These offers are only available to people who don’t have an existing account, so if a bookie you already use is mentioned, unfortunately you won’t be eligible for their freebies. But as there are plenty to choose from, it shouldn’t be too difficult to locate an excellent alternative. Our chart will help you compare the best free bets around, and find the ones which suit your personal style.
If you’re new to free bets, we’ve created a short guide to explain more about the different terms used. This includes information on the various types of free bet, typical conditions of use, and tips on how to take full advantage of each bonus.
The different types of free bet
Online bookmakers provide new customers with a variety of sign up promotions, but before taking up their offers, it’s worth looking into exactly what you’ll be dealing with. Here’s a guide to the most popular free bets from major UK bookmakers.
A free matched bet will usually be worth the same as the first bet you place with a bookmaker. The stake of this bet will be ‘matched’ to a set amount indicated by them, though in some cases you’ll be awarded a percentage of your initial bet. This could leave you with anywhere between 10% and 300% of the amount to use on subsequent bets.
A familiar fixture in casino betting, deposit bonuses are now becoming a firm favourite with many sports punters. Most of those on offer double your first deposit with a new betting site, up to a maximum value. That means if your initial cash deposit is £10, you’ll actually have £20 in your account to start playing with. Deposit bonuses can also be provided in the form of a percentage of your first cash deposit. What makes these bonuses so attractive is that unlike the majority of free bets, the cash can be used on a range of bets over an extended period of time. However, they do come with terms and conditions that are essential to read before you sign up, as some have set wagering requirements before you can withdraw any winnings.
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No lose bets
No lose bets are free bets that are granted to new customers if their first bet is unsuccessful. So if you lose, you can still count on getting all or at least a proportion of your money back as a free bet. Although it seems generous, these are not considered as good value as basic free bets because you’ll only get the deal if you don’t win. Also known as ‘risk free’ bets, they are not especially common, but some bookmakers do use them as an incentive.
Stake returned and stake not returned bets
If you go for a stake returned free bet, the bookmaker will reimburse you for the bet and pay out any winnings. These represent great value and have become increasingly rare, instead bookies tend to offer the less generous stake not returned free bets, where you’ll get any winnings you’re owed, but they keep the free bet value.
Free bet bundles are given to new customers after they have placed a certain number of bets, they usually increase in proportion to the value of bets placed. For example, if you have a bet bundle of £100, the bookmaker could provide you with a free bet of £50 when you first wager that amount, another £50 could be added when you make three additional bets totalling that amount.
What are the terms and conditions?
Even if a bonus offer is from a reputable bookmaker and looks just right for what you have planned, you will encounter a range of terms and conditions if you choose to use it. That’s why it’s important to learn more about the limitations of these deals and the type of rules that they come packaged with.
Minimum deposit requirements
While the adverts for sign up offers will usually focus on the maximum amounts that can be deposited, the majority of bookmakers will also have strict rules about the lowest deposits they will accept. If you intend to make a deposit that’s significantly smaller than the maximum amount specified, always find out if you’ll still be eligible for the free bet, because no one wants to lose out for the sake of a few pounds.
Betfred Welcome Offer: 30 Pounds Free Bet
Minimum odds are another element of welcome bonuses which need to be met, in order to qualify for a free bet. If you choose to play it safe and bet on an event which has shorter odds than the minimum stated in the bookmaker’s terms and conditions, you could miss out altogether. This is especially exasperating because bonuses often relate to the initial bets placed, so if you lose out on a technicality there’s no going back.
Free bets won’t make a dent in your bank balance, but some bookmakers place strict conditions on their deals. These are often related to withdrawing any winnings, and may oblige you to wager the value of any free bet numerous times prior to getting access to your funds. That means even if your first bet was a winner, you could end up losing the lot because you’re forced to place a further series of bets. For seasoned players, this may not be a major issue, but it’s always worth checking before you commit yourself.
Which bets are excluded?
Bookmakers often excluded specific forms of bet from their introductory offers, most often these are the more complex types, like in-play or multiple bets. Also, you will rarely be able to combine a free bet with any other moneyback deals or discounts.
Capitalise on your free bet
When your new account is ready and you’re about to splash out using the bookies free bet, here are a few strategies that might boost your chance of a win.
One of the most obvious ways of bumping up your profits is often ignored by newer players, who may not be ready for a big spend. However, most experienced players will always go for the maximum possible amount that a bonus can provide, be that through placing a bet or a deposit. You can only take this route if you’ve got the funds to hand, but if you have and you like the look of the site, it’s worth getting your money’s worth as the offer won’t come around again.
Many free bets are delivered once you’ve used some of your own money to lay down a deposit, so always give yourself the strongest possible chance at success. Naturally, a sure-fire way of winning any bet is to go for a wager that’s set at minimal odds for the offer you’re using. Assuming the bookmaker is sound and the odds do actually represent the chance of that prediction being accurate, you’ll be in with a solid chance of winning money using your free bet. This is far more beneficial for your account balance than throwing away your bet on a whim just because its free.
Alternatively, if you’ve gone for a signup deal that delivers a no-lose bet, the opposite is true. Going for a safe option is never going to set you up for a big win, so the long odds are definitely worth a punt. Experts can make an educated guess about the outcome of events they follow for a greater chance of winning a serious profit, but even if you do lose, there’s always that handy second chance to play with.
Stake not returned bets are popping up less often amongst bookie bonuses. If you are offered one, the most effective way of bagging a serious win is to go for longer odds. Your potential returns on stake not returned bets will always be more attractive with long odds, as the bet type effects a pay-out. Of course, longer odds make it less likely that the bet will be a winner, but it’s going to be a risk worth taking for some players.
There’s no guaranteed way of cleaning up at the bookies, even if they are offering an array of tempting free bets. But, if you’re willing to use these tactics and invest a little time to research the best value odds, you’ll certainly be giving yourself a fighting chance.
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