Whether you’re interested in placing bets on sports such as horse racing, tennis and football, or casino games are more your thing, our betting guide will help to find a safe site for you.
What you need to know to open a betting account online
If you’d like to get the best bet offers, you need to open a betting account online. While high street bookmakers have a certain exciting atmosphere, online is where you find the best bonus offers. Online you’ll find free bet offers (no deposit required), free spins and exclusive sports betting deals just for you. Many of these bonuses are app exclusive, so it pays to download a bookmaker’s betting app for extra deals.
If you’ve not signed up on a betting website before, you may have concerns about site safety. While most websites are safe, there are a few things you can do to check to make sure that you are being a smart punter. A reputable website will have a licence to operate in at least one country. They’ll mention these details somewhere on their website. You’ll usually also find that the website uses SSL encryption to protect your data, making using the site much safer.
How to open a betting account online with ease
Before signing up with a bookmaker, check out Openodds best online bookmakers comparison guides. On these you’ll find everything you need to know about the most popular betting sites. We cover bookmaker bonuses at depth, so if you’re looking for a betting bonus without payment or information about who includes up and down bets or even lay betting you’ll find it here. Website security, live betting, odds and betting markets are also discussed to give a rounded review of each bookmaker. Lastly, we give each bookmaker a score out of 100.
Once you’ve decided on the best online betting account for you, click through to the bookmaker’s website and read the website terms & conditions. Often, you’ll find information here on bonuses and deposits and withdrawals, so take time to familiarise yourself with these. Once you’re satisfied, the next part is to register with the bookmaker.
Registering is simple. You provide some personal details (usually your name, address and date of birth) and think up a username and password to protect your account. After this you set up your payment information, so you can place bets. Some bookmakers will prompt you to add this immediately. Others request you go into your account settings and add a payment method. These include credit and debit cards, bank transfer and e-Wallets such as Neteller and PayPal. Once a payment method has been added, you can make your first deposit to the account. With new open betting accounts, a first deposit bonus is usually available, so keep your eyes peeled.
If you’ve made you deposit, that’s it, you’ve got an open new betting account. All there is left is to place your first bet and make some money.
Registering: An example
You’ve looked at the bookmaker comparison list and have decided to open a betting account online with Betway. After checking out the betting offers new account holders are given, you see there’s a 100% bonus on your first deposit. You click the link from Openodds leading you to the Betway website to create an open account.
The welcome offer is displayed prominently in the scroll banner, stating “£30 free bet.” The terms and conditions are in the bottom right hand corner of the banner image. Click these and you’ll find that you need to make a minimum deposit of £10 by credit/debit card or PayPal to qualify for the free bet offer. The deposit is awarded after making a deposit.
Click the green “register” button at the top of the screen and fill in your personal details on the registration form. Once you’ve filled in the form, you need to confirm you’re 18 or over. You’ve now set up your online bookmaker’s account. Next up is how to place a deposit using your preferred banking method. Remember, to get the 100% sign-up bonus you need to use either credit or debit card, or PayPal only.
How do I fund an online betting account?
Online bookmakers offer various payment options and which you’ll use depends on your own personal preference. Some payment methods will charge you fees for using them, for example, PayPal and Neteller often charge fees to withdraw money to your online account. Make sure that you familiarise yourself with the payment providers terms and conditions and also check bookmaker’s terms, too. Occasionally, they will also charge a fee.
Certain bonuses will require you to deposit in specific ways. These bonuses will often include credit and debit card options as these are commonly used online payment methods.
With Betway, you can place your deposit using credit card, debit card, Neteller, Paysafecard, EntroPay Visa and Visa. For the welcome bonus, you need to use either credit or debit card or PayPal. For our example, we’ll choose credit card.
From your home page, you need to click the green “bank” button on the top of the screen to add a payment method. Select credit card by clicking the green “deposit” button next to it. This transports you to another page. Type in your banking information and click “next.” Again, you’ll be sent to a different screen. On here you type in the amount you’d like to deposit and confirm the transaction.
Best bookmakers for newcomers
|Max. Wert||Bonus Type||Details||Get the Bonus|
|1||98 / 100||10||Bet £20 and get a £10 free betNew customers only. 18+. T&C’s Apply. begambleaware.org||Novibet bonus|
|18+ | UK new customers only | KYC verified | Max £10 free bet | Min bet £20 | Min odds 7/10 (1.70) | Free bet stake not returned | Certain Markets/sports/payment methods restrictions apply | Qualifying bet must be made within 30 days | Free bet valid for 30 days | T&Cs Apply | General Promo Terms Apply|
|2||97 / 100||30||79.5New customers only. 18+. T&C’s Apply. begambleaware.org||STSbet bonus|
|18+. New depositing players on STSbets.co.uk only. Promotion from 11/02/2020 until further notice. First deposit min. £10. Qualifying bet: min. £10 accumulator bet with at least two selections with min odds of 1/2 (1.50) per selection. Bonus: 50% of the amount of the first bet. Max bonus £40. Min 6x wagering with bonus on min odds of 1/2 (1.50) before withdrawal. Deposit method restrictions. Bonus valid for 7 days. Full T&cs apply. BeGambleAware.org.|
|3||96 / 100||30||£30 FreebetNew customers only. 18+. T&C’s Apply. begambleaware.org||Betway bonus|
|New UK & Ireland customers only. Min Deposit: £10. First deposit matched up to £30. 1 x wagering at odds of 1.75+ to unlock Free Bet. Debit Card & PayPal deposits only. This offer is valid for 7 days from your new account being registered. Terms apply|
|4||92 / 100||30||Bet £10 get £30 free!New customers only. 18+. T&C’s Apply. begambleaware.org||William-Hill bonus|
|New customers using Promo Code P30 only, min £10/€10 stake, min odds 1/2, free bets paid as 2 x £15/€15 (30 days expiry), free bet/payment method/player/country restrictions apply. *By entering the Promo code in the box above you agree to the full terms and conditions of this promotion as displayed below.|
|5||89 / 100||20||£20 Risk-Free-BetNew customers only. 18+. T&C’s Apply. begambleaware.org||SBK bonus|
|New customers only. Deposit £20 using Debit Card, bank transfer or Trustly. Up to your first £20 of losses will be refunded as CASH within 24 hours of qualifying bet having been settled.|
|6||87 / 100||100||£100 in bet creditsNew customers only. 18+. T&C’s Apply. begambleaware.org||Bet365 bonus|
|New Customers only. Up to £100 in Bet Credits. Sign up, deposit £5 or more to your account and bet365 will match your qualifying deposit in Bet Credits when you place qualifying bets to the same value and they are settled. Min odds/bet and payment method exclusions apply. Returns exclude Bet Credits stake. T&Cs, time limits & exclusions apply.|
|7||86 / 100||30||Bet £10 Get £30New customers only. 18+. T&C’s Apply. begambleaware.org||888 bonus|
|New customers only • Max Bet €5 • €10 deposit using promo code • Free bets are granted within 72 hours and expires after 7 days • Free bet stakes not included in returns • Deposit balance is available for withdrawal at any time. withdrawal restrictions & full T&C’s apply.|
|8||82 / 100||10||£10New customers only. 18+. T&C’s Apply. begambleaware.org||Grosvenor bonus|
|9||80 / 100||£30||Stake £10 get £20 in free betsNew customers only. 18+. T&C’s Apply. begambleaware.org||Betfred bonus|
|10||75 / 100||30||£30 in Free BetsNew customers only. 18+. T&C’s Apply. begambleaware.org||PaddyPower bonus|
|New customer offer. Place a single £10 (or £5 e/w) Sports bet in the 13:45 York on Friday, 21st of August and get a £5 free bet for each of the subsequent race. Deposits using Credit/Debit cards or Apple Pay only. Free bets are only valid for the specified race and are awarded when the qualifying bet has been settled. Free bet stakes not returned with winnings. T&Cs apply.|
|11||74 / 100||£10||Up to £10 on first depositNew customers only. 18+. T&C’s Apply. begambleaware.org||Smarkets bonus|
|1. Once the bonus is credited to your account, losses will be refunded up to the bonus amount. 2. You must deposit at least the qualifying deposit of £20 (or currency equivalent) in a single amount with your first deposit to be eligible for the rebate. 3. To withdraw rebated funds, you must bet at least the qualifying deposit on any combination of markets within the promotional period; otherwise rebated funds will be forfeited. 4. Unused bonuses expire after seven days of being credited to a user account and will be removed after this period. 5. Users making their first deposit by Skrill, Neteller, PayPal or a virtual/prepaid card will not qualify for this promotion. 6. The sign up offer is strictly limited to one per individual, family, household address, email address, same payment account number, and shared computer. 7. This promotion cannot be used in conjunction with any other sign-up promotion. 8. Smarkets standard terms for promotions apply.|
|12||72 / 100||30||Get £30 in bonuses!New customers only. 18+. T&C’s Apply. begambleaware.org||BetVictor bonus|
|New Customers only. Deposit and place a £5 qualifying bet at odds of 2.00 or greater within 7 days of opening a new account; excludes cashed out bets. Receive 2x £10 Sports/Virtual Sports Free Bets, valid on set events only at odds 2.00 or greater, expires in 7 days, plus a £10 Casino Bonus, expires in 7 days. Wager the Casino Bonus 35x to withdraw winnings. Payment Cards only. Geographical Restrictions and T&Cs Apply.|
|13||60 / 100||100||100New customers only. 18+. T&C’s Apply. begambleaware.org||Paddy-Power bonus|
|14||0 / 100||20||£20 welcome bonusNew customers only. 18+. T&C’s Apply. begambleaware.org||Betbull bonus|
How do you find the best operator for you?
Choosing the right bookmaker for you is a personal choice, and it all comes down to what perks you would like an operator to have. If you’re a casino fan, it may well be that a great gaming interface is essential. Or maybe you would like to play a specific game such as Baccarat or roulette. For sports fans, in-play betting action may be the thing you crave, alongside lots of wagering options like Goliath bets and four-fold bets.
Take the time to consider what would really excite you in a betting provider and then use the Openodds comparison guides to see who fits the bill. You’ll be able to use these to compare welcome bonuses, game providers and ease of use. There is even a specific comparison guide for the best odds. It works like this:
Go to the Openodds home page and type in the team, player, or sporting event you’re interested in into the search box. Click “Get odds” and away you go, the best odds by the most reputable operators in the world. You can narrow down this search option using the tick boxes on the left of the screen. In fact, you can even make the search wider to cover 2 days instead of just daily odds.
Say for example, you wanted to bet on Manchester City vs Feyenoord. You would type in Manchester City into the search box and get given all the betting options for the match. This includes over/under goals, win, draw no bet, even Asian handicap results. In fact, you’ll get odds for 17 different markets in this game’s case. More than enough choice for most, and with the possibility of trying some round robin bets with other football matches, it shows just how much choice we have.
Possible bookmaker options
If you’re looking for the best bookmakers to place bets on eSports, we’re the ones to beat. We’ve got betting providers for the upcoming CS:GO DreamHack tournament at the touch of a button.
Option 1: William Hill
As one of the world’s oldest bookmakers, you can be sure that William Hill is a name to trust. They’ve got licences in the UK and Gibraltar for peace of mind. The bookmaker has a respectable sports betting bonus that you can use on eSports, including the DreamHack tournament. As well as CS:GO betting, the site also offers DOTA2 betting and League of Legends bets, too. The website was one of the first bookmakers to offer odds on the Las Vegas Dreamhack tournament earlier on in the year, and yet again will be raring to go for the late November Swedish tournament.
As well as eSports betting, you’ll find a whole host of other sports that you can bet on. Aintree horse racing, football derbies and boxing features heavily on the website and their high street bookmaker shops have an atmosphere that any punter would be proud of.
Option 2: Pinnacle Sports
Pinnacle sports offer CS:GO, League of Legends, King of Glory and DOTA 2 betting from Europe, North America and Asia and consistently offer some of the largest betting limits and great odds in the industry. They were one of the first bookmakers to embrace live tournament betting, offering live odds on a range of markets including overall winners and handicap betting. So, whether you’re interested in betting on Fnatic or Virtus Pro or GODSENT you’re likely to find odds to suit you here.
The website ensures that players are happy AND knowledgeable through their betting strategy articles and betting insight to help you get the best deals. Including in their betting resources is a glossary for common betting terms. This glossary is alphabetised, so you can find what you’re looking for at a glance. Perfect for both new and experienced players alike.
Option 3: Ladbrokes
Ladbrokes is one of the most established names in the UK. Originally formed in 1886 as a horse agency, the business later went on to become a bookmaker in the late 1800s.
New sign ups to the website get a welcome bonus. Deposit from £5 and Ladbrokes will match it – up to the value of £20. The bookmaker also operates an odds boost program where you can boost the odds on one pre-event or in-play single bet per day. These two offers can be combined with great effect! Sign up with a £20 deposit and you’ll receive an extra £20 free bet. Place your first £20 on a team to win DreamHacks at odds of 7/1 and these could be boosted to 8/1. If you win, your usual return of £160 (£140+£20 returned), would be boosted to £180. This leaves your £20 free bet for the DOTA tournament later.
Chose your new betting account carefully
You’ve reached the end of our guide on how to open a betting account. We hope you found the info useful and have no problems using it to sign up with new and vibrant bookmakers. We’ve covered all aspects of the registration process, including those pesky terms and conditions, payment options and welcome offers. If ever you’re considering signing up with a new bookmaker, be sure to check them out on the Openodds comparison guides for peace of mind. Who knows, you may even get a rather tasty bonus, too!