Betfair Review: Sports Betting, Free Bets & Promotions
The main sports covered by Betfair sportsbook are football, tennis, rugby union, and favorites for the British players like cricket and snooker. This is a standard number of sports for a online betting site to cover.
The bets that Betfair sportsbook allows are Singles, Parlay, System (Doubles, Trebles, Folds), Specials (Trixie, Yankee, Super Yankee, Heinz, Super Heinz, Goliath, and Luckies). Look out for bets on politics and trading events as well. However, some of them might not be eligible to bet on using freebets, no deposit bonuses or other bonus campaigns.
The focus of the site appears to be Premier League for football, Champions League and Portugal Masters and Zozo Championship for golf.
The margins offered by Betfair sportsbook are so much higher than any other online betting shop. For example, when it comes to championship Betfair football their margin is an astounding 11.35%. Given that there are sites with a margin on championships of only 5.9% we are unsure why they would be so elevated here.
The margins for pre-live markets are also astoundingly high. For Betfair football you have between 7.1% and 11.7%. For tennis you have 6.1% to 9.4%. For rugby you have 10% up to an incredible 14%. For cricket they offer 6% to 11.4%. For snooker you get 8.2% up to 8.4%. Why punters put up with these margins is a mystery.
Compared to other bookmakers, their margins are high. William Hill, for example, only charges a 5.2% margin on Betfair football. As Betfair sportsbook has been in operation and quite popular for a long time in the online betting industry it appears to be acceptable for some punters, probably because of the great freebets and other generous bonuses offered here. It still seems almost inexplicably high to us, however.
For Champions League football the live margin is 7.51%. For the pre live market for Champions League Betfair sportsbook charges 6.35%.
Again, the league margin is much too high. You can see margins at other online betting sites for as low as 6.2%. In this case, however, there are other bookies with even larger margins than Betfair Exchange offers.
When it comes to the number of markets available, Betfair sportsbook is right in the middle. There are 80 live markets for the football forum, 50 for tennis, a varying number for rugby and cricket and 10 for snooker, all available to bet on with either your own funds or a free bet. For pre-live markets you have 170 for football, 70 for tennis, 40 for rugby, 15 for cricket and 13 for snooker.
Our opinion about the margins offered by Betfair Exchange is quite low. Nothing the site offers justifies these margins. It’s taking money out of punters’ pockets, and we see no justification for it. We understand that a bookmaker like Betfair needs to make money. But they could easily cut a percentage point or two off of their margins and still make a fortune but also giving their customers the opportunity to make some good money even from free bets or no deposit bonus promotions.
It would be slightly more understandable if some of the other things they offered were great. But as our review has discovered, Betfair is not exactly the most outstanding website in the online betting industry, with the lack of no deposit bonuses on the offer. It would be much better if they enable their players to try the website not only with free bets and deposit bonus offers but also with some no deposit bonus funds.
Statistics & Results at Betfair
To place a wise bet, a punter needs to have statistics on hand. That's how he or she can decide whether or not a bet is worth it. But Betfair, despite their huge margins, offers no statistics. Many other online sportsbooks include statistics that players can easily look up. None of them are available at the Betfair community.Statistics are what gambling is all about. There might be some novice gamblers who bet based on nothing more than instinct. But a real gambler collects all the information she or he can, and then places their bets.
Since Betfair offers no statistics. We’d suggest them think it over whether or not statistics should be on the online betting site. Obviously, a punter could simply go to another site for statistics, but why should you have to? And by finding another site, the likelihood is much higher that you will find more generous free bets offers, no deposit bonuses and better odds as the margins will be lower.
While you can’t get any statistics on their site, you can from their widget. They are paying someone for statistics, but just not using them. Perhaps this is Betfair’s attempt to tempt people to make bad bets because they don’t have enough information which can help online betting fans to place their free bets and no deposit bonuses right.
Their widget is dependable and above average. It has scores, the time left in the match, loads of stats, and is provided by Opta. Opta is one of the best keepers of sports data in the world. It would just seem natural to use their statistics on the site itself.
It can’t possibly be that hard to transfer the data from your widget to your online betting platform. We are sure it would take some programming skill but not that much. Which leaves us in a mystery of why Betfair Arcade hasn’t just up and done it. It would be a great online betting service to their punters and would likely keep them coming back to the site. If you are going to charge high margins, then you want to be able to provide a premium service along with generous free bets and no deposit bonuses to your punters.
Betfair does not provide the results of games and thus does not help players place their free bets or no deposit bonuses in an informed manner. You simply find out if you’ve won or if you’ve lost. This is another area where Betfair Exchange misses the mark and can lose the interest of online betting fans. Having data about how games have resulted can make gamblers place better bets in the future. Not having that data handicaps punters. Given the extremely high margins Betfair charges it should not be a problem for them to provide results so that players can enjoy bonuses and free bets they are offered. We find it baffling that they do not.
It should come as no surprise to anyone that since they don’t display results at Betfair they don’t store them in their online betting platform either. Betfair Exchange doesn’t come through with the information that both serious gamblers who usually use their own money and those playing with their free bet or no deposit bonuses, need to make their bets. It’s like they don’t care about this at Betfair.
- No statistics available
- Informative live widget
- Results not provided
Betfair does have an ample number of bonuses and free bets available to players. That’s a positive feature of the website, as freebets and bonuses give you a chance to win without risking your own funds. However, they don’t seem to offer any no deposit bonus at the moment, at least we couldn’t find any info about their no deposit bonus money offers in Betfair promo section. Still, we hope they will have some in the near future as there’re a lot of players seeking to maximize their winnings not only from deposit bonuses and freebets but also using no deposit bonus offers.
|Promo Name||Promo type||Requirements||Restrictions||Max. Winnings|
|Betfair Arcade 200 FREE SPINS||Deposit||Deposit and wager a minimum of £20||On Betfair Arcade||200 free spins on Daily Jackpot games|
|Opt in is required. New customers only|
|REFER YOUR FRIENDS||Special||For the referred customer: £50 over three days, 1.5 odds||Your family or any persons at the same postal address as you cannot be Referred Customers||£20 free bet for each person|
|Expires in 7 days. Max referrals is 5|
|BEST ODDS GUARANTEED||Odds Boost||Singles and multiples||Horse Racing||£50,000|
|Race winner markets only|
|Same Game Multi FOOTBALL||Free bets||Same Game Multi bet at combined odds of 4/1 or better||On Football||£25 free bet if your bet wins|
|Exchange bets to not qualify for this offer|
|Same Game Multi AMERICAN SPORTS||Free bets||Same Game Multi bet at combined odds of 4/1 or better||On American Football, Basketball or Baseball||£25 free bet if your bet wins|
|Max number of selections is 25|
|A MIN BET TO WIN GUARANTEE||Deposit||min £500||Horse Racing||£500|
|Any horse in the Win market from 10am|
|Free £20 exchange bet||Free bets||£20||On the exchange||£20|
|New customer only. Bet must be placed in first 7 days of account opening|
|UP TO 100% Casino BONUS||Deposit||£10||Casino||100% up to £100 bonus|
|45x wagering. Deposits made with e-wallets are not valid. New Customers only|
|30 free spins||No Deposit||None listed||On eligible games only|| 30 free spins|
No cap of winnings
|New Customers from UK & Ireland only. SMS verification required. Expires in 7 days|
|BET £20 GET 100 Free Spins||Free Spins||Bet £20||Casino||100 free spins|
|New Customers only. Opt in required|
|LIVE CASINO Welcome||Deposit||None listed||Live Roulette or Live Blackjack||100% up to £100 bonus|
|50x wagering. Expires in 7 days|
The cashout option at Betfair is odd. And it’s not in the players’ favor. Cashouts allow players to secure a win if their team is ahead but accepting less of a payout. Or it allows them to limit their losses if their team is behind, though it might not be available when using free bets and other bonus offers. Most sportsbooks have a cashout option on all games. Betfair Casino does not. They select the games you can cashout on. To make sure that they bet you are making has a cashout option you have to look for the cashout button before you place your bet. And even if there is a cashout option when you make your bet it may disappear at some point during the game. Again, given the margins Betfair is asking for, having cashout on every bet and some no deposit bonuses available would just be expected.
When you are a new customer at Betfair you simply need to place five bets of £10 or more on any sporting event you’d like once you have used your Betfair Exchange login. The minimum odds for your bets must be ½ (1.5). Then you will receive a £20 free bet. You can end up being given up to £100 in free bets as you can take them up on their offer a total of five times. You have to claim your £100 in free bets in 30 days. Under the terms of the free bets if you lose you lose nothing. If you win Betfair will give you your winnings minus the amount of your free bet. There are no play through requirements for these free bets.
Refer & Earn
If you are a resident of the UK or Ireland, you can refer a friend to Betfair Arcade and receive more free bets. If you refer a friend and then bet at least £50 in 30 days while you are on your Betfair Exchange login, you'll be credited a £20 free bet to wager on anything you like. You can do this up to five times – for £100 in free bets. Once you receive your free bet from Betfair it will expire in seven days.
Get one point for every sports bet you place on Betfair. Collect as many points as you can. Then you can trade your points in for savings on going to the track. You can obtain cheaper tickets, upgrades and access to experiences at prestigious events at the Cheltenham Festival, the Grand National and the Derby.
Best Odds Guaranteed
This promotion also applies to horse racing. On selected races Betfair Exchange will guarantee you the best odds available from any other online bookmaker. It doesn't apply to all races but the cash race or races it does apply to do something to make up for the fact that their margins are ridiculous on other forms of sport.
Same Game Multi
This feature allows you to build your own accumulator from a variety of markets on one single game. Simply navigate to the game and make your pics. The more variables you add in the higher your odds will be.
Welcome bonus up to £100
If you go to the Betfair Casino you can receive 100% matching funds up to £100. You can also access up to 30 free spins. The video slot machines you can bet your free spins on varies over time. But in our experience, it will be for the most popular slots at Betfair, or sometimes even Betfair Bingo. Any winnings you earn from your bonus money will have to be played through 50 times.
Betfair Payment Methods
At Betfair you can make payments with Visa, MasterCard, Neteller, Skrill, PayPal, Pay Safe Card, direct wire transfer, check, Click and Buy and a Betfair Bank transfer. You can also use these methods to process your withdrawal. While making a deposit keep in mind that not all of these payment methods are valid for getting bonus offers, including freebet offers and no deposit bonus money.
Withdrawal Time Frames
Withdrawals are generally processed in under 24 hours. In some cases, it just took a matter of minutes for Betfair to process our withdrawals. When you have access to your money depends on what payment method you used. Visa and MasterCard can take up to five days. Some methods will be in your hands the next day.
We can’t find any fault with Betfair as to how they deal with their deposits or withdrawals. It all seems fairly simple and put together. It’s a system that works and we have to give Betfair credit for that.
They don’t charge any fees for their deposits or withdrawals which is a good thing. The minimum you can deposit is £5 the maximum is £20,000. For withdrawals the minimum goes down to £2. We find this to be an efficient system Bet Fair has put together for their players. It works, doesn’t seem to have any problems and it is well put together. When Betfair does something right we have to give them credit.
Licenses held by Betfair
Betfair holds a license from the UK Gambling Commission. Its license number is 39439, and it was issued for general betting standard – real even and general betting standard for virtual events. Pools are not listed.
It is also licensed by MGA. That license number is 39561 for active help, remote and betting intermediary help.
The UK Gambling Commission found in October 2018 that Betfair did not do anything about gamblers on the site who were showing signs of problem gambling. It indicates that Betfair either doesn’t have monitors in place or if they did, ignored them. Most casinos and sportsbooks manage to go their entire run without having problems like this.
That said they did not lose their license over it and that was more than a year ago. It is possible that Betfair has taken action since to improve things. There have certainly been no reports of any other actions or sanctions against Bet Fair since so that is what we hoped happened.
Customer Support at Betfair
As for customer support at Betfair Casino, they don’t list an email address to contact them on their site. Instead they state, “We no longer have an e-mail service. We have done this to improve our service to you. The reason being is that Live Chat and Phone are immediate tools, and this means that we can respond to your query quicker and more efficiently.”
Yet if you ask them on Live Chat how to contact someone via email, they give you the email address – it is email@example.com. They do have an email set up; they just don’t advertise it. When we sent a message to Betfair’s email asking if we could get our margins lowered; we got an instant message with a reference number, and then a real email back in about 44 minutes: “We would not be able to lower our odds for specific customers unfortunately”.
Response Wait Time
Betfair Live Chat – which is clearly what they want you to use – is different. It takes a while to start up. The average time was about five minutes. Once live chat loads at Bet Fair it takes between a minute and half and three minutes to receive a reply; when we contacted them at quarter to one in the morning, it took them three minutes to reply.
Competence of Support Team
When you get them talking to you, they are quite knowledgeable and professional. And they give you the correct response – eventually. For example, when we used Live Chat to ask if they accept Bitcoin, first they responded: “From our end supposedly yes, if an error pops up when you try to withdraw kindly contact us with the error and we’ll further look into it”. Then a while later came the next response: “Sorry for the previous information, management confirmed that that payment method cannot be used on Betfair”.
They don’t list a phone number despite saying that it’s one of their options. We did find them, however; they are 0344 871 0000 (UK) 1800 944 000 (Ireland) 0044 203 059 8888 (other locations). But as far as we were able to discern, they no longer take phone calls, but they used to do so between 7 a.m. and midnight.
You can also contact customer service through their Facebook and Twitter account.
We are unsure why they hide their email address. Some people prefer that over live chat and Bet Fair should be on board with that. While Live Chat was nice it did take them a while to find the right answers. We would also note that our conversation with them was full of typos.
But the customer service experience at Betfair Arcade is far better than average. If you have the time to wait for their responses, they provide good information and can be helpful. We’d like to see them respond a little bit more quickly but that’s just a small quibble.