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Do bookies like matched betting? (The truth revealed)

Bookies and matched betting go hand in hand.

Without bookmakers there would be no matched betting – we need their free bets and bonuses to make a guaranteed profit.

We won’t go into the details of what matched betting is in this article, so if you’re new to this concept I recommend you check out some of our other articles.

All we need to know is that matched bettors take advantage of free bets and bonuses the bookies offer – whether that’s a sign up promotion or a bonus for existing customers, they’re all useful and add to our matched betting profit.

We use a risk free betting technique to guarantee a profit from these offers.


How can you make a guaranteed profit if betting is involved?

It’s a fair question that we get asked a lot…

The answer: we use a method called back and lay betting which alleviates or cancels out any risk from normal gambling.

It involves placing two opposing bets meaning all bases are covered regardless of the event outcome.

But a common question and the one we’re going to look at it in this article is: do the bookies like matched betting?

Surely the bookies aren’t going to be happy with matched betting if we’re making a guaranteed profit from the free bets they’re offering?

Do bookies like matched betting?

Whether or not the bookies like matched betting is quite a complex question.

It’s difficult to know what exactly the bookies think. Furthermore they all have their own specific opinions.

However, through some research we’ve got a pretty good idea of the answer.

Thanks to the competitiveness of the betting industry, the bookies offer new and existing customers a large range of free bets and promotions.

They do this to entice customers to place more bets with them.

Matched betting is about taking advantage of as many of these free bets and promotions as possible.

The bookies are perfectly happy with us using these free bets. They want to promote their company, entice more customers and ultimately get more people betting on their site.

If they didn’t want people using these promotions they wouldn’t offer them. So in theory bookies don’t have a problem with matched betting.


The bookies don’t like it when matched bettors just take advantage of their promotions.

That’s what they call bonus abusers – customers who take too much value.

There’s got to be something in it for the betting company or else there’d be no point offering any promotions.

In an ideal world, matched bettors would only place bets when there’s a promotion or bonus available.

However, this would put us in dodgy territory in the eyes of the bookies.

Therefore it’s important for us matched bettors to act like normal gamblers do and blend in with the crowd. There are a number of methods we can use to do this. More on this later.

As you progress with matched betting and become more experienced, there are other ways to make a guaranteed profit that don’t require a free bet.

There are more arbitrage based methods that take advantage of a difference in price between betting companies.

Bookies unfairly closing accounts

In recent months and years, it’s become a common theme within the betting industry as a whole that winners are not respected in the eyes of the bookie.

There have been a number of reports of gamblers being restricted before they’ve placed any bets.

It’s important to add, this is not an issue isolated to matched betting. This is happening across the betting industry as a whole.

Earlier this year in January 2018, there was a debate about whether or not bookmakers were unfairly closing betting accounts.

In a survey conducted by the Horseracing Bettors Forum (HBF) they found that 20% of respondents had had their accounts closed after less than 10 bets, 37% after less than 20 bets.

During the debate, Lord Lipsey said ‘bookmakers need to get a grip’ and ‘we should be congratulating winners, not denigrating them, if we want racing and betting to grow.’

Whilst each bookie has the right to choose who their customers are and conduct risk management to remain profitable, it seems to have gone a bit over board in recent times.

It will be interesting to see where this goes in the future. It will certainly help matched betting if bookies aren’t so hot on closing accounts.

What if we get caught matched betting?

Over the years, as technology has improved so has the ability of bookies profiling their customers.

The bookies use advanced technology to analyse each and every customer.

However, this should not put you off matched betting.

Instead, we need to use it to our advantage. We need to make ourselves look like every other ‘regular’ gambler out there.

Initially the bookies probably won’t do anything. They’ll obviously keep a closer eye on your account but unless you really are playing unfairly, you’ll be fine.

If the bookies are not happy with our betting patterns there are a number of things they might do.

This ranges from a maximum stake limit to a full account ban. Bettors have coined the phrase gubbing to describe when a bookie limits an account in some way or another.

This is a matched bettors worst nightmare. We need as many bookie accounts open as possible to maximise our profit.

It all comes down to how many offers we can complete. So keeping our accounts unrestricted is crucial to matched betting success in 2018.

3 tips to stay below the bookies radar

Below are the three best tips to staying below the bookies radar and keeping your accounts unrestricted for as long as possible.

Tip #1 – Mug betting

Mug betting is a method matched bettors can use to keep the bookies from gubbing our accounts. This technique makes us look like regular gamblers.

We simply place a normal bet on a popular event, a Premier League football game for example.

We can make this process risk free by placing a lay bet at a betting exchange, however, the process works better if we just place a back bet at the bookie.

Granted, we might lose some money, however, we could also win the bet and increase our winnings.

I know matched betting is meant to be a risk free method that doesn’t require gambling.

But we’re in it for the long run, we might lose a tenner by placing a few mug bets. But this should keep our bookie accounts open for longer, allowing us to make a far greater profit in the long run.

Tip #2 – Select markets wisely

Another one of our three top tips is to think about what markets you place your bets on.

Regular gamblers don’t place bets on rare markets like the Icelandic Third Division for example.

Therefore, matched bettors shouldn’t either. We need to select popular markets where the majority of gamblers are placing their bets.

Most gamblers place their bets on large football and horse racing events.

Tip #3 – Time your bets

In order to be as inconspicuous as possible we need to place our bets at a time when other bettors place theirs. We want to blend in with the crowd.

Your average bettor will place their bet just before kick off, so we should do the same.

Timing your matched bets

Placing your bets a few days before the scheduled start time of an event is likely to be flagged up by the bookies.

This could lead to them keeping closer tabs on your account, and any further odd activity may end up with your account being restricted.

Matched betting brings more customers to the bookies

One big argument for matched betting, in the eyes of the bookies, is that the technique is used by a wide variety of people from students to stay at home parents.

A number of these people would never place any bets in their life if it weren’t for matched betting – some of our members are completely against the idea of gambling.

Add matched betting into the mix and suddenly you’ve got hundreds of people who open new bookie accounts, even though they may not be true gamblers.

Overall, matched betting brings new customers who wouldn’t necessarily sign up in the first place. This increases the bookies revenue considerably and ultimately makes them more money.


It’s important to remember, the bookies provide free bets and promotions in the knowledge they’ll get something in return.

Bookies like matched betting when they know they’ll make more money from the gamblers.

Matched bettors who continually extract the maximum from free bets and promotions will certainly face restrictions sooner than those who are in it for the long run and follow our advice.

That’s it for today’s ‘Do bookies like matched betting’ article.

I hope this article gives you a greater understanding of where the bookies stand in terms of matched betting.

Feel free to add any comments in the section below or read some of our brilliant articles where you can find our more about no risk matched betting.

Until next time

Further reading

Matched betting outside the UK
Our top 6 matched betting tips
Best payment methods for matched betting