Sportsbooks often promise “free” dollars or “free” stake bonuses to new clientele. But for every time the book offers some type of supposed cash, there’s some type of prohibitive stipulation that keeps the betting site in the black on aggregate.

For instance, a sign-up bonus comes with the caveat that a gambler must wager the entire amount in their account (not just the bonus money) several times before a withdrawal is possible. The betting book therefore doles out funds which are inaccessible and may be lost with interest. Other kinds of “free” stake money have strings firmly attached as well, such as Free Plays and other gimmicks.

Stop the presses. There’s at least one book out there that is offering real funds to high-rollers on its client list.

Only one small catch applies – they have to lose first.

The British-based sportsbook Bet365 is giving out refunds to gamblers who have lost big money on sports bets, to improve morale and encourage them not to give up the ghost. The Sun reported on Monday morning that the betting site has created a threshold for losses, beyond which unlucky punters can receive take-backs of up to 10% of their losses. That kind of stipend could allow even a “busted” gambler to continue wagering in smaller amounts or even win their original stake back with a win on a 10/1 underdog.

The loss threshold is currently set at 15,000 pounds, not the type of number that recreational bettors are used to seeing on their accounts. But there’s more. Bet365 likes when customers call their service team, so much so that junior staff members – not necessarily odds-managers – are free to give out smaller cash rewards to clients who call and ask for advice. Household handicappers on a losing streak can even be coddled with VIP treatment and given complimentary tickets to events such as the FA Cup.

A separate Daily Mail report alleges that the sportsbook is trying to keep bettors hooked with the promise of spoils in exchange for losses. But anyone who loses 15,000 pounds at a betting site has already handed the house a nice profit. Perhaps Bet365 is interested in avoiding the bad PR that can occur when irresponsible players are ruined by terrible losing streaks and wind up losing their assets.

Or maybe they’re just nice folks. “Bet365 prides itself on providing a safe environment for its customers and goes above and beyond its legal and regulatory requirements to do so,” says a spokesperson for the site.

Now if they’ll only put a longer line on Manchester City to win the Premier League.

Image from Wikimedia Commons.

Published by Kurt Boyer

Kurt has penned over 1000+ online sports stories and is known as a 55%+ American football handicapper. He has been published on, Yardbarker and Bleacher Report. You can reach Kurt at

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *