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Bookie Reviews

All the bookies we cover are ones that we bet with personally and consider to be safe, secure and trustworthy. Below we take a concise look at their main strengths (and any weaknesses) and throw in a few half-interesting facts too.

Information on free bets and bonuses is a guideline only. For more information see our Free Bets and Bonuses section and of course, always check terms and conditions on the bookmakers’ websites as these are subject to change.

Featured bookies (A-Z): | Ladbrokes | 888sport | bet365 | Betfair | Bet Victor | BoylesportsCoral | Paddy Power | Sky Bet | Stan James | Totesport | Unibet |

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 Ladbrokes Review

Ladbrokes is a London-based PLC that was founded a long, long time ago, in a galaxy not that far away – 1886 in Worcestshire to be more precise. They are one of the British big boys, in fact the largest UK betting company and, with over 2000 shops, the largest retail outfit in the world. As you would expect they tick all the usual boxes – safe, secure, wide range of markets, decent in-play options, good customer service and payment options and fast payments. Their odds are generally ok but nothing to rave about but with a £50 free bet and unbeatable racing and football coverage Ladbrokes are well worth remembering.

To read the full review, along with details of other free bets and bonuses on offer with Ladbrokes CLICK HERE.

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888sport Review

888sport is part of 888 Holdings which was founded in 1997 and operates from a Gibraltan HQ after starting in Antigua. The sports betting business is relatively recent, only launching in March 2008 but the company has plenty of experience through its work in poker, bingo, games and online casinos. They sponsor Middlesbrough, Seville and, unusually, Shane Warne!

888sport offers new customers the chance to earn TREBLE THE ODDS on the first bet they place, with potentially very lucrative results (if you pick you bet wisely!). The bookie also offers good in-play options, excellent odds on certain markets, good football and racing stats and information, a fast website and are constantly improving. Although their customer service is sometimes a little slow and the website has had teething problems 888 are definitely worth adding to your accounts.

To read the full review, along with details of other free bets and bonuses on offer with 888 CLICK HERE.

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Bet365 Review

bet365, owned by the chairman of Stoke City F.C., advertised by an uncharacteristically annoying Ray Winston and home to probably the most generous free betting offer going. The Mystic Mongrel can’t recommend these boys enough for a total package of £200 free bet, decent odds, the excellent 4/1 racing offer and good repeat freebies. Throw in good customer service and an huge range of sports betting markets and the Mystic Mongrel can’t stop barking.

To read the full review, along with details of other free bets and bonuses on offer with bet365 CLICK HERE.

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Betfair Review

Betfair is the daddy of the exchanges, like Pele, Einstein and Bill Gates rolled into one, huge, gambling playground. A British company, founded by now-mega-rich cyber geeks (probably), they have also developed a fixed odds sportsbook which offers great odds, an amazing range of markets (although not as many unusual specials as some bookies), unparalleled in-play options and a site that is incredibly easy to use. Being an exchange there is no danger of being limited when our tips keep on winning and of course you can lay bets to lock in a profit. Betfair is 100% safe and secure and customer service is British-based, fast and efficient. The odds and the BET £10, GET £30 opening offer mean that Betfair is an absolute must-have in any serious gambler’s range of active accounts.

To read the full review, along with details of other free bets and bonuses on offer with Betfair CLICK HERE.

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Bet Victor Review

Victor Chandler, the man, is the chairman of BetVictor, the bookmaker. Crazy! He is the grandson of the founder and is known as the Gentleman Bookmaker for his style and dignified way of doing business. Paradoxically he is an old-school bookmaker who will take huge bets at great risk, yet also the biggest innovator in British bookmaking. He was the first to move off-shore, to Gibraltar, was key in recognising the importance of online gambling and was instrumental in bringing an end to the 9% betting tax punters had to pay until 2001. But enough history. Let’s cut today and consider Victor’s bet £10, get £60 offer, the great odds, the huge limits, the superb user-friendly website and the excellent range of markets. Enough history and enough reasons to join.

To read the full review, along with details of other free bets and bonuses on offer with Victor Chandler CLICK HERE.

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Boylesports Review

Boylesports is 21 this year and thriving (like we all were at that fine age). Many happy returns to Ireland’s largest independent bookmaker. With nearly 10 years’ online experience Boyles offers a good range of markets, excellent in-play options and friendly Irish service. It focuses on UK football and the horses but has most things covered including a decent range of novelty bets (Miss England anyone?). Regular cash-back offers and friendly odds make this a good place to try out the luck of the Irish.

To read the full review, along with details of other free bets and bonuses on offer with Boyles CLICK HERE.

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Coral Review

Coral is part of Gala Coral, the Coral part to be exact. That is to say, the bookmaking side, along with Eurobet, as opposed to bingo and casinos. They have about 1600 shops in the UK, making them the third largest company on the high street. It was founded in 1928 by Joe Coral and has a history far too long and complex to recount here, so I’ll stick to what you need to know as a potential customer today. Coral are a safe, secure, British institution and offer an excellent opening offer, regular cashback deals and superb football odds, as well as a good range of sports, all with better than average prices. So there.

To read the full review, along with details of other free bets and bonuses on offer with Coral CLICK HERE.

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Paddy Power Review

Paddy Power is a grand bookmaker to be sure, to be sure and the craic here is excellent (nice to start with a few Oirish clichés I think, don’t you?). Interesting fact about Paddy? They offered odds on Barack Obama being assassinated (well, not lasting the first term to be precise but it was widely taken to be an assassination market). 16-1 if you were wondering, although after complaints the market was withdrawn! Publicity stunts aside Paddy is a great bookmaker, with a welcome free bet of up to £50 to match the stake of your first bet, regular refunds on losing bets, excellent odds all round and seemingly bottomless football markets. It was founded in 1988 and is Ireland’s largest bookmaker and with the luck of the Irish on your side the Mystic Mogrel is certain you’ll win with Paddy. Fairly certain anyway.

To read the full review, along with details of other free bets and bonuses on offer with Paddy Power CLICK HERE.

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Sky Bet Review

Sky Bet, home of press-the-red-button betting and owned by the BSkyB empire, it is a safe, fun betting environment with very competitive football odds, a £10 no deposit free bet simply for signing up and a free bet every week as part of the Sky Bet Free Bet Club. The website has pros (max bet is stated when you try to place large bets) and cons (not as easy to navigate as some rivals) but the best thing about Sky Bet is the strong bonus package, with a nice bet £10 no deposit opening offer and a £5 free bet available every week. Every little helps!

To read the full review, along with details of other free bets and bonuses on offer with Sky Bet CLICK HERE.

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Stan James Review

Stan James have got a lovely £20 free bet when you join and bet just £10, which is ideal for beginners and people who prefer smaller stakes.

Stan James are long established bookie that primarily trade online but still retain a high street presence. The website is fast and functional and betting is easy and simple. They offer all the usual extras like in-play betting, a decent statistics section and a reliable live scores page. The two main reasons to join them, apart from the £20 free bet, are the excellent promotions, such as the recent World Cup offer where they took on Spain, refunding all losing outright bets when Spain won, and the highly competitive odds on UK football.

To read the full review, along with details of other free bets and bonuses on offer with Stan James CLICK HERE.

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Totesport Review

Totesport are yet another UK operator with a strong high street presence, around 500 shops last time I got my abacus out. “Born” 4 years after my Nan in 1928 they are horse racing experts – their origins are the Horserace Totalisator Board set up by beach-fighting expert Winston Churchill. Head office is the pie capital of England, Wigan, but don’t let that put you off. Totesport are unbeatable for horseracing, occasionally get a bit lazy with the football odds, meaning you can cash in on great prices and offer most of the usual extras. The website is not as sharp or as straightforward as many rivals’ but with good bonuses – especially on the racing – and unbeatable security they get the thumbs up from us.

To read the full review, along with details of other free bets and bonuses on offer with Totesport CLICK HERE.

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Unibet Review

Unibet were founded in 1997 and are a Nordic-owned company that focuses on Scandinavia and the UK for most of it’s custom. Having said that, they claim to have customers in over 100 countries, their website is available in 25 languages and their headquarters are in Malta. There are several things we really like about Unibet and the no-risk free bet is a good place to start. It’s a free bet of up to £20 that is granted as a second bite of the cherry if your first bet with them should lose. However, there is far more than just the free bet: the website is clean and crisp, as you might expect of a Swedish company, the odds, especially on the larger football matches, are amazing, and their in-play console and customer service are both award-winningly good. There are no real downsides to Unibet so with FBFT’s special £20 risk free bet offer as an added bonus, what are you waiting for?

To read the full review, along with details of other free bets and bonuses on offer with Unibet CLICK HERE.

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