Sports Betting FAQ
Sports betting is mostly very simple: You place a bet on an event and you either get a return on your investment or you don’t. But there can be a lot of things surrounding that simple transaction that aren’t so easy to understand. In order to help you have the smoothest betting experience possible we have created this FAQ to answer any question you might have. From bonuses and free bets to live streaming and legal questions, this page has been designed to be the definitive source for betting questions and queries.
Bonus and Free Bets
Why do bookies give out free bets and is there a catch?
Bookies give out free bets for a variety of reasons, but it all boils down to grabbing your attention. A good bonus is a way of telegraphing the worth of a company. The catch is the wagering requirements that the bookies request. This can be an initial deposit, or rolling over the bet a certain number of times.
How do we rate sportsbook’s bonuses?
We look for a whole host of different things in finding the best sportsbook bonuses. The size is a very important thing, but we also look at it in relation to the amount of money you have to initially wager or deposit. This is so we can figure out if it’s the best value for money. Other criteria include the deposit methods, sports you can bet on, and odds levels.
Wagering requirements are put in place by bookmakers in order to make sure you aren’t getting your bonus so easily. This might mean betting over a certain odds level, or turning over your initial deposit more than once. Learn more about this at our unique wagering requirements page.
What is a risk free bet & how does it differ from a free bet?
A risk free bet is one where if you stake loses, the bookmaker refunds your deposit as a bonus or a free bet. This differs from a free bet whereby if you lose then that’s your lot. As a result, risk free bets are a great thing for first time bettors.
Why didn’t I receive my free bet?
When you try and claim a free bet, you have to fulfill the criteria that the bookmaker sets for you. This is why we recommend always reading the terms and conditions before getting involved with a bookmaker. Reasons could include the wrong payment method, betting on the wrong market and any suspicion of money laundering.
Deposits and Withdrawals
What is the best method for depositing at an online betting site?
There is no one deposit method that is better than another. Each has its own merits and drawbacks and these can depend on the bookmaker that you use. But in general we lean towards depositing methods that are quick and easy to use, such as PayPal, credit or debit Cards and paysafecard.
How long do I have to wait for deposits and withdrawals?
With almost all deposit methods, you can expect your money to go into your betting account instantaneously. For withdrawals, it can take up to 3 days for card payments, up to 2 days for e-wallets, and even longer if you use a bank transfer. This can depend upon which operator you use.
How can I deposit and withdraw using my credit/debit card?
Using a card for deposits and withdrawals is really simple. First you have to add it as a payment method on your bookmaker. After that, you select how much money you want to deposit and connect your card details. It should go through pretty quickly – just note that for Visa you may be asked to go through the independent Verified by Visa process.
Can I use multiple payment methods?
Using multiple payment methods is not only allowed, it is also a great idea! The ideal thing for any bettor to have is full flexibility with anything they do, so being able to deposit and withdraw in many different ways is highly recommended.
Is it legal to use someone else’s log in details or credit card?
For the most part we would recommend never using somebody else’s log in details or credit card. This opens you up to wide suspicion of fraud, which is a serious criminal offence. If for any reason, you may have to do this, make sure you get permission in writing. This way you can clear yourself legally.
Is online betting legal and regulated?
Gambling in the UK is legal and is regulated under the Gambling Act 2005. This includes online betting. Any site that you use has to be regulated by the UK Gambling Commission to be legal. Just look for it on the UK Gambling Commission website to double-check.
Are there any restrictions for gambling online?
There can be many different restrictions to gambling online depending on the operator that you use. For the most part, operators have minimum and maximum deposit limits, as well as a maximum that you can win on any given day. They also look out for arbitrage and money laundering.
Why has a betting site asked for photographic identification and what is the verification process?
In order to stop people under the age of 18 from gambling online, and to stop people making multiple accounts with the same operator, bookmakers will ask for some kind of photographic identification so you can bet with them. You can usually send them a picture of your passport or driver’s license via email.
Are there any betting sites without age verification?
There’s a very short answer to this question: No. Age verification is an essential part of making sure that young people do not gamble. If you happen to stumble upon a betting site that doesn’t enforce age verification, then it is illegal. Do note that bookmakers will usually allow you to deposit before your age is verified then ask for verification. If you are underage you probably won’t get your money back.
Do I have to pay tax on my betting winnings?
Under the Gambling Act 2005, no tax is levied upon punters from their winnings. All the tax proceedings are raised from the bookmakers themselves as they gain massive profits from their client’s losses. This is what makes it such an enticing thing for bettors to invest in.
How do I make a complaint against a bookie?
There are many methods of recourse you can use when complaining against a bookie. The first is to contact the bookmaker directly through any contact method they give you. If this doesn’t work, you can contact IBAS (The Independent Betting Adjudication Authority) who are trained in solving any dispute you may have.
Is betting online safe?
When you bet online you can be assured of your safety. With end-to-end encryption and strong anti-money laundering protocols in place, there is little chance of your money being stolen. In fact, the main thing that gets in the way could be you. Always keep your personal details safe and never give them out to anyone.
What are the safest payment methods?
As a general rule, all payment methods accepted by bookmakers are considered to be very safe as they are all regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. We would just say to be a little cautious regarding crypto-currencies at the moment as they can be suspect to fluctuating market rates.
What do I do if I think I’m addicted to gambling?
If you believe you are addicted to gambling, you should stop immediately. You can ask your bookmaker to freeze your account, thus meaning you can’t bet any more on these sites. We would recommend a full digital detox in order to get away from any online sites.
How to cure gambling addiction?
There are many ways to cure gambling addiction. You can get therapy, which will try and help you unlearn or reduce your urge to gamble. Additionally, medication such as anti-depressants can be used to stop the triggers that cause gambling. It also helps to join a self-help group such as Gamblers Anonymous. More resources can be found at Gamble Aware.
How to avoid gambling addiction?
To avoid gambling addiction, we would recommend keeping full tabs on all the money that you spend, and asking yourself why you are gambling? If it is no longer fun, or you are doing it to beat depression or some other mental illness, we would recommend getting professional help instead of betting anymore.
What causes gambling addiction?
There are many things that cause gambling addiction. From alleviating depression through the elation of winning, to financial difficulty meaning that gambling feels like the only way out, to simply chasing the rush of winning, it can be a highly compelling activity for vulnerable people. If you fit this type of person, we would recommend that you know your limits and stop gambling immediately.
Generic Bet Questions
What betting events are covered online?
When it comes to the world of online betting, there are so many markets for you to choose. What they are depends on the bookmaker you use. All the major operators cover a vast amount of sports, while some even do political, TV specials and novelty bets.
What are betting markets?
A betting market means a type of bet that is covered online. Here is where you will find the different odds for certain events. For example, a football match will offer betting markets such as over/under markets, player to score, score of the game and team to win. The best operators have lots of different markets to bet on.
What are the minimum stakes and maximum payouts?
The minimum stakes and maximum payouts depend on the operator. Some allow stakes as low as two or three pence, whilst some can be up to 10p. Payouts can be as low as the few thousands, while some go up to over a million pounds.
How do I make money through sports betting?
Making money through sports betting is not guaranteed, but most people believe it can be achieved through keeping a log-sheet of all your bets and seeing what works and what doesn’t work. To learn more, please head on over to our betting guide.
Why are odds levels important?
Odds levels are important because they show you how much money you can get as a return for your investment. Basically what you want to find is odds levels as close to 100% as possible, knowing that you get as much money back for your initial stake.
Why do the odds vary between online sports betting sites?
Each betting site has their own system for tabulating odds, so there is bound to be some difference between each one. They vary the odds in order to either make sure they make more money or to entice the user into making a bet. This is common practice among betting sites.
How can I find the best betting odds?
You can find the best betting odds by taking your time looking across different bookmakers. This is dependent on the market you are looking at and the sport you are betting on. Take a look for yourself in order to find the best possible odds.
Which sport has the best odds?
As a general rule of thumb, odds improve when there are less options available for an outcome. Therefore for boxing, baseball or American football, where you bet for one person/team to win or the other, the odds are much better than horse or greyhound racing, where there can be at least six options. Nonetheless, with these sports you can expect bigger payoffs when you win.
What is live sports betting?
Live sports betting is having a punt on a sport while it is being played out. With in-play betting, the odds for the event can change depending on what happens. This is usually accompanied by the ability to live stream the event.
How to stream online?
Streaming online is pretty simple. Some bookmakers let you watch a whole host of sports if you are simply logged into your account. Others require your bank balance to have a positive amount before you can live stream sports. For horse and greyhound racing, you usually have to stake on the race before you are allowed to watch it.
What are the differences between betting online vs. betting in the shops?
There are a few differences between betting online and in the betting shop. Betting shops have limited hours, lower odds and limited in-play bets, while betting online gives you 24/7 access, a bunch of bonuses and promotions and the ability to bet on mobile or PC. That said, we do recommend the betting shop occasionally for the community vibe it fosters.