Don’t get banned from the bookies

Training: Beginner

What is 'mug betting'?

police mascot

To keep the promotions ongoing you're going to need to keep your account under the bookies' radars. And we'll show you how...

No one really knows why bookmakers ban accounts – but what can't be denied is that it's happening, and increasingly often. There have been plenty of ideas thrown around to aid our matched betting to maximise our chances of keeping our accounts open. The general consensus is that our chances of getting banned from the bookies are drastically less if we partake in this little activity called mug betting...

Mug betting is simply just 'regular' betting, without any promotions or bonuses in sight. It's having a cheeky flutter every time Ray Winstone pops up on your TV.


If you're taking up reload offers, you should be mug betting regularly to protect yourself and future earnings. The bottom line is we need to match the profile and patterns of a genuine punter and not stick out like Ray's sore head.

Important! We're still laying off all our mug bets at an exchange! Otherwise that is gambling (though we'll still be making a small loss on each one as you'll see from the calculator).

What's the point?

The idea of mug betting started when it became more common for bookmakers to restrict users' accounts – i.e. excluding individuals from all promotions and limiting stake sizes. This is what we call gubbing. But why do they do this?

Unfortunately (well, for us anyway) bookmakers run like most companies do. If their clients - or customers in this case - aren’t profitable in the long-run then they’re going to be cut loose. If you appear to keep costing them money, it's a swift sayonara and goodnight!

How often?

It's all relative to how many reload offers you're doing, but generally I would suggest placing a couple of mug bets for every reload you attempt.

But really you can never mug bet enough.

8 Ways to Keep Under the Radars

1. Place accumulator bets

This is arguably the muggiest thing a punter could do. Do a few doubles/trebles with some reasonable stake sizes (around £10). Chuck in a few ridiculous £1 accas as well (six-fold or more). You’re going to lose £1 but you’ll be surprised how many people do this. We’ve all read an article somewhere about that guy who won £10,000 from a 10-fold £1 accumulator.

2. Use round figures

From a bookmaker’s point of view, nothing screams matched bettor more than someone who bets a random £94.07 on Derby to beat Burnley. Similarly, you want to be depositing and withdrawing a nice £50 (say) at a time.

3. Bet large stakes on the ‘sure-things’

Bet on something with ridiculously low odds (around 1.10 or less). You’ll be amazed how much bookies actually make on these bets from the regulars. So back £100 for Real Madrid to beat Sporting Gijon – it’s a done deal right?

4. Bet tiny stakes on an outlier

The most under-rated mug strategy in my opinion. People regularly place small amounts on ridiculous things happening as if they were playing the lottery. We’ve all read a million times about that person who bet on Leicester City to win the Premier League at 5,000-1... That could've been you!

leicester win league

5. Bet on the same team religiously

This technique has become quite popular amongst matched bettors. The idea is you ‘become a fan’ and bet on a football team to win every week. It doesn’t matter what odds are being offered – you’re a scouser and you’re convinced Klopp won’t let you down this weekend (like a genuine mug).

6. Vary your stakes

Put a tenner on Liverpool to win on Saturday. After it loses, you’ll be thinking “OMG I need to get back my losses!” and so you’ll put on £20 for Man City to win on Sunday. This is what mugs do.

7. Don’t place weird bets

Again, nothing screams matched bettor more than someone who puts on a huge amount for 'under 3.5 goals' in the Clyde v Berwick match.

8. Instead of laying, go dutch!

Next time you see a promotion, think about dutching instead of going to the exchange to place some lay bets. So if you're betting £50 on a home win with bet365, see if you can bet X with Ladbrokes on the draw and then Y with Paddy Power for the away team to win so that you lose roughly the same amount (in total) regardless of what happens. Or better yet, place some mug bets and then dutch those off – who needs promotions anyway!

Bonus tips

Each time you go on a bookmaker’s site you’ll see a few popular selections. Take a few of these – they’re on the homepage for a reason...

Don’t fret about not finding close matches when laying off your mug bets. If you’re getting a close match, chances are your mug bet is actually a value bet.

Again, make sure you match any mug bets you make!

For 9 more advanced tips on not getting gubbed, click here.

And finally…

It’s important to realise that mug betting is more than just taking this particular approach or placing that bet every week. It’s about adopting a mug-mindset and ensuring you’re doing everything you possibly can to keep under the radars.

Next guide »
How to lay accumulator bets


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