What is Rollover in Betting? – Play-Through Requirements Explained

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Written by Dan Fitch

Updated: 05:08 am EST, 11/07/2024

‘Rollover’ is a term that applies to a condition of betting bonuses and refers to the amount you must wager or play-thorough before funds are free to withdraw. We’re going to explore the concept of what is rollover in betting, so that you have a deep understanding of how it works.

How Does Rollover Betting Work?

A rollover is a requirement that must be met before any bonus sum, or any winnings from that bonus, can be withdrawn from a sportsbook account. Sportsbooks give out bonus payments as welcome offers to attract new players, or as a deposit match scheme to retain existing users.

When these bonus funds are applied to your betting account, you will be required to wager either the bonus, the deposit amount, or a combination of the two, a certain amount of times before you can make a withdrawal.

These rollover requirements are normally expressed by a figure indicating how many times the funds must be wagered, followed by a multiplication sign. So if a bonus offer stated a rollover requirement of 10x, it would mean that you would have to wager a stated amount of money, ten times before you could withdraw the cash.

Sportsbooks apply wagering requirements to prevent new sign-ups from claiming a bonus and immediately withdrawing the funds. The attractive betting bonuses on offer are there to attract and retain users. Rollovers ensure that players must actually engage with the sportsbook and make some bets.

How to Calculate Rollover Amounts

Let’s give you an example of a sports betting rollover. The details of sports betting bonuses can vary. Yet while you will have to take a close look at the individual terms and conditions of any offer, this example will give you a general idea of how they tend to work and help to explain rollover meaning in betting.

Let’s say the BetWhale sportsbook is offering a 100% deposit match for new sign-ups. That means that your initial deposit will be 100% matched by the sportsbook. Your first deposit is for $50 and you therefore receive a bonus money sum of $50.

The terms and conditions state that the rollover is 3x the amount received as a bonus. This means that the bonus figure of $50 must be wagered three times before any associated winnings can be withdrawn.

Let’s break that down into a simple formula.

  • Rollover amount = Bonus amount x Rollover multiplier

In the case of our example, that would work out as follows…

  • Rollover amount = ($100 + $50) x 3 = $450

So in this example, you would need to place bets worth at least $450 before any winning could be withdrawn.

What is Rollover in Betting? – Key Terms & Conditions

Any bonus bet offer that is available from online betting sites, will have terms and conditions attached. Here are some examples of the type of type of betting conditions that are often relevant to the rollover.

  • Eligible Sports & Games – Sportsbooks will sometimes state that bets on certain sports or events will not count towards the rollover.
  • Market Restrictions – Equally, there will be certain markets which sportsbooks may choose to exclude from a rollover. So if parlays were outlawed for example, any parlay that you placed would not be considered as part of the requirements of the rollover.
  • Expiry Date – There will be a certain amount of time that is stated, in which you must meet the requirements of the rollover. A typical time frame might be 30 days.
  • Maximum Stake – By setting a maximum stake, sportsbooks ensure that you must place a number of bets to meet the requirements, rather than one or two really big bets, with large stakes.
  • Minimum Odds – You might think that an easy way to meet the requirements would be to place bets on heavy favorites that are likely to win. Sportsbooks prevent this by setting minimum betting odds. If you make a bet at a lower price than the minimum odds, it won’t count towards the rollover.

Examples of What is a Rollover in Betting

Online sportsbook sites typically set a requirement for rollovers with offers centred around deposit bonuses. We’re going to take you through the different type of deposit offers where you can expect to see a rollover in sports betting.

Deposit Match Bonus

A sportsbook will give a welcome bonus that is based on the amount that you deposit. Typically, this will give a bonus based on a certain stated percentage of the deposit. There will also be an upper limit on how big that bonus can be and note that there may be a promo code to enter, when registering.

So a bookmaker might have a welcome offer where they will give you a bonus of 50% based on your first deposit, up to a limit of $1000. That would mean that you would have to deposit $2000 to receive the full bonus funds of $1000.

If you didn’t want to deposit that much, that’s fine. Deposit $100 and you’d get a $50 bonus, for example. It’s entirely up to you as to whether you want to max out the potential bonus or not.

Reload Bonus

This type of type of betting offer is not just available to new users making their first deposit. Existing players at sportsbooks can often take advantage of a very similar promotion, known as a reload bonus.

With a reload bonus, additional deposits are also rewarded. Sometimes it will just be the second deposit, or first few. Yet many sportsbooks are even more generous and provide this offer on a continuing basis.

Generally the percentage worth of such bonuses are smaller than is the case with a welcome bonus. So a sportsbook that gives 50% of a new user’s first deposit, may only reward an existing bettor’s future deposits by 25%. Though the bonus figure is smaller, if you can find a sportsbook that gives regular reload bonuses, the rewards can be significant over time.

What Happens if I Don’t Meet the Rollover Requirements?

At this stage of our study into what is rollover in betting, you may be wondering what happens if you fail to meet the requirements.

An often overlooked element is the time limit. You must wager your bonus a certain amount of times, within a certain amount of time. If you have not bet the free play funds sufficiently before the time expires, then any funds that are left will disappear from your account.

If that sounds daunting, don’t worry. In the next section we’ve got some examples of rollover strategy that will help you to succeed.

Effective Rollover Betting Strategy

Before you claim a welcome bonus from one of our recommended offshore sportsbooks, take a look at our best betting rollover strategy tips. Follow this advice to make it through the rollover stage with funds intact and ready to withdraw.

1. Check the Fine Print

It can be tempting for sports bettors to skim over the fine print of the terms and conditions of a bonus offer. After all, the enjoyable part of the offer is the placing of bets, but it’s not much fun when you miss out because you haven’t paid enough attention.

Check the fine print of any bonus bet deal. Sportsbooks often require bonus codes to be entered when registering, or state that you must deposit using a certain method. Find out what is the time frame that the rollover must be completed by and if any types of bet don’t count towards the requirements.

2. Don’t be Greedy

If an online sports betting bonus looks too good to be true, then it probably is. Some sportsbooks offer huge deposit bonuses that dwarf those being offered by their competitors but still may be overlooked by those practicing arbitrage betting or other strategies.

Yet when this is the case, you normally find that the rollover amounts are equally hefty. A large amount of bonus money can be tempting, but if the rollover terms are too exacting, then it’s unlikely that you’ll meet the requirements.

3. Find the Balance

So if huge bonuses with a high rollover expectation are designed to see you fail, what should you be looking for? The majority of sportsbooks try to find a balance between the size of the bonus on offer and the rollover.

So, if for example, you see a welcome offer with a relatively small welcome offer of $250, that’s likely to be balanced by a sensible rollover amount that is achievable. The best value bonuses are not simply the biggest ones of offer. Rather, they are those that strike a balance between the size of bonus and what’s expected of the bettor.

4. Bet an Amount That You’re Comfortable With

Online bettors have a natural tendency to try and max out any bonus offers. So if a sportsbook will 100% match your first deposit, up to a limit of $750, many bettors will think that they really should deposit $750 to make sure that they get the full amount of bonus that’s available.

Yet to take advantage of that bonus, the rules of rollover in sports betting mean that you will have to bet those bonus funds multiple times. Consider whether you’re comfortable making large enough bets to do this within the stated time period. There’s no shame in depositing less and accepting a smaller bonus.

5. Consider the Odds

Something that we learned earlier on in this exploration of what is rollover in betting, is that sportsbooks will set minimum odds requirements in relation to rollovers. At the other end of the scale, large priced bets have high odds for a reason. This is because they are less likely to win.

The sweet spot is around the +100 mark. In theory, these bets have a 50% chance of winning and may be a PK bet, so by backing bets around this price, you have a good chance of emerging through the rollover period with funds intact. Of course, in practice this might not be the case. Don’t just randomly pick selections based on price. Instead, do plenty of research on any bets and weigh things up against the odds.

FAQs

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