What is a Free Bet?
A free bet is a complimentary bonus of a specified value that is provided by bookmakers to promote player loyalty. Free bets can only be used to place a bet at the bookmaker that provided the promotion, and therefore cannot be withdrawn as a cash amount.
To use a free bet offer, you need to meet the bonus requirements. This may include signing up as a new player with the bookie, registering a valid payment method and depositing into your account, or placing a wager on a specific sports event. Make sure to check the terms and conditions.
How do Free Bets work?
Players using a free bet offer in the UK are usually required to activate a new account with the bookmaker, as these deals are designed to attract new customers. Depending on the form of free bet, players should receive the betting offer immediately upon signup, or after completing the bonus requirements – such as making a deposit or placing a bet on an upcoming sports event.
If the wager placed using the free bet proves successful, it’s worth noting that the winnings don’t include the stake money. For example, if you place a £10 free bet on an outcome with odds of 3/1, you won’t receive £40 – you’ll receive £30 in winnings. Furthermore, most free bet offers include a time limit which means it must be redeemed within a certain time period, such as 30 days.
How can you get Free Bets?
Online bookies offer players free bets as part of all sorts of promotions.
Some of the most common are:
- Welcome offers when you open a new betting account – in order to credit your account with a free bet you will need to make a first deposit of usually between £5 to £10.
- A Free Bet Club – you’ll receive a free bet when you make the requisite number of regular bets, such as placing 4 accas in a week.
- Insurance Offers – bet on specific events and if you lose but a specific scenario occurs you will receive your stake back up to a certain amount as a free bet. E.g. bet on football and if you lose but it finishes 0-0 receive your stake back as a free bet of up to £10
Here at Freebets.com we have partnered with the biggest names in sports betting to provide our visitors with the best collection of free bets and enhanced odds offers you’ll find anywhere.
Are there different types of Free Bet offers?
Yes, there are different variations offered by bookmakers. The best free bet offers are generally provided by the big brands, such as Bet365 and Paddy Power, as they have the budget to provide highly competitive promotions for new players. The most popular types of free bet are: matched free bet, matched deposits, enhanced odds bonus, no deposit free bets and stake not returned bets.
- Stake not returned (SNR) – the most common type of free bet. This means you only receive the winnings you make as part of the bet and not the stake itself.
- Matched free bet – this is usually provided to new players. This means your bet will be matched by the bookmaker, so a £25 wager becomes a £50 total bet.
- Matched deposit – this is where the bookmaker matches the sum deposited by a player into their casino account, so a £30 deposit becomes £60 to play with.
- Enhanced odds bonus – usually provided to new players, these promotions offer better odds on a sports event than is typically available, so 8/13 odds become 33/1.
- No deposit free bets – considered the best free bet by many, this is a complimentary bet provided to players without the need to make a deposit or wager.
- Free Bet Sign Up Offers – Generally speaking, free bet offers for new customers are very simple with a minimum deposit limit initiating a free bet offer which is activated once your first qualifying bet is settled.
- Risk Free Bets – But free betting sites can also work their new customer promotions to act as risk-free bets and consolation prizes whereby you will receive a free bet credit if your first bet is a loser.
Upcoming Events to Use Free Bets on
- At freebets, we collate the best free bet offers from bookmakers for all upcoming sport events, including the Premier League, Royal Ascot and Wimbledon. To see all our top tips for major sporting markets, visit our free betting tips and reviews page.
- Please make sure you visit our free football betting tips page for daily tips and previews from the European elite leagues such as the English Premier League, Spanish La Liga, Italian Serie A, French Ligue 1 or German Bundesliga.
Free Bet Offers VS Bonus Offers
With so many bookmakers on the market, all offering enticing sign-up promotions to new customers, it can become tricky to choose the very best free bet offers.
On the surface, Free Bet Offers and Bonus Offers may well seem to be the same thing, with both being offered regularly by bookmakers to new customers.
However, there are a few differences between free bet offers and bonus offers that punters should always looks out for when signing up to a new bookmaker.
Bonus offers initially work on the same system as a free bet: place a bet and once the bet is settled a bonus amount will be credited to an account.
The key difference with bonus offers is the flexibility they give punters as they can be broken up and used as multiple bets, making them ideal for rookie bettors.
For example, if you take up a ‘Bet £5, Get £20 in bonus bets’ offer, you can use the bonus to place one £10, another £5 bet and five £1 bets (assuming the TnCs allow you to place small bets).
The bookie may also offer bonuses that can only be used on other products like casino, bingo and poker.
With sportsbook betting the bonuses are easy to use but be sure to read all the terms and conditions attached to online slots and casino free bets.
All of these offers are designed to incentivize punters and at freebets.co.uk, we are on the lookout for the very best free bet and bonus offers on the market.
Is the ‘Free Bet’ Really Free?
The name free bet comes from the fact that punters don’t have to part with their own money when using one of these offers. Instead of their betting balance, stakes are covered by free bet tokens.
The catch behind a free bet is in reality there is almost always an expense required before you can earn a free bet and most free bets can’t be cashed out.
Whether this expense takes the form of a qualifying bet, first deposit or participation in a free bet club, it’s vital to understand what is required before your free bet bonus is credited.
Understanding the Terms & Conditions
The most important piece of advice we could give you when it comes to free bets UK punters can take advantage of is to read the terms and conditions. The bookies use free bet promotions to entice customers but they always come with conditions attached.
You will usually find the terms and conditions written in small print below the main details and the key terms to look out for are:
- Timeframe – typically you have seven days to use a free bet once rewarded. Be sure to do so as the free bet could be removed thereafter.
- Winnings – In a few, rare situations, free bet offers may have a cap on the amount you can win using your free bet credits/tokens.
Other conditions include:
- Minimum odds requirements
- Who is eligible
- Minimum deposit amounts
- Accepted and restricted deposit methods
- How and when free bets are credited
- What sort of bets (singles, multiples, etc) are eligible
If you are in any doubt about free bet sign-up T&C’s we suggest that you get clarification from the bookmaker’s customer support staff before entering the free bet promotion.
Tips & Strategies on Choosing a Free Bet Offer
The most obvious free sports bets to aim for are the biggest ones!
For a long time betting sign up offers were described as a ‘matched bet offer’ whereby a first time deposit/bet would receive an identical amount as a free bet bonus.
But nowadays they come in all shapes and sizes. We maintain the bigger the size or number of free bets the better, but here’s a few things to consider:
- How much do I need to deposit/bet to get the biggest free bet bonus?
- Will the free bets be credited to my account immediately?
- What are the time restrictions on placing my free bets?
- Are there realistic restrictions on the amount I can win?
- Will I have to place additional bets before I can withdraw my free bet winnings?
- What are the minimum deposit required to trigger my free bet?
- What sports, events and market types do my free bets work on?
- Is the bookmaker is fully licenced and regulated in my country?
What are the Advantages of Free Bets
Free bets are risk free and that means a punter can be carefree with them backing big odds selections giving the prospect of big returns.
What are the Disadvantages of Free Bets
Free bet offers are a mainstay of the free betting sites but they do have some disadvantages such as:
- The stake is not returned from free bets
- Qualifying criteria can be very difficult to achieve
- Limitations on the markets, bets you can place
- Punters almost always have to pay something before getting a free bet
- Terms and conditions are sometimes difficult to understand
- Betting sign up offers and free bets can encourage you to gamble when you might not normally do so.
License and Safety
Free bets are no different to bets placed with cash (other than your free bet stake is not returned in any winning payouts) and therefore they come under the same general terms and conditions of your bookmaker which, in turn, is licensed by a reputable organization such as the UK Gambling Commission or Malta Gaming Authority.
Furthermore, we promote responsible gambling and strongly support organizations that offer support to those who may become affected by problem gambling such as GamCare and Gambling Therapy.
How to Find the Best Free Bets & Sign Up Bonuses
Freebets.com is your one-stop-shop for finding the latest free bets, bonus codes and enhanced odds offers that will help you in your battle against the bookies!
As a new customer you can take full advantage of all free betting which we list every day – they including matched bonuses, enhanced odds, free bets no deposit offers, and others. We scour the Internet and list all of the latest free bet exclusives so that you don’t have to search for them.
Free Bet Offers for Existing Customers
There are countless reasons why, as an existing customer, you can and will receive free football bets or free sports bets.
- Free Bet Clubs – Many firms have ‘bet clubs’ which will credit you with a free bet every week if you place a certain number of bets during the course of the previous seven days.
- Reload Bonuses – If replenishing your online account with cash you might find your online bookmaker has a random free bet bonus offer which is triggered when making a new deposit.
- Consolation Prizes – It is not uncommon for ongoing promotions to have free bet concessions associated with them. Free bets are often given to existing customers when their horse is beaten into second by a favourite or falls at the last flight of a race. Another example in sports betting is you can collect free bets for Grand Slam tennis matches if your player goes two sets ahead but loses.
- Justice Payments – Many free bet offers involve ‘fair play’ and so, for example, if you back a horse who plants himself in the stalls at the off or who weighs in light after the race, you may receive a free bet as compensation.
- Loyalty Bonuses – Regular punters are often rewarded for their loyalty via free bets.
Free Bets FAQs
Can you cash out a free bet?
Unlike bets placed with cash a free bet cannot be cashed out either prior to the start of the event or in-play.
Do free bets expire?
They usually do. Skybet are the only firm we know of who offer free bets with no expiry dates. Normally betting sites have a 7 day period between a free bet being credited and it expiring and being removed. You can, however, place a free bet on a long-range event such as the FA Cup of Cheltenham Festival.
What Does Paid in Free Bets Mean?
As opposed to winnings being paid in cash, under some circumstances free bet credits / bonuses are used as a payment method. As your stakes are not returned with the winnings from a free bet, free bet bonuses have a lesser worth than actual cash.
Can you make money on free bets?
Like all sports bets, you can make money from free bets if your bet wins. Although you won’t receive your stake back you will receive the winnings. The bigger the odds, the more you’ll win.
How to use a free bet?
Once you have decided on a selection simply select/click it and it will appear in your betting slip. Here you will usually see a small button or checkbox saying ‘Use free bet bonus’ or similar. If you want to use your free bet simply click this before confirming your bet placement.
Can you withdraw money from a free bet?
You cannot withdraw a free bet or free bet bonus balance as cash but you can withdraw winnings from a free bet.
What are betting bonuses?
A betting bonus is a common promotion offered by bookmakers that matches your first deposit up to a certain percentage, usually no more than 200%. This type of promotion is essentially a matched deposit free bet, but it’s important to read the full terms and requirements before redeeming any betting bonus, as there’s typically a limit on the deposit amount a bookmaker will match (e.g. up to £100).
What is a risk free bet?
A risk-free bet is a wager that you can place knowing that even if it proves unsuccessful, you’ll still get part or all of your stake back. How much you’ll get back depends on the risk-free bet limit - for example, some bookmakers may only return 50% of a losing bet, while others will return 100%. Risk-free bets are particularly attractive to new players as they tend to be open to all sports and bet types.