3 Facts About Parlay Bets You Need to Know

3 Checkmarks in Front of Parlay Ticket and Casino Background

Parlay bets go by many names and have many possible combinations you can make. They’re a complex form of betting and have many outcomes. They’re also a risky bet to make, but the good news is you can vary the risk based on how complicated you make the parlay bets.

A parlay bet is kind of like ordering a combo meal. You can add fries, burgers, shakes, and onion rings all to one meal. A normal moneyline bet is one where you just get one thing, like fries, at a restaurant. If you want a complete meal, a parlay bet is the way to go.

Parlay, accumulator, combo bet or multi are all different names for parlay bet. A parlay bet is a bet that combines many single bets into one larger bet. There are 2 factors that make a parlay bet:

  • Multiple bets combined together. For a parlay bet to exist, you have to make multiple bets in one bet.
  • The bets must all win. The only way to win a parlay bet though is for all your single bets to win. That’s why it’s such a risky bet—so many things have to go right for you to win a parlay bet.
The good thing about winning a parlay bet is you can get a much bigger payout if you do win.

Just like with anything else involving gambling, the amount of winnings go up more the more risk you involve. If you want to risk a lot with a parlay bet, you can be paid generously.

There are 3 possible outcomes to a parlay bet:

  • The bet can win. That means you get all the winnings back, including your stake. This is the highest reward option but requires a lot to go right in your bet.
  • The bet can push. If any single bet in a parlay bet ties (maybe a moneyline bet on a soccer match ties), then the parlay bet pushes. As a result, the parlay reverts to a lower number of teams.
  • The bet can lose. The last option is the worst. The parlay will lose if any one part of the parlay bet loses.

1- How to Place a Parlay Bet

Placing a parlay bet is similar to how you’d place any other bet. Fill out the card with the outcomes you expect and take it to the oddsmaker. There are several different places where you can make parlay bets:

  • Sportsbook—sportsbooks are common places to make many kinds of bets. They’re typically inside casinos and offer a wide variety of bets in a fun atmosphere. You’ll be able to place a bet at a counter and watch the event unfold on their big-screen TVs.
  • Betting websites—many betting websites also offer parlay bets. Research the website you decide to bet on before you place any bets. Make sure the website accepts your payment method, is reputable, and offers the types of bets (including parlay) that you’re interested in.
  • Mobile sports betting apps—many sports betting apps also offer parlay bets. Just like with the website, you’ll need to research a few things about the app before you place any bets. Betting apps offer lots of conveniences because you can place them anywhere from your phone.

Consider the odds of the event you’re betting on before you place the parlay bet as well.
Parlay bets are offered on many types of sports, so you need to make sure you know a few things before you place a parlay bet.
Wide View of a Sportsbook

  • Understand the sport you’re betting on. If you’re betting on football, make sure you know the rules of the game well so you can make an informed bet.
  • Know how the teams match up. In addition to understanding the sport, you need to know the teams of the sport as well. Some teams match up well against each other and some teams will have weaknesses.
  • Know the conditions. Know the field conditions of whatever bet you’re placing as well. While some games may take place indoors, many sports are played outdoors and climate factors like rain or wind can greatly influence the outcome.

Decide what kind of parlay bet to make. Lastly, you’ll need to decide the kind of parlay bet you want to make. Once you understand the different types of parlay bets, you’ll feel comfortable placing them.

Once you’ve decided where to bet, who to bet on, and what kind of bet you want to make, you’ll be ready to start making some parlay bets.

2- Varieties of Parlay Bets

There are 2 main types of parlay bets we’ll focus on today.

The Teaser

A teaser is a traditional type of parlay bet. The bettor can place a parlay bet on multiple teams or totals. One important thing to remember is no moneyline bets will be allowed on a teaser.

Moneyline bets are the simplest kind of bet you can make. You simply predict which side or team will win. An example of a moneyline bet is as follows:

New York Yankees +110

Boston Red Sox -105

In this example, the team with the positive number is the underdog. The team with a negative number is the favorite.

If you place a $100 bet on the Yankees, you will get $110 in profit if you win the bet. You also get the money you put down as well if your team wins. So, the $100 bet you placed on the Yankees would give you $210 back, the $110 in profit as well as the $100 in winnings.

If you place a $105 bet on the Red Sox, you can win $100. So your total payout would be the winnings, $100 plus the stake, $105, or $205.

As you can see, you have to put more money on the favorite to get the same amount of money back. People prefer to vote on the underdog because there’s a chance to get more money back that way.

Even though moneyline bets are not allowed in teaser bets, many other types of bets are.

Handful of Parlay Bet Tickets

The main type of bet you’ll see in parlay bets are point spread bets. In a teaser, you can adjust the point spread of the bets you make to change the cushion. You can give yourself more of a cushion by adjusting the point spreads.

Many bettors like teaser bets because you can reduce the risk by changing the point spread. The more you reduce the risk, the less you can win. Bettors see teasers as a safer bet because they can be a tailored parlay bet where you change the amount to your choosing.

You can also choose how many teams you want to involve in a teaser. The more teams you choose, the more money you’ll be able to win. In some teasers, you can choose anywhere from 2–15 teams, with the most risk being involved in a 15 team teaser.

Moving the Spread

Moving the spread is a complicated concept that needs to be explained. It’s essential for understanding teaser bets that you understand how the spread works and how moving it works.

Spread are used to even the playing field with bets. If bets didn’t have spreads, everyone would just bet on the favorite every time and win money that way. Spreads work by adding another dimension to betting and making the process more complex.

A spread may look like this:

Yankees +3

RedSox -3

Spreads can be confusing because the team with the negative number is the favorite.

In this example, the spread is saying the Red Sox are expected to win by 3 runs. The 2 numbers are just 2 different ways of saying the same spread.

If you bet on the Red Sox in this bet, the Red Sox must win the game by more than 3 runs for you to win the bet. If the Red Sox win by less than 3, you lose the bet. So a spread changes the terms of the bet. Now the bet you’re making is, “The Red Sox will win by more than 3 runs.”

Moving the spread means you change the number from +3 to +1. Then, you can bet on the Red Sox to win by only more than 1 run. While this seems great and seems like a way to give you an easier bet to win, it’s not that simple.

The bet pays out less if you move the spread down, but more if you move the spread up. Moving the spread is a great way to reduce or increase risk depending on the outcome you expect.

3- Round Robin Parlay Bets

Round robins are another type of parlay bet. In them, you can make multiple bets at once.

The bettor selects 3-8 teams when they make a round-robin bet. Once you choose the number of teams you want to be involved in your round-robin bet, you’ll choose how many teams you want to tie together in the bet.

The more teams you tie together, the more risky the parlay will be. Remember, for a parlay to win, all the parts of the parlay have to win.

The combination of all the individual parlays made on the round-robin will be the final ticket. There can be up to 56 parlays made on a single ticket so round robins can be very complex. The payout for all the parlay bets combined is the same as if they were made individually.


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