What is Matched betting?
The Ultimate beginners guide to matched betting
If you’re looking to make money from the comfort of your own home, matched betting may be a good option.
What is it? Well, matched betting is a gambling method where an individual places bets on both potential outcomes to ensure they win. By using free bets from bookies it guarantees a tax-free profit.
All bookies advertise these offers to entice new customers. This low/no-risk form of gambling is typically done on sporting events that bookies want to promote. By using free bets and other promotions, matched bettors guarantee profits by having all outcomes covered.
Is matched betting legal?
Yes. Currently matched betting is legal in the UK. Government policy could change in the future and as such could be policed if new legislation were introduced to ban matched betting. Stay updated with legislation changes on our site.
How is matched betting different to traditional betting?
With traditional betting, you are usually betting on something happening, i.e. Roger Federer to Win the Mens Singles at Wimbledon.
The bookies will give you a price, for example, 8/1 and you will place one bet. As there is no guarantee that Roger will win, you are at risk of losing the amount you have staked.
With the availability of betting exchanges, punters can now essentially become the bookie and make lay bets.
With matched betting, you place 2 separate bets, one bet backing an outcome with a bookie and one bet laying the outcome on a betting exchange.
By covering both outcomes, you are mitigating the risk factor of traditional betting.
What are benefits of matched betting?
What is a betting exchange?
A betting exchange is a service that allows you to bet against one or more people and not a bookmaker.
The idea is simple; betting exchanges provide a platform for participants to place bets against each other. The betting exchange take a small commission for providing this service. The commission is usually calculated as a percentage of the net winnings on markets and events.
So when you are using a betting exchange, you never bet against a bookie, you’re betting against another person. One person will place a bet backing an outcome, i.e. Chelsea to Win and the other person will take the lay bet, in this example, Chelsea not to win.
Essentially, on a betting exchange, someone is placing a back bet on an event to happen and someone else is placing a lay bet on the same event not happening.
Is matched betting worth it?
Match betting is definitely worth it if you are willing to take the time and patience to learn what to do. As with anything in life, there’s an upfront investment needed before you start and that is taking the time to learn how to match bet correctly.
You then need to open multiple accounts with all the best online bookmakers in the UK. These will include, Ladbrokes, William Hill, Bet365 and Paddy Power. Finding offers and viable bets all take time and patience, however, if you are willing to stick at it all the profit you make is tax-free!
How much money can you make with matched betting?
Matched betting is an unconventional strategy for gambling on sports that offers a safeguard against losing money once learned and executed properly.
Earnings will vary from person to person and how much time and effort that they put into Matched betting.
Earnings can also depend on what sign-up offers you use and how many accounts you have opened. The more accounts that you have, the more bonuses and offers you will get from the bookmakers, the more potential profit you can make.
Another factor is the amount of time you can commit to matched betting. It’s realistic to make between £20 to £1,000 per month from matched betting
How long does matched betting take?
If you want to be a successful matched bettor, then it is important that you start at your own pace.
Doing this too quickly can lead to large losses and failure.
In order for the process of matched betting to make sense, take your time to follow our guide carefully.
Don’t try rushing into anything before understanding what’s going on!
Once you understand the basic concepts of matched betting, each bet will take around 10-20 minutes to do. This includes signing up for an account and finding a suitable bet.
With time and organisation, you will be able to reduce this time.
What are the pros and cons of matched betting?
This section will cover the pros and cons of matched betting so you can decide if it would be beneficial for you to take up the activity.
So far, I’ve talked about how it is a great way to make yourself some extra money.
There are, however, some pitfalls to matched betting.
I want to share with you the pros and cons of matched betting after talking to other people, and doing research online.
- Tax-free money – All money made from matched betting is tax-free! This means you have a nice little earner each month that you can spend on whatever you want!
- Consistent returns – Unlike tipsters which can run hot and cold, matched betting is consistent. All you need to do is follow the process and churn through the offers.
- Simple to do – Once you have got up to speed with matched betting and placed a few bets, it gets easier to do. As long as you keep on top of all the betting accounts and bonuses.
- 30 minutes – As long as you can spare 30 minutes a day, you will be able to place a few matched bets and make a profit.
- Time-consuming – Its very time consuming to manage multiple betting accounts and credit cards.
- Lots of admin – Updating your betting spreadsheet with bets placed and login details for your betting accounts.
- Gambling – You could get bored of matched betting and fancy a flutter instead. Gambling is a sure fire way of losing your hard-earned matched betting winnings. If you have a problem with gambling, DO NOT START MATCHED BETTING and seek help here
- Online casino – Bookies will advertise great casino offers to draw you away from your matched betting process.
- Account Gubbing – This is when your account gets limited by the bookie. You’ll be limited in the amount you can bet therefore making matched betting pointless on this site. You’ll have to then find a new bookie.
- Miscalculating odds – This is a mistake anyone can make but mostly happens to beginners. The best way to avoid this is by using a calculator.
- Not reading the T&Cs – By not reading the terms and conditions properly, you run the risk of not qualifying for the free bet. It’s imperative that you read the T&Cs of each offer that you sign up for.
Is matched betting still worth it in 2023 ?
Yes, matched betting is still worth it in 2021.
Matching betting is a way to make extra money using free bets from bookies.
It’s perfect for people looking for an easy side hustle that offers lots of flexibility and, more importantly, tax-free income.
One complaint people have about matched betting is the initial investment. While some will argue that it doesn’t matter if you have a lot of money because you can start with £10, others feel it is time-consuming unless you have £200+ to start with.
Matched betting can be an effective way for the average person to make some money on the side in 2021 and beyond.
Is Matched Betting a con?
No, matched betting is not a con. Although it might seem like a con as it is essentially free-money being given away, it most definitely isn’t a con. Bookies spend their marketing budget on sign-up offers to entice new customers. They then spend a lot on promotions to retain their customers. Matched betting explots these sign-up and promo offers.
Is Matched Betting safe?
Yes, matched betting is safe, in fact it’s one of the safest ways to earn an additional income online. It’s definitely one of your best options if you want security in making money online.
Matched Betting can also be very lucrative for those who take precautions and know how to competently place match bets.
See the risks of matched betting.
Any website that is offering gambling to customers based in the UK need to be registered with the Gambling Commission.
When you open a new account on a betting site or app, gambling businesses must provide you with the following information:
- the licensed status of the company
- your account
- account fees
- how your money is protected
- free offers and bonuses
- terms and conditions
Can anyone do this or just an expert gambler?
No, you do not need to be an expert or have knowledge about sports for matched betting to work. You can make money from this if you take each bet one at a time and place them with care. Anyone, provided they are aged over 18, can do matched betting.
What if I already have a bookmaking account?
With over 50 registered bookmakers in the UK currently offering signup bonuses, even if you have signed up to a handful, there will still be some you haven’t signed up to. We have a list of bookies here. Also, don’t forget the reload offers bookies use to retain their customer base, which you can use with your existing accounts.
Will matched betting affect my credit rating?
When you sign up with a bookmaker, they will run a soft check on your identity to confirm who you are who you say you are. This is because they have to do KYC checks to comply with the directives set out by the Gambling Commission.
This is a soft check so no, it won’t affect your credit rating.
What is a qualifying bet?
A qualifying bet is when you place a back bet in a bookmaker and then lay against that same selection at an exchange.
A qualifying bet is placed with a bookmaker in order to qualify for their bonus bet or promo offer. In order for a punter to get the bonus bet advertised by the bookmaker, they must first make a qualifying bet.
Qualifying bets criteria are stipulated in the promotion’s Terms and Conditions, an example from Ladbrokes can be seen here.
This example states that a new customer will receive £20 in free bets once they meet the following criteria:
- New customers only
- Over 18s only
- Place a £5 bet at odds of 1/2 or greater
- Bet must be placed within 14 days of opening the account
Once the above has been completed, the customer will qualify for 4x £5 free bets.
The rules for placing qualifying bets vary from bookmaker to bookmaker. So always check the T&Cs before you place a bet.
It is worth noting that the majority of qualifying bets will result in a small loss for the punter. This small loss will depend on what odds your back and lay bets are placed at. The objective here is to find a bet with odds that are close together.
An easy qualifying bet example
In this example, we are betting on the winner of the Mens Singles at Wimbledon.
Lets ignore the odds for now to keep it simple and assume that if we bet £5 we can win £5 (plus our initial stake back).
You select Federer and Back him to win on the bookmakers site
You bet £5 on Federer to win
On the betting exchange, you select Federer not to win with a Lay bet
You bet £5 on Federer not to win
In a normal or standard bet, you place a back bet on an event to happen and with a lay bet you bet on an event not happening. An example would be for Roger Federer to win the men’s Wimbledon singles championship as the back bet and Roger Federer not to win the men’s Wimbledon singles championship as the lay bet.
Back bet outcome
If Roger wins the Mens Wimbledon singles championship then the Back bet is the winning outcome and pays out £5 plus our £5 stake. Conversely, the Lay bet we placed is the losing bet and we lose that stake of £5.
Back Bet – £5
Lay Bet – £5
Total £10 Staked
Back bet has won
Back bet – £10
Lay bet – £0
Total Returns £10
Lay bet outcome
If Roger doesn’t win the Mens Wimbledon singles championship then the Lay bet is the winning outcome and pays out £5 plus our £5 stake. Conversely, the Back bet we placed is the losing bet and we lose that stake of £5.
Back Bet – £5
Lay Bet – £5
Total £10 Staked
Lay bet has won
Back bet – £0
Lay bet – £10
Total Returns £10
At first glance, betting £10 and then seeing a return of £10 seems rather pointless, however, you have now qualified for the bookmakers offer. In the example above for Ladbrokes, that is 4x £5 bets, £20 in free bets.
Our top tips for matched betting
- Take your time. There is no need to rush, so make sure you read the T&Cs for each bookmaker so that you correctly place your qualifying bet.
- Open one account at a time. Much like the above, take your time to open an account and place the qualifying bet before opening another account. This way you wont get lost with what bet you need to place.
- Create a spreadsheet. Create a simple spreadsheet to keep track of all the bookmakers and betting exchanges that you have an account with, what bets have been placed, and how much money has been deposited. Organisation is key to being profitable.
- Organise your ID. Bookmakers and betting exchanges require some form of ID when either signing up or when you withdraw money. Keep a folder with an up to date ID, proof of address, and bank statement so you are prepared for their request.
Risks of matched betting | Can matched betting go wrong?
There can be a few key areas which you could make mistakes with that cause it to go wrong. The typical things that new bettors do are:
- Not reading the T&Cs of the qualifying bet
- Miscalculating the stakes
- Not placing the Lay bet on the correct market
This is not an extensive list but are typical areas where things can go awry. The good news is that they are all in your control.
Can matched betting be sustained?
Yes, matched betting can be sustained. To do so though requires a person to be organised and have the discipline to keep up with it.
Staying organised requires you to consistently look for qualifying offers on each bookies and keeping track of reload offers. If staying organised isn’t your thing, you should sign up with Profit Accumulator