Arbitrage betting vs Matched betting: which is better in 2023?

  • Post last modified:March 24, 2023

Finding the best betting strategy for your bankroll and possibilities can sometimes be challenging. Both matched betting vs arbitrage betting have their advantages and downsides too. In a lot of cases, only one of them can be suitable for you.

Let’s find out which one can be your next step.

Which is better, arbitrage betting vs matched betting?

Both strategies are based on similar ways of generating profits. The bookmakers offer something that can be exploited and turned into guaranteed profits.

The average people are hard to be convinced to deposit money to a bookmaker. Betting, in general, is judged as a guaranteed route for losing money.

But every time a bookie offers a good bonus or free bet for your deposits, the resistance seems to weaken.

This bonus offer for the average bettor means more money to play with. On the other hand, for a smart bettor, it’s a guaranteed profit opportunity.

So, let’s see the main advantages of matched betting vs arbitrage betting:

1. Learning difficulty

You can learn the basics of matched betting in even one hour. In a very short period, like 1-2 days of practising it, you can know almost 90% of the information you would need in the long run to make money with it successfully.

Like in almost every job/business you need constant learning and researching about matched betting to make more profits and keep it going.

But this amount will be fairly low in matched betting. In comparing matched betting vs arbitrage betting, the difficulty of learning sure betting is significantly higher. You will need to have a deeper understanding of how odds work.

While arbitrage betting, you will face faster-moving odds compared to arbing. This will force you to learn certain trends and influencing factors to spot which outcome is overpriced so you can place your first bets on those to exclude unnecessary risks of running into a smaller loss.

2. Time invested in working

Generally speaking, the more you work in matched betting, the more you can make. But with this strategy, you don’t have to stay in front of the PC all day. If you have free time only on weekends, it is still possible to make a decent profit.

Comparing matched betting vs arbitrage betting, I know from experience that the latter is a full-time job. If you want to make a decent income from sure betting, you will almost always stay in front of your PC to spot new betting opportunities which disappear from one moment to another.

Even by using arbitrage betting software, you will need to invest more time in sure betting.

3. What is more profitable: matched betting vs arbitrage betting?

Completing the roll-over requirements for most deposit bonuses is fairly easy with matched betting. But in most cases, beginner matched bettors also focus on other types of bonuses, such as free bets or recharge bonuses.

These bonuses with matched betting are offering the fastest payouts without too much hustle.

You have to place 2 bets at the bookie with the bonus and cover both at another bookie like Betfair or Pinnacle.

With 10-15 minutes of work, you can easily make 10-30 Euros. After completing these bonuses, you only upload the required documents to verify KYC (Know Your Customer) and withdraw your profits.

Initially, you can easily make around 600-1000 a month with matched betting.

What about arbitrage betting?

The situation is different with the profitability of arbitrage betting. With a smaller betting capital, you won’t have the opportunity to make big profits. But betting opportunities won’t disappear from one month to another like matched betting.

Even beginner arbitrage bettors can make over 1000 a month if they can access more bookies. The future profits can exceed several times the amount you could make with matched betting.

4. Matched betting vs arbitrage betting: the best software

If you are from the United Kingdom, many services will guide your matched betting steps. No matter how much knowledge you have about sports, their betting tutorials will help you.

The best and most popular oddsmatcher service for matched betting is OddsMonkey won’t make you disappointed. Unfortunately, only a handful of tools support matched betting outside of the UK. But you can read my review of both of them by clicking on the following links:

Arbitrage betting software, on the other hand, you can find plenty. Many of them are even focused on certain countries. You can find my detailed article about the best arbitrage bet finders where you can select your country of origin, and my searcher will display the best tool for your activity.

5. Sustainability

With matched betting, your average bets won’t be placed on significantly overpriced markets.

Most bonus hunters are looking for betting opportunities where the loss is close to 0% on a pair of bets.

This fact by itself helps your account to last longer while matched betting. On the other hand, Arbitrage betting is the heavy category where you need to place many bets on wrong odds and significantly higher stakes.

This type of betting will get your accounts limited way faster than it would with matched betting

Summary: Is arbitrage betting better than matched betting?

This question has no simple answer because it depends on multiple factors.

Arbitrage betting will generate more profits than matched betting but will get your account limited faster.

As mentioned, you can make a decent income from matched betting (even over 1000 euros in the first month if you have access to many bookies) fairly quickly. But the biggest disadvantage of this technique is the number of available bonus offers.

After completing the welcome bonuses and free bets, your monthly profits will be significantly lower with matched betting. You will get new free bets and recharge bonuses occasionally, but not enough to maintain your monthly income at the same level.

Arbitrage betting, on the other hand, offers a longer-lasting profit flow if you can keep your betting accounts healthy.

You can also check my in-depth article on long-term arbitrage betting career strategies for additional tips to follow a healthy and successful way of practicing this strategy.

Which to start with: Matched betting vs arbing?

The amount of profit you can make with arbing is way higher, as I already mentioned earlier. But this won’t necessarily be in your favour right from the start.

At the start, arbitrage betting needs a significantly bigger starting capital. If you can’t use thousands of euros for arbing, then in most cases, the profits are smaller, and you are missing out on many betting opportunities because you are forced to wait for your bets to end.

Right at the beginning, you might make more profits with matched betting and can build up your betting capital faster, but later down the road, arbitrage betting is the winner.

From my experience, no matter how much money or time you have, starting with matched betting is the best option.

1. Starting capital: matched betting vs arbing

In other articles, I mentioned that matched bettors don’t need much to start this technique. Don’t be afraid if you don’t have thousands or even hundreds of euros.

For example, I started matched betting career with around 100 Euros. If you are thinking about sports betting with smart strategies, you don’t need much, but you need to be patient to build up your bank.

Arbitrage betting, on the other hand, requires more resources to start. After some weeks of matched betting, I also made enough to start arbitrage betting. To successfully place enough sure bets without struggling, you will need several thousand euros, or at least 2000-3000.

2. Time investment

Making bigger profits requires more time investment with both strategies. But unfortunately, arbitrage betting will take more of your free time.

You can hedge your bets with even a minimal loss with matched betting. You can find many of these opportunities without waiting too long for a new overpriced market.

Arbitrage betting is not even slightly different. If you prefer betting before the start of the match, you can take advantage of the already available sure bets.

But these opportunities are coming and going in a fairly short timeframe. So, if you want to catch the majority of these sure bets you have to invest more time.

Pre-match arbitrage betting is getting harder and harder. The majority of bookies can easily spot smart bettors.

Placing 5 – 10 bets on overpriced markets can instantly limit your account.

For every experienced bettor, I advise switching to in-play sure betting. This way, the risk of getting limited is reduced. Of course, you will need more experience and focus too.

The biggest downside is that you need to invest far more of your time than at matched betting. You have to stay in front of the PC every time there is a good match.

This means that your weekends will no longer be free.

You have to make a decision about your goals in arbitrage/matched betting. Do you want to take it seriously, or is it just a side hustle, a bonus income source?


Which is better: Matched betting vs arbitrage betting (arbing)?

How much do you need to learn: Matched betting is way easier. It requires less knowledge in general. Arbing is the strategy where you will find out new things almost every day
Time investment: Arbitrage betting is time-consuming. If you plan to practice it as a full-time job or an important income source, you will work 10-12 hours daily. It is possible to work less, but in general, it will take more of your time
Profitability: In the long run, arbitrage betting is several times more profitable than bonus hunting
Starting capital: Arbitrage betting requires way more money to start properly. On the other hand, you can start matched betting even with 100 euros.
Getting limited: If you start with matched betting after being gubbed (taking your bonus offers away), you still have the chance for arbitrage betting. Limitations are coming way later with matched betting.

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Sam @ Sportssmartbetting

I have been a professional sports bettor for almost 8 years. I have the most experience with matched betting, arbitrage betting, and learned the most about value betting. Each betting software and betting strategy I promote was tested or used for a longer period by myself.