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Peter Addison

This page will explain how to bet on golf online. We’ll discuss how to decide what to bet on, all the markets that are available and how to place a golf bet online.

How to Read Golf Betting Odds

Golf betting odds are usually presented in fractional or decimal format, and most online betting sites will let you switch between the two if you have a preference. Let’s say you want to bet £10 on Rory McIlroy to win the UK Open, and the odds are 15/2 fractional, or 8.50 decimal. How much will you win if McIlroy finishes in first place after the last putt has been sunk?

It’s really just a case of multiplication. With fractional odds that will be £10 x 15 which is £150, then divided by two, giving £75. You would therefore win £75 and you would get your stake back, giving a return of £85.

How to Bet on Golf

It is almost the same with decimal odds. The multiplication is £10 x 8.5, which is £85. You will notice straight away that decimal odds calculate your returns, whereas fractional odds calculate your winnings. Returns are just your winnings with your stake (which you get back with any winning bet) added back on.

If you struggle with the calculation of winnings and returns, then don’t forget that we offer a handy range of bet calculators.

How to Bet on Golf Online

Let’s now take you through the steps necessary to place a golf bet.

  1. Visit a Golf Betting Site

    All betting sites in the UK have sections for golf betting. Consult our list of the best golf betting sites in the UK and select the one that you feel suits your needs the most.
    Visit a Golf Betting Site
  2. Sign up for an Account

    You will find a ‘join’ button featuring prominently at any site you want to sign up to. This will open up a form for you to fill in your personal information (legally required at any betting site with a UKGC licence). Below is what you would see if you were signing up for bet365 golf betting.
    Sign up for an Account
  3. Make a Deposit

    Head to the site’s cashier section and make a deposit. If this is your first deposit at the site make it using a debit card, and big enough to qualify for the welcome bonus, if one is available.
    Make a Deposit
  4. Choose Your Outcome

    Hunt around the site’s golf betting options until you find an outcome you like the look of. Here, we are going to bet on Rory McIlroy to win the UK Open.
    Choose Your Outcome
  5. Place Your Bet

    To back McIlroy we just need to click on his golf betting odds of 9.00. This will transfer the bet to the betting slip, where we also set our stake of £5. As this is an each way bet on golf, our total bet will be £10 (£5 to win, £5 to place). To complete our bet placement, all that is required is to click the ‘Place Bet’ button.
    Place Your Bet

Golf Betting Tips and Strategy

If you are new to betting on golf, then you are probably looking for some golf betting tips. Well, stick your niblick back in your bag as we are about to give you some!

Do Your Homework

Golf is a very difficult sport to predict. The favourites often have nightmare rounds (some not even making the cut) and unfancied competitors (such as Shaun Micheel winning the 2003 PGA Championship, his only PGA tournament win in over 400 attempts) win more often than in other sports. Don’t place golf bets without doing your homework and expect to win.

Consider Course Performance

There are many different types of golf courses. Some have narrow fairways, some wide. Others have greens that are hard to read, some not so hard. Some have many dog leg holes. Golfers have differences too, some hit for power but have weaker short games for example. Matching up the right golfer to the right course is one effective golf betting strategy.

Check the Weather Forecast

Weather has a bigger effect on golf tournaments than most other sports, and in particular the wind. Some golfers are good at playing in windy conditions, and others not so. The cold too affects the flight of the ball (cold air makes a ball fly higher but shorter) and wet grass is harder to play on than dry. Take all this into account before placing your golf bets.

Think Beyond the Winner

Because of the competitiveness of golf, it is going to be much easier for you to correctly pick a player to finish well up the field than the player who actually wins. UK sport betting sites will offer generous odds on players to finish in the top five, ten, twenty and even to make the cut. Top among our golf betting tips is the idea that you should explore more markets than picking tournament winners, such as golf each way betting.

Bet on More Than One Player

Again, because of the nature of golf it is wise to spread your bets about a bit instead of pinning all your betting hopes on a single player. The odds for any tournament are likely to be generous enough to make betting on more than a single player more than worth your while. You could back a couple of fancied performers at the start of a tournament, for example, and then back one or two more after a round, or after the cut.

Get the Best Golf Betting Odds

The odds offered by golf gambling sites may vary greatly at different sites, particularly deeper into the field. If you are placing golf bets it’s certainly going to be worth your while exploring the odds offered across a number of sites so you will maximise your winnings and returns if your bets are successful.

Golf Spread Betting

Spread betting is different to fixed odds betting as you are betting on a range of outcomes instead of a single one. It’s almost like trading, where you ‘buy’ an item in the hope that its price will rise so you can sell it for a profit. However, there is always the risk that the price will drop meaning you make a loss. The ‘item’ when it comes to golf spread betting is some metric, such as the final card score of a specific golfer.

Let’s take a quick look at an example. Below are the ranges for tournament winner at the Travelers Championship.

golf spread bet

Solely for the purposes of this bet, the tournament winner receives 80 pts, the runner up 40 pts, 3rd place 30 and so on in an 80-40-30-25-20-15-10-5 system.

Say you think Scottie Scheffler is going to do well in the tournament, so you buy at 27, £1 per point. If he wins, you’d be selling at 80, as that’s what the tournament winners scores. As you bought at £27 and sold at £80, you’d make a £53 profit. However, say he finishes eighth, and only gains 5 points. You bought at £27 and sold at £5, making a £22 loss.

You can also bet if you think Scottie Scheffler won’t do well. Here you would sell at 24, £1 per point. If he doesn’t finish in the top eight and scores zero points, you would have bought at £0 and sold at £24, making a £24 profit. However, if he does win you would have bought at £80 and sold at £24, making a £56 loss.

Golf spread betting can take some getting used to but the key thing to remember is that you could be liable to losses that are much bigger than your stake, although conversely, you can win much more than fixed odds betting if your predictions prove correct.

How to Bet on Live Golf

Golf is a very good sport when it comes to live betting. This is because golf is a very slow game although with the large fields of competitors, there is always something happening on the course at all times.

When it comes to learning how to bet on live golf, the most common live golf betting markets are based on the groups – duos, trios or foursomes – that the players are currently out on the course in. You can bet on which player of the group is going to win the next hole, for example. Other markets may be available, but they will be the same kind of markets for outrights, and so on.

Popular Golf Betting Markets

The most popular golf bet is to bet on the eventual winner of a tournament, but there are plenty of other markets for you to consider, as the following list will demonstrate.

Tournament Winner

All golfers are competing to win, so you can bet on the winner of the overall tournament. Most stroke-play tournaments are held over four rounds of 18 holes each on the same course, with the winner being the player with the lowest score (number of strokes to complete all holes). Match-play tournaments pit golfers directly against each other on a hole-by-hole basis, with players winning a point for every hole they win (no points are awarded for tied holes).

Each Way Bet on Golf

An each way betting wager on golf means you split your bet in half. Half of the bet goes on the player to win, and half on the player to place. The golf betting odds and places offered is at the behest of the betting site. It could be a quarter the win odds for a top five finish, or one-fifth the win odds for a top eight finish, for example.

Top Finishes

This is similar to a place wager in horse racing betting. You are betting on a player finishing in a high enough position on the final leaderboard. Odds could be given for a top five finish, a top ten finish or even a top twenty finish, for example.

To Make the Cut

During the first two days of a golf tournament, the tournament organisers will announce ‘the cut’ which is the qualifying score needed for a player to be allowed to compete on the final two days. Usually the cut is worked out so that 65 to 70 golfers will play out the competition. You can bet on specific players making the cut. You may also be on specific players not making the cut.

1st Round Leader

The first round of golf takes place on the first day of the tournament and consists (almost always) of eighteen holes. You can bet on players being atop the leaderboard once the first round has concluded.

Betting Without

Sometimes a player is such a dominant force in a golf tournament that betting on the golf golden boy is simply not really worth it. On such occasions, the best way how to bet on golf tournaments might be to choose a ‘betting without’ market in which that player is removed. Your bet wins if your selected golfer wins the tournament or finishes second to the player the market is offered ‘without’.

Handicap Betting

If you consider yourself a golf expert, then you might consider handicap betting. This is where players are given artificial points which will be added to their score once the tournament has concluded. For example, say you bet on Scottie Scheffler to win with a +2 handicap. If he wins the tournament by one stroke, then your bet would lose as for the purpose of your bet, two strokes are added to his final score.

2-Way Betting

During a golf tournament, players may play in foursomes, trios or pairs to spend up play. At some betting sites you will be able to bet on any such grouping, selecting the player you think will achieve the better score. This can be quite challenging as groups are selected based on players with similar abilities, but it makes betting on golf tournaments more interesting.

Group Betting

Similar to the above, players may be grouped in trios or foursomes to speed up play, especially during early rounds. In addition, betting sites may create artificial groups for you to bet on. Just like 2-way betting, you need to correctly select the golfer who will card the lowest score.


People who enjoy betting on greyhounds will recognise this bet. When betting on the golf for a forecast bet you need to predict both the winner and the runner-up in a golf tournament. With a dual forecast bet it does not matter in which order the two selected golfers finish. With a straight forecast it does.

Wire to Wire Winner

As previously explained, most golf tournaments consist of four rounds. If a player is top of the leaderboard at the end of every round, they are said to be a ‘wire to wire winner’. If you so wish, you can bet on a specific player to be a wire to wire winner, and you will get decent odds as this is difficult to achieve. You may also bet on there being a wire to wire winner on a yes/no basis.

Hole in One

Just in case you didn’t know, a ‘hole in one’ is where a player holes the ball on his first stroke, straight from the tee. Betting sites usually do not offer golf betting odds on individual players hitting a hole in one, but you can bet on a tournament or maybe even a single round seeing any player hit one.

Winning Margin

Another popular wager when people are betting on golf tournaments. Here, you predict the number of strokes the tournament winner will win by. You will need, usually, to choose the tournament winner too, so this is a tough bet to get right but if you do, the payouts ought to be spectacular.

Straight Down the Middle

This page has explained to you how to bet on golf online, including how to bet on golf tournaments, golf spread betting and has even outlined a golf betting strategy or two. You should now have all you need to be able to place golf bets successfully and have the confidence to win more betting on golf wagers than you lose.


What’s the best way to bet on golf?

Is golf hard to bet on?

What is the most common golf bet?

How to calculate golf bets?

Is there such a thing as bet in play golf?

Peter Addison
Peter Addison

Peter is one of the most well-known and well-respected names working in the field of online sports betting today. Having a Bachelor of Arts degree, Peter has worked for many high-profile publications in the industry, both online and in the real world. He joined the SafestBettingSites team in 2021 and has provided millions of words ever since. When not writing, Peter enjoys performing and writing music, gaming, reading and he is a massive movie buff, with a particular love of Japanese cinema and anime.