While fractional odds are typical in the UK, they aren't the only way that odds are presented in bookies online. Decimal odds, the style commonly implemented throughout Europe, are now also finding their way into the top Internet bookmakers. With most betting sites accepting UK bettors offering gamblers the option to switch between the two odds styles.
So what are decimal odds and how do they differ from fractional ones?
In this guide to online sports betting in decimal we'll show you:
If you're a long-time British bettor in the UK, you'll no doubt be familiar with odds that look a little something like this:
Those are all common odds presented in the fractional style at UK bookmakers. But outside of Britain, our neighbouring European countries use a betting odds system known as Decimal. In the Decimal system these same fractional odds would be presented as so:
As the above odds demonstrate, converting fractional odds into decimal ones isn't a simple case of writing 2/1 as 2.00 instead.
In fact, 2/1 in decimal odds is actually written 3.00. So if you're going to place wagers using the decimal system, or convert decimal odds into fractional ones, you need to understand how one translates into the other.
As well as being written up differently, there's another key difference between fractional odds and their decimal equivalents. This is evident when it comes to calculating your return, and is something that can often trip up newbie bettors. Using the following guided examples, we'll take you through exactly how to work out your profit and return using the two odds styles.
With the fractional system, the odds you see advertised tell you the expected profit you stand to make on your bet, but not the full return (your profit + your stake).
If you see odds of 2/1 at a bookies and you wager £10, you can expect to make a £20 profit. Which equates to a £30 total return once you add your original £10 wager. In fractional odds, the first number listed (in this case the 2) shows you how much you stand to win if you bet the value of the second digit (in this case 1).
With Decimal odds, working out the return is actually far easier. Unlike with fractional odds, in the Decimal system the odds advertised include your stake. So to work out the return you simply multiply the odds by your wager.
With a wager of £10 and odds of 2.25 you'd get a £22.50 return (£10 x 2.25). Your profit in this case will be £12.50 as decimal odds include your wager. In Decimal odds, anything less than 2.00 is considered an odds on bet (1/1) and you'll never see odds lower than 1.00 with the Decimal system.
Converting Fractions To Decimals
The good news, if you're trying to convert one odds style to another, is that fractions into decimals is incredibly easy. You just divide the fraction as it appears and add 1 unit. The 1, in this case, being representative of your stake. Here's how it works with odds of 2/2/1: . 1. Divide 2 by 1 (=2) 2. Add 1 (2 + 1) = 3. Therefore 2/1 in decimal form is 3.00. Let's try it again to demonstrate how this formula works in every case.
Told you it was easy didn't we?
Of course in this digital age it's not necessary to do the sums yourself. You can find plenty of odds converters online that will quickly convert any fractional odds into decimals and vice versa, without you having to make any calculations. It's perfect if maths isn't your strong point or you just want to double-check your sums.
Bigger Isn't Always Better - While it's natural to want to take advantage of the biggest free bet offers you can find online, the terms connected with bigger bonus values often specify more criteria you need to meet. Sometimes impacting the next few bets you make at the bookies, too. So always read the T&Cs before taking up an offer.
Make sure you can meet the wagering requirements - Offers at all online bookies will stipulate some kind of terms, normally involving a wagering requirement on your part. These can be higher for some offers than others, with deposit bonuses typically commanding higher wagering requirements than free bets, so take this into consideration.
How long you have to claim the offer - Every bonus offered at a bookmaker will have a limited redemption time, meaning the length of time you have to claim the offer and also complete any associated terms - such as fulfilling your wagering requirements. If you don't complete these before the offer period expires, you could find yourself unable to draw out any winnings you generated from the bet.
Another way you can quickly compare fractional and decimal odds is by using the below table. Our online odds expert has compiled some of the ones bookies frequently offer bettors, to help you see the difference in a glance.
Odds are the foundation of gambling, and understanding them is the first priority for anyone looking to turn a profit betting on sports online. If you find one system easier to understand than another, go by the one you feel most comfortable with.
Just because the fractional system is traditional in the UK doesn't mean you have to stick with it. A lot of British bettors prefer the Decimal system for its simplicity. But ultimately whether you use fractional or decimal odds to calculate your bets is down to personal preference.
compare fractional and decimal odds