Matched Deposit Bonus Offers
You generally have to deposit some of your own money into a new account before you can unlock a sports betting bonus. This is called a match bonus. For example, betting sites might offer you a 100% cash bonus if you sign up for a new account. That means it will give you 100% of the amount you deposit in the form of a free bet. If you deposit $100 of your own money, you will receive $200 in credit to play with.
Alternatively, a sportsbook could offer a 50% match deposit. In that case you could deposit $100 and receive $150 to play with. Some sports betting offer 150% or 200% matched deposits, while others might go to 300% or 400%, but they may only allow you to deposit a small amount when seizing this free bet bonus.
You will notice that each betting site has a minimum and maximum deposit amount for anyone that wants to take advantage of a first deposit free bet bonus offer. For example, one site might offer a 100% matched deposit up to $250, while a rival site could offer a 50% bonus up to $1,000. In the first case, you would be able to deposit $250 and receive $500 to play with. In the second case, you could deposit $1,000 and receive $1,500 to play with.
You can only qualify for a sign-up bonus if you are a new customer. You often have to enter a promo code to unlock these bonus funds. For example, at Intertops you can use the promo code ROOKIE200 for a 200% matched deposit bonus when you register, or ROOKIE100 to take the site’s 100% matched deposit bonus. It sounds like a no-brainer to take the 200% sign-up bonus instead of the 100% sign-up bonus, as it gives you more bonus funds, but they actually come with different wagering requirements, so some bettors might prefer the 100% offer.
Some of these bonus offers are cash bonuses, meaning you get to keep your stake if your wager is successful. Bookmaker and Bovada are examples of leading betting sites that offer a cash bonus. Other top sportsbooks such as BetOnline will provide a free play bonus, meaning you do not keep the stake if your bonus bet is successful. You only keep your profit. However, you can benefit from low wagering requirements and a high deposit match, so a free play bonus can sometimes be better than a cash bonus.