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The Best Online Bookmakers in the UK - December 2023
Latest Betting Offers
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How We Select The Best Online Bookmakers
When looking out for a new bookie to bet with, everyone has their list of wants and nice-to-haves. We select our favourite bookmakers by reviewing them against the following benchmarks:
- Licensing: We ensure the betting site is licensed and regulated by a reputable gambling authority, such as the UK Gambling Commission.
- Security: Online security is essential, so we look for betting sites with SSL encryption to protect your personal and financial information.
- Payment Methods: We ensure the betting site offers payment methods that are convenient for you, such as debit cards and e-wallets.
- Betting Odds: We want to provide value for our followers, so we only recommend betting sites that provide competitive betting odds.
- Betting Markets: Any betting site we recommend provides a wide range of markets, including the sports and events in which punters are interested.
- Features: Useful extras such as live-streaming, in-play betting & bet builders can help separate the best from the rest.
- Bonuses & Promotions: Here at Freebets, we work with some of the biggest names in the betting industry to bring you unique betting bonuses and promotions.
- Customer Support: We look for betting sites that provide good customer support, ideally via 24/7 Live Chat, to answer your queries and resolve any issues.
We work with many brands on the site, but not all, and this is because we look at the brands and make sure they pass our test, before reviewing them and putting them onto our site.
This is an important step for us, because we want to be known as a brand that won’t just work with everyone, we only work with brands that we are happy to recommend, and satisfied that they are going to offer a good service to players. Of course, some are better than others, but minimum requirements need to be met.
Firstly, we look at the safety of our players, the most important part, and ensure that all brands we work with are licensed and regulated by the UK Gambling Commission. By having a license, they’ve demonstrated their ability to keep you and your funds safe to the organisation in charge of gambling in the UK.
Next up we take a look at the service they offer. Bare minimum requirements we look out for include the number of sports and markets on offer, competitive odds, in play betting, types of bet accepted and more, as we try to showcase only brands that offer enough for customers, regardless of the sports they love.
Of course, a big part of our work is done around offers and free bets. We want brands to have free bets available to new customers as a minimum requirement, while others such as existing customer offers and money back deals are all seen as added extras on top, which separates the very best brands from the rest.
By putting all of this together, we build up a picture of what we need to see from a brand, in order for them to be placed on our website. When that is confirmed, and we are happy, then we will begin to work with the brand, and showcase what they have available to our readers.
|Top UK Betting Sites|
|Best Betting Site for In-Play Betting||bet365|
|Best Betting Site for Offers||CopyBet|
|Best Betting Site for Enhanced Odds||Betfair|
|Best Betting Site for Frequent Promotions||Betfred|
|Best Betting Site for Odds||Paddy Power|
The Best Online Bookmakers for:
If you’re looking for top odds for football leagues worldwide, Freebets partners with some of the best online bookmakers for football betting. Here, you’ll find a vast collection of markets with competitive odds at the likes of William Hill, bet365 and Betfair – all of which also offer a mobile app allowing you to bet on the go.
The best online bookies also have special offers for horse racing events, such as the Grand National and the famous Cheltenham Festival, which always sees an array of Cheltenham Betting Offers and promotions for both new and existing customers. And for flat racing fans, there are always Royal Ascot Free Bets and special offers during this event.
Tennis betting is hugely popular, with tournaments occurring weekly throughout the year, plus the four Grand Slam events. The main focus is on the Australian Open, French Open, Wimbledon, and the US Open, but bookmakers, including Unibet and Ladbrokes, offer ongoing tennis betting promotions that are well worth checking out if you’re a tennis fan.
Following the England cricket team can be a rollercoaster ride, with plenty of highs and lows. However, the excitement of cricket is undeniable, and there are plenty of cricket betting opportunities on matches and competitions throughout the year, domestically and internationally.
From county cricket to the IPL to the Ashes series, there’s something for everyone, and with the bet365 welcome offer to claim, they are an excellent choice for cricket betting, with competitive odds, a vast range of betting markets, and live-streaming of selected matches.
Both rugby union and rugby league are popular in the UK. Check our rugby betting offers on all major rugby events, from the Super League to the Six Nations.
The current sponsors of the Super League are Betfred, and they offer some of the most competitive odds on all the action, plus some excellent ongoing rugby league promotions. For union fans, the Betway sign up offer is a top choice with their Free Bet Club, which sees you receive a weekly free bet if you wager a certain amount - perfect for domestic and international rugby union clashes.
With golf being televised almost every week of the year, there is no shortage of golf betting opportunities for punters. We cover the biggest events on the calendar, and our golf betting experts provide their best bets and players to watch out for.
The leading golf betting promotion is extra places, with some bookmakers offering up to 10 places for each-way betting on the big tournaments. So, if you’ve got an each-way golf fancy, check out the Paddy Power new customer offer, they regularly offer enhanced place terms on the PGA, DP World, Tour, and LIV golf.
Bookies don’t just offer sign-up deals, football betting bonus codes and promotions to new customers – they also keep their existing customers happy with different loyalty bonuses and promotions.
Regulation & Licensing of Bookmakers In The UK
Gambling laws in the UK provide some of the world’s most stringent legislation and protections. Gambling licences are in place to protect not only punters from unlicensed operators but also bookmakers and betting operators.
The UK Gambling Commission licences all UK online bookies and all members of other key organisations, prioritising punter and operator safety.
These organisations include the ‘European Sports Security Association’, GamCare (a leading national provider of information, advice, support and free counselling for the prevention and treatment of problem gambling) and IBAS (an authoritative, independent third-party with adjudication for customers who have an unresolved dispute with their UK bookmaker).
The Biggest Bookies in the UK
If you are looking for the very best betting sites, then here are the top names to consider.
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bet365 is famous for it’s diverse betting markets, impressive in-play betting, user-friendly platform, famous bet builders, alongside generous Free Bets.
Known for being one of the best online betting sites, Bet365 places a huge element of their service on the in play section of their site. Here they offer everything a punter needs, from a wide choice of sports, excellent betting markets, quick updates, and great streaming coverage, so you can watch the game unfold.
So, whether you are an experienced in play punter looking for more, or you are new and want to find the best place to get started, bet365 offer a service seen as one of the very best.
Paddy Power is synonymous with making betting fun, with humorous ad campaigns, alongside being recognised as one of the best bookies for Horse Racing.
When you are betting, there is nothing better than a great deal, and time and time again, Paddy Power has proven itself as the best site for betting enhancements. When the big events come around, Paddy Power offer regular enhanced odds offers for players, so you can get even more value with these events.
From football to horse racing and many other sports, these enhanced odds will be available ahead of the big action.
Betfred are widely recognised as the best bookmaker for promotions, with Betfred founder Fred Done quoted as saying he “knows exactly what punters want”.
Betfred have a great reputation as being one of the best sports betting sites when it comes to promotions. If you are looking for something big to take advantage of, whether this is a general offer or something specific to a big event, then Betfred usually have you covered.
What’s great, and really makes their service stand out, is the further offers for existing customers that you can use after you’ve signed up and taken the welcome promotion.
888sport are known for their breadth in betting markets, and vast amount of in-play offerings. Perhaps not the biggest name, but 888sport are a big player!
When you place a bet, the odds you take determine what you win. Every time you don’t take the best odds, you are leaving potential winnings on the table. 888Sport are one of the sports gambling sites known for offering highly competitive odds, sometimes the very best available, or if not, close to the top of the list.
If your betting is all about getting the very best value, then these competitive odds across the board are going to really appeal to you.
Betfair is one of the biggest names in the business, with it’s hugely popular Exchange and Sportsbook. The Sportsbook is a brilliant place for new punters!
Of all the websites for sports betting, Betfair have one of the very biggest services on offer. Their choice is excellent, with a huge range of betting markets available for all sports. When it comes to the big events, they go even deeper, for big football games, you will have hundreds of betting markets to choose from when looking to place your wager.
It’s not just football though, as Betfair stand out for their betting markets across many different sports.
Unibet are one of the biggest UK bookmakers, since forming in 1997, they have become famous for their Horse Racing, Greyhound Racing & Darts offerings.
Looking to construct your ideal accumulator or craft a winning bet builder? Let Unibet’s ‘Market Insights’ feature be your trusty sidekick. This feature is like a crystal ball, offering you the freshest, most insightful stats at your fingertips just when you need them most – right before you seal the deal on your picks. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg! Unibet is far more than a one-trick football pony; it’s racing ahead with a diverse and impressive portfolio of betting markets.
From the high-stakes thrill of the world’s most prestigious horse races to the strategic battles of chess and beyond, Unibet is your passport to a world of exciting betting opportunities.
William Hill are one of the most popular brands with punters, and it is easy to see why! Having been around since 1937, William Hill are a staple of UK betting!
Since William Hill have been on the scene for so long, they have established some of the biggest betting markets out there - covering basically all sports you can think of, such as football, horse racing, boxing and even more niche sports such as badminton and squash!
William Hill also have some of the best welcome offers in the business, and often give you the opportunity to split your bonus between either sports betting or casino bonuses, which means there truly is something for everyone at William Hill.
Ladbrokes are the home of football betting, with their famous acca insurance proving to be one of the biggest value promotions in the beautiful game!
Having been formed way back in 1887, Ladbrokes and their iconic red logo are truly engrained into British betting culture. Whilst being well known for their football offers, such as acca insurance and 2up&win, Ladbrokes are a one-stop shop for sports betting.
Due to their longevity in the marketplace, you truly know what you are getting with Ladbrokes. The online sportsbook offering, combined with over 1,800 physical stores, makes Ladbrokes a great place for punters new and old.
Betway, famous sponsors of West Ham and several PDC events, is a perfect place for a new bettor to start their journey, with competitive odds and great offers!
Despite their famous sponsorships in recent years, Betway are a relative newcomer to the UK bookmaker scene, only forming in 2006. Whilst still being junior in age compared to it’s competitors, Betway has shown some strong might to forge its name into the minds of UK punters!
Most renowned for their Free Bet Club, where punters can get up to £15 in free bets each week, Betway are the perfect place for someone looking for a new bookmaker who can provide a high level of offers for their regulars, alongside a smooth and responsive website and app.
Fair & Safe Betting Sites
As with any online transaction, finding a fair and secure website is paramount for betting. The betting sites we recommend are fully licensed and regulated to operate in the UK, with many holding a UK Gambling Commission license.
With safe betting sites, you can focus on enjoying your gambling and not worrying about your funds and whether you are being given a fair deal.
UK bookmakers are required to promote responsible gambling. They must offer tools and information to help people gamble safely and avoid addiction - these include:
- Setting limits on how much money people can deposit and bet
- Offering self-exclusion tools that allow people to take a break from gambling
- Providing information about gambling addiction and how to get help
If you are concerned about gambling, contact the National Gambling Helpline on 0808 8020 133.
Here are some additional tips for responsible gambling:
- Only gamble with money that you can afford to lose
- Set limits on how much time you spend gambling
- Take regular breaks from betting
- Be aware of the signs of gambling addiction
- If you are concerned about your gambling, seek help
Are online bookmakers legal in the UK?
Yes, online bookmakers are legal in the UK, provided you are 18 or over.
Can I place a bet at a bookie in person and track it online?
Unfortunately, as far as we know, there aren’t any bookmakers who offer this service as of yet. However, some high street bookmakers allow punters to withdraw their winnings from an online bet in their shop, most often through a membership card style system.
Do online bookies have a mobile app?
All the leading UK online bookmakers have a mobile app for punters to download.
How do online bookmakers calculate odds?
As bookmakers try to determine the probability or the odds of a given outcome, a range of factors in real-time, such as news and injuries, can shift these odds on one particular outcome over time.
Which online bookies offer cash out?
Many leading UK bookmakers offer cash-out, allowing you to bank some profit if your bet is winning or to reduce your potential losses if it is not.
Do any betting sites accept PayPal?
Yes, a limited number of betting sites will accept PayPal - check out the payment methods for each brand to find out where you can bet with PayPal.
What betting sites do Irish lotto?
The Irish lottery has become a staple on many betting sites, all accepting various bets on the twice-weekly draw.
Can betting sites ban you for winning too much?
Bookmakers can place restrictions on accounts as they wish, but this rarely affects regular punters.
What betting site has the best odds?
No one site has the best odds all the time - the best betting value is found by shopping around for each event you are betting on.
Do all betting sites need verification?
The process may vary slightly between brands, but you must prove who you are with various ID checks.