Totesport bookmaker review

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Totesport Review

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Totesport are a rarity in today’s betting world; a bookmaker that has been around since a time when World War I was still fresh in people’s memories. At the time of the Tote Group’s birth in 1928 sports betting was prohibited by UK law. The founders however were resourceful types and they wound up making a deal with the government: they would receive official sanction on the condition they returned 10% of their profits to the UK horse racing industry. Approval was granted and Totesport has been returning those profits to the horse racing industry ever since.  

Totesport are currently the fourth largest bookmaker in the UK with just over 4,000 employees manning nearly 500 betting shops nationwide. Unlike most of their competition their online division is not squirreled away offshore somewhere in an effort to avoid taxes. They’re licensed right here in the UK so the corporate taxes they pay benefit the local economy and that 10% kickback to the UK horse racing industry goes a long way toward helping insure the health and proper treatment of those amazing animals.

In 2011 Totesport were purchased by Fred Done, owner of BetFred. Since then they’ve expanded their online sports book offerings to include many of the sports you’d typically expect to see at any online betting site. 


In-Play options

While new owner Fred Done has set about to turn Totesport into more of a standard UK betting site the number and variety of in-play betting options remains limited, by industry standards. This is a direct correlation to their overall paucity of sports betting options in general. Their in-play offerings are easy enough to locate within the website environment but once you’re there you may feel the page hasn’t fully loaded and hit the refresh button, though it won’t do any good. They simply don’t offer that many in-play betting options, particularly during the week. 

That said they do offer some and the relevant sports include most major European football leagues (although only major matches), cricket, rugby league and rugby union, golf, snooker, tennis, hockey and the typical list of American sports including NFL football, NBA basketball, NHL hockey and Major League Baseball. It should be noted that while the number of matches available is limited there are a healthy number of betting markets in play for the available matches. 

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Totesport Free Bet and Promotional Offers

Totesport spent most of their long existence concentrating on horse racing so it should be no surprise that that is the arena wherein the lion’s share of Totesport bonus, Totesport free bet and Totesport promotional offers can still be found. Their current horse racing related promotions include: 

  • A best odds guarantee - Should you place a bet on a horse to win and the odds for that horse increase before it crosses the finish line first Totesport will pay out at the higher odds.
  • Enhanced odds for multiple bets - 3x the odds if only one winner in all Lucky 15s, 4x the odds if only one winner in all Lucky 31s and 5x the odds if only one winner in all Lucky 63s. 
  • The Tote Jackpot - This bonus pays out a potentially massive jackpot on certain races. In theory even races with short odds could potentially pay off big. 
  • The Totepool - Not unlike a standard lottery where the more people involved the bigger the pool but the more winners the lower the payout.

Non-Horse Racing Promotions

As we’ve said Totesport concentrate most of their bonuses and promotions on their horse racing action, leaving the Totesport bonus offerings for other sports wanting. They currently have one promotion related to their football offerings: 

  • The Double Delight/Hat Trick Heaven Totesport promo - Pick a particular player to score first in a match and if that player winds up scoring twice you’ll get double the odds. If he winds up scoring 3 goals you’ll get treble the odds. 
  • The Totesport free bet £25 bonus - Open a new account with Totesport and you’ll be eligible to receive a £25 Totesport free bet.

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Deposit and Payment Methods

Another area where Totesport don’t exactly excel is in the area of deposit and payment methods. While their payment methods are not the worst we’ve seen they’re far from the most comprehensive as well. The following deposit/payment methods are currently on offer: 

  • VISA credit/debit card
  • MasterCard
  • Maestro
  • Laser
  • Moneybookers

What We Like About Totesport

We’re suckers for tradition and we’re not above being homers so we love the fact that Totesport can trace their origin to the time of the flappers and that, as a company, they’re not afraid to contribute to the tax base of the UK. We also love that they continue to kick back 10% of their profits to benefit the UK racing industry. Major kudos to them for that. We like the Totesport bonus offers on horse racing and we need to mention that the £25 Totesport free bet welcome bonus comes no strings attached. Which is unheard of in the online betting industry. They also don’t insist that you use that free bet immediately. We also like that they clearly display recent promotions they’ve paid out so you can see that they keep their word about the various multipliers they offer.

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What We’re Not Crazy About

The dearth of Totesport bonus offerings on non-horse racing sports. The fact that on some weekdays it can seem like they have virtually nothing in the in-play queue. The lack of markets on some sporting events. The lack of live streaming which, being 2017, should be de rigueur for any sports betting website. And the sometimes uncompetitive odds. 


Conclusion

Totesport do a lot of things right from the standpoint of corporate social responsibility and they need to be applauded for that. They also deserve credit for enduring the Great Depression, WWII, the Falklands War and the Great Recession. But once you get past the public image you find a website that aspires to join the ranks of the top betting websites in the UK but falls short due to a lack of attention to non-horse racing sports. Let’s hope they get their act together soon. 

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