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What Are Free Bets and How Do They Work?

When you encounter the phrase ‘free bets’, the most common image that usually comes to mind is the promotion page or head banner of a bookmaker, offering free bets to anyone who will sign up or sometimes with no commitment attached to it. Free bets are typically offered by online sports gambling companies in order to entice or encourage their potential or existing customers to place bets on different types of sports. Most reputable bookmakers use free bets as part of their arsenal of promotional tools.

Many websites such as free bets UK attempt to explain what free bets are and how they work. This article will answer those questions and provide a brief overview of the sports betting industry and why free bets are important.

Sports Betting Industry

The online gambling market is a giant industry, projected to earn US$90 billion by the year 2024. Year in and year out, it continues to prove that it is one of the most vibrant entertainment economies in the world. The sports betting industry is one of the most competitive segments of the online gambling market. The UK, one of the original gambling markets, has thousands of betting shops across the country. Meanwhile, the fastest-growing sports betting market is the United States, currently worth around $70 billion. In fact, international sportsbetting is projected to be worth $250 billion. People who bet on sports usually visit online sports betting sites to check out the latest promotions, bonuses, and see if they can avail of free bets. Sportsbetting sites vie for customers’ attention, usually enticing them with free bets.

What exactly are Free Bets?

Free bets are essentially additional benefits that customers can use. They  can place these free bets either in part or full.  Customers can bet up to the total amount of their free bet bonus. Free bets usually have a specific value that bookmakers offer to pay the stake. Free bets are available from some of the most trusted online bookmakers.

How do Free Bets work?

Customers take advantage of free bets because they are not risking anything. Most reputable betting sites explain how free bets work. Free bets are categorized into two main groups.  There are free bets that require customers to perform a specific action. These actions may be depositing a certain amount, placing a bet (B.O.G.O. or Bet One Get One), or creating an account. Some bets don’t need any kind of action – they are just given away for free as a promotional tool.

Free bets are usually listed under the ‘Promotions’ tab. This can easily be located with an online account. It is essential to carefully read the terms and conditions of these free bets. The terms and conditions usually include wagering requirements and minimum odds. Using a free bet is simple.  Just add the selections to the bet slip, and then click on available free bet while confirming the bet. If the bet wins, the profit will be placed on the bettor’s main wallet. The original free bet stake will not be given back to the bettor, which means that the stake won’t be returned to the bettor along with their winnings.

Who qualifies for Free Bets?

People who qualify for free bets are the following:

  • Those who have signed up for an account with the online gambling site/bookmaker, providing verifiable personal details.
  • Customers who have used their funds to place a bet on a sports event.
  • Customers who have registered a valid payment method and who have made a deposit with a specific amount.

How do Free Bets Benefit Gambling operators?

Free bets are one of the most effective promotional tools that gambling operators use to attract more customers. They are also used to entice people to sign up in betting sites. Free bets bring in more site traffic, and more traffic ultimately leads to more bets and more revenue. Giving away free bets is also one way for operators to highlight a special event. Bookmakers utilize free bets in order to ensure that their existing customers will continue to bet with them in the future.

How do Free Bets Benefit Customers?

Aside from being able to bet without stakes, there are several ways that free bets can benefit customers.  Here are some of them:

  • Free bets can be converted to cash.

Free bets can be converted to cash using a strategy called matched betting. Engaging in matched betting involves placing a free bet on a specific outcome with one bookmaker and using another betting exchange to bet that the same outcome won’t occur.

  • Hedging bets

Free bets can be used as a hedge. Bettors can choose to bet on one team and use the free bet to back the opposing team. This strategy guarantees their chances of making a profit without costing them extra money.


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