What is a Double Bet?
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What is a Double Bet?

A double is an example of a type of accumulator bet. An accumulator bet consists of multiple individual bets linked together and is dependent on all of those bets being successful. The advantage of this kind of betting is that it can generate much larger returns than simply backing each selection separately, as the winnings from one bet go forward to the next.

Although a double is technically a form of an accumulator, the description ‘accumulator’ is more usually applied to bets that feature four or more selections, and a double is such a popular form of the accumulator that it has earned its own name.

The double is a relatively simple bet to understand. It consists of a single bet on two different selections. If both bets win, then the double is successful; however, as with all accumulators, if one of the selections doesn’t win, then the whole bet fails.

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For example, let’s say you are looking at two football matches, and the odds are as follows:

Stoke City versus West Bromwich Albion:
Stoke City win: 11/10
The draw: 23/10
West Bromwich Albion: 5/2
Manchester City versus Hull City
Manchester City win: 1/6
The draw: 11/2
Hull City win: 18/1

You think that Stoke City and Manchester City are going to win. Instead of backing them both separately, you can opt to cover these selections in a double, backing both to win. If you placed £10 on this double, and both teams won, you would make a profit of £14.50. If either or both teams failed to win, you would lose your initial stake.
Some bettors like to offset the risk inherent in double betting, by opting for an Each Way double. This bet is particularly popular in horse-racing betting.

An Each Way bet is in effect, two bets on the same selection. One bet is for the selection to win and one is for the selection to place. What constitutes a place will depend on the bookmaker or the market. In a horse race, a selection is generally considered to have placed if it finishes in the top three, and the odds are generally one-fifth of the win odds.

If your selection wins, then both the win and the place part of your bet will generate a return. If your selection only places, then you will lose the win bet but win the place bet. So, in an Each Way Double, if both of your selections are placed, you will get a return, even if they don’t win.

Calculating your potential returns from a double is relatively straightforward, but there are free online calculators available that will do the maths for you.

Although double bets are most common in football and horse-racing, they are often available across a range of sports, and most online bookmakers will make it easy to turn two individual selections into a double, enabling you to increase your returns from the same stake.