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Free bets put the odds in your favour

Lot's of bookmakers offer free bets to encourage new customers and try and get their name and brand out there. If you are canny you can use these incentives in your favour and seriously boost your chances of making a profit.

Depending on the offer, your approach to risk and how much time you have, one can approach these promotions in a number of ways. If you are happy to make a smaller amount and prefer low or no risk then matched betting is probably the best approach. This entails backing and laying the same selections in order to guarantee a positive outcome - usually around 60-90% of the free bet amount.

However, for a higher potential return we would advise trying to use your skill and judgement to get the better of the bookies. At we are strong advocates of value betting: that is to say backing selections that have a better chance of winning than the odds imply.

Skill and judgement are all very well, as is following the advice and pointers suggested in our match previews, however they are no guarantee. When the bookmakers are prepared to give you free bets, however, you can be sure the odds will be in your favour. For example, where the terms allow, you could put a qualifying bet and a free bet on the same selection - effectively doubling the odds on offer and meaning that you definitely have a value bet.

As mentioned, there are lots of other approaches, such as trading, dutching or crossing your fingers and hoping for the best (!) but in very simple terms these offers can be used to more or less ensure you are a winner. And everyone loves a winner, especially when it comes to having a punt!

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