Experienced

Asian Handicap - what is it and how does it work?

Asian handicap betting excludes draws which leaves only two possible betting options. Before the match betting sites will give both teams an individual “handicap” when the match kicks off. This spices things up a little, especially if the match you’re interested in has a strong favourite.

Asian Handicap

What is Asian Handicap?

Asian handicap is a popular form of betting that a number of professionals use, and a type of betting every punter should seek to get to grips with even if it seems complicated at first.

Asian handicap originally came from the Asian betting market, who were early innovators in attempting to revolutionise football betting.

Football itself is one of the few sports where a draw is a common result, meaning that there are usually three potential outcomes in a match: Win, draw or loss. Playing Asian handicap excludes the option of betting on a draw as the final result, meaning only two potential outcomes exist. Betting companies give each team a handicap before the match begins making it a lot more interesting to bet on, especially if there’s an outright favourite in the match.

Asian handicap is huge in Asian betting markets and with Asian betting sites, but it’s becoming all the more common with European based betting sites such as bet365 and Unibet.

Nowadays Asian handicap is becoming so popular and so prevalent that it’s not only possible to bet Asian handicap on the match result, but in some respects betting sites will offer Asian handicap odds and Asian handicap betting markets for other sports than football, as well as other football betting markets such as number of goals, number of corners etc.

Best Asian Handicap Betting Sites

bet365

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Bet365 is one of the world’s best betting sites and that’s why it offers one of the best Asian handicap betting options on the market today. Bet365 offers a wide range of different Asian handicap betting markets and Asian handicap odds. What sets it apart is that on bet365 you’ll often find Asian handicap odds stretching as far down to the lower leagues, and even to more obscure football betting markets.

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Bethard

Up to £50 in bonuses

Founded as recently as 2014, Bethard has managed to establish itself as one of the most dynamic betting sites on the market, not least thanks to an impressive product. Even before Zlatan Ibrahimovic got on board Bethard were offering great odds not limited to Asian handicap odds.

If you’re after Asian handicap odds then Bethard is the betting site that will satisfy your needs. First and foremost Bethard prides itself on always offering Asian handicap odds for the biggest matches.


LeoVegas

100% In-Play Profit Boost

One of the stand out betting sites for Asian handicap odds is LeoVegas. This Swedish betting site makes it easy for its customers to bet Asian handicap and to find Asian handicap odds both on its website and in its app. The range of Asian handicap matches and the Asian handicap odds available on LeoVegas is broad, and with them you can play everything from the Premier League to the Peruvian Premier Division.


Why should I bet using Asian Handicap?

As we’ve already mentioned, in Asian handicap betting there are only two potential outcomes when compared with the traditional tripartite form of match odds betting. Essentially this means Asian handicap betting gives you the punter a bigger chance of winning your bet.

On top of that Asian handicap betting nearly always gives out better odds when compared with the form of odds that have traditionally been offered in European betting.

Benefits of Asian handicap betting:

  • Great chance against the betting site’s margins
  • Avoid limiting yourself when betting with Asian betting sites
  • In some cases you have the opportunity to get both the full orhalf the bet back
  • It’s easier to find value in the odds even in there’s a stand out favourite in the match

Downsides to Asian handicap betting:

  • Range of available odds isn’t as wide as for other forms of betting in Europe
  • Difficult to find incorrectly set odds as the odds are calculated according to the market itself, and not what the betting sites think the potentially outcome will be

For betting sites it also means that there are advantages and disadvantages to Asian handicap betting. The advantages for betting sites are that they minimise the risk for losses by balancing up the deposits made on both bets. This means the betting site can assure itself that it will benefit regardless of the outcome.

The disadvantages for betting companies are that Asian handicap betting gives very little margin compared with the traditional three way betting (1X2). In order for punters to go into the black against betting sites over the long term that margin is extremely important for betting sites. That’s why Asian handicap betting is a great form of betting if you want to beat the betting sites over the long term.

Asian handicap examples

Still not sure how it works? No problem. Let’s run through a few examples of how Asian handicap betting works in practice. 

Asian handicap examples #1

In order to be able to give a clear view of how Asian handicap betting works in practice, let’s use a football match between Manchester United and Burnley as an example. In an ordinary betting market let’s say that Manchester United have odds at 2/5 (1.40). This doesn’t leave the punter with much of a return if they back Man United as favourites and then win the bet.

This is where Asian handicap betting comes into play, and can be a great alternative to raise the odds of a bet you want to back and one that you thoroughly believe in. If you back Man United and think they’re strong favourites, then with Asian handicap betting markets you could play Man United to win -1.0, for odds of let’s say around 1/1 (2.00).

By betting Man United to win -1.0 would effectively mean that Burnley would start the match with a goal in their favour. So your bet at kick off would start Man United 0-1 Burnley. If United were to win the actual match by more than one goal then you’d win your bet. If Man United lost the bet you’d lose your bet anyway. If Man United were to win the game by exactly a goal then you’d get your money back.

Asian handicap examples #2

To give another example of Asian handicap betting let’s consider a more evenly placed match, between Real Madrid and Juventus in the Champions League. Let’s say the betting sites are offering 0.0 Asian handicap on both teams. That means that you’ll get your money back if it finishes in a draw. It will be a winning bet if the team you back wins and a lost bet if the team you back loses. 

Asian handicap 0.0 is essentially the same thing as “Draw no bet”, but nearly always gives better odds.

Asian Handicap Goal Line

Asian Goal Line is in principle similar to over/under goal betting in traditional markets. The difference is that there are more possibilities than to simply win or lose. For example, you’ll get your initial deposit back if the number of goals is the same as the goal line you’ve bet.

In some cases there are even goal lines that will give you a win on half of your bet. Let’s say you place a bet of the amount of goals being over a particular number. That essentially means that you would play half of your bet over 1.50 and the other half over 2.0. If you’ve played on the goal line over 1.75 and the final result is 2-0 you’ll win half of your game (over 1.50) and get the bet back on the other half (2.0).

Asian Handicap Live Betting

Asian handicap betting markets are even available for live betting. Asian handicap live betting is getting bigger with European betting sites. although many punters make the misconception that betting Asian handicap means the same thing as a normal three-way European handicap. This would mean that the handicap commences at the start of the match you decide to bet on. The difference with Asian handicap live betting is that the handicap would come into effect when the bet itself was made during the match.

For example, let’s say that the match as it stands is at 2-0 and you want to place a bet on the team who is currently winning at an Asian handicap of -1.5. In order for your bet to win the team you back would have to finish the game with a win by a four goal margin, unlike if you were to play a regular 3-way handicap at -1.5. Then your team would only have to keep their 2-0 lead for your bet to win.

  • Asian handicap examples: live betting

Man United are winning against Burnley 3-1 after 50 minutes when you decide you want to place an Asian handicap -1.25 live bet on Man United at odds of 1/1 (2.00)

  • Man United win by 1 or 2 goals = ❌Lost
  • Draw = ❌Lost
  • Man United lose = ❌Lost
  • Man United with by 3 goals = Half lost. Half your money back
  • Man United with by 4 goals or more = ✅Win

Asian Handicap Table

Let’s go through a more detailed explanation of some the most common types of Asian handicap bets where the same principles would apply to what we’ve previously been through.

Asian handicap 0.0

Asian handicap 0.0 basically means the same thing as “Draw no bet” (DNB). That means that no handicap will be set before the match. This usually occurs when the match is considered to be too even. Because Asian handicap doesn’t deal with draws, if the match ends in a draw, you’ll get your money back.

  • Your team wins = ✅ Win
  • Your team loses = ❌Lost
  • Match ends in a draw = Money back

Asian handicap -0.25

This is where we need to consider things a bit more carefully. If you’re betting on a team at -0.25 it means that you’re putting them at a disadvantage by a quarter of a goal when the match begins. This means that the team you’re backing will need to be a little bit stronger than their opponents, but not so much that they need to win the match outright. This type of Asian handicap bet means that you’ll get half of your bet back in the match ends in a draw.

  • Your team wins = ✅ Win
  • Your team loses = ❌Lost
  • Match ends in a draw = Half lost/Half your money back

Asian handicap -0.5

Placing this type of Asian handicap bet means that the team you’re backing will begin the match minus half a goal down. If you’re playing Asian handicap -0.5, it means the exact same thing as a win, nothing more, nothing less. This type of bet doesn’t give you the option of to recoup any of your money. You either win or you lose.

  • Your team wins =  ✅ Win
  • Your team loses = ❌Lost
  • Match ends in a draw = ❌Lost

Asian handicap -0.75

If you’re playing Asian handicap -0.75 it means that you think the team you’re backing will win the match by at least 1 goal. If your team wins the game by 1 goal, you’ll win on half of your bet. If your team wins by more than one goal you’ll win the full bet. With this type of Asian handicap bet it means that the team you’re backing is the favourite to win the match, and that you’re putting them at a disadvantage when the game starts. If your team wins by 1 goal, essentially your bet will be divided into two. You’ll win half of your bet, and you’ll get the the other half back.

For example, let’s say you bet £10 on a team and give them a handicap of -0.75 at odds of 1/1 (2.00). If your team wins by 1 goal you’ll get £5 back (half of your bet), and the rest will be counted as a win. So the remaining £5 at odds of 1/1 (2.00) will result in a £5 win.   

  • Your team wins by 2 or more goals = ✅ Win
  • Your team wins by 1 goal = A win on half your bet/Half of your money back
  • Your team loses =  ❌Lost
  • Match ends in a draw =  ❌Lost

Asian handicap -1

This type of Asian handicap bet means your team will begin the match at a disadvantage of 1 goal, essentially starting the match 1-0 down. Because Asian handicap betting by design cannot end in a draw, you’ll either win the bet or get your money back. If you’re playing this bet it means that you think your team will win the match by more than 1 goal, but at the same time you don’t want to risk losing your money if they only win by 1 goal.

  • Your team wins by 2 or more goals = ✅ Win
  • Your team wins by 1 goal = Your money back
  • Your team loses = ❌Lost
  • Match ends in a draw = ❌Lost

Asian handicap -1.25

  • Your team wins by 1 goal = Half bet lost/Half your money back
  • Your team wins by 2 or more goals = ✅ Win
  • Your team loses = ❌Lost
  • Match ends in a draw = ❌Lost

Asian handicap -1.5

  • Your team wins by 1 goal = ❌Lost
  • Your team wins by 2 or more goals = ✅ Win
  • Your team loses = ❌Lost
  • Draw = ❌Lost

Asian handicap -1.75

  • Your team wins by 1 goal = ❌Lost
  • Your team wins by 2 goals = Half a winning bet/Half of your money back
  • Your team wins by 3 or more goals = ✅ Win
  • Your team loses = ❌Lost
  • Match ends in a draw = ❌Lost

Asian handicap -2

  • Your team wins by 1 goal = ❌Lost
  • Your team wins by 2 goals = Your money back
  • Your team wins by 3 or more goals = ✅ Win
  • Your team loses = ❌Lost
  • Match ends in a draw = ❌Lost

Asian handicap -2.25

  • Your team wins by 1 goal = ✅ Win
  • Your team wins by 2 goals = Half your bet lost/Half your money back
  • Your team wins by 3 goals or more = ✅ Win
  • Your team loses = ❌Lost
  • Match ends in a draw = ❌Lost

Asian handicap -2.5

  • Your team wins by 1 or 2 goals = ❌Lost
  • Your teams wins by 3 goals or more = ✅ Win
  • Your team loses = ❌Lost
  • Match ends in a draw = ❌Lost

Asian handicap +0.25

With this type of Asian handicap bet it means that you’re backing the underdog, but you believe they can win the match, or even that they might take a point home if the match should end in a draw. The team you’re backing will essentially start the match with a quarter of a goal advantage. If the match ends in a draw, your bet will be split into two. You’ll get half of your bet back, and the other half will go down as a win.

  • Your team wins = ✅ Win
  • Your team loses = ❌Lost
  • Match ends in a draw = Half your bet counts as a win/half of your money back

Asian handicap +0.5

The team you’re backing will essentially start the match with half a goal as an advantage over their opponents. With this type of Asian handicap bet the match ending in a draw basically isn’t an option. Should the actual match end in a draw, your team will have started the game with half a goal advantage and will “win” the game - and you’ll win your bet.

  • Your team wins = ✅ Win
  • Your team loses = ❌Lost
  • Match ends in a draw = ✅ Win

Asian handicap +0.75

With this type of Asian handicap bet the underdog in the match will be given an advantage of three-quarters of a goal at the beginning of the match. This means that you’ll get half of your bet back even if your team loses, or if the game ends in a loss.

  • Your team wins = ✅ Win
  • Your team loses by 2 goals or more = ❌Lost
  • Your team loses by 1 goal = Half your bet lost/Half of your money back
  • Match ends in a draw = ✅ Win

Asian handicap +1

The underdog in the match up will be given a goal when the match kicks off, meaning they’ll essentially start the game 1-0 up when it comes to your bet. If your team wins or the actual match ends in a draw, you’ll win your bet.

  • Your team wins = ✅ Win
  • Your team loses by a least 2 goals = ❌Lost
  • Your team loses by 1 goal = Your money back
  • Match ends in a draw = ✅ Win

Asian handicap +1.25

  • Your team wins = ✅ Win
  • Your team loses by 1 goal = Half your money back/Half your bet counts as a win
  • Your team loses by more than 2 goals = ❌Lost
  • Match ends in a draw = ✅ Win

Asian handicap +1.5

  • Your team wins = ✅ Win
  • Your team loses by 1 goal = ✅ Win
  • Your team loses by 2 goals or more = ❌Lost
  • Match ends in a draw = ✅ Win

Asian handicap +1.75

  • Your team wins = ✅ Win
  • Your team loses by a goal = ✅ Win
  • Your team loses by 2 goals = Half your bet lost/Half your money back
  • Your team loses by 3 goals or more = ❌Lost
  • Match ends in a draw = ✅ Win

Asian handicap +2

  • Your team wins = ✅ Win
  • Your team loses by 1 goal = ✅ Win
  • Your team loses by 2 goals = Your money back
  • Match ends in a draw = ✅ Win

Asian Handicap FAQ

How does Asian handicap betting work?

With Asian handicap betting a match ending in a draw isn’t brought into consideration - there are only two potential outcomes in a match. Betting sites will give both teams a “handicap” either positive or negative, depending on who is considered to be the favourite and who is regarded as the underdog. The strength of a handicap is also calculated according to how far each team is either expected to win or lose.

What does it mean when you say I’ll lose half of my bet?

In some cases when you place an Asian Handicap bet, it is possible to lose half of your bet and to recoup the other 50% of your bet. In cases of playing Asian handicap goal line bets where you give a team a handicap of a quarter (e.g. -0.25, +0.75) your bet can be split in two in this respect.

Why should I play Asian handicap?

One of the many advantages of playing Asian handicap is quite simply that the majority of the time, you’ll be given better odds when compared to playing normal three-way match odds of home win, draw or away win (1X2).

For example, let’s say you want to bet on the home team, Manchester United to win against Liverpool. If you choose to play 1X2 and the betting site gives you odds of 1/1 (2.00). Alternatively, if you were to bet Man United Asian handicap -0.5 you’ll most likely be given better odds and it would essentially be the same bet to make.

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