Similar to real money online casinos, sportsbook betting sites offer various promotions and bonuses to attract new players and retain bettors as well. Finding the best sports betting bonuses is a huge step in getting the most value out of your bets and maximizing profits.
With more and more sites becoming available in Canada it can be hard to make a decision when committing to a sportsbook. Some sites may be more appropriate for you than others depending on the sports you wager on, the types of bets you make, and various other factors.
At Bonusninja we want to provide you with all the details you need to find the sportsbook sites and bonuses that are right for you. In this article, you will find out which bonuses are best, how to find them, and the best way to use them.
We have even compiled a list of the sites that offer the best betting bonuses in Canada.
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What are Sports Betting Bonuses
The business of sports betting in Canada is lucrative. With estimated billions of dollars in revenue per year funneling through the industry, Canadian sportsbooks are constantly vying for new bettors.
Luckily this is great news for you, as there is no better way to attract new bettors than to offer bonuses such as free bets, improved odds, or enhanced payouts. And that’s only to name a few.
Now usually when the term ‘free money’ is thrown around it may sound too good to be true but if you know what you’re looking for you can turn betting bonuses into just that- real money.
Sports betting bonuses can be the bread and butter for new and experienced gamblers alike. The trick is to find which bonuses are going to provide you with the most value based on your investment and time.
Why Sportsbook Sites Offer Bonuses
First and foremost sportsbooks offer bonuses to attract and retain their customers. At first glance, it may not seem viable or sustainable for a sportsbook to be offering free bets, or doubling payouts but don’t forget this is still gambling.
Gambling by its very definition is never a sure thing or a guaranteed win. So in this sense, the risk for sportsbooks of paying out big when bonuses are used is somewhat lessened.
But you also don’t constantly lose either. So what makes it worth it for the sportsbooks?
At this point, the terms vig, juice, or margin probably sound familiar. If you’ve done any amount of sports betting you will know what they mean. These all refer to the commission that the sportsbook takes from betting odds and is what they primarily rely on for their income.
Similar to gambling, as long as the reward outweighs the risk, sportsbooks won’t stop offering bonuses anytime soon.
For first time bettors, taking advantage of a betting bonus can be a great way to get familiar with the platform, which could in turn minimize your risk of loss. For those new to sports betting, some odds and lines can take some getting used to. Using betting bonuses as a way to practice is a good strategy.
In addition to gaining new customers, sportsbooks offer betting bonuses to existing clientele in order to ensure they remain engaged. Loyal customers are often showered with betting bonuses, and given the opportunity to maximize their betting.
Different Types of Betting Bonuses
Now that you understand what betting bonuses are and why they are offered we can dive into the fun details. Betting bonuses come in a large variety of types and sizes and understanding the difference between them can be the key to your success.
Different bonuses appeal to different people for many reasons, and bigger is not always better. Let’s take a closer look at the types of bonuses available and what they mean.
Sign Up Bonus
As we mentioned earlier, attracting new bettors is crucial for sportsbooks and, as the name implies, sports betting sign up bonuses are a great way to do this.
After you’ve done your research and decide to register with a specific site you’ll likely receive a sign-up bonus from the sportsbook. If your chosen site doesn’t offer one then you may want to reconsider as they are not hard to come by on the best sportsbook sites.
The bonus is usually not overly complicated and will come in a simple form such as a free bet, or some form of match bonus. These are a great way to either reduce your initial risk to nearly nothing or possibly even double your investment.
If you are new to sports betting you may want to opt for an option such as a free bet so you can test the waters and see if you enjoy it. On the other hand, more experienced bettors will likely lean towards increasing their playable funds to maximize winnings.
The term cash bonus is usually used in reference to how the bonus is delivered. For instance, if you receive your bonus in the form of playable cash this will likely be promoted as a cash bonus.
You can receive cash bonuses for various reasons including sign-up, deposits, reloading, and more.
The upside to cash bonuses is that they can usually be bet when and how you see fit, with very few restrictions. On the downside, they tend to be a set amount that can work out to be substantially less when compared to something such as a match bonus that works based on percentages.
First Deposit Bonus
A first deposit bonus will likely be offered as part of a sign-up promotion. When you register one of the first things you will need to do is deposit funds to bet with. And getting as much value out of your first deposit as possible is not a bad thing.
First deposit bonuses are excellent as they commonly come in the form of a match bonus and tend to be quite a lot higher than many other promotions.
Many sites will offer to match up to 100% of your deposit effectively doubling your playable funds.
However, be sure to read the terms and conditions as they can have more stringent restrictions and limitations. The sportsbook will likely limit the match amount to around $200-$300 depending on the operator.
Additionally, they can have certain wagering requirements and rules when it comes to betting with the bonus money.
No Deposit Bonus
While no deposit bonuses aren’t as common in Canada as in some other countries you may come across them from time to time. This type of bonus doesn’t require any investment from your end and can make initial betting risk-free.
When you do find one it will likely be as part of a sign-up bonus and will come in the form of a cash bonus or free bet.
If you’re thinking this sounds a bit too good to be true you wouldn’t be entirely wrong. A no deposit bonus will be relatively small and they can have strict wagering requirements that can make withdrawals a time-consuming process.
Whether you made a few questionable calls or you’ve withdrawn all of your winnings and emptied your account (hopefully the latter), a time will come to make another deposit. Now is the time for the sports betting reload bonus or sometimes simply referred to as a deposit bonus.
These bonuses are part of a strategy by sportsbooks to retain bettors and prevent them from going to other operators. And there is no reason why you shouldn’t take advantage.
Similar to a first deposit bonus yet usually not nearly as rewarding. A reload bonus more times than not will be a match bonus but generally ranges from 5%-20% depending on the sportsbook.
Other sites may rely on different promotions entirely to keep their current customers loyal and may skip deposit bonuses entirely.
Free Bet Bonus
As we mentioned Free bet bonuses tend to be similar to something like a cash bonus in that they are a set amount and are used for a singular wager.
But they are not only offered as part of a sign-up or deposit bonus. It’s common for sportsbooks to offer free bets circumstantially to entice bettors.
You may find the bonus offered if you happen to lose a wager because of an unexpected upset, or they are commonly offered as a type of add-on when parlay bets are placed to improve the bettor’s payout should they win.
Risk-Free Bet Bonus
Be on the lookout for risk-free bet bonuses surrounding large upcoming sporting events. While they are not always guaranteed to turn up, they can be a great opportunity.
A risk-free bet means that your initial wager will be returned to you should you lose. The initial funds for the bet will not be provided but it can help to take the pressure off.
The worst case is you get your wager back, the best case is you win and don’t even break a sweat. Depending on the operator the funds may be returned to you in different forms so be sure to read the details.
Enhanced Winnings Bonus
Enhanced winning bonuses are most commonly offered to newcomers but they can pop up for some loyalty programs as well.
These bonuses effectively boost your winnings on a given wager and improve the payout. For instance, if the odds are 2.25 or +125 the enhanced winnings bonus may increase the betting odds to 5.0 or +400.
While this can substantially increase your winnings it’s up to the sportsbooks as to how they payout the extra winnings. As with any bonus, read the terms so you know what to expect.
High Roller Bonus
This type of bonus is usually extended to loyal players who have a history of large bets. While it may not be appropriate for beginners, those veterans with deep pockets can take full advantage.
For bettors who tend to make deposits of $1,000 or more, some sportsbooks will match up to 50% of the deposit when you use a high roller bonus.
Reduced Vig Promos
When you choose the best sportsbooks to bet with you’ll want to find one with a reasonable commission that doesn’t take a big bite out of your winnings. But with reduction bonuses, you can lower the juice even more.
Depending on the sportsbook rather than taking a smaller commission from a given payout, they may just initially charge less than normal for the wager. This means you get the same payout with a smaller investment.
Rebate bonuses can be priceless for those who make consistent bets and a lot of them. Depending on the volume of your bets these bonuses can vary substantially.
Sportsbooks will return a percentage of your total betting amount on either a weekly, monthly, or yearly basis.
While the percentages may not be very high, usually 1%-%10, this may be no small amount for avid gamblers.
Loyalty programs are a great way for sportsbooks to retain customers over a long period of time. If you find yourself consistently betting with your favorite sportsbook and not bouncing around chasing sign up bonuses you can expect to see this in some form.
Depending on the operator these may be offered overtime in various types of bonuses, and some sportsbooks use a point system. Depending on the amount of betting activity you will receive points over time that can then be used to obtain various other prizes, promotions, or bonuses.
How to Wager with Betting Bonuses
After receiving your bonuses you’ll want to take full advantage and put them to good use. Depending on the type of bonus along with the terms and conditions this can vary quite a lot.
Depending on the type of bonus, you may be given the option to choose which platform to use your bonus money on. As many sportsbooks also operate real money casinos online you can use bonuses such as cash and free bets in their online casinos if you prefer.
Other types of bonuses will have to be used in the realm of sports betting but may have restrictions of their own. Certain types of bonuses may only be possible to use with specific types of bets.
Some bonuses might have to be used for bets such as Moneyline, spreads, or game totals where other bonuses may be restricted to futures or parlay bets. This tends to be up to the sportsbook and some sites provide more flexibility than others.
This is just another example of why it’s so important that you read the terms and conditions to be sure you know when and how to use our bonuses.
A few of the most popular bets when it comes to wagering your bonuses include-
- Point spread bets-
- Place a wager on the favored team to win by more points than the spread, or bet on the underdog to either win or lose by fewer points than the spread
- Total line bets-
- Wager on whether the combined score of both teams will be higher or lower than the predicted score
- Moneyline bets-
- Just pick which team you expect to win outright and place your bets
Betting Bonus Restrictions and Limitations
While all of these bonuses and free money offers are great they do come with restrictions. Sportsbooks are a business, and they need to ensure that the offerings they make have a return on investment.
Sportsbooks put certain terms and limitations in place to minimize their losses and avoid bonus chasers from capitalizing on promotions and leaving immediately.
We can’t stress the importance of reading the fine print enough, as these restrictions can vary from site to site. While the most reliable sportsbooks won’t try to hide terms or sneak anything past you, newer or lesser-known sites may try.
Here are a few of the rules you will want to be on the lookout for when it comes to using your bonuses:
Wagering requirements are a way for sportsbooks to ensure that money is being wagered and not withdrawn immediately. While a few bonuses may not be subject to wagering requirements, many of the most valuable ones will be.
This restriction indicates that the money will need to be wagered a given amount of times before it can be withdrawn as cash. This can pertain to only a percentage of the bonus, the entire bonus, or even the entire deposit depending on the situation.
The wagering requirement can range anywhere from 1 to 3 or more times. For example, if the terms state that there is a wagering requirement of 3, this means the amount subject to the terms will need to be bet three separate times before it can be withdrawn.
Be aware that wagering requirements may also be referred to as rollover or playthrough requirements.
Minimum odds restrictions are generally put in place to prevent people from finding loopholes within the wagering requirements.
Some players may think they can go with easy bets to meet wagering requirements and then withdraw the money as cash. This is exactly what minimum odds restrictions are designed to prevent.
Minimum odds can vary substantially between operators but will state the lowest odds you can wager on to convert a bonus into cash. Generally speaking, expect minimum odds to be around 1.5-2.5
Some bonuses may have a certain expiration date. This means they need to be used before a certain date or they will be removed from your account.
Commonly ranging from anywhere between 7-30 days, expiry dates can be easily avoided by playing your bonuses as soon as you receive them.
Expiry dates can be a use-by date usually pertaining to offers such as free bets, but they can also apply to cash bonuses and deposit bonuses. Expiry dates can also indicate the time you have to convert bonuses into withdrawable cash as well.
Market restrictions are usually used when referring to the type of bet you are placing, or the event that you are betting on.
Some markets may be exempt from certain bonuses. This may mean that you cannot place a futures bet or a parlay bet using a specific bonus.
Some bonuses are offered in conjunction with specific games, championships, or sporting events. Market restrictions can prevent you from using these types of bonuses for other events.
Single Bonus Restrictions
In some cases, you may have the opportunity to claim multiple bonuses at similar times should they arise. But this may not be possible.
Many sportsbooks will have restrictions in place that limit you to having one active bonus at a time. This means any previous bonuses will have to be completed and converted into cash, or they may be closed or forfeited.
On top of the time it takes for you to meet any wagering requirements you might have to wait a little bit longer. Some sportsbook bonuses state they must remain in your account for a given amount of time before they can be withdrawn.
The timeframe can range anywhere from one week or up to one month depending on the site. But this may not be an issue for you as once you have met wagering requirements many people choose to leave funds in their account for additional bets.
How to Collect Free Bonus Winnings
Luckily with the progression of online security and banking methods, when the time comes to collect your winnings the process should be fairly simple.
But there are a few key points to be aware of when it comes to withdrawals.
First and foremost be sure to register to a site that allows Canadian residents to deposit and withdraw as needed. Be careful as some sites may be easy to register with and make deposits, but when it comes to withdrawals there can be geographical restrictions in place that may not allow certain residents to make the withdrawal.
Aside from that as long as you have met any wagering requirements or rollovers it should be as simple as selecting your preferred banking method and watching the money roll in.
Depending on the chosen banking method it may take some time for the funds to reach your account. For quick transfers be sure to search for the fastest paying sites.
How to Choose a Betting Bonus
In many cases, you will be able to take the bonuses as they come and there won’t be many options involved. However, sometimes you may find yourself with a decision to make if multiple opportunities arise.
In this case, you will need to pick the bonus that is best for you. Here are a few things to consider when making your decision.
Type of bonus
Now that you are familiar with the various types of bonuses you will need to decide which ones you prefer.
This can change with your experience or circumstance. Certain types of bonuses may be more conducive to the types of bets you like to make, or sporting events that draw you in.
Others may appeal to you because they have a very low risk or investment but they may not yield high rewards. It’s truly a matter of personal preference.
Size and Value of the bonus
Rather than making your choice based on the size of the bonus, you’re far better off considering the value.
While a free bet or cash bonus may be tempting as there is no risk involved, they tend to be relatively small.
Meanwhile, deposit and match bonuses can be highly valuable and maximize winnings if used properly. But the initial investment needs to be made.
Generally speaking the larger the deposit, the more valuable the bonus will be.
As we mentioned, restrictions can vary quite a lot depending on which sportsbook you register with. Regardless you will likely find most bonuses will have wagering requirements and minimum odds restrictions in place.
Choose bonuses that have reasonable restrictions and are not overly strict or limiting. If a bonus has a rollover requirement that says you need to wager the funds 10 times then it’s likely not a good choice.
The last thing you want is to have any funds seized or forfeited due to a violation of terms and conditions.
Deposit and Withdrawal method
Certain banking methods may only be available with specific sportsbooks. Even certain promotions or bonuses may pertain to specific payment methods.
For instance, a sportsbook may give you a match bonus for any deposits made with PayPal or cryptocurrency.
Stick to bonuses that coincide with your preferred currency or banking method to avoid any issues.
Similar to many other online gaming industries, choose a payment method that is convenient, and within your responsible gaming standards. While lots of sites will make payment as easy as possible, ensure that you are setting yourself up to stick to your gambling budget.
Most Frequently Asked Questions
What are sports betting bonuses?
Sports betting bonuses are promotions offered by sportsbooks and betting sites to attract or retain bettors. There are many different types of bonuses offered depending on the site and player.
One of the most common types of betting bonuses is a sign up bonus which is used to entice new players to register with a given sportsbook.
There are also many promotions offered to current and loyal customers as well.
Betting bonuses can be offered in many different forms-
- Real cash
- Free bets
- Improved odds on a wager
- Matching a percentage of a deposit
- Risk-free bets
- Reduced juice from the sportsbook
Is it legal to bet on sports in Canada?
Yes. While online gambling laws within Canada have always been a bit ambiguous, it is perfectly legal to bet on sports in Canada.
In fact, a recently passed bill has shed some light on the matter and made the legality even more clear.
That being said, be sure to register with a sportsbook that accepts Canadian residents. This can be up to the discretion of the operator or may be dictated by the type of license they hold and from which authority it was issued.
It is common for online gambling sites in Canada to register in another country or overseas for licensing purposes. This is not illegal and is a common practice.
Canada is evolving its rules and policies on online sports betting in order to meet the demand. To ensure betting is being done legally and safely, we can expect legislation to reflect an attitude to working with operators to ensure a growing industry.
How are sports betting odds calculated?
Sportsbooks create their own lines and odds based on the probability of a certain outcome. For most sportsbooks, their aim is to keep the wager neutral and minimize their losses. This means that for an event with evenly matched opponents, you won’t expect the odds to be dramatically high.
Depending on the size and diversity of a sportsbook, they may be able to offer more attractive odds and lines because of the size of their audience, and the diversity of bets they offer.
The higher the odds offered by a sportsbook, the more risk the operator is taking. This is why it’s important to understand risk on both sides in order to ensure your bets are well placed.
Can sports betting be profitable?
Like all online gaming activities, there is always a chance of winning more than you put in. However, bettors should work hard to ensure they are following responsible gaming practices, and minimizing their risks.
Like online casinos, sportsbooks carry with them a responsibility to ensure bettors are offered support and resources to make informed decisions. This means an emphasis on recreational gambling, and not betting more than you are willing to lose.
While bettors can make a profit when betting on sports, this should not be the main goal. Sports betting should be something that is done in a safe and responsible way.
Where to start with sports betting?
Well, this article is a good place to start. Here at Bonusninja, we work hard to provide our readers with the most up to date information on sportsbooks, and the best sports betting bonuses available.
We recommend only reputable sportsbooks that are adhering to local legislation.
For those new to sports betting, we recommend taking advantage of some sports betting bonuses to familiarize yourself with a sports betting platform. By practicing and learning about the sportsbook, players can increase their skill and minimize their risk.
When you are ready to bet real money, you will have a better idea of how to set yourself up for success.
Do betting bonuses have restrictions?
Yes. Most if not all betting bonuses will have certain restrictions in place.
Usually the bigger the bonus, the more restrictions it will hold. But don’t let this dissuade you. The most reliable sportsbooks will have reasonable restrictions in place that can be met so you can turn your bonus into real cash.
Restrictions may include-
- Wagering requirements-
- The bonus money must be wagered a certain amount of times before it can be withdrawn
- Minimum Odds-
- You can only wager the bonus money on bets that have a minimum number of odds
- Expiration dates-
- Some bonus money will expire and be forfeited if not used in a stated amount of time. Wagering restrictions must be met within this time frame otherwise the funds will be removed from your account
- Market limitations-
- Some bonuses may be limited to certain types of bets or sporting events
- Time limit-
- Terms may state that the funds must remain in your account for a minimum number of days before they can be withdrawn
- Single bonus restrictions-
- Many sportsbooks will limit their bettors to only having one bonus active at a time
What is the best betting bonus?
This depends a lot on experience level and personal preference.
Beginners tend to prefer bonuses that offer low investment and little to no risk, while more experienced bettors search for bonuses that provide the most value or potential.
The most popular types of bonuses include-
- Sign up bonus
- Deposit bonuses
- Match bonus
- Risk-free bet bonus
How do I withdraw my Bonus Winnings?
Once you have met any wagering requirements it should be a straightforward process to withdraw your funds.
It’s usually as easy as selecting your preferred banking method, inputting the details, and stating the amount to withdraw.
Depending on the banking method and the sportsbooks processing time the funds may take some time to reach your account. Some methods are faster than others.
Anybody who strays, or lives, in the world of online gambling, knows the importance of bonuses. And sports betting bonuses in Canada are no different, they are key to your success and can only benefit your bank account.
The trick is to find the best betting deals in Canada and choose the ones that suit you best. Whether you prefer low risk and small bets, or you’re a high roller with a lot of money on the line, we guarantee there are bonuses for you.
While sportsbooks may not be your best friend you can use their promotions to your advantage and come out on top with a little bit of perseverance and research. And Bonusninja is here to help.
Be sure to see our list of the best sportsbooks and bonuses in Canada to ease the process so you can start placing your bets.