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What are handicap bets: how to figure out the confusing numbers

Of all the betting markets in Betwinner, the handicap seems to be the most difficult for beginners. But it is necessary to understand it, because such rates are very profitable. Knowing how to use them means earning more and with less risk.

Today we will help you understand this issue and try to explain all the basic information that is sufficient to bet on the handicap.

What is a handicap?

Handicap is the lag or advantage of one team over another. It is created artificially by the bookmaker in order to slightly reduce the difference in odds.

The handicap is especially popular in cases where the meeting is held between unequal opponents. In other words, when there is a clear favorite and an outsider.

This bet works as follows: after the end of the game segment (this may not necessarily be the entire match, but only 1 half or round), the handicap is taken away from the result of a particular team / athlete (or added to the result). If the result obtained after that matches your bets, then you make a profit.

It may seem to you that this makes no sense, but in fact it is not so. Betting on a handicap is more interesting, plus, such a bet has other odds. That is, if the coefficient for the victory of the clear favorite is low, for example, 1.21, then for his victory with a negative handicap it will already be higher.

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What types of odds are there?

Going to the site of the bookmaker, you will see that the odds are with a plus or minus value, and are also expressed in different numbers (whole or decimal). This is because there are different types of such bets. Let’s consider each of them step by step:

  • Plus – added to the final result, laid down as an artificial advantage;
  • Minus – subtracted from the final result, laid down so that the bettor can get a larger coefficient on the victory of the favorite, as an artificial lag;
  • European – indicated in whole numbers and does not provide for a return;
  • Asian – more difficult to understand, provides for a return and is presented both in whole numbers and in decimal fractions.

In addition to all this, there is also a zero handicap, which provides for the return of the bet amount if the match ends in a draw. Usually, the odds are higher for such a market than for a standard draw. It allows the player to play it safe.

For the basic calculation of the bet, it will be enough for you to understand how the minus and plus handicap work.

If you are betting on a winning team with a plus handicap, then after the announcement of the results, you need to add the handicap to the actual scores. If the team wins according to the result, then the bet wins.

In the case when you bet on the victory of a team with a minus handicap, then after the end of the meeting it is subtracted from the actual result. If the number of athlete’s points is enough to win even after that, then you get a win.

Reinforcing information with an example

Let’s say two teams are playing: A and B. Consider an example with a plus handicap.

  1. We bet: team A + handicap 1.5.
  2. Team A lost the match 0:1.
  3. We add our handicap to her score: 0 + 1.5 = 1.5.
  4. 1.5 is more than 1, so the bet has passed. Given our handicap, the team still won.

Now let’s look at an example with a negative handicap.

  1. We bet: team A – handicap 2.
  2. Team A wins 3:2.
  3. We subtract our handicap from her account: 3 – 2 = 1.
  4. 1 is less than 2 (Team B’s score), so our bet has failed. Because, taking into account the handicap, our team lost.

It may be that after deducting or adding the handicap, a draw is obtained. In this case, we get a refund of the rate, but only in the case of the Asian type.

Thus, each result is calculated. In any case, when you bet on a handicap, the team must win even with it. This is the whole interest of such bets.

This type of betting is very useful when unequal teams are playing. Let’s say there is a clear favorite. If there is a chance that he will win by a small margin, then you can bet on the outsider handicap. If the handicap is 1.75, and the difference in the score is only 1 goal, then the bet on the outsider will win. Therefore, all bettors are advised to understand the odds and apply them.


Is it profitable to bet on odds?

Of course! This gives the underdogs an artificial edge and increases your chances of winning a high odds bet.

In what cases should you choose this type of bet?

When the meeting is between unequal teams and there is a high probability that the favorite will win. The odds for it will be underestimated, and due to the handicap they grow.

In which sport is the handicap best suited?

It is easiest to calculate the handicap where the teams score few points. For example, in football. It will be easiest for beginners to understand such a forecast.