Betting exchanges can be a great option for those who want to get better pricing on their bets. The concept of betting exchanges is different compared to a regular bookmaker, where it is only possible to back a certain outcome. However, betting against the outcome is possible with a regular sportsbook. This, however, is where the betting exchange steps in with the ability to back or lay against a particular outcome. The concept of betting exchanges is growing across the globe, but it is yet to take off in India with only a handful of choices available. Yet, we will take a closer look at the same in this article.
Betting Exchange Sites in India
Betting Exchange Explained
The betting exchange is a platform where punters will be able to exchange bets with other punters rather than the bookmaker. The conventional sportsbook makes money out of the margins that it places on the bet. In a betting exchange, however, the site makes money by charging a commission. The ability to bet against other punters gives a lot of flexibility. It is also capable of generating better returns for the punter by virtue of the better odds available on the platform. The process of betting against another punter could actually be favourable for the smart ones, as they are not going up against a bookmaker who has a ton of data and statistics that allows them to get a significant edge over the punter.
Top 3 Betting Exchanges in India
BetWinner is a brand that might be relatively new to the betting scene having been launched only in 2018. However, it has gained a lot of traction in the online betting space thanks to the brilliant sportsbook and exchange. Depending on the user’s preference, one can go with either choice and they are unlikely to come out disappointed on both. The betting exchange provides betting options on around 10 sports. This may not be on par with the coverage offered by the sportsbook but it is a boon for punters who deal with these sports like football and cricket considering the better odds.
- Many betting options
- The interface doesn't have a very steep learning curve
- Multiple deposit options
- Site loading times are not very impressive
Fun88 has a platform that manages to stay true to the expectations of any punter with regard to market coverage and prices. The coverage on the site might be restricted to only a small circle of events, but these are amongst the most popular events. For those who want to bet on cricket, tennis, and football, Fun88 could be an excellent destination. The lack of horse racing betting options is the only big downside of the brand. Due to the smaller concentration of games, it is easy to have a personalized approach to bets.
- Very competitive prices
- Decent amount of betting features
- Bonuses and offers in the sportsbook segment
- The user interface is very poor
- Casino titles are also available but in small numbers
The 1xBet platform is easily one of the largest betting exchange sites in India. It is almost identical to Betwinner in its operations, but users are likely to appreciate the higher level of betting choices available. The banking options supported by 1xBet are also slightly better and users can even bring in funds into the account using UPI payment, which does not cost any money up to a certain limit. Any user is unlikely to make a wrong choice in choosing 1xBet over Betwinner, as there are very few differences between the two betting exchange sites in India.
- Very popular platform
- Gaming and betting options
- Option to deposit even using UPI
- Exchange is slightly slower than the sportsbook
Differences between a regular sportsbook and a betting exchange
There are a handful of differences between a regular bookmaker and betting exchange sites. They would be:
There’s plenty of flexibility when it comes to betting exchanges. However, one of the areas where these sites are let down would be the accumulator options. For the accumulator bet, the choices are severely restricted because punters are not going up against fixed odds.
The margin charged by a regular sportsbook might seem very negligible in the grand scheme of things, but the totals end up adding quite a lot to any wins or losses made by the individual. However, the commission model used by betting exchanges can result in a decent amount of savings especially for a punter who goes through a lot of turnover.
The biggest reason for users to pick the betting exchanges sites in India compared to a regular bookmaker would be if they are unsatisfied with the prices received. There is not much that users can do about the prices when they are dealing with a bookmaker, who has a rigid set of rules when it comes to determining prices. Furthermore, the bookmaker also has an army of members working behind the scenes to come up with statistics and numbers to price a specific market in the best possible way. All these go out of the window when a punter goes up against a punter in the exchange.
For someone who is trying to reduce the risk of a bet, the betting exchange would be a better bet considering that one can go against the tide and choose the lay option. This effectively means that the user is predicting the backing an outcome. This is possible in betting exchanges since punters are growing up against other punters and not against a bookmaker.
How to place a bet with a betting exchange?
For someone new to the world of betting exchanges, the terms being employed in the segment can feel quite alien after having been used to a regular sportsbook. However, the betting exchange would be as simple as the sportsbook itself when trying to learn the different terms. The major options in betting exchange sites would be:
- Back – This is used to signify that the outcome would occur
- Lay – This is used to go against the outcome
Therefore, it is not necessarily one-way traffic when trying to bet on events. The sportsbook will usually provide the option of betting on one outcome in a game. Therefore, users in a betting exchange will be able to come out with a reward even if the game finishes as a draw.
One can go with the regular win bet if they are particularly confident about the outcome. The lay bet is a great option when users want to stake some money on a particular outcome without being extremely bullish or confident about the same.
Advantages and Disadvantages
There are plenty of reasons why someone should choose a betting exchange site over a regular sportsbook. Let us take a look at some of the key pros and cons:
Laying a bet – There could be several games where a punter wants to take a shot at the possibility of an event not taking place. This would be especially visible in the horse racing betting scenario, where punters may want to back against a particular horse not finishing in the top three places. A regular bookmaker will not provide such a bet even if many new features are added.
Odds – The sportsbook is a tightly controlled business that is in the process of making money by setting a margin on every market that they offer. Even if there is competition, there is less motivation from the sportsbook to come up with the lowest possible prices. This, however, is not the case in betting exchanges, where the free-market principle works at its best. The commission is the only major expense in this system.
Fewer bonuses – The biggest disadvantage with betting exchange sites in India will be the reduced number of bonus offers available. Apart from the choices being reduced, users who will also have to make do with
Inability to match bets – Even though it may not be possible to match the bets on a betting exchange, such an event occurs only in the case of very niche markets that do not enjoy a favourable response amongst the punters. The free-market situation does not work well in this instance when there is not a lot of interest amongst users.
Common questions about Indian betting exchanges
Is it legal to practice arbitrage betting with an exchange?
Yes, there are no limitations, at this moment, if a punter decides to practice arbitrage betting, which can be useful to almost eliminate the chances of losing money.
Can India use Betfair exchange, which has global popularity?
No, Betfair still does not accept players from India. Betfair happens to be one of the best betting exchanges in the world.
Can users bring in local currency – Indian rupees – into the account?
Yes, the betting exchanges in India will make sure that their customers operate locally and they are able to accept and send payments through Indian rupees.