betfair-logo-hi-resWith their unique betting exchange service in which punters can set their own odds and wager for or against other bettors, it is safe to say that Betfair are a little bit different from the average online bookmaker.

This doesn’t mean that they don’t cater for the handicap and Asian handicap markets, however. In fact, Betfair offer some of the most interesting and comprehensive handicap bets in the business both on their betting exchange and in their sportsbook markets.

Sports coverage

There are two ways to make bets on Betfair: through their sportsbook or through their betting exchange. The sportsbook is just like any other betting website in the fact that you simply place a stake on a set of odds and the bookmaker gives you money if you win. You will find a number of different handicap options on Betfair’s sportsbook with the usual sports covered. Here’s what you can expect to find:

  • Football – 3-way match result handicaps.
  • Rugby union – 3-way match result handicaps, 2-way match result handicaps, 2-way first half handicaps and alternative handicaps.
  • Tennis – games won handicaps.

You will notice here that there are not as many handicap betting options for each sport as you might expect to find from a leading online betting site. For example, there are no Asian handicap options in the football and no half-time handicap options either. However, when you look at the Betfair exchange, you will find more handicap betting options including Asian handicaps. Here’s a breakdown of what you will find:

  • Football – Asian handicaps and 3-way match result handicaps.
  • Tennis – games won handicaps.

These Betfair exchange options give you the opportunity to bet on interesting handicap scenarios at your own odds, meaning that you have a whole different selection available other than the ordinary sportsbook handicap options.

You will also find handicap betting available in a whole variety of different sports that are a bit out of the ordinary. If you are a follower of American football, baseball, handball, basketball and ice hockey then you can expect to find handicap lines and spreads for each of these sports.

Market depth

Because of the two different ways that you can place a handicap or Asian handicap bet on Betfair, it is no surprise that there is a good depth of handicap options available.

In the football markets, you can expect to find the same handicap options for a League two clash as there are for a Premier League fixture, meaning that your options won’t be limited if you are interested in taking a punt on a lower league match. Moreover, for each football match on the sportsbook it is typical to find up to nine different odds from the handicap scenarios that are offered.

On the Betfair exchange you will find a great selection of different Asian handicap options as well as alternative 3-way handicaps on offer. What’s more, for each handicap and Asian handicap scenario on the Betfair exchange, you have the option to bet for or against that scenario happening. You can also introduce different odds into the equation – as long as they are matched by another bettor. In a nutshell, the Betfair exchange offers a huge possibility of different handicap and Asian handicap betting options.

It is a different story when it comes to other sports on the Betfair sportsbook and exchange. Sports such as rugby league and tennis markets tend to offer a limited amount of different handicap options whilst most American sports will likewise offer small selections.


The positives of Betfair’s handicap and Asian handicap service are many. Whilst there is a fairly standard selection of handicap bets across a decent spread of sports in the Betfair sportsbook – giving bettors an adequate amount of choice with some interesting variety – the Betfair exchange gives the more seasoned bettor a whole host of unique handicap betting options. On top of that, the Betfair exchange gives the punter a bit more power to manipulate the odds of sporting events, which is never a bad thing.


As for the negatives, there are a couple of downsides which could be addressed by Betfair to improve their overall service. Firstly, there are still a few large gaps in the variety of handicaps offered within certain sports such as rugby league and tennis.

Secondly, while the Betfair exchange does offer a better range of handicap variety for the bettor, it can be a little bit complicated for punters who simply want to place a normal bet. Which makes you wonder why Betfair don’t make the effort to provide Asian handicaps on the sportsbook section of their website.


Overall, Betfair offer a more than adequate spread of handicap and Asian handicap bets across their two online betting platforms. However, if you are a newcomer to the Asian handicap method, it would be advisable to get the hang of this type of bet with through a betting website with a standard sportsbook before delving into the Betfair betting exchange.