Online bookmakers are always trying to attract more punters to their site. Betting offers are therefore a vital part of the experience for new customers. So, the better the promotion, the more likely a bettor will part with their hard-earned cash at a site.
The strength of a betting offer can make or break a player’s time with a sports betting site. We intend to draw your attention to betting promotions and deals served up by the best UK betting sites that cater to new and existing customers. We will also explain how we rank the best betting offers.
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What Are Betting Offers?
Betting promotions come in various shapes and sizes, but in essence, they act as a gateway or a conduit to further riches at a bookmaker. Of course, these offers vary in quality, and some will be sports specific, in terms of which markets you can wager on.
As you will discover later in this guide, there are many different types of promotions you can tap into, which cover everything from a standard sign up offer to acca insurances. Ultimately some will be catered to new customers, while others will be aimed solely at existing players.
The UK betting scene is a very competitive marketplace, so betting sites are always frantically working behind the scenes in an effort to convince players to join their site. However, you should also take time to pick your betting offer, so you get the most out of your time wagering at a particular bookmaker.
How New Customer Betting Offers Work
On a basic level, there are two ways in which betting sites operate new customer betting offers. The first element is activation, while the second part incorporates the reward itself.
Essentially, with the activation part, you will have to be prepared to spend money. You will usually have to put down a minimum deposit if you wish to claim a free bet. With some bookies, you may have to insert a promo code otherwise you could be disqualified from the offer. In some instances, you may be able to get a no deposit free bet where you just have to register an account to get a healthy promotion in return. Nevertheless, these are scarce and are more likely to be found at casino sites as opposed to sports betting operators. With the activation part, these will come attached with rigorous T&Cs which need to be read and understood carefully before taking advantage of them.
You will have to settle any qualifying bets before you get your reward. Typically, with betting sign up offers, you will receive free bet tokens. This mirrors the same principles as cash wagers, although your stake won’t be returned to you as winnings.
Minimum odds will often apply, but in many cases, there will be wagering requirements, which refers to betting through a bonus before collecting any winnings. Spreadex’s offer which consists of ‘Bet £25, Get £35 in Free Bets’ is worth exploring further, although be aware of the minimum odds requirements which is 1/2.
Types of Betting Offers
The most revered sportsbooks will be replete with the best betting offers, but there is a modicum of predictability when it comes to offers you will encounter.
New Customer Betting Offers
At Sportslens, we have undergone extensive research to share with you the best betting site offers around, so you don’t need to shop around. New customer betting offers should be exciting, but also fair, so that a bookmaker can retain the loyalty of players in the long term. In the following section, we will rummage through the types of free bets available to new customers.
- Free Bets
They say nothing is free in life. To a certain extent, this saying rings true. However, we think the following freebies may change your opinion.
- Bet & Get Offers
Bet & Get offers are common, especially among the best new betting sites we reviewed. In essence, you are getting something in return for placing a minimum wager. They are designed to make your time worthwhile as well as convince you to keep playing at a site. For example, we consider Kwiff’s ‘Bet £10, Get a £20 Surprise Bet’ to be rather lucrative. While the offer can’t be used in conjunction with any offer on the site, the rewards may be rather satisfying.
- No Deposit Free Bet Offers
Unfortunately, no deposit free bets are extremely rare, so you are more likely to find these types of offers at online casinos. From time to time, some bookmakers may offer a small free bet as an incentive. If anything, you are probably more likely to find no deposit free bet offers on the mobile, but once again, these can be tricky to source.
- Money Back Free Bet Offers
With these kinds of offers, these refer to a specific event happening. For example, if Manchester United were facing Chelsea, you could get money back if Cristiano Ronaldo is the game’s first goalscorer. Or, alternatively, if you were placing money on a horse, you could get money back if your horse falls. But be careful, as you won’t get your money back. Instead, you will be rewarded with a free bet, which you can use to retrieve your original stake.
Horse racing takes pride of place at QuinnBet, so you can unlock some great money back specials. One of their flagship offers is the ‘Money back as a Free Bet if your horse finishes second to the favourite’, which can be applied to any race in the UK or Ireland any day of the week. The promotion clearly stipulates there must be a minimum of 6 runners in the field, with the favourite heading off at odds greater than 6/4 (2.50).
Existing Customer Betting Offers
Bookmakers are always walking a tightrope. There is a fine balancing act of trying to please all newcomers to their site. Yet at the same time, they also have a duty to keep existing customers on board. In the following section, we will run through some of the finest existing customer betting offers that should be taken advantage of.
Free Bet Clubs
Free bets, as we have seen, can be invaluable. Whether you are wagering normally or implementing a more complex no-risk matched betting strategy, they can be a great way to earn bet credits. While you will be familiar with Betway’s well established Free Bet Club, there are other reputable bookmakers out there that deliver in this regard. The Free Bet clubs will allow existing customers to use these kinds of betting offers, for specific wagers, such as accumulators. Usually, you will have to wager a minimum of £20, and there will be stringent T&Cs to adhere to, but ultimately the more you bet, the bigger the return will be.
Virgin Bet, for example, runs a weekly acca where you can opt in by placing two £10+ accas with four more legs between Monday and Sunday. These are available on all sports, but the free bet token is non-withdrawable.
Acca insurance betting offers
Accas are hugely popular among bookmakers, although they can be a cruel mistress. Any football fan will share tales of misery while placing these kinds of bets. After all, if you wager on six different results, but then say Rangers end up slipping up away to Motherwell in the Scottish Premiership, then you bet will be scuppered.
If you’re a seasoned bettor, you will know all too well of the risk involved. However, acca insurance betting offers provide a welcome safety net if your wager goes awry. Even if one of your selections lose, then your entire stake will be refunded.
At 888Sport, for example, they are rather generous in this regard. You can claim a Free Bet up to £25 if your 5+ Acca loses by a single leg. It is widely seen as the top UK bookmaker for accas, although it is predominantly available to bet on US sports. The wagering requirements are rather steep, however, as they are set at 40x, and you have to use the bonus within 14 days.
Acca bonus betting offers
This is also a rather tasty proposition for acca aficionados. As they are harder to win than standardised single bets, accas deliver sizeable rewards, which increases if you have an acca offer to hand.
Acca bonus deals will therefore boost your bankroll over time if you can strike lucky. This will vary depending on the number of selections you have incorporated into your acca. So, for example, you might start at 5% for a three-fold, which can go up to 10% for a four-fold and so forth. At the very top end, you can earn huge amounts if you win all the elements of your acca.
BoyleSports, for example, runs a regular ‘£5 Free Acca for every 5 Accas placed’ which can be used across all sports, although they work perfectly for football and horse racing.
Special event betting offers
There is usually a humdrum of excitement throughout the sporting calendar, where some punters will flock to certain sites to place their wagers. These will be well advertised by bookmakers where such offers may be available in the run up to say BBC Sports Personality of the Year. For example, you could get some tasty odds served up by some bookmakers on US Open champion Emma Raducanu to win the 2021 edition.
Best odds guaranteed betting offers
In terms of betting site offers, the best odds guaranteed has a certain cache attached to it. Best Odds Guaranteed – also known as BoG for short – are a brilliant horse racing concession where you can take an early price on a particular horse, so you’ll know whether you will get paid out at these odds or the starting price depending on which is bigger.
Each bookie will have slightly different T&Cs when it comes to BoG, but since QuinnBet introduced this type of offer, it has stolen a march on some of their rivals. With this offer, customers can bet up to a maximum of £250 per race which is available for UK and Irish horse racing meets.
Extra places betting offers
The basic premise of this, as the name suggests, is for bookmakers to give you more places on your each way bets. This type of betting offer is perhaps less common compared to Best Odds Guaranteed.
Yet most bookmakers worth their salt, especially those with a rich horse racing pedigree will have these in place for any given event. So, if you normally receive three runners to meet the ‘place’ part of your bet, then this could be bumped up to four. With a payout at odds of 1/5, you are more likely to cut down on your losses.
BoyleSports is a go-top option if you wish to chance your arm with their extra place offers. Here, the odds are set at 1/5, but you will need 12 runners or more for 4 places, while there must be 20 or more runners for a payout of 6 places. This applies to the each-way market, but you can use this bet each day for selected races.
Odds & Price boost betting offers
There’s few things that beat an exclusive price boost or odds inflation on a bookmaker’s site. Some bookmakers will offer daily increased odds across a wide range of events, leaving just to find the best odds.
Enhanced odds are a great way to boost your bankroll, but sometimes, the best new customer betting offers will provide outrageous prices to give punters a greater chance of success with their wagers. For example, you may wish to stake £10 on Tottenham to beat Arsenal, where the original odds were 4/1. However, if the enhanced odds were 10/1, then you would see £50 as soon as the bet is settled, and £110 in free bets upon settlement too.
At VirginBet, price boosts are flagged on the promotions page. They have termed it as ‘Price Boosts for Days’, which makes this a regular occurrence for punters to enjoy. The maximum bet you can place down to activate this offer is £20.
How We Rank the Best Betting Offers
Whatever site you wish to play at, UK bookmakers will never cease to come up with new betting offers to appeal to their customers. You will be inundated with new offers when you sign up to a site.
But how do we judge the best betting offers? Well, to do that, we have zoned in on the most critical elements, so here’s what you should pay close attention to:
- Value – Risk/Reward ratio
Different punters will have different interpretations of or varying approaches to the risk/reward ratio when it comes to be betting. Some may be more naturally conservative with their attitude, while others may be happy to adopt the ‘go big, go home’ attitude, therefore throwing caution to the wind.
But fear not, bookmakers have covered every possibility, from Free Bet Clubs to Acca Insurance bets. With Free Bet Clubs, the risk may be higher with these kinds of wagers, but they may provide more value in the long term. With some you may be able to spread out the risk. However, more measured bettors may eschew the Free Bet Club and go for Acca Insurance or Money Back, which will prevent losses from mounting up.
- Clarity & Transparency
Betting offers can naturally be very attractive, although there should be no grey area when it comes to advertising the offer. Bookmakers should make it abundantly clear from the outset all the T&Cs, so that you know how to activate the offer, as well as how things may transpire over time.
Of course, you should assess the risk/reward nature of the bet itself based on its merits, but the wool should never be pulled over your eyes. Whether it is Price Boosts or extra places, the bookmaker should put you in control, so that you can have the freedom and flexibility to make the most of the offer.
While the T&Cs should be stipulated correctly, you should also as a customer, be able to clarify any area of the betting offer you are unsure about. The bookmakers with the best betting offers will also be some of the most transparent in the industry.
- Fair Terms
Similarly, whichever bookmaker you decide to play, offers fair terms. All betting offers will have clear T&Cs, but they should be fair, firstly from a timeframe point of view. Bookmakers usually give punters a minimum of 7 days to activate an offer, however, this can be more and less.
The minimum odds shouldn’t be too low, so as to make it harder for the punter to win. Whereas the wagering requirements (which will be discussed in the next section) shouldn’t be too severe or steep, so as to prolong the time you can withdraw any potential winnings.
At Sportlens, all the sites we have outlined in this guide have fair terms for the betting offers they serve up.
- Betting Offers Terms & Conditions
All betting offers will come with a detailed set of terms and conditions. Once you have entered the promotions page of a site, you will then be able to click on a specific offer, which will then pull up the full T&Cs.
It is always advised, however arduous, to read through the small print, so that you aren’t in for a rude awakening when you come to use your preferred betting offer. After all, you don’t want to find out that you can’t use your preferred payment method or that the wagering requirements are too high, which may put you off.
If you don’t take the time to read the T&Cs, and you are left short-sighted, then you will only really have yourself to blame. Nevertheless, if you want further guidance or reassurance, then we are happy to discuss some of the key T&C phrases which are part and parcel of the best UK betting sites.
- Minimum Odds
These will be more applicable for the qualifying bet of the offer. If a promotion for example, carries minimum odds of evens, then your wager will need to be made at evens or greater.
However, with promotions, such as Free Bet Clubs, things will work somewhat differently. There will usually be minimum odds for the selection as well as the wager overall.
- Eligible Markets
There is usually a common perception about qualifying bets. In some cases, the free bet offers will contribute towards your wagering requirements, but bookies aren’t always there to make your life easy. To do this, there may be certain restrictions placed. One of this is market limitations, which comes in three forms – bet types, sports, as well as competitions. It’s very important you pay close attention to see which markets your offer is eligible for, otherwise you will be discounted from the offer. Also, don’t forget regardless of the offer, you won’t be able to Cash Out the stake partially or in its entirety immediately.
- Wagering Requirements
A wagering requirement refers to a multiplier that you must play through a bonus before you are able to collect or withdraw any winnings made. For example, if you are given a £10 sports betting bonus with a 20x wagering requirement, then you will need to spend £200 on eligible games before you can withdraw any pending winnings.
- Valid period
One of the cornerstones of T&Cs, this gives punters the opportunity to activate an offer. Here, they will be given a specific timeframe for which to claim. Usually, betting offers may be available for as little as 7 days, while some can go up to 30 days, with others ongoing. Whichever betting offer you receive, you should be given enough time to use it.
- Minimum deposit
With most betting offers, you will be required to place a minimum deposit to qualify for the betting offer. At some bookies, this may be as little as £2, although with some bookies this may be as much as £10. This will be well advertised, and you will also find details of the wagering requirements.
- Payment method restrictions
This condition is quite common with betting offers. Your first sports bet will have to use an eligible payment method, otherwise you will be discounted from the promotion. Even if you’re betting with real money, it won’t count.
Debit cards, such as VISA and Mastercard will be fine, while credit cards have now been banned from use at sportsbooks. Bank transfer is also a safe pick, but now there are other e-wallets, such as Skrill and Neteller that have popped up. However, with some offers, you won’t be allowed to use e-wallets as payment methods, so always check before proceeding.
Sports betting is a combination of risk and reward. Betting offers tries to tip things in your favour, and the best betting sites will have plenty of offers to keep punters interested.
Of course, the welcome offers served up by the best betting sites will provide the juiciest rewards. In this guide, we have tried our best to make things simple for you. We have achieved this by walking you through the kinds of betting offers you can tap into when you sign up to a sports betting site for the first time. Whether the type of offer you receive is of the ‘Money Back’ variety, ‘Bet X, Get Y’ or ‘Risk-free Bet’, they can give your bankroll as massive boost when used properly.
Ongoing betting promotions can be very useful, and these will form a key component of your strategy. Once you have read this article, you will feel more confident in how to use betting offers to your advantage. You should never taken what is written here as gospel, so you should undertake your own research to find the perfect site for you.
Remember to always read the T&Cs before triggering any kind of bonus offers, and above all, bet responsibly.