As experts in sports betting with a focus on Canada, we want to offer our top tips to Canadians looking to improve their sports betting records. Placing bets should add excitement when watching sports, but what makes it all the sweeter is coming out with a winning result. If you read this page and follow our tips, you'll soon increase your chances of becoming a successful bettor, and hopefully even bump up your bank balance!
On this page you will:
There's a whole host of sports out there to bet on, but not all of them will offer you the same opportunity to make a profit. So how do you select the sport that will maximize your chances of winning money?
Quite simply, you must consider the extent of your knowledge about the sport in question. Betting on sports events when you don't have a good insight into the game is a sure-fire way to lose money in a hurry. This may seem like an obvious tip, but many people are tempted into betting on the major international sporting events, without having enough of an idea about the ins and outs of the sport. Just because the Tour de France is on TV, doesn't mean that you should start dropping cash on the outcome (unless you understand the nuances of the sport, of course!).
Once you've identified the sport which gives you the best chance of winning, you need to choose a specific event. Let's use football as an example. For starters, we don't advise betting on pre-season games as these tend to be more unpredictable. Additionally, as a Canadian bettor you may want to consider sidestepping betting on the NFL and CFL which are more widely known across the globe, and instead use inside knowledge of the CFL to get one over on international bookmakers.
Now it's a case of choosing which type of bet to make. Let's assume that you plan to bet on one CFL regular season game. The most straightforward bets are either a futures bet, where you can make an early prediction on which team will make it to the end, or a straight bet such as which team will win the upcoming game. bookmakers will also offer a points spread to even out the chances. For example, one team could get a spread of +7.5, meaning even if they lose by up to 7 points the bet will still pay out. Conversely, their opponent's spread would be -7.5. This means that the favorite would have to win by at least 8 points to cover the spread.
If you feel confident, you can start to place more complicated bets such as a parlay bet, where you choose the results of multiple games in one long bet. This can be risky, but the returns are also better.
Additionally, in-play betting has introduced a whole new range of betting options to the market. Sportsbooks which offer in-play betting let bettors gamble on the action live as it unfolds from their laptop or phone. This means that while you're watching the game you can make any number of bets, such as the next team to score, the next player to score and countless others. The bigger, televised games attract a huge variety of live betting options, but these bets can be a quick way to lose money, so we suggest only partaking in in-play betting if you're confident of your knowledge of the sport.
Of course, you'll also need to find a good sportsbook where you can place your bets. There are plenty of excellent online sports betting sites out there, so it's just a case of finding the best fit for you.
When choosing your sportsbook, it's important to check that your chosen site offers you the sports that you're most interested in, along with a good range of bets and competitive odds. Other factors to consider is whether the site offers a good welcome bonus for new joiners, or whether there's a loyalty plan for those who continue to bet with a particular site. Finally, and most importantly, the site should be fully licenced and regulated to ensure that your funds are safe. For guaranteed safety and a good betting experience, be sure to check out our recommended sites!
Naturally you'll also need to have a good understanding of odds in order to make informed sports bets. Most sportsbooks will allow you to choose between fractional, decimal and American odds, although the latter two are more popular in Canada. American odds work around a base figure of 100, and will be either positive or negative. If the number is negative, (e.g. -150) it shows you how much money you would have to bet to make a profit of $100. If the number is positive (e.g. +120), it shows you how much you would make for a $100 bet.
Decimal odds are a way to measure the potential return on a bet. For example, if you bet $100 at odds of 2.25 then your winnings would total $225, giving you a $125 profit. Bigger numbers equal a bigger return, and of course the number will always be greater than 1 as it includes your stake. Fractional odds are not widely used outside of the UK, but they're super simple to understand. As an example, odds of 5/1 give you $5 for every $1 you bet. Odds of 1/5 would give you $1 per $5 bet, plus your stake is returned, of course. Choose the odds you feel most comfortable with and you're ready to start betting!
By now you're ready to start making some bets. Make sure to read the terms and conditions carefully, and only use one of the sites we recommend to ensure a safe and enjoyable betting experience. Be sure to look out for welcome bonuses too, which could allow you to start making a profit from the get go. Now all you need to do is open that account!