Free Bets Explained
Most online bookies offer free bet deals to attract new customers and encourage you to bet online instead of using traditional methods like high street betting shops.
These new customer offers usually involve offering potential customers free bets, betting promotions or boosted odds on a sporting event when registering a new online betting account.
Free bets come in all shapes and sizes from 100% matched bets to offers that give you three to four times the value of the first bet that you place as free bet credit on your account.
Explaining Free Bets
A free bet is a basically a bonus bet that a bookie gives you on signup - just like this offer from Ladbrokes.com which offers to match your first deposit with a bonus bet of equal value.
18+. New customers only. Promo code 'F50' required. Certain deposit methods excluded. Min £5 on win or each-way bet excluding Tote or pools = match max £50 free bet. Min odds 1/2 (1.5). Bet must be made within 14 days. Free bet valid for 4 days. Free bet stake not returned. Single bets only. Free bet cannot be used on certain markets. T&C's apply.
When betting online, a free bet is a complimentary sum of money/credit on your account that's usually awarded to you once you've placed your first bet.
Some bookies call them free bets, others bonus bets, but it must be used for placing bets online; i.e. you can't withdraw the cash straight away!
Some bookies do however let you withdraw any winnings that you generate from a free bet. You can usually find this information in the terms and conditions of the offer.
How to Choose a Free Bet
To help you with the process of choosing a free bet, we've reviewed loads of bookies and only allow the best to display their free bet offers on our site.
Check out our reviews section to find out how each bookie rated and which we consider to be the better bookies you should consider claiming free bets from.
The next step that we recommend would be to compare the free bets that bookies offer new account holders in our comprehensive free bet offers section.
This page offers a quick summary of each of the bookies free bets for new account holders and also allows you to access further details, including the T&C's, of each offer.
What Can I Use Free Bets On?
Good question, this usually depends on the free bet offer that you want to claim or the online bookie that you've decided to start betting at.
When placing free bets, most bookies allow you to use it on any of the sports betting markets they offer odds on where as some may limit your options.
Most of the online bookies that we've reviewed also impose some form of time limit on the free bet token or voucher that they give you on signup.
This means that you may have to use the free bet within a certain number of days since you joined, usually around 30 days, but each bookies' different.
When Do I Get My Free Bet?
Although bookies vary in how they award free bets, standard practice is to generally credit accounts with a free bet after you've placed your first real-money bet.
Some bookies hand over a free bet once you've registered your details, while most reward you with free bets once you have credited your account and placed your first bet.
This is the case with the free bet that Ladbrokes offer (above) and means you'll have to bet first in order to gain a free bet - but even then it's a cheap way of finding out if you like Ladbrokes!
How to Register At a Bookie
Once you've chosen the free bet offer you want to claim simply click through to the bookie's website using any of the big green buttons on our site.
At this stage, you'll need to enter some personal details, including your contact details and email in order to register a new online betting account.
Once you've registered an account you'll usually need to deposit some money into it using a credit card or debit card or via PayPal, Skrill or Neteller.
In most cases, the bookie requires that you place a first bet with the money you've just deposited before they credit your new account with the free bet.
Providing you meet the offers criteria, the bookie then credits your account with a free bet voucher or code that can be used on any market they offer odds on!