Is Matched Betting a Scam is one of the most frequently asked questions on betting forums, and the answer is – NO!
If you’re not sure what matched betting is, it’s the practice of turning welcome offers from bookmakers into cash without gambling. Yeah, admittedly, it does sound a bit strange, but it’s perfectly legal and it’s not even that hard to do.
What Is Matched Betting?
Matched betting is the act of opening an account with a betting site solely to profit from the welcome offer. Normally, you’ll have to deposit and bet funds to receive an offer, but you don’t actually need to gamble.
The idea is to bet your deposit on a selection and then deposit enough money into one of the betting exchanges to lay it back. This means that you will neither lose your deposit or profit from it.
But you will now have earned a free bet with the bookmaker you opened an account with, and you can turn this into free cash. You place your free bet on a selection with the bookmaker, then lay the selection on the exchanges to lose half the amount you stand to win with the bookmaker – guaranteeing yourself a profit whether your selection wins or loses.
An Example Of Matched Betting
Let’s say you open an account with a bookmaker that is offering £100 in free bets when you deposit and bet £100. What you do now is bet your £100 deposit on a selection at even-money (2.00), meaning that you stand to win £100 plus your £100 stake for a total return of £200 and a profit of £100.
Before your selection is in play, you also need to deposit £100 in a betting exchange where you can lay your selection to lose £100. If you lose this bet, you will lose the £100 you bet but will win this £100 at the bookmakers.
Of course, it doesn’t matter whether your bet with the bookmaker is a winner and your bet with the betting exchange is a loser, or vice versa, you should still have the same £200 you started with.
But what you also have now is a free £100 bet. You now stake this bet on an even-money shot, meaning you again stand to win £100. But what you do now is lay your selection on the betting exchanges to lose £50. If the selection wins, this means you’ll now be £50 up.
If your selection loses, you will have lost your free bet at the bookmakers but will have won £50 on the betting exchange – and this is how you profit from a matched bet.
*Please be aware that you will have to pay a small commission on any betting exchange winnings, but these will only reduce your profit by around 5%.
Why Do Bookmakers Offer Matched Bets?
Bookmakers offer matched bets as an incentive to entice new members to open an account with them. Many matched bet offers are used in good faith by people that prefer to gamble and try and make a profit from it. For example, you could make a lot more money if you placed your free bet on a 10/1 shot and it won. Indeed, you’d win £500.
But if you prefer the idea of making a little extra cash without gambling your deposit, then matched betting is an easy way to do it.
What Bookmakers Offer Match Bets?
Bookmakers’ offers are always subject to change, but most good odds comparison sites will tell you the latest matched betting offers that are available. Most of the big online betting sites offer matched bets, with Bet365 traditionally offering one of the biggest matched bets offers for new players.
Other popular betting sites worth checking out include Sky Bet, William Hill, 888, Betfair, Betvictor, Betfred, Betway, and Boylesports.
What’s The Best Way To Use Bookmaker Offers?
If you’re interested in taking advantage of bookmaker offers but don’t want to get involved in match betting, you can also make money from these offers by actually betting with them.
If you’re going to have a bet on a selection anyway, then you’d be crazy not to take advantage of a free bet offer. But there’s no need to just throw your free bet blindly on the favourite in the next race. Instead, use it to bet on a selection that you would have bet on with real money, if you didn’t have a free bet.
But always remember to check the terms and conditions of matched bets or free bets, as some may have time limits, odds restrictions, or other t&cs you need to consider.
What Sports Should I Bet On?
You can use bookmaker offers to bet on a wide range of sports but, again, always check the terms and conditions to make sure that you bet your deposit on a market that will qualify towards the offer.
The best advice is to try and stick to the type of bets that you normally do well from, whether that’s horse racing, football, or any other kind of sports.
If you’re new to gambling, then it’s a good idea to take the advice of a professional tipster. Hey, these guys gamble to make their livings, so getting their help will give you a better chance of making a profit from those bookmaker offers.
Here at Betting Gods, we have tipsters that provide tips for a wide range of sports, including horse racing, football, basketball, ice hockey, American football, cricket, golf, and tennis.
Even better, you can get a daily sample of free tips from our tipsters simply by sending us your email address. You can enjoy these free tips for as long as you like, but our free tips newsletter is also a great way to find your perfect tipster.
Once you’ve built up a nice bankroll from your bookmaker offers, you might want to consider purchasing an affordable monthly subscription to receive all the tips from any of our tipsters. All subscription services also come with a staking plan and bankroll management.
We hope that’s answered your question, is matched betting a scam.