What is Handicap in Betting?

Top Esports Betting Sites
ggbet logo
+200% Up To $300
GG.Bet Review
thunderpick logo
Up to €/$600 Bonus
Thunderpick Review
bc game logo
BC Game
180% On First Deposit
BC Game Review
n1bet logo small
$/€5,000 + 200FS!
N1Bet Review
mystake logo small
Up To €500 Welcome Bonus
MyStake Review
Latest Esports News

Published: Feb 28, 2023 - Last Updated: Feb 29, 2024

Whether you’re a fan of esports or traditional sports, betting is a major experience that connects the fans to their favourite teams and even brings fans ever so close to high stake action in matches. Bookmakers have provided various means of making betting much more immersive, one of these means is called a handicap. Now, what is handicap in betting?

$20 Free
On First Deposit
$20 Free Play On First Deposit
CS:GO, LoL, Rocket League and Call of Duty contests
Win Big Cash prizes in Public Tournaments
Gambling Problem? Call 1-800-GAMBLER
No Code Needed - Use our links
$100 Bonus
On Deposit
First Deposit Match up to $100
Win up to 100x Payouts
Place in-game Contests
Use Promo Code: BETWIN
Up to $100
Deposit match
When You Register for DFS
Register on DFS, Receive a Deposit Match up to $100
Watch Sports, Play Fantasy, Win Cash!
To Claim: Click Play Now

What is a Handicap in Betting?

A handicap in betting is a popular betting option in sports where a virtual advantage or disadvantage is given to the underdog or favourite team to level the playing field. This betting system aims to make the odds more even and the outcome of the game more unpredictable, thereby increasing the excitement for the bettors. This can also be seen in many betting guides, but we’re going to look deeply at this feature to understand the meaning of handicap in betting.

In handicap betting, a handicap is set, usually in the form of a goal or a point spread, to give an advantage or disadvantage to the team that is seen as weaker. For example, in football, if a team is given a -1 handicap, they must win by two goals or more to beat the handicap, while if they are given a +1 handicap, they can either win the game or lose by only one goal to beat the handicap.

what is handicap in betting pinnacle

Illustration provided by Pinnacle

Handicap betting is popular because it allows bettors to increase their odds and winnings, especially when betting on a strong favourite. By giving a virtual disadvantage to the favourite, the odds of an upset become higher, and the potential winnings for the bettor increase. Similarly, by giving a virtual advantage to the underdog, the odds of an upset become lower, allowing the bettor to place a safer bet.

Types of Handicaps in Betting

There are several types of handicap betting in sports, each with its own set of rules and regulations.

Read more about betting on the underdog here.

Why are Handicaps important in Betting?

Asides from the obvious question of what are handicaps in betting? Another great question is why are they important.

Well, there are several reasons why they are important and not just to sports betting as well, but to eSports and virtual betting too.

Betting Sites that offer Handicaps in Betting

what is handicap in betting

Handicap markets on crypto betting specialist, Thunderpick

The aim of this article is to better answer the question of what is a handicap in betting, the types of Handicaps in betting, and why they are important. A large number of traditional bookmakers and esports bookmakers offer handicaps in betting and here are some sites that may have great offers.


GG.Bet offers handicap betting on esports events. Handicap betting is a popular way for bettors to even the playing field in esports matches where there is a clear favorite, by assigning a virtual advantage or disadvantage to the teams in a match. This creates a more even betting market and allows bettors to increase their chances of making a profitable bet. Read our GG.Bet review for a comprehensive assessment of this platform.


MyStake Esports is a popular online betting exchange that allows users to bet against each other, including on handicap betting markets.


Pinnacle, a pioneer of the esports betting industry, is a bookmaker that offers handicap betting on a wide range of sports and esports events. Pinnacle offers players a dedicated Esports Hub with the best odds for betting on these events. Check out our Pinnacle review and ratings for more information.


Thunderpick is an online betting site that offers a wide range of betting options, including handicap betting on many different sports. Take a look at our Thunderpick review for a closer look at this crypto betting operator.

These are just a few of the many online betting sites that offer handicap betting.

Frequently asked questions

This should sufficiently answer the question of what is handicap in betting? And should equip you with all you need to know about betting on sports or eSports with a Handicap. Now that you understand the meaning of handicap in betting, it’s also important to read the terms and conditions and understand the rules of handicap betting before placing bets.

What are the risks of handicap betting?

Handicap betting can be more complex than regular betting, and it can also be more difficult to predict the outcome. Additionally, handicap betting can be risky if the handicap given to a team is incorrect or unfair.

How do I place a handicap bet?

You can place a handicap bet at a bookmaker or online betting website that offers this type of betting. Simply select the handicap bet you want to make, and place your bet by following the instructions provided.
Grant Taylor-Hill
Grant Taylor-Hill

Since: February 12, 2021

Grant is a lifelong, multi-platform gamer with a passion for journalism and more than ten years' experience in the industry. He'll try any game once, and when he's not playing them, he's watching them, being as he is an avid esports fan.

See all articles from this author