Everybody likes a good offer, whether it’s a free pint down the pub or a BOGOF deal at the supermarket. And because bookies know you have plenty of choices of where to place your bets, it means that most of them are very liberal with their promotions.
From free bets when you sign up and reload bonuses when you top up to money back on losing bets and enhanced winnings, there’s almost always something you can use when betting. Some bookmakers even offer loyalty points on your betting which you can trade in for bonuses, cash or VIP tickets to sporting events.
On this page we’ll be giving you the lowdown on all of these kinds of offers. Starting with the most lucrative of them all – the sign up bonus (but don’t worry, there’s plenty for existing customers lower down on the page).
Introductory Free Bets From UK Licensed Bookmakers
Please note: All offers subject to terms and conditions and may have rollover requirements.
About These Bonuses
Sign up bonuses, as you can probably guess from the name, are given to you when you sign up to a bookie. And for obvious reasons, they can only be claimed once per site.
Most are in the form of a free bet (such as place a £10 bet with your own money and get £30 in free bets) but you do also come across some other types as well, including straight up bonuses (you deposit £x, they match it with £x in free cash) or even massive price boosts such as three times the regular odds for your first bet.
You can find a list of these above in a table for easy comparison. All of the offers listed are for UK customers as that’s where most of our readers are based. If you’re from a different country you may find the offers slightly different to those in the table.
The term ‘free bets’ is often used generically to describe any kind of bonus dished out by the bookies. But, as you’ll soon see, there are actually a number of different types of bonus that you can receive. Understanding these differences is the key to getting the most value from the promotions, and maximising your chances of coming out on top.
Types of Offer
In the grand scheme of things there are three main types of introductory offer:
- Free Bet Tokens & Promo Cash – These are promotional credits that can be used to place bets without touching a penny of your own money. When given as a token you often need to bet it all in one go – so a £10 token cannot be split into two £5 tokens. Promo Cash, on the other hand, can be used as you wish – so if you have £25 in promo cash you could place one £25 bet or five £5 bets and so on. To get your free bet you’ll need to place a qualifying bet, which usually determines the value of the promotional credit – when this is a straight pound-for-pound match we call it a ‘matched bet’, but there are a couple of ‘bet £5, get £10’ type deals kicking around too.
- Money Back Bets – The end result of a money back bet (RFB) is often the same as a free bet token where the stake is not returned, except that you must place the bet using your own money. So if you have a £25 RFB you need to have a minimum of £25 in your account to cover the stake. Sometimes the refund is given as a free bet, but the better offers are where it’s just refunded as cash. As with the FB’s above, the value of the offer is usually connected to the value of your qualifying bet.
- Deposit Bonuses – Some sites will give you a bonus based on the amount you deposit, for example: deposit £50 and get a £50 bonus. Most bonuses are either a 100% or 50% match and are often given immediately upon making the deposit(although not always – you sometimes need to ‘qualify’ for the bonus first by betting your deposit ones) and almost always come with a wagering requirement (WR) – a total amount you need to wager before withdrawing. The main benefits of this kind of promotion are that the bonus itself is usually withdrawable once you’ve met the WR and that the bonus amounts tend to be higher than a traditional free bet.
Terms & Conditions
As with all promotions, even ones from the supermarket, there are terms attached to pretty much all of these offers. When bookies offer free bets they want to incentivise new customers to try their service out, what they don’t want is for people to register, get the offer and then never be seen again.
By law the terms have to be listed with the offer, and most are pretty good at keeping them simple. Below you’ll find a guide to the more common things you should watch out for when claiming these kinds of offers.
- Minimum Odds – For both the qualifying bet (the one you place to activate the offer) and the free bet(s) there may be a minimum odds requirement. This is so you don’t whack it all down on a 1/100 shot and walk away an (almost insignificantly) slightly richer person. Minimums vary from the very generous (at time of writing Coral’s is 1/5) up to something around evens.
- Eligible Bets – You may also be restricted on what kind of bet you place. Sometimes this may be on a specific event if the bonus is boosted for a high profile match, or it could be limited to a particular sport. Quite often you can bet on whatever you like, but certain bets will be excluded. In particular you’re unlikely to find any bonus or free bet that allows you to bet on pari-mutual markets.
- Time Restrictions – Again this varies quite a bit, but most bookies have some kind of time limit on both how long you have to claim the bonus after signing up, and how long you have to use it before it expires. After all, they don’t want thousands of pounds in unused free bets kicking around in peoples accounts for years, mucking up their financial reports. Time frames vary from a couplr of days to a month or so.
- Wagering Requirements – Finally, there’s what happens after you’ve used your free bet or received your bonus. Sometimes your winnings are yours to keep, no questions asked. Other times you may be required to place additional wagers before withdrawing what is, effectively, free money. Turnover requirements tend to be fairly low at all the big bookies, and usually not much of a problem if you were planning on betting regularly anyway.
Offers For Existing Customers
Betting offers aren’t just limited to the introductory free bets and bonuses that we feature above. In fact, most of the better bookies run a wide range of money back specials on various sporting events throughout the year.
Sometimes these promotions are limited to a single event but there are also a number of ongoing offers which have been running for months, or even years. These should be considered your go-to promos as they can offer some great added value to your bets day in, day out.
Below you’ll find a list of these offers which have been split into various categories to help you find the right promotion for the bet you want to place. We update this page every week as new offers are launched and old ones retired, however we do reserve this page for promos that cover multiple events – for details of one off promos, see the latest betting offers section of our blog.