In life, getting something for free is almost certainly a boon. A bit extra on top of what we want is always a nice bonus in life. It helps us to get extra value, and to take risks where normally we would not want to use any money. In the betting world, this is known as free bets, and they are very popular with the betting community. If you want to make the most of the betting industry, then you need to be able to utilise free bets to your advantage. Where, then, should you start if you want to make this so?
What is a free bet?
A free bet is just as the term suggests – a bet that you pay no money for. It’s the perfect place to start with for many people. For example, most bookmakers and betting sites will offer you access to a free bet or a sign-up offer. This means that you can often pick up a nice bit of extra value for your time, making sure that you get a nice amount of credit to play with on your first bet.
To get a free bet, most of the time you simply need to sign-up and fill in the details. When you do that, you will often be given your bet credit to use. This will give you the chance to fill-up your account with the offer they provide. For the most part, bookies will offer you a free bet to a certain value, and it will depend on what they are going to offer in the first place. This can change, and can often be based around a variety of different parameters.
What types of free bets can I get?
For example, some bookies will give you a free bet that is for a specific match. So, if a major European grudge match was kicking off this weekend, they might try to entice you to place a bet on that particular match. To do that, they’ll either match your bet, or give you a free bet to place on the match. Some of the most popular kinds of free bets include:
- New customer free bets. These are given to people for signing up and trying out that website. They are often very generous, either requiring no deposit or offering a healthy bonus on top of your deposit.
- Existing customer free bets. Slightly different again, existing customer free bets are often a touch less generous but can give you extras to play with. For example, you can receive more free bets for having loyalty and using the same bookie for a long time.
- Seasonal free bets. As we mentioned before, some free bets are built around a specific kind of promotion. So, for example, on a weekend with many major European derbies, it could be tied into these matches, or a certain player who is on a hot run of form.
- Reload bonuses. Another popular form of bonus is the reload bonus. This is often given out to existing customers at the beginning of a major event, like the start of the UEFA Champions League or the FIFA World Cup. Often tied to the start of something major.
- Enhanced odds. These tend to give you a much more diverse set of odds that you can pick up from a particular game. So, for example, someone who is scoring a lot could suddenly go from 6/1 to 10/1 to be the first scorer in a match, enhancing the potential winnings.
- Loyalty rewards. These are another particularly interesting form of reward, and tend to give you the chance to get money back from your bookie if you use them a lot. For example, some give you free bets every week if you keep putting in a certain amount into your account.
There are numerous forms of free bets, but most of them are built around a specific sum of money rather than forcing you to be on a particular match or result. That should make it easy for you to place the bet in a manner that you feel comfortable with, and make sure that you are happy with the kind of betting odds you get back.
If you don’t want to bet on a Sadio Mane winner, you don’t have to; most free bets are entirely up to you how you spend them. However, please be aware that most free bets will come with a wagering requirement. This means that to get your free bet winnings, you’ll need to meet certain wager requirements for bets, sizes of bets, and odds. Every free bet, though, must clearly explain the wagering requirement, so be sure to read over their regulations.
Can you get a free bet without making a deposit?
A free bit is often collected by signing up to a account. This can be quite varied, though, as some bookmakers will give you a top-up to what you put in. So, for example, a common free bet is that they will back your first deposit of up to £25, for example, and give you up to £25 back in additional credit to play with. If you do that, then you will have £50 to play with; £25 of your own money to do with as you please, and £25 to use in the wagered requirements that are set out in front of you.
Other casinos, though, are much fairer to you. They might provide you with a no deposit free bet bonus, which often comes with wagering requirements. However, this means that you could sign-up to the website, try it out, see what their betting system is like, without having to put any money in. Many users will use this system as a kind of ‘try before you buy’ platform, so that you know exactly what you are getting.
So, the majority of free bets are going to be built around one of these two systems.
How to use your free bet
How you use your free bet will vary from company to company. Most of the time, they are going to be automatically added to your account. Or, in the case of specific event bonuses, you might be prompted to go and place that bet. Keep in mind that the majority of these are not 100% free: they have restrictions on everything from what you can win, to how much you need to bet to actually win.
Keep this in mind as you have to make sure you read through every free bet that you look at. Free bets can be quite alluring, but don’t get drawn in by the word ‘free’ – it is often a lot more subjective than you might give it credit for. Minimum requirements can mean that you may have to put in credit to your account, or you may have to put on a real money wager for a certain line or odds value.
It’s a bit of a pain, but you should make sure you look through any and all free bets that you intend to use. A bit of vigilance will make sure that you walk away from your free bet with added value, and a few more quid in the back pocket!