Mug Betting

Mug Betting Guide – Strategies That Will Keep Your Bookie Accounts Open

The Ultimate Mug Betting Guide

How To Keep Bookie Accounts Open

Mug Betting - What Is It & Why Do You Need To Do It

A bookmaker will close or restrict your account if they suspect that you're only there to claim their promotions – This is known as ‘gubbing’

A bookmaker wants to ensure they keep their best customers (the ones who are regularly spending but losing money), and restrict the players who are profiting from their services and who are only there to claim promotions.

Mug Betting is a technique where we place bets on events that do not involve any promotional offer.

We do this to make ourselves look like a regular punter and blend in with the rest of the crowd should the bookie look at our account (and they will).

Mug Betting helps to ensure that our accounts are kept open for the long term, and that no betting restrictions are placed on them.

You should always lay all of your mug bets on the Exchange to ensure that we are not losing any money, and we keep our betting risk free

The Bookies Have Their Eye On You!

Bookies closely monitor your activities.

Everything regarding your account is monitored.

From the details you sign up with (name, address and IP address), to what sports you bet on, the stakes and at what odds.

A bookmaker will keep tabs on all of your betting habits and use this data to decide who gets restricted or not.

An account which is in good standing, will be able to place large stakes bets at high odds, and potentially be rewarded with promotional offers.

If your account is not in good standing, you will find that your stakes are reduced. This may shortly be followed by a gubbing if you’re not careful!

So how do the bookies know who to gub or who not? Well, each bookmaker has a risk management team.

It’s the risk management teams job to specifically pinpoint people who are taking a lot of value from them without really giving much back.. Remember, they are a business after all, and they’re here to make money!

You may have received the dreaded gubbing email from them already – It will advise that their risk management team have reviewed your account and it is their recommendation that your account be closed or restricted.

mug betting guide

Basically, they’ve been monitoring you and they didn’t like what they saw.

The above email is one I received from Paddy Power - A bookie which I can honestly say I took too much value from without giving back.

I regularly did their football reload offers and rarely ever 'mugged' them!​

Cookies are a common method of monitoring us as we browse the internet nowadays [cookie message picture].

Information from your browsing session will all be recorded such as:

  • Duration of your browsing session
  • The Time and Date of your visit
  • Links clicked on (or even just hovered over)

In case you were thinking of setting up a new account with a bookie under your spouse’s name with the same IP address, don’t!

The duplicate IP addresses will flag to them immediately and you will find your accounts closed, and possibly any money in them withheld.

Bookies take multiple accounts by the same person very seriously and anything that flags this potential violation of their terms will result in you losing your account with them.

It is possible to have multiple accounts with one bookmaker under one household. This is called Multi-Accounting, and I have written a tutorial on How to Multi Account here.

Bookie Account Health Check

You can gauge how healthy your accounts are by how much the bookmaker is willing to let you stake.

If your max stake is fairly low - Consider the account to be in trouble and in need of some nurturing! 

It may be wise to avoid offers with accounts that are in a poor state, and focus solely on a few mug bets for a while.

If you are able to enter a high max stake, then consider this a healthy account with no restrictions.

Things That Increase The Likelihood of Your Account Being Monitored

New bookie accounts are monitored rather closely.

The first and foremost factor that will flag you as a matched bettor, is only ever betting on events that have a promotional offer on.

It couldn’t be clearer to the bookmaker what you are on their site for and what your intentions are in this scenario.

Matched Bettors tend to know exactly what they are going to bet on and precisely how much before they’ve even logged into their account, so because of this, they don’t spend much time on the site at all.

This can be a bit of a red flag as a normal punter will spend a bit more time on the site browsing.

Mug punters typically bet close to the start of a match or race. Matched Bettors in their highly methodical and organized ways, may bet on an event a day or even several days before it is due to take place – Repeated activity like this on your account does become noticeable.

We all know the typical matched betting process… we place our qualifying bets at low odds, and our free bets at high odds to maximize profit.

We also try and find events where the back odds are similar to the lay odds.

These betting patterns end up becoming a dead giveaway and it doesn’t take a genius to figure out what you are doing!

When Should You Start Mug Betting?

​Don't worry too much about mug betting at the beginning.

Focus on completing the sign-up offers first. (Of course, if you wish to throw in a mug bet here and there, then feel free to do so!)

Mug Betting becomes far more important once you move onto the Reload Offers and are placing bets more regularly.

Which Bookies Should I focus Mug Betting On?

Your efforts should be focussed on those accounts which are going to be providing the most value to you over the long term.

There's absolutely no point mug betting an account that rarely has any reload offers on, or the reloads are of very poor value.

Focus on the larger bookmakers that are providing you with the most value and offers. These are the guys that you're going to want to keep happy!

Examples of bookmakers you need to focus mug betting on are:

  • Bet 365
  • SkyBet
  • Ladbrokes
  • Paddy Power

(These are just a few examples, but you get the idea!)

How To Keep Bookie Accounts Open: Mug Betting 101

So, taking in all of the above into account. Here are some basic steps to follow in order to keep your bookie accounts open for the long haul.

1 - Mug Bet IN-PLAY

Place your mug bets in-play. (You can wait until half time until the odds have settled if you wish).

2 – Place your bets close to the event starting

The trick is to look like a regular mug punter, and mug punters tend to bet closer to an event start time (or in-play as suggested above).

3 - Download All Of The Major Bookies Apps.. And Use Them!

I have all the major UK bookie apps on my iPhone (William Hill, Coral, Skybet, Bet365, Ladbrokes, Paddy.. etc).

Bookies love it when people bet using their apps or on Mobile. Combine this tip with the first two for extra brownie points and to really come off as a mug punter.

4 - Vary Your Stakes!

This one is very important. If the offer is 'bet £25 to get a free £25 bet', try not to ALWAYS go for the full £25.

Yes you will receive a smaller free bet.. but you’ll keep your accounts healthier for longer this way

If you were to only place bets on matches that have offers on, never varied your stakes AND you always take full value of an offer, this will definitely make you look like a bonus hunter!

Always vary your stakes for mug bets AND qualifying bets. EG:

Bet 1

Bet 2

Bet 3

Bet 4





4 - Check Profit Accumulators 'Mug Bet' Thread

Check the Mug Betting thread on PA - This is where people post nothing but mug bets so feel free to jump on some of these if you don't feel like finding them yourself.

5 - NEVER Place Arb Bets!

An arb bet is when the odds on the Exchange are less than on the bookie - If low enough on the exchange then you will actually make a profit from your qualifying bet, rather than a loss!

These do not look good on your account, so don't do them.

If you get lucky whilst betting in-play, then that's fine.

6 - Bookies Love....

Accumulators, Scorecasts, Wincasts and First Goalscorer type bets.

Mix these types of bets into your mug bets for sure!

7 - Ever Heard of Nongthymai SC?

Exactly! Then why are you betting on them? DO NOT bet on obscure teams/leagues that you’ve never heard of.

8 - Have A Favourite Team

Do you have a favourite sports team? Great.. then bet on as many of their games as possible (regardless of qualifying loss).

I'm an Arsenal fan so whenever they're playing I mug bet all of my major accounts by betting on them.

If you don’t have a favourite football team then now’s the time to choose! Arsenal seem to be losing a lot lately so they’d make a great selection as a high profile team who will regularly ‘lose’ you money!

9 - What's Being Promoted?

Check what events/selections bookies are promoting on their landing page. If it’s being promoted then that means they want you to bet on it.

You've also probably noticed that bookies will promote selections during commercial breaks? (Bet365 do this a lot). See if you can find good matches on those markets and bet on them!

10 - Mug using the Casino

Chuck in a few mug spins at the casino now and again.

I like to do a couple of small stakes spins on my favourite slots or buy the odd bingo ticket now and again.

If I have a win on a bingo or a casino offer, then I'll add in a few extra mug spins then too.

11- Vary the Odds

Just as important as varying your stakes, you must also vary your odds.

Don't always use free bets at really high odds. Again, vary things up here.

Constantly using low odds on qualifying bets, and high odds for free bets will make you stick out.

Use a free bet at smaller odds once in a while – Yes the profit is smaller, but it’s important that you think about the long term benefits of keeping your accounts open.

12- Keep Money In Your Accounts

Keep money in your accounts and reduce the amount of withdrawals you make.

It has been suggested that the less withdrawals you make, the better.​

13 – If you bet on a Horse Race, watch it!

...Or at least pretend to watch it.

SkyBet allow you to watch any horse race that you have placed money on.

Once in a while I'll 'watch' the race.. and by that I mean I'll open up the race window and play on my phone for a few minutes (I find horse racing so boring to watch!)

14 - Be Consistent

Be consistent with the sports markets that you bet on.

If you've never bet on Basketball it looks quite suspicious for you suddenly take part in Basketball reload offers, right?​

Make sure you mix in mug bets within the sporting market you are betting on.

Mug bets on football matches aren't much good if you're only doing Basketball promotional offers.​


Mug Betting isn’t difficult but is does require time.

Do not neglect this part of the matched betting process as it’s just as important as any other matched betting technique for long term success.

Some bookies are KNOWN for gubbing people (Racebets and Boylesports spring to mind here!!)

There is absolutely nothing you can do about a gubbing from these types of bookmakers and you shouldn't worry about it.

These things happen so just focus your energy on the major bookies.


Any questions in relation to the points discussed in this article?

Give me your thoughts in the comments section below! I’m happy to answer any questions.

About the Author Gia