXCEPT: Hawaii, Idaho, Louisiana (depending on location), Montana, Nevada, Washington|
|FanDuel Bonuses:||$20 Sign Up Bonus|
How To Use FanDuel
Though it’s tempting to tell people how they should play FanDuel in terms of strategy, such is not the purview of our handy FanDuel review and guide. Rather, what we’re aiming to do is to give you a crash-course in how to actually go about using the FanDuel site. Think baby steps: you have to know how to actually play daily fantasy sports before you can start worrying about advanced tactics and even season-long strategies.
In subsequent sections we will discuss topics like choosing a contest type, making deposits, collecting your winnings, downloading and using FanDuel’s industry-leading mobile daily fantasy sports app, some of the details on available promotions and so on. In the FanDuel FAQ section that concludes our FanDuel review, we will also take a look at issues regarding the legality of participating in daily fantasy contests (short answer: it is legal, so don’t worry) and other general questions about how DFS works.
Getting Started On FanDuel
First things first, FanDuel is not going to be very fun for you if you don’t first make an account. In fact, there is very little outside “teaser” type information available on the main FanDuel website before you make an account. The good news is it’s free to sign up, so have no fear.
Simply click any of the prominent bright green “get started” or “join now” buttons scattered throughout the homepage and you’ll be prompted to enter basic information in the startup menu. That means you’ll have to enter fill in things like your name, email address, a screen name (be creative!) and a password (there is a handy password strength bar to let you know how secure your prospective password is, which is a nice touch from the FanDuel developers). This part of the getting started process takes literally less than a minute.
Entering A FanDuel Promo Code
Next, you’ll have to input the appropriate code for any promos currently on offer – FanDuel is one of the best DFS operators when it comes to promo codes, as it seems like they have always got something juicy to offer, especially on new signups. Right now the big seller is the Win or Play Again offer, which basically lets you get an automatic credit of up to $120 to your account if you lose your first ever contest. The genius of this offer is that it incentivizes players to shrug off their newbie jitters and get right back into the action even if they crash and burn on their first time. More DFS companies could take note of this sensible approach toward long-term player retention.
Picking A FanDuel Contest
Picking a contest on FanDuel isn’t a straightforward process, but neither is it a confusing one. The first decision you have to make when you head over to the Contest Lobby page is to choose whether you want to play for cash prizes against contestants from around the world or if you only want to go against people you know.
In the first case, you’ll want to select FanDuel Classic. There are several different contest types available, but we’ll get into more thorough explanations of those in upcoming sections. For now, it’s probably helpful for you to understand that you can participate in contests with as few as one other person all the way up to hundreds. Even free contests are available in FanDuel’s Classic Mode.
In the second case, you should select Friends Mode. This selection will enable you to create your own private league in which you and your friends can engage in weekly or season-long contests for cash prizes. You won’t be able to qualify for the big public tournaments this way, but playing daily fantasy is, at its core, about having a good time watching sports, and this is the perfect way to enjoy the sports you love in a new way.
FanDuel Contest Types
Our FanDuel review wouldn’t be complete if we didn’t dive deep into all the different types of contests available for players to participate in. Just choosing the sport you want to try out is just the first part of your task when it comes to actually getting started playing daily fantasy sports. Now you’ve got to choose between one of the many contest types offered by FanDuel.
However, we recognize that a lot of the terminology used may be confusing to daily fantasy neophytes, so our review of FanDuel’s contest offerings will hopefully give you a more thorough understanding. That way you’ll be able to choose the contest type that works best for you when considering the time you have to invest and your skill level.
Free Play Contests
Just like it says on the tin, Free Play-type contests are free to play, with no entry fee. You won’t win any cash prizes for winning this kind of contest, but what you gain in experience in these early forays into daily fantasy sports at FanDuel may pay off in a big league way down the road if you stick with it.
FanDuel offers newbie players a great opportunity to hone their skills against other players just getting started on the daily fantasy sports adventure. More experienced players are not allowed to participate in this contests, so beginner mode is your best bet when you’re still learning.
There are several types of beginner-only contests, including 50/50, Double Up and Mini Squeeze. We’ll talk about 50/50 contests in more detail in the next section, but Double Up and Mini Squeeze contests are basically just the next steps up in progressively more lucrative games, with top finishers earning more prize money. The entry fee for all beginner-level contests is $2.
Also known as “Double-Up,” 50/50 contests are available for both beginners and more experienced players. Daily fantasy veterans flock to this variety of contest because all you have to do in order to win double your entry fee is make it into the top half of all entrants.
This is a great kind of contest for folks who want to have a 1v1 test of skill with a friend, because in this case, the winner takes it all. The victory in a head-to-head 2021 FanDuel contests gets almost double his entry fee while his opponent goes home with nothing. Sounds like the perfect place to settle your rivalry with a “sports guy” coworker.
These contests are essentially the upgraded form of the 50/50 type. What that means is, instead of winning double your entry fee, winners in multiplier contests win more money as they win more contests in a stackable fashion. So, for instance, if you win several daily fantasy contests in a row you could be looking at 3, 4 or even 5 times the entry fee in cash prizes depending on how well you do. Obviously more experienced players are going to shine here, but when you’re ready to step up into the big leagues of FanDuel cash payouts, this is usually your first stop on the road to bigger and better things like the contest type we’ll discuss in the next section.
This is where things really start getting serious. FanDuel tournaments attract high player counts and pay out big dollars at the end. You can start with a low entry fee and work your way through successively more challenging levels of competition until you’re vying for a cash prize of several hundred dollars or more in the case of truly big special-event type tournaments. These are the main attraction of FanDuel - you enter your team into a large tournament, and then compete against others who have done the same.
Satellites And Qualifiers
FanDuel players who take part in satellite tournaments do so in order to qualify for special event tournaments like the Playboy Championship or the annual Dallas Baseball Championship. Satellites are important because they whittle these massive fields down to a few finalists who will compete for prizes often worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. Only very experienced players need apply. These are basically professional daily fantasy qualifiers. You qualify for one of the big tournaments, you’re in the big time. This makes these tournaments similar to, for example, WSOP qualifiers, or various esports qualifiers.
FanDuel World Fantasy Football Championship
With over $5.5 million in cash prizes, FanDuel's World Fantasy Football Championship (WFFC) requires players to qualify before the event takes place. The first place winner takes home $500,000 at the event with second place winning $200,000 and another $100,000 going to third. The top-80 cash in this major fantasy football championship and qualifying can occur by earning a ticket in a satellite event or later by paying for a chance with a $250 entry.
In what is perhaps the most self-explanatory of all FanDuel cash contests, large contests are for more than a few players – a lot more. Expect the total number of entrants to go up to 100 people. These are the biggest non-qualifier contests available, and the best part is players can choose what kind of entry and prize structure they want when they choose a tournament. This could be seen as a nice segue into tournament play. This is what the majority of FanDuel players end up playing. These are big contests where you compete against the field in order to try to top the leaderboards with your team. There are all sorts of analytics and data analysis edges to be gained in these tournaments, so make sure to do your research and check them out.
Making A FanDuel Deposit And Collecting Payouts
Now that you’ve completed the sign-in process, picked your sport and decided on a contest type, it’s time to make a deposit into your account so you can get started actually playing daily fantasy sports at FanDuel. Fortunately, this process is a cinch thanks to the many payment options FanDuel makes available to its users. PayPal is, of course, accepted, as are VISA, American Express, Mastercard and Discover credit cards, and even electronic check or bank account transfers.
The whole deposit process is rather straightforward and streamlined, and that simplicity carries over to the withdrawal procedure. FanDuel is only able to issue payouts via PayPal or a request for a check, however, so factor either a 48-hour or 7 to 10-day turnaround time, respectively, into your plans should request a withdrawal. You will need to confirm your physical mailing address, social security number and pass other similar security checks in order for FanDuel to process your withdrawal.
Drafting Your Daily Fantasy Sports Team On FanDuel
FanDuel, like other leading daily fantasy sports operators, uses a simulated salary cap model for recruiting (otherwise known as “drafting”) players to your fantasy roster. In the case of FanDuel, the salary cap imposed on players building their lineup is $60,000. Athletes are ranked according to their stats and assigned a certain “salary” commensurate with their skill and proven ability, with better athletes naturally commanding a higher salary. The aim is to choose your team carefully, taking into account the best possible players for each position you have to fill, without going over your salary cap.
This is one of the more enjoyable aspects of playing daily fantasy sports, and definitely the most strategic component of the whole affair, and much ink has been spilt across the internet and many a water cooler conversation has been had on the nuances of this very subject. However, it is not the purpose of this FanDuel review to set you on the path for building your ultimate fantasy team, but rather just to give you an idea of the constraints placed on you when you prepare to recruit your roster and some of the general concepts behind the salary cap model. FanDuel does allow instantaneous substitutions, so don’t get stuck with a bad lineup going into your next contest.
In conclusion, your goal when drafting a roster should be to get as close as you can to your salary cap limit without going over. FanDuel will let you know if you’ve exceeded your salary cap by highlighting your account with a red $ sign, meaning you’ve got to go back and do some reorganization. Every sport is different, so recruiting the best team possible requires that you have some knowledge (if not an in-depth knowledge) of the sport in which your fantasy team is going to compete.