With two distinct and equally valuable products, having a Betfair account in 2018 remains a must for serious sports bettors.
Of the Sportsbooks that the Betting Maestro recommends on his site, Betfair is the highest rated of the lot. And that only tells half the story because there’s a whole new product to be added to the mix when opening a Betfair account in the form of the Betfair Exchange. So you basically get two for the price of one.
Some Sportsbooks do some things well and others do most well but at Betfair they’ve managed to tick all the main boxes in terms of what you want from an Operator who provides you with everything you need in order to go head-to-head with the bookies on the Sportsbook and head-to-head with other punters on the Exchange. All done in a professional way that offers you plenty of extras… at no extra cost.
We’ll look at at it all in greater depth below but here’s a quick summary of Betfair’s highlights:
- Guaranteed best odds on the Premier League/ATP Tour/all cricket/UK and Ireland racing.
- Generous welcome bonuses on both Sportsbook and Exchange.
- Dozens of different sports covered.
- Livestreaming of all major tennis, dozens of football leagues and all UK/Irish racing.
- Ability to request your own betting markets by using #OddsOnThat on Twitter.
- Low house-margins on Live Betting.
- A huge amount of payment methods available.
- Best-of-class mobile product.
- Ability to use two completely different products under one account.
- Excellent customer service.
Products: Exchange, Sportsbook, Casino, Live Casino, Poker, Exchange Games, Bingo, Vegas slots, Arcade.
Launched: Exchange (2000), Sportsbook (2012).
Licenses: UK, Gibraltar, Malta, Tasmania.
Additional local licenses: Bulgaria, Denmark, Italy,Romania, Spain.
Website: https://www.betfair.com/exchange/plus/ (Exchange) , https://www.betfair.com/sport/ (Sportsbook).
Languages: English, Russian, German, Portuguese, Spanish, Danish, Swedish, Greek, Italian.
Platforms: PC, Mobile, Tablet.
Mobile App: Android, iPhone, Windows phone.
Currencies: GBP, EUR, DKK, AUD, HKD, SEK, USD.
Sportsbook: £100/€100 in free bets
The best way to explain the offer is that for every £50/€50 wagered, you get £20/€20 Euros/GBP as a free bet.
The £50/€50 must be placed as five singles, each made up of £10/€10 bets and they have to be placed on Sportsbook at odds of at least 1.5 (1/2).
You can repeat the exercise five times, meaning there’s 5 x £20/€20 = £100/€100 up for grabs in free bets.
Exchange: Free £20/€20 Exchange bet
Just place a bet of 20 Euros/GBP on the Exchange and if it loses, you’ll get the money back in cash. Yes, cash. That means no wagering requirements
One thing to be aware of is that you need to place your bet within 7 days of opening your account and it also needs to be settled within 7 days. So make sure you place it on an event that will be over in the next few days.
To qualify, you’ll need to make a deposit using a credit/debit card or Paypal.
Goes without saying that if your bet wins, you’ll receive your winnings from that bet rather than getting the cash back.
There are loads more great offers across the Exchange and Sportsbook all year round. Unsurprisingly, they offer special promos and bonuses around the big events like the Premier League, the Champions League final and Wimbledon so be sure to keep an eye on their Promotions Page.
But there are others that are constant, like the fact that you can get money back if the horse you backed goes odds-on and loses or free bets up to £25/€25 as a reward if you pick a racing winner at 3/1 or greater. Be aware that these are sometimes only applicable to the main/featured race of the day so as ever.
But you can also earn yourself some money by not even betting at all. Just refer Betfair to your friends using a unique code that will be provided to you and you’ll receive 20 GBP/Euros for each friend referred, as long as they meet some simple conditions.
You can refer up to five friends.
Variety of markets/specials
You name it, you got it. Everything from football betting markets involving goals, goalscorers, scores, cards, Asian Handicaps, corners and a lot of other specials are all available.
A recent addition to the Sportsbook that caught our eye is the Same-Game Multi bet feature. It means that you can combine two or more events within the same game and they’ll work like a regular acca/multi placed across several events. For example, you could back: 1) England to beat Sweden 2) Harry Kane to score a goal and 3) both teams to score. The Betfair Sportsbook will then just work out the odds on all three happening.
The beauty of Betfair’s two-pronged approach is that across the Exchange and Sportsbook you’ll find every football betting market on either one, the other or both.
Football betting odds
For the first few years of Betfair’s existence as an Exchange, the quality of their odds was their biggest selling point.
The fly in the ointment is that you’ll only secure very good odds if there’s enough liquidity in an Exchange market. That’s never an issue on say a match odds market or an under 2.5 goals one on a big Premier League match or a cricket Test match. But it may be an issue if you’re looking to bet on say a particular player to get booked or an obscure Greek 3rd division game.
Again, this is where you need to be smart as a punter. In most cases the same football betting market will be available to you on both the Exchange and the Sportsbook, in some cases only on one of them.
If it’s available on both, there are two considerations you should have in mind. The first is that on the Exchange you need to pay commission on winning bets. Work out whether after paying commission on the Exchange you’re better off than just backing the same outcome on the Sportsbook.
The other consideration is whether you might want to lay off your bet at some stage. In other words, lock in a profit by doing the opposite to what you first did. If it’s quite a big bet or at high odds it’s always a good idea to make sure you walk away with something so it’s good to give yourself the option on the Exchange. The Sportsbook has the Cash Out option to make sure you can lock in a profit of sorts with your football betting if it’s price comes in but using the Exchange is mathematically a superior option.
Request your own football markets
Here’s your chance to go really go to town. From a left-back scoring two or more goals to Kieran Tripper scoring from a free-kick to there being over 33.5 fouls in the game.
Within reason, you can request pretty much whatever you like and they’ll offer odds on it happening. Just tweet your request using #OddsOnThat and they’ll oblige.
· Variety of Cricket Markets/Specials
Across the two you’ll find the lot. Their cricket betting markets include lots of lines on runs scored, who will win the toss, a particular player to get to 50, top batsman, top bowler, our beloved man-of-the-match market and much, much more.
You’ll probably need to turn to the Sportsbook for most of these because of liquidity issues on the Exchange, though you should be able to get better prices for top batsman runners on the Exchange.
- Cricket betting odds
If you’re serious about betting on the outcome (match winner) of cricket matches, then Betfair should be not only your first port of call but your only one.
If you’re going to put your money down and let it ride, the odds on the Exchange will be the best you can find anywhere. If you’re going to trade the match by backing and laying throughout the game in order to secure yourself a Green Book where you win on all outcomes, then the Betfair Exchange is the place to do it rather than Betdaq or another Exchange because of the greater liquidity.
For cricket betting on markets other than the match winner, those on the Sportsbook are in line with the competition. As ever, it’s worth having more than one account to make sure you get the best possible price on whatever you’re betting on.
Live Betting (5/5)
Other companies these days will claim to be the home of Live Betting but as far as the Betting Maestro is concerned, the Betfair Exchange is the place to do it.
Better cricket odds and the possibility of being able to lay as well as back opens the door to successful trading.
For next goalscorer, correct score, top batsman and other stuff you may have to turn to the Sportsbook for Live Betting but as has been the theme so far; using both will satisfy all your needs.
Live football Streaming (5/5)
Premier League and Champions League aside (no betting company has livestream football of these) you’ll find live football streaming from just about every league you could want to bet on. That includes La Liga, Serie A, Europa League and internationals. Plus some South American and MLS stuff for the night owls. And you can also watch live football from the Asian and Australian leagues in the morning, meaning there’s pretty much round-the-clock live football streaming available, if that’s how you roll.
So open an account with them and you can livestream football till your heart’s content.
There’s also live cricket streaming, US sports, horseracing and lots and lots of tennis. Including action from the Grand Slams that not many betting companies offer.
Customer Service (4.5/5)
Experience goes a long way in life.
So it’s no surprise that Betfair excel here, too. Having dealt with customers in the online era for almost two decades, they’ve developed a Customer Service Team who’s seen it all before so can deal with queries relating to deposits, settled bets and terms and conditions efficiently and with about as much fuss as Virat Kohli dispatching a half-volley on off stump to the cover boundary.
Here are some of the all-important contact details:
Customer Service: 0844 871 0000
Telephone Betting Service:
This is a broker service set up so you can place bets over the phone. For account queries contact the Customer Service number above.
0844 871 5000
Ireland: 1800 719 915
You can also get in touch with them via Live Chat, Betting Maestro’s preferred method, and also Twitter: @BetfairCS.
So yeah, they’ve been around forever as far as online betting companies go but their use of Twitter as a CS form of communication and other stuff is proof they’re keeping up with the kids.
Money matters (4.5/5)
The part of the Betfair review where it’s time to talk turkey.
As is often the case, the Betting Maestro has done the work so that you don’t need to.
Below you can find all the major payment methods you can use at Betfair, including how long they take to be processed.
|Visa /Visa Delta/Visa Solo/MasterCard||€6||Immediately||€0.00|
|Bank transfer||€15.00||2 – 5 working days||€0.00|
Of those listed above, there might be a fee if you’re using Credit Card, Paypal or making a bank transfer; the others are completely free.
Betting Tips (5/5)
We weren’t going to mention this as part of our Betfair review but then again, it’s not every day that we come across a blog that can lay claim to rival Betting Maestro!
Betfair has a blog full of betting tips, stats, football news, cricket previews, opinion pieces and, much, much more.
And in case you’re wondering, the betting tips are bona fide ones. All the previewers providing football and cricket betting tips are under strict instructions to provide as many winners and betting value tips as possible rather than do like some other sites do and deliberately provide losing ones. That’s because Betfair is more than big and confident enough as a company to have betting tipsters on board who regularly provide winners for it to be a problem for them.
Betfair Review: The Betting Maestro’s last note
We’re going to pay Betfair the ultimate compliment by saying that if we could only open an account with one betting company in the world, it would be them.
A big part of that is because you get two products in one and as we’ve said time and time again, going to battle with the Sportsbook and Exchange products under the same roof is your best chance of making money from your sports betting.
But it’s not the only reason we’re so fond of Betfair.
It;s also because the Betfair Sportsbook is right up there with the very best around. Lots of sports covered, lots of variety, good odds, colourful promos, the ability to choose your own markets, buzzy live betting, plenty of live football streaming. Its’ well-designed, it’s fun and easy to use, it makes you feel part of the action.
And then of course there’s the Exchange. Not the only one in the world but it’s to Betting Exchanges what Google is to search engines: in a league of its own. Exchange betting won’t be for everyone just as reading a book on Kindle will feel weird to some. But give it a try before dismissing it.
You can also look forward to decent welcome bonuses and plenty of ongoing offers for the existing customer, an area that some of Betfair’s rivals overlook. Getting folk in is one thing, getting them to stay there is another.
The Betfair Maestro is critical by nature. He was once overheard telling a party guest that Usain Bolt was overrated and believes to this day that Naples is the only place in the world where it’s worth eating pizza.
But when it comes to Betfair, it’s hard to find faults and is forced to give them the maximum rating of 5/5.
Final Rating: 5/5
New customer offer. Place 5 x £10/€10 or more bets to receive £/€20 in free bets.
Repeat up to 5 times to receive maximum £100/€100 bonus. Min odds 1/2 (1.5). Exchange
bets excluded. T&Cs apply.
And as mentioned in the review, you can also claim your free Betfair Exchange bet at the same time.