Types of Betting

Sports betting is so rich in options that punters can decide to place wagers in a number of different ways, from straightforward singles to multiples, forecast bets and many more. The main types of betting available are:


The most common type of bet, a single is just a bet on one selection in one event. You only get a return if the wager is successful.

  1. Example - Betting on Team A to beat Team B in a football match


A bet on two selections in different events. You only get a return if both are successful.

  1. Example - Betting on Team A to beat Team B, plus Team C to beat Team D


A bet on three selections in different events. You only get a return if all three are successful.

  1. Example - Betting on Team A to beat Team B, Team C to beat Team D and Team E to beat Team F.


Accumulators are bets on a number of different selections across different events. They are known as four-fold accumulators, five-fold accumulators, and so on, and you only win if all of yours elections are successful. Find out more about what accumulators are and how they work.


A multiple is technically any wager that has more than one selection, but the term is mostly used to discuss various types of bet made up of more than one stake. These consist of one treble or larger accumulator plus a large number of smaller bets which are all encased within the biggest bet. The most basic is a Trixie, which comprises one treble and three double bets. You will get a return with a minimum of two successful selections.

  1. Example - One treble bet on Team A to beat Team B, Team C to beat Team D and Team E to beat Team F.  The three doubles are for Teams A and C to win, Teams A and E to win and Teams C and E to win.

The other types of multiple bets are displayed in the table below, which shows a breakdown of the bets involved. Unlike accumulators, multiples require players to put down a stake for each bet they play, so a Trixie requires you to decide on an amount you wish to wager four times, while a Goliath demands a total of 247 bets.

Bet Type Selections Bets Involved Total Bets
Trixie 3 3 doubles, 1 treble 4
Patent 3 3 singles, 3 doubles, 1 treble 7
Yankee 4 6 doubles, 4 trebles, 1 four-fold 11
Lucky 15 4 4 singles, 6 doubles, 4 trebles, 1 four-fold 15
Super Yankee 5 10 doubles, 10 trebles, 5 four-folds, 1 five-fold 26
Lucky 31 5 5 singles, 10 doubles, 10 trebles, 5 four-folds, 1 five-fold 31
Heinz 6 15 doubles, 20 trebles, 15 four-folds, 6 five-folds, 1 six-fold 57
Lucky 63 6 6 singles, 15 doubles, 20 trebles, 15 four-folds, 6 five-folds, 1 six-fold 63
Super Heinz 7 21 doubles, 35 trebles, 35 four-folds, 21 five-folds, 7 six-folds, 1 seven-fold 120
Goliath 8 28 doubles, 56 trebles, 70 four-folds, 56 five-folds, 28 six-folds, 8 seven-folds, 1 eight-fold 247

Permutation Betting

Permutation betting, also known as perm betting or sometimes combination betting, lets you select which of the options you wish to cover when backing multiple selections. For example, it may be that you make four selections but do not wish to cover all the bets that you would have to in a Lucky 15 or Yankee, and would prefer to just back the doubles as well as the four-fold accumulator.

Forecast Bets

Traditionally favoured in horse racing or greyhound racing but becoming increasingly popular in other sports, forecast bets involve backing the winner and second-placed participant in a given event. A straight forecast is betting on them in the right order, which must be right for the wager to be successful. In a reverse forecast, you get a return if they finish first and second regardless of the order, but you are having to make two bets rather than one.

  1. Example - A straight forecast on Horse A, Horse B, would be unsuccessful if Horse B wins and Horse A finishes second. However, a reverse forecast on Horse A, Horse B, would give you a reward even if Horse B wins and Horse A comes second.

Straight forecast doubles and trebles work the same way as normal doubles and trebles, except that you have to select two selections per event. Reverse forecast doubles and trebles are also available, although you will have to make more bets to cover the additional outcomes.

  1. Example of a reverse forecast bet - A bet on Horse A and Horse B in Race 1, Horse C and Horse D in Race 2 and Horse E and Horse F in Race 3. There are eight possible winning combinations, as displayed below:
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
Race 1 A, B A,B A,B A,B B,A B,A B,A B,A
Race 2 C, D C,D D,C D,C C,D C,D D,C D,C
Race 3 E, F F,E E,F F,E E,F F,E E,F F,E

Combination forecasts consist of three or more selections in an event or race, two of which must come first and second in any order. Again, there are combination forecast doubles and trebles which can be selected with most bookmakers.

Tricast Bets

A straight tricast bet works in the same way as a straight forecast, but the difference is that you select the top three finishers of an event in order rather than the first two. Combination tricasts involve three selections finishing first, second and third in any order. As this equates to a series of straight tricast bets, multiple stakes are required. The number of bets that must be made can be worked out by multiplying the number of selections by the two numbers below that, for example 5 x 4 x 3 = 60, as per the table below: 

Selections Tricasts
3 6
4 24
5 60
6 120
7 210
8 336
9 504
10 720

Each Way Betting

A type of bet most often found in horse racing, an each way bet involves two wagers on the selection. One bet is on the selection to win the event, and the other is for the selection to place. To place means that a selection will finish within one of the first few positions, which will be specified depending on the event and the number of participants. The stake is doubled and the each way bet has shorter odds, but it guarantees that if the selection just misses out on winning then you still come away with a decent return rather than a loss.

  • Example: 1 - Horse A is priced at 10/1 to win a race, and there is an Each Way price of 1/4 for the first three places. If you decide to place a £10 each way bet it means your total stake is £20.
  • 2 - The horse wins and you receive £110 (£100, plus your stake) for the win part of the bet.
  • 3 - As the horse has also placed, you receive a further £35 because the odds here are 2.5/1 (1/4 of the original odds of 10/1), giving a total return of £145.
  • 4 - If the horse comes second or third, you lose the ‘win’ part of the bet but are successful in the ‘place’ part of the bet, so still end up with a return of £35.

Find out about other varieties of sports betting in the Spread Betting and Lay Betting sections.

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