Any sportsbook worth its salt will always offer betting bonuses. Most commonly, bonuses are handed out to new members to help sweeten the deal of signing up, but loads of sportsbooks also have regular bonuses and promotions to keep existing players happy and engaged too.
Besides general sportsbook bonuses, we’ve also put together the best bonuses for you by sports league. Find the best:
Bonuses are like the icing on the cake of sports betting. They make the betting experience that little bit more fun and more exciting. Best of all, bonuses are also potentially really profitable if you use them intelligently, and maybe get a little bit of luck too.
This page is your full guide to sports betting bonuses. We take a look at everything you need to know about bonuses, including:
- How to claim sports betting bonuses
- Different types of sports bonuses
- Understanding terms and conditions
- Where you can find the best bonus for you
Before you jump into signing up for any sportsbook for a bonus, take the time to read this page to get a comprehensive understanding of sports betting promotions in general.
What Are Sports Betting Bonuses and How Do They Work?
Sports betting bonuses are basically marketing tools. The idea is that a sportsbook offers customers, either new or existing, something extra to encourage them to play on the site. Usually this a chance to either save money (like a cashback bonus) or win money with no risk (like a free bet).
There are loads of variations of bonuses, and we are going to cover all of them further down.
How do betting bonuses work?
Every bonus works differently, but they are usually very straightforward. Sportsbooks advertise betting bonuses to encourage users to play, so it would be counter productive if they made them really difficult to avail of.
The most important thing is to read the terms and conditions carefully, which we will also cover later on in this article.
How do you get a betting bonus?
Again, each one is different. Bonuses for new players often require you to type in a “bonus code” during the signup process. Sometimes, you can type in the code afterwards in the cashier. Sometimes, you don’t even need to type in a code and your account is just credited with the bonus automatically.
Bonuses that require you to type in a code, or take some other action like checking a box in the cashier, are referred to as “opt-in bonuses”.
The key to claiming your bonus is to carefully read and follow the instructions, but getting it is rarely complicated.
Types of Sports Betting Promotions
There are lots of different sports betting bonuses out there. Some are more valuable than others. Some are designed to give you the chance to maximize profits, while others allow you to minimize loss.
Depending on the type of player you are, you will probably find some bonuses are more appealing to you than others.
In this section we are going to run through all the most common types of sports betting bonuses you are likely to find.
Free Bet Bonus
This might be the most common type of bonus out there. A free bet is exactly what it sounds like – one bet that you don’t need to pay for. A free bet bonus is usually for a specific amount (e.g. $20 free bet) and the bet must be for the full amount. Successful Free Bets generally do not return the original value of the bet, only the winnings.
Whatever kind of bonus you have, you often use it in the betslip when you go place your bet. For example, you can use a $20 Free Bet by choosing a bet and placing $20 in the betslip, which will automatically allow you to claim the Free Bet.
Like all bonuses, Free Bets are subject to terms and conditions which you can read about in the next section. Look out for Minimum Odds, Restricted Markets and Rollover Requirements.
Risk Free Bet
A Risk Free Bet is very similar but you use your own money to place the bet, and if it loses, the value of the stake is returned to you. Sometimes it’s returned in cash, and sometimes as a Free Bet.
A Money Back or Cashback bonus is designed to help you save money. In this case the sportsbook gives you back a certain percentage of the money you have bet over a period of time. Usually, you only receive money back on losing bets, and you may receive the money back in the form of cash, free bets or bonus cash.
Sign Up (Deposit) Bonus
This is also an extremely common bonus. A Deposit Bonus will match a certain percentage of your first deposit, up to a specified limit. For example, a 100% deposit bonus up to $400 will double whatever money you deposit up to $400. If you deposit more than $400, you will still earn the bonus on the first $400.
The big thing to remember here is that the boosted money is usually in the form of Bonus Cash.
What is Bonus Cash?
Bonus Cash is money that needs to be gambled a certain number of times before it can be withdrawn. Basically, this is to stop people depositing funds for a Deposit Bonus and immediately withdrawing the boosted cash. You can read more in our section on terms and conditions.
No Deposit Bonus
A No Deposit Bonus is essentially a bonus you qualify for without putting any of your own money into your account. Usually, this is in the form of Bonus Cash. For example, a $20 No Deposit Bonus will give you $20 in free Bonus Cash to play with just for setting up an account.
A reload bonus is basically the same as a Deposit bonus, only it applies to future deposits (or “reloads”) rather than the first deposit after signing up. Reload Bonuses tend to be subject to similar conditions, and are designed to encourage people to keep playing after the initial excitement of joining.
This type of bonus is exactly what it sounds like. The sportsbook will pick a certain market or bet and give you more generous odds than normal. This is often used when the sportsbook wants to promote a specific sport or market. Enhanced Odds (or Boosted Odds) often have a maximum amount you can bet.
Parlay Bonus / Boosted Parlays
Boosted Parlays are similar, but refer only to parlay bets and usually become more profitable the more legs you add. For example, a sportsbook might boost your odds by 2.5% for three legs, 5% for four legs and so on.
Some sportsbooks offer real, physical prizes that go beyond the online world. Examples include merchandise like hats or shirts, restaurants or shopping vouchers or electronic products.
Complete Sportsbook Bonus Overview
|Sportsbook||Legal to Bet Online In||Sign Up Offer||Other Bonuses||WSN Bonus Codes|
|DraftKings||Colorado, Indiana, Iowa, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, New Hampshire, New York, Tennessee||Risk-Free Bet up to $500||Deposit Bonus up to $500; Refer a friend offer $100; Daily Free to Play Pools||No code – use links|
|William Hill||New Jersey||$500 FREE Bet when you deposit $250||WSN500|
|bet365||New Jersey||Up to $100 in bet credits||Multi-Sport Parlay Bonus; Early Payout Offers||No code – use links|
|SugarHouse||New Jersey, Pennsylvania||Up to $250 bonus on first deposit||250MATCH|
|BetMGM||New Jersey, West Virginia, Colorado, Indiana,||Risk-Free First Bet up to $500||NBA In-play bet and get; Hit the Cycle; Money Monday – Get a $10 Free bet every week; Cash Out||WSN|
|Borgata||New Jersey||$100 in Free Bets||No code – use links|
|Caesars||New Jersey||Up to $25 in-play free bets||No code – use links|
|FOX Bet||New Jersey, Colorado, Pennsylvania||$1000 Sign-up Bonus||No code – use links|
|Unibet||New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Indiana||$250 Risk-Free bet||Buzzer beater refund; Highest odds challenge; Profit boost; Weekly parlay boost||No code – use links|
|888Sport||New Jersey||$500 Risk-Free bet||$10 Free first live bet; Pick 8; $50 in free bets everyday||No code – use links|
|BetRivers||Pennsylvania, Indiana, Illinois, Colorado||$250 Deposit Bonus||250MATCH|
Daily Fantasy Bonuses
|DraftKings||Deposit Bonus up to $500||No code – use links|
|FanDuel||$5 Bonus||No code – use links|
|Monkey Knife Fight||$50 Sign Up Bonus||WSN50|
Horse Racing Sportsbook Bonuses
|TwinSpires||$100 Sign Up Offer||No code – use links|
|TVG||$300 Risk Free Bet||Derby Bankroll; Exacta Insurance; Fee Free Deposits||No code – use links|
Common Sportsbook Bonus Terms and Conditions
Carefully reading the terms and conditions is absolutely essential for any sports betting bonus. Although sportsbooks will rarely actually try to trick users, the headline of the bonus never gives the full story.
There are always rules to consider or obligations to fulfill before your bonus becomes profit. In this section, we are going to run through the terms and conditions to look out for.
This is probably the most important condition to be aware of. Generally, any cash you receive as part of a bonus is not actually cash, but instead what is often called Bonus Cash. Bonus Cash means it can’t actually be withdrawn, and instead must be gambled a certain number of times before it’s unlocked. The number of times it must be gambled is referred to as the rollover requirement.
This could be anywhere from 1x (which is very good) to 70x (which is very bad). The rollover requirement is crucial when it comes to figuring out how valuable a bonus is, even though it’s rarely part of the headline. Always make sure you seek it out in the terms and conditions.
This condition refers to Free Bet bonuses. Not every single bet will qualify for your Free Bet, instead you can only use it on bets that have odds over a certain value. Often this is around -200. This condition is to stop people placing their free bet on an almost sure thing, with incredibly short odds, thereby practically guaranteeing a free win over the sportsbook.
Maximum Bet Size
This usually refers to Enhanced Odds bonuses, and just like it sounds it refers to a limit in the amount you can bet. This is to protect the sportsbook losing a huge amount of money if the enhanced odds bet comes in. For example, in the terms and conditions for an Enhanced Odds offer you may see a $100 maximum bet limit.
Just as it sounds, many bonuses have a date they must be used by, after which they expire. For example, if you sign up with a sportsbook and receive a Free Bet Bonus, you may only have one week to use it.
Things to Be Aware of/Reading the Fine Print
Getting free money to bet with when joining a new sportsbook sounds great, but you should remember that there are often strings attached to offers that sound too good to be true. That doesn’t mean that the offers are not worth your while. With a few tips, you can be ready to take full advantage of an offer without losing big from the fine print.
Below are some of the common ‘catches’ you should be aware of when choosing a new sportsbook based on the signup bonuses they offer!
Reading the Fine Print
So sports betting was just legalized in your state and now you’re looking for a mobile sportsbook to download so you can start placing bets on your favorite teams. You see that a certain sportsbook is offering a $500 sign up bonus and you decide to create an account.
After opening your account you find out that the fine print says that you have to match the dollar amount in order to claim the $500 bonus and that the deal is actually a risk-free bet offer and must be claimed after 48 hours of your first bet. If you hadn’t read the fine print then you’d potentially be out $500 with no way to get it back. Luckily WSN is here to give you the scoop before you make mistakes. Continue reading to learn more about how to take advantage of the sportsbooks instead of them taking advantage of you.
Free Bets Not What They Seem?
When shopping for sportsbooks you will see big banners that say things like “$10 FREE BET”, or “$50 FREE SIGN UP BET”. That doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re going to get a free 10 or 50 dollars credited to your account once you sign up. What it could mean is that you’re actually getting a Risk-Free bet of that amount. A risk-free bet is a bet that if lost you will be credited to your amount the same amount that the wager was for, essentially meaning that the bet has no real risk of being lost.
Risks with Risk-free Bets?
A risk-free bet sounds great but is it really? The answer to this one is a yes but you have to do it right. A risk-free bet offer is a promotion from a sportsbook in which you make an initial deposit to bet with then there is no risk of a losing bet because if you lose then you are awarded credits to bet with equal to the sum you placed the bet with.
What is the catch with a risk-free bet? Sportsbooks will only offer you credits back on the loss of a risk-free bet. The purpose of the credits is so that you may not withdrawal the credits but rather must turn around and bet them. This prevents you from losing your risk-free bet then just walking away with your money.
To be clear you can still withdraw winnings from a risk-free bet but you must actually win in order to do so.
Another catch with this one is that sometimes you must opt-in upon account creation in order to use your risk-free bet, so keep a lookout when signing up your account.
One more catch with the risk-free bets is that they may sometimes come with a timer associated with the credits or the use of the initial bet. The timer can be anywhere from twelve to seventy-six hours so beware that you don’t lose your chance to win big. Some risk-free bets go as high as $500 or $1000!
How to Get a Bigger Sportsbook Bonus
With so many sportsbooks now available they are competing for your business, that means that there is a bonus war going on of competing offers, all of them trying to dangle a bigger carrot to try to get your attention.
This means bigger and bigger offers and bonuses for the consumer and a wide range of different types of bonuses. If you want to maximize the number of bonuses you get you basically have two options.
Open Multiple Accounts
This may seem clever at first but this strategy isn’t for everyone. Keeping track of your several accounts that you opened to take advantage of several offers at once can be very unwieldy and confusing. Many offers come with timers (expiration dates) meaning that you only have so long before the bonus offer expires.
If you have several accounts at once then you’ll almost need a spreadsheet to keep track of the various offers and expiration dates, which may be a viable option for professional bettors who treat betting as a part-time job.
Many sportsbooks also come with rollover requirements, which are explained on this page. A rollover requirement means that the cash that you receive as part of a bonus is not yours to withdrawal immediately and must, in fact, be used to place another bet before being eligible to be withdrawn, Sportsbooks do this so that they are offering a free bonus to sign-ups while also giving them extra bets that they hope you lose before you are allowed to withdraw your winnings.
This can be worked around with a simple trick. On your free credit bet, you should bet on a sure thing, something that the odds are very in favor of. Sure, you won’t win hardly anything when you win but at least you will be more confident that you will be receiving money that you bet with.
Try to Find a Sportsbook that Lets You Stack Bonuses
With so many separate offers being offered at once you may find that a sportsbook makes you choose one over another. You may find some that allow you to add the risk-free bet with other sign up bones effectively making it so that you can have a much larger collective bonus than other sportsbooks who may make you choose which one over another.
Remember to watch out for expirations on the offers and other common terms and conditions that may inhibit you from taking full advantage of the bonuses.
For more on how to take advantage of sportsbook bonuses and offers listen to Bill Krackomberger share his tips on the topic, on our Wise Kracks podcast.
Best Bonuses for Bitcoin Deposits
Many sportsbooks take deposits in cryptocurrency including bitcoin. Some of the largest sportsbooks out there offer deposit services for people who want to deposit with cryptocurrency but are there any offers specifically that cater to bitcoin and cryptocurrency deposits?
So what are some of the other advantages of betting with cryptocurrency?
- There are no chargebacks with cryptocurrency. A chargeback is a function where for one reason or another a transaction is returned to the account that the payment has come from. A chargeback can be a complicated procedure that can take some time and can be triggered for a number of reasons. You may experience some issues with your sportsbooks account while a chargeback is being processed leading to unwanted delays. Cryptocurrencies are instantaneous and incur no failed transactions.
- No transaction fees are another huge boon to opting in for crypto betting. Banks and sportsbooks will occasionally add a transaction fee for their services but these are usually mitigated when using a cryptocurrency.
- No middle man. When placing a bet from your bank account to the sportsbook you are having to bring in your bank to approve the transaction, aside from the usual transaction fee there are also sometimes waiting times in which for larger bets so that the bank can approve the transaction. With cryptocurrency, there is no bank and so it cuts out the middleman.
- Speed. Without the bank having their hand in your transaction there is almost no possibility of a wait time stalling your bet. This could be a crucial asset to those who are interested in placing live bets since the betting on the action on the screen is taking place live. If there is an amazing bet that you want to take advantage of live then you could potentially be missing out when betting with a bank involved.
- Further banking complications. There is another unforeseen obstacle when trying to bet with a bank account. Some American laws state that banks are not allowed to handle betting transactions. This is a huge deal for those people who have accounts at such banks and can be circumnavigated by using a crypto-wallet.
Will Sportsbook Bonuses Continue or Will They Disappear?
Is the bonus war likely to continue or will it slow down and will the bonuses begin to disappear as the industry matures and stabilizes? Who knows, but for now the amount of competing offers keeps getting better and better meaning there has never been a better time to open an account and start placing bets.
What Are the Best Betting Bonuses?
To be honest, that depends on what kind of player you are. There are advantages and disadvantages to all types of bonuses, and some will suit you more than others.
If you have a limited budget for betting online and want to make the most of your bankroll, a Cashback Bonus or Deposit Bonus might be most appealing. If you intend to play and deposit a lot, Reload Bonuses are great. If you have specific types of bets in mind, you may find some sportsbooks offer Enhanced Odds on your preferred market. Everyone is different.
That said, there are some things to look out for that make some bonuses objectively better than others:
Low Rollover Requirements
The lower the better. If one site offers a 100% deposit bonus with a 65% rollover stipulation on the bonus funds, while another has an 80% deposit bonus but a 5% rollover stipulation, the second bonus is considerably more valuable.
Cash vs Bonus Cash
Just remember that Bonus Cash is not the same as actual cash, and can not be withdrawn. Any time a bonus of any sort involves you receiving or claiming back extra money, make sure it’s in the form of cash and not Bonus Cash.
Generally, the best bonuses are the ones with the least restrictive terms and conditions. As long as you pay close attention to them, as described in the previous section, you will be able to spot the best bonuses.
What States Offer Online Sports Betting Promotions?
Basically all sportsbooks offer bonuses of some kind or another, no matter what state they are in. Legal sport betting is currently available in 16 different states, with more inching closer every day.
If you’re looking for the best NBA betting bonuses in your state then check out our Best NBA Promos and Bonuses page to see what is available on a weekly basis!