Betting Approach - what do you think the most common betting mistakes are ?

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Betting Approach - what do you think the most common bettingmistakes are ?With Royal Ascot now finished and with the domestic football seasonnot starting until August, right now seems a very good time to takea break from focusing on betting

Betting Approach - what do you think the most common betting mistakes are ?
Darren Brett Tipster Competition Manager

Horse Racing, greyhounds and snooker specialist with thirty years experience of writing about sport across multiple platforms. A QPR and Snooker fan

Betting Approach - what do you think the most common betting mistakes are?

This is the 2nd blog in a series covering different elements of Betting Approach.

The first one covered what we've learned from football betting over the years, 

In this one, I'm going to look at what I and fellow members believe to be the most common mistakes made by punters.

So hope you find this interesting and useful, feel free to offer any comments you have. 

1.Chasing losses - Tommy Buckley

I spent 4 years working in betting shops, 30 to 40 hours per week during those 4 years, 

Without doubt the biggest, most damaging, and indeed very common betting mistake which people repeatedly made was to chase their losses.


In many cases, it was a desperate and painful chase.

Chasing losses is the scenario when a punter places a bet, say £10 win and that bet loses, so straight away the mindset of that punter is to think "right I've got to get that £10 back" 

They instantly look for a bet that will at least get them their £10 loss back, ie £10 on something priced at least Evens.

Now the lucky chasers get their money back straight away 

But I often witnessed many chasers starting with one bet, and within an hour or so, ended up having up to 10 bets at ever-increasing stakes

That hour later instead of being £10 down, they were several hundred pounds down, greed and desperation taking over their normal thought processes.

Honestly, I saw hundreds of situations with punters chasing their losses and ending up blowing all their money 

This no doubt causing massive personal issues, this has to be the biggest mistake punters make and it is the most damaging.

If you wish you can check out the betting school advice on How to be Sensible and Gamble Responsibly, it is written by a punter for punters. 

2. Not checking the latest information ie team news, jockey changes, odds/prices - Tommy Buckley

Again this is something that I noticed occurring very frequently during my time working in the bookmakers. 

People coming in with lucky 15's made up of 3 nonrunners and 1 that was running.


Punters wanting to put each-way bets on when the field had been reduced to only 4 runners, 

Wrong numbered horses in placepots.

Common mistakes which football punters make in terms of not checking the latest information.

Not checking team news, 

Having first goalscorer bets on players ruled out for a month with injury.

Players not even starting the match.

having large bets on teams who had several key players missing.

Issues like that are not as bad they used to be given how much information is so freely available.

I know from my friends who are betting shop managers that it still happens.

Placing Bets

Don't place a bet unless you have all the relevant information.

It drives the staff crazy as the punters will come in moaning at the staff and blame them for not telling them about team news or nonrunners.

They forget every punter is responsible for every bet they place and not anybody else.

Chasing Losses and not checking the latest information are definitely the two biggest and most common mistakes 

I've personally witnessed punters making but there are many mistakes which all punters make and here some thoughts offered up to me via twitter @tbuckleythinks from fellow OLBG members Dan Bradley, Billstraighten and Andrew Jackson.

3. Only ever using one bookmaker for betting for all sports - Dan Bradley

I think this is an absolutely cracking point made by Dan.

leader board

We all have massive choice when it comes to where to bet and to shop around for the best offers/terms, 

But it's undoubtedly the case that many, many punters only ever go to the same bookmaker and never shop around to check relative odds, offers and betting terms.

The betting market is a seriously competitive market and that means bookmakers will offer terms to attract punters in and that will often mean better odds or betting terms such as each way fractions will be better elsewhere yet big volumes of punters stay loyal and at their own cost.

Going with a bookmaker that doesn't offerBOG, or one that offers 1/5 odds instead of 1/4, double odds, or one that doesn't pay a bonus on accas.

These are examples where punters staying loyal means that over a period of time, those punters will miss out and get less from their betting.

Bookmaker Odds - Shop Around

Your football singles or accumulators can vary hugely in price, make sure you are always getting the best odds.

These are examples where punters staying loyal means that over a period of time, those punters will miss out and get less from their betting.

4. Betting on sports/leagues you know nothing about - Andrew Atkinson

This excellent point made by Andrew Atkinson was something that really did ring true to me and what I've witnessed and it's very hard to explain why it happens, but it does happen and it is a mistake because it often costs punters.


One perfect example I witnessed was one of our regular punters who only ever bet on horses, never football or any other sport, 

Yet out of the blue one, Saturday the same punter comes in wanting a bet on American football and also on Speedway - yes I know it's hard to think of two more diverse sports and you can imagine how I reacted to start with.

When I asked him what bets he wanted and how it comes about him wanting to bet on those sports he simply and honestly said: "well I saw them on Sky Sports the other night and thought I might as well have a bet" -

Now it's not the official job of the cashier to ask punters if they understand what they are betting on but I always made the effort to ask and make sure they were happy with their bets, 

When I asked this particular punter he openly admitted "I don't understand what's happening, but I'll be watching it so I'm having a bet".

It's fine to want to have an added interest by having a bet but betting without having a clue about the sport is clearly a mistake.

Betting Blind

If you do not know the team or leagues or sport, then leave the bet alone, you will not regret it!

This will surely mean in lost money over time, it's basically doing the equivalent of a lucky dip on the lottery.

5. Not understanding/appreciating the true odds on offer/likely returns - Billstraightner


Great point made by Billstraightner regarding punters not understanding the odds of a bet or the likely returns they will get if their bet wins.

Picture the scene, it's a scene that you've all surely witnessed during your time of going in the bookmakers.

"Hello Sir, do you want to take the odds on your horse ?" - customer reply "what are odds ? what does that mean ?"  

When you the cashier hear that you just feel totally exasperated and think "why are you betting if you don't understand odds."?

That's a basic example but it's one that happens hundreds of thousands of times every Grand National day 

It is definitely true that hundreds of thousands of punters do not understand odds, and what they are likely to return on their bet, 

This clearly means there are hundreds of thousands of punters likely to be missing out and losing money.

Grand National day, the betting shop is rammed, the queue to the till is 10 deep, and a totally brand new customer comes to the counter to put their National bet on.

Learn about odds and betting percentages, on OLBG we have a host of articles on this subject

They are valid points that fellow punters and I have made regarding the most common mistakes made by punters. 

I'm sure everybody reading this will relate to them and hopefully, it will help you in some way in the future. 

Feel free to add your own points via comments on here.

Or to me on twitter @tbuckleythinks and also include @olbg so OLBG members can join in, just really interested in hearing what people think and see how we can all learn of each other.

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