Understanding free bet deals

how does it work

Newcomers to the world of online bookmakers must find the internet a bewildering place. Every internet-based online bookmaker now offers a plethora of free bet deals and other bonuses and promotions, and while the bookies are not being intentionally duplicitous, the way such deals are constructed can be confusing to the newb.

This article will talk you through the best way to get to understand about ‘free bet deals’ so you won’t end up disappointed when you sign up for a free bet offer and end up unsatisfied with what you actually receive.

First and foremost it is important to understand that a free bet deal is NOT free money. When a deal says something along the lines of ‘bet £30 get £10 free’ you will not receive a shiny ten pound note that you can then spend anywhere. The ‘free’ money will be money that you can ONLY use to place a wager.

Very few sports books offer you something for nothing when it comes to a free bet deal. There is usually a single hoop or a series of hoops for you to jump through before you can get your hands on your free cash. In the example above, you would need to make a single bet or a series of bets totalling £30 in order to receive your free bet money.

Some deals have a condition known as ‘minimum odds’. This is the minimum price for any so-called ‘qualifying’ wagers for them to count towards your qualification expectation. The typical minimum odds price is Evens, or 2.00 if you prefer your odds in the new-fangled decimal format. This means that bets on events at, for example, 3/1 (4.00) WILL count towards your qualification expectations, but bets on events at 1/3 (1.33) won’t. This tactic is used by sports books so you won’t be able to place your bets on ‘dead certs’ and hence minimise the risk of losing money.

Once you have achieved your qualification expectations your free bets will arrive in your account. Usually, you will have to use your free bet money in one go – you will not typically be able to use a £10 free bet to make ten £1 bets, for example. Minimum odds may come into play as well.

By far the most important thing to understand about a free bet is that the ‘free bet money’ does not ever, actually exist. It’s a theoretical amount of cash that you can only use to wager with and once the free bet is settled, you will not receive the free bet stake back as your winnings. For example, if you bet £10 of your own cash on a horse to romp home at 4/1 you would expect £50 back if it wins. With a free bet you would receive back £40 – just your winnings and not the free bet itself.

Already read the terms and conditions associated with any free bet before you sign up for one. Although complex, free bets they are a great way of getting a little extra from your gambling pot.



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