What is fractional odds?

Different odds formats

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Odds are the likely probability of a stated event occurring and with regards to financial implications, there should be no impact of using one system of odds over another. This makes it easier for gamblers to choose a betting odds system that they understand the best, which should hopefully allow them to feel comfortable about the bets they place.

The choice of odd styles available are fairly limited, especially in comparison to the number of betting sites and bookmakers available but this uniformity has stood the test of time because the odds work and make it easy for people to understand what they are betting on. The two main style of betting odds that are used most commonly are the fractional odds and decimal odds.

Fractional odds

The style of fractional odds are more commonly associated with book makers and betting systems based in the United Kingdom and Ireland, which makes them a natural choice for betting fans who have commonly placed bets in these regions. Although fractions may make many people think of their schooldays and unhappy times spend in mathematics classes but there is simplicity about fractional odds which make them a great choice for many people wanting to develop their knowledge about sports betting.

One of the reasons why many people choose to use fractional odds as their preferred system of odds is that the odds should indicate the total amount that a person will receive for their winning bet, relative to the stake that they placed. This can be best shown by an example with odds of 4/1 (known as four to one) being used as the odds.

How to calculate with fractional odds

This means that for every unit of currency placed as a stake, the betting fan can expect four units of currency in return. This means that if Bolton Wanderers were listed as 4/1 to beat Liverpool and a person placed £100 on them to win, they would receive winnings of £400 if Bolton were triumphant. The person would also receive their stake back, ensuring they walked away with £500, their initial stake of £100 and their winnings of £400.

Fractional odds work in the same manner if the odds were reversed, for example the odds are offered at ¼. This could be in a game where Chelsea were facing Stoke and equally, one unit of currency placed on a Chelsea victory would see the person walk away with a quarter of that unit of currency if Chelsea win. For a £100 bet, the winner would walk away with £25. Of course, they would also receive their £100 stake back so would have £125 at the conclusion of the game and would be better off but it is obvious there is a far greater risk for a lower return from betting on this sort of odd.

Why fractional odds?

Fractional odds offer a quick and easy way to determine what sort of return a successful bet would provide to the gambler and makes it easier to make a decision on what is a worthwhile bet or not. Weighing up the probabilities, what would be lost and the potential earnings possible from each bet is the best way for a betting fan to decide if the bet is worthwhile and fractional odds make it easy to determine what the expected outcomes are if the bet wins.

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