Every rookie gambler has heard of BookMaker and BetOnline; they’re two of the top betting sites. What you need to know next is how they compare against one another or why one might stand out from the other.
Read on to find out as we weigh up the two heavyweights in a comparison sportsbook review.
Who to Trust With Your Money
You might not be a pro gambler yet. But even so, who has money to burn? If you intend to use online betting websites to make some fast cash, you want to know the bookie you choose is trustworthy.
One of the best ways to judge this is by how long a site has been around. It’s a sign of how many happy customers have returned to their books time and time again.
BookMaker.eu put its first online gambling site live in 1997, but the company’s bookmaking experience goes way back to 1985. In an age where websites and apps can come and go in an instant, two decades online is pretty impressive. It’s one of the strongest reasons for always associating BookMaker with the list of top sportsbooks.
Does BetOnline go back just as far? It sure does. The company was formed in 1991. These sports betting websites are both digital dinosaurs. They’ve been around the block enough times to take on any new contender with confidence; any smaller sites are simply playing with the big boys.
Welcome to Online Sports
You’ll find a lot of gambling sites dangling a carrot in front of your nose to get you to bet with them. That “carrot” is a welcome bonus. There are many different types of welcome bonuses, but it will serve you well to remember that it’s quality that counts, not quantity. Be sure to look out for any small print and conditions that might apply to any offer you’re drawn to.
When you find a good welcome bonus, it’s worth taking full advantage of it. All the best sports betting sites offer a welcome bonus simply because the competition online is so stiff these days:
- BookMaker offers a 50% welcome bonus (up to $300) on the first deposit
- BetOnline offers 25% on $100, but this is accompanied by an unlimited reload bonus
The welcome bonus works well for you. Extra credit in your account means you can try out a few more features on the site or place a few more practice bets. Without having to worry about every cent, you can enjoy the experience from the minute you sign up.
It’s Game On
Gamblers who bet on sports online often have a much wider choice of games than those who bet in bricks-and-mortar betting shops in the few areas where sports gambling is legal.
This is certainly true of BookMaker, which puts forward odds on almost every sport you can think of. Sure, somebody somewhere can come up with an extraordinarily niche sport we’ve never even heard of, but all in all, both BookMaker and BetOnline have the majority of sports covered.
You can’t criticize these guys for choice. Both sites also offer casino games and BookMaker offers online poker.
If you’re after proposition bets, both sites offer a range of these.
Proposition bets, shortened to ‘props’, or ‘prop bets’ up your chances of winning. Instead of betting on a flat win or lose, for example, you can bet on smaller elements of a game. You might place a prop bet that a goal will be scored in the first half of a football match, not the second.
It makes the betting math simpler, but there’s no guarantee you’ll win, of course! Still, props are often called “exotics” because they spice up your game. Have a little fun with your next bet and try out the props.
Gamblers into more mainstream sports like basketball might underestimate the popularity of horse betting. Yet The Racing Forum, a UK-based discussion site for horse racing enthusiasts, has almost 60,000 subscribers.
The racetrack community needs a place to bet online too, and if you’re part of it, BetOnline offers a 7% rebate on all horse bets. This is the sports betting site for you.
Do All Good Sports Books Post Lines Quickly?
They can’t all be the fastest to post lines, but it certainly helps pull in the punters. It might not always be the most important consideration when judging a gambling site, but it sure can be frustrating for bettors when sites are slow to post lines.
This is where BookMaker comes into its own. BookMaker.eu is usually the first to post lines, which notoriously gains the site a lot of stars in online betting reviews.
BetOnline is a winner here too. It might be slower than BookMaker, but when you look at the big picture, BetOnline is still often several hours ahead of the rest of the competition. So you can count on fairly swift service with both of these sites.
Getting Paid When You Win
BookMaker isn’t ahead of the rest on everything, mind you. In fact, you can sometimes wait four or five weeks to collect your winnings. If this is one of BookMaker’s biggest downfalls, BetOnline has one too: you have to pay a fee to claim your money.
Losing a little from your winnings or waiting a few weeks to receive them may be a pain, but since the payment process on both sites is organized and reliable, the admin charges and payment delays aren’t dealbreakers.
Once you’re comfortable with online gambling, you don’t want to be restricted to your desktop. Players want to access the best betting tips on the go, too.
There are no complaints about the BookMaker mobile site. Use it to add credit and bet live. They even offer live chat for a live customer service experience too.
If you’re cautious about trying a mobile betting site or just haven’t got round to it yet, BetOnline is keen to get you started. They’ll give you $50 worth of free bets just to try the mobile version.
Overall, you’ll have a streamlined gambling experience on both of these sites, no matter what device you use.
International Play vs US Centric
It’s good to know you can access your favorite betting site from just about anywhere you’re headed on a day-to-day basis, but players are often restricted by geographic location. This is something you should bear in mind if you’re outside North America.
BookMaker is available in Chinese and Spanish as well as English, but that’s as far as it goes. Essentially, the site exists for players in the US and Canada.
If you’re overseas, you’ll be pleased to know that BetOnline offers its service to international players too. This gives them a wider geographical advantage over other sites, but it adds an extra dimension for bettors, since the pool of players is much bigger.
Once you know which sites you can use, deciding what to bet on, how much, and how often is then all down to personal preference. There’s no hard and fast rule about which site appeals most to which bettor. Your own preferences might even change from week to week.
How to Decide Which Site is For You
Comparisons are useful because some sites might perform better in one area than another. You might like to use more than one betting website to get the best of both worlds.
If you’re looking for a deeper look into either site, read our full reviews:
Let’s sum up the pros and cons of both sportsbooks:
- One of the oldest online gambling sites around
- 50% welcome bonus, up to $300
- Wide range of sports and prop bets
- First to post lines
- Use your mobile to bet live and credit account
- Live chat feature available
- Chinese and Spanish language versions available
- Slow to pay out
- No international play (US and Canada only)
- Online for more than two decades
- 25% welcome bonus, up to $100
- Unlimited reload bonus
- Good choice of games including propositions
- Racetrack with 7% rebate on all bets
- Fairly quick to post lines
- Good mobile interface
- $50 worth of free bets to try the mobile site
- International players welcome
- Administrative fee charges to collect winnings
- No live chat
At the end of the day, you’re looking at two well-established websites. Just don’t forget to check both sites for payout details, as fees tend to change frequently.
Still surveying your best options? Be sure to check out our other reviews: