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High Rollers Casino Bonuses

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UK Betting sites

Looking for the most trusted UK operators? Check out the best UK betting sites and find the one that suits you the most.

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What is Matched Betting?

If you have been keeping up with my blog, lately you have probably been reading a lot about “free bets.”  I put “free bets” in quotation marks because free bets are not really free - read more about this in my installment on What You Should Know About Free Bets.  There are a lot of strings attached to them, and quite often, you actually wind up losing money while you are trying to meet the criteria to claim them. 


Matched betting is a technique you can use to actually get some value out of a free bet you are offered.  It is fairly complicated to explain (though not so challenging once you wrap your mind around it), so I will be devoting a couple of articles to teaching you how it works in detail.


Before I get into that, I want to quickly review the problems with free bets. 

Basically, it goes like this.  You sign up at a reliable UK betting site.  You agree to a promotion for a £20 free bet.  Hurray, free money … right?  Well, according to the terms and conditions, you need to:

  • Pick a selection with particular odds, say for example 2.00.  This is a bet you are unlikely to win.
  • Place the wager within a specified and generally brief timeframe (like within a few weeks).
  • Place your wager using your own funds, not the free money from the betting site.
  • Meet the rollover requirement.  In some cases this is actually 1:1, so if you want to claim £20, you have to stake £20.  But if the requirement is 3x or 4x, you would have to stake £60 or £80.

See?  Lots of strings attached and caveats, all designed to put money in the UK betting site’s account, not yours.


So this brings me back around to talking about matched bets.  As I have stated, a matched bet (not to be confused with a “match bet”) is a strategy which you can use to leverage the free bet to your advantage.  It is basically a form of hedging involving placing opposing wagers at different UK betting sites. 

It is something which seems at first glance like it involves a lot of effort to make a fairly small amount of money, but once you get the hang of it, you can do it pretty quickly and easily.  Do it at enough sites and you can probably make several hundred pounds or more without too much hard work (and very minimal risk).


You may be wondering if matched betting is legal and if bookies mind you doing it.  Matched betting is entirely legal; you are simply placing opposing wagers on a single event at two different sites.  As to whether bookmakers mind, that depends very much on you.  For the most part, UK betting sites do not care about matched betting at all, but they will get angry fast if you try to cheat the system (i.e. signing up for more than one account on the same site to double up on promotion offers).  Play by the rules and you should be just fine.  This does not guarantee that no one will get mad at you, but it is relatively rare. 


Ready to learn more?  Read on to How to Place Matched Bets, Part 1 to start exploring how the process works.


Horse Racing Betting

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Bookmaker of the Month

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Gambling on the Internet

A few things to consider when gambling online:

  • Take advantage of first deposit bonuses
  • Have a budget and stick to it
  • Don't lose more than you can afford
  • When drunk, don't bet!
  • Don't chase losses
  • Bet on markets you know well
  • Don't abuse bonuses