Future Bets – What are they and how do they work?

A future bet is a wager made on an outright result like a league or tournament winner. You can place futures wagers on all major US sports and big global events like the Olympics.

The beauty of futures wagers is that you can use them to hedge your bets. Make a prediction months ahead of time, then lock in a profit by backing another team later on.

How Future Bets Odds Work

A future bet is simply a wager placed on a team or sportsperson to win a competition months in advance. For instance, you might place NBA futures bets a year ahead on the winner of the World Series or soccer league championship. You can also find great NFL future bets on the Super Bowl winner.

And because the bet is so far ahead of time, you may get a better price than you would do when the competition has already begun.

Examples of a Popular Future Bet  

Eastern/Western Conference winner
Stanley Cup

Super Bowl
AFC Conference winner
NFC Conference winner
MVP of league (available)

MLS League champions
World Cup winners
Olympic champions

World Series winners

Grand Slam winners
David Cup winners
Olympic champions

How To Place a Futures Bets

Futures wagers are popular among sports bettors as you can often find value months ahead of time. You can back a hit favorite well in advance and enjoy higher odds than you’d find when the competition begins.

It’s easy to place a futures bet on your computer or mobile. First, open up the sportsbook lobby and find the sport you want to bet on. The best sports betting sites offer a dedicated futures odds tab in their lobby.

Next, click on the team or player you want to bet on. Your selection will appear in your bet list. You can now open the bet list and type in your stakes.

Your potential winnings will appear in the box at the bottom of the slip. If you’re happy with the payout, click on the ‘Place Bet’ button.

When and How Do You Hedge Future Bets?

Sports betting sites offer hundreds of futures bets on your favorite sports like college football, hockey, and MLB.

However, you can also use sports betting strategy to improve your chances of a payout.

Hedge betting is wagering on more than one team or player to help secure a payout whatever happens. A futures bet is great for finding value early on. You can then hedge your bets while a tournament or league is in full swing.

For instance, imagine you place a bet on the soccer World Cup in January, five months before the tournament begins. Germany are favorites at +1000 and you place a futures bet of $10. However, as one of the four best teams in the world at that moment, you put their “true” odds at around +400.

The tournament arrives and an in-form Germany makes it to the final. They are now priced at -200 to win the final, with Brazil a +125 shot for the match. You can now place a second bet on Brazil to win the trophy and ensure a profit whatever happens.

Golf is also a great sport to use a futures bet on. With such big fields, futures odds on big favorites are usually quite generous. Back one of the big US favorites before the PGA starts, and when it’s underway and your pick does well, you can comfortably back five or six other shorter-priced golfers to hedge your bets on.

Of course, there is risk in these types of betting options. Anything can happen over the course of a year. But betting on a team to win ahead of time, even a favorite, can reward you with a bigger price.

Sportsbooks with Futures Betting Markets

A futures bet is a great way to find long-term value in competitions held in the United States. Bet on who will win the Super Bowl months ahead of time, or back the World Series winner before the bookies have had a chance to drop the odds.

You can read our betting guides to discover great ways to combine your futures bets in parlays and Round Robins. But don’t forget to sign up to one of our recommended US sportsbooks today. Sign up and earn a welcome bonus or free bets to use on games of your choice.


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