While bookmakers will offer a variety of regular free bet offers for existing customers, sign up offers will offer the greatest individual amounts in free bets, thereby offering plenty of value for new customers.
You can see our free bets guide for a detailed look at free bets overall; but here we will walk you through how to capitalise on the many sign up offers advertised across the industry.
Every once in a while, a bookmaker may surprise you with a new customer offer that’s out of the ordinary. But, commonly, there are a set amount of go-to sign up offers a brand can provide.
A frequent sign up offer is the offer of a handful of free bets when you make your first bet with a new site: for example, bet £10 get £30 free. This would consist of three £10 bets on top of your initial wager. We will explore further examples below.
Other sign up offers can include promotions which offer enhanced odds, such as 50/1 on a certain outcome. To learn more about these types of offers, see our comprehensive guide on enhanced odds.
Some offers will also add a casino bonus as part of your reward; for example, bet £10, receive £30 in sports bets and £10 in online casino chips.
Other common sign up promotions see the bookmaker match your initial deposit, either with the exact amount or a percentage deposit bonus. Here, a first deposit of £50 could see the bookmaker give you a £50 bonus – usually in the form of bet credits, not withdrawable cash.
Just like in our free bets guide, however, we would always advise you to be certain of the exact terms and conditions before proceeding with any offer.
When signing up with bet365, you have the perfect example of a sportsbook matching your initial deposit. In this case, if you deposit anything up to £100, bet365 will give you the same amount back in bet credits.
The minimum deposit is £5 and bet credits are non-withdrawable. The offer needs to be claimed within 30 days of registration and the minimum odds of your free bets has to be 1/5 (1.2).
Meanwhile, 888sport offers a textbook sign up offer carried by many different bookmakers – with the specific amount in free bets usually varying between £20 and £40 across brands.
When using this offer, simply deposit £10 using the promotion code “RACING” (the code may vary depending on the offer) and bet the full amount on any market at minimum odds of 1/2 (1.5).
You will then receive four free £10 bets that must be used within seven days; these can be used on any sports market.
Paddy Power provides something slightly different, and a classic example of what can be called the money back market, with its ‘risk free’ offer.
If you are a new customer with the brand, you can place a bet of up to £20 on any sportsbook market and have your stake refunded in cash if the bet loses. In this case, the term cash means you can actually withdraw the amount – hence the term risk free.
In a slight variation of the same promotion offered by bookmakers like 888sport, Ladbrokes offers you four free £5 bets if you place one bet of £5 when signing up with the brand.
Again, your qualifying offer must be at odds of 1/2 (1.5) or higher.
While your stake is lower than with a £10 sign up offer, you are still getting four free bets (and five in total) for the price of one £5 bet.
The perfect time to use a good sign up offer is during a big sporting event. In horse racing, major festivals often produce a raft of new customer promotions, while the start of a new season – or a high-profile match – will always create offers in football.
In the past, bookmakers have offered no deposit or money back offers during the Cheltenham Festival, as well as bet £10 get £40 in free bets when football either returned from an extended break or saw the start of a new season.
The benefits of such offers are plentiful. Were you to place a £10 bet and then use three free £10 bets, you would end up making a greater profit with the same results than by placing four £10 bets with your own money.
Let’s say you won two and lost two of those bets, you would still end up with the winnings from two out of four bets, making a profit. The same four bets with your own money, however, could leave you with a loss once the four matches are over, depending on the odds.
Ultimately, should you choose to take advantage of the numerous sign-up offers available, you will end up registering with multiple bookmakers.
While there is nothing wrong with brand loyalty – and you are perfectly entitled to have a preferred bookmaker – having as many options as possible will help you receive the best promotions and pursue the best odds.
Before you bet, compare. And if, for instance, you bet regularly with one bookmaker and see an appealing offer with a different brand, don’t be afraid to broaden your horizons. After all, sign up offers are designed to attract players by giving them great value.