Parlay betting is a common way to bet on sports that allows you to raise the stakes for larger payouts. To place a parlay bet, you can combine the odds for three or more events and if all legs of your wager are correct, you will win a much larger payout than a simple single-game wager.
We repeat, all legs of your parlay must be correct or you lose.
Your parlay bet can consist of two or more moneyline bets, point spreads, totals and even prop bets. Usually sportsbooks prevent you from adding more than one bet from the same game, so you can pick a few different games and mix and match betting types if you so desire.
It’s common on any given night for there to be multiple sports being played, so not only can you mix different betting types, you can bet on different sports on the same ticket. You could bet on the NFL, NBA and NHL all at the same time, spreading your wagers out across different leagues.
Parlays are appealing to sports bettors because you can win some big money by betting on multiple games at once – you just have to do your research and ensure you are making smart betting decisions because you can’t make a single mistake or your bet won’t cash.
Let’s look at an example of the difference between betting on three single games individually and combining them into a parlay.
New England Patriots (-5.5 point spread, -110 odds). A $100 wager would pay out $90.91
Colorado Avalanche (moneyline +105 odds) A $100 wager would payout $105
Toronto Raptors versus Boston Celtics (225 total, under, with -120 odds) A $100 wager would pay out $83.33
If you bet all of these games you would win a little over $279.24.
If you took those three games and combined them into a $300 parlay, you would be looking at quite a different scenario. If you combine those odds and all of those outcomes occur, you would walk away with $1,852.52 in winnings plus your initial stake – so a payout of $2,152.52.
It’s pretty amazing what some sports bettors can win by correcting a few games correctly. That’s just three games, imagine cashing in on a 10-game parlay!
How to Calculate Parlay Odds
When you place a single game wager, you will be able to view the odds for that specific game outcome. When you bet a parlay, you’re combining the odds together, pooling those odds so that if you correctly predict all outcomes you can expect a big payout. You can choose between two and 20 picks and see if you can correctly pick the outcome of all selections.
At BetUS, the largest parlay payout you can receive is $200,000.
In the case of a push on your parlay ticket, you wouldn’t lose your bet, but you would reduce your odds – pushes just eliminate that bet from your wager, because you didn’t technically lose that bet. For example, if you had five legs on your parlay ticket, and you had a moneyline soccer wager that resulted in a tie, you wouldn’t ruin your whole ticket, that game’s odds would just be removed from your ticket, and your odds would reduce.
When all of your picks in a parlay are at standard odds of -110, the parlay will payout according to the parlay payout table below:
Parlay Payout Table:
When events that are not listed with standard odds are included in a parlay bet, the parlay will pay out according to ‘true odds’, where each selection is given a multiplier which is calculated using the Moneyline odds like so:
(risk amount + win amount)/risk amount
The risk amount used is either the amount you need to wager to win $100, for favorites (negative odds); or the amount you win by risking $100 if the pick is an underdog (positive odds).
For example, if you have two bets, let’s say you decide to bet on two NHL moneylines:
Boston Bruins -175
Vancouver Canucks +160
So if you’ve read our moneyling betting guide, you will know that on a single wager, you’d need to bet $175 to win $100 on the Bruins, and you would win $160 on a $100 wager on the Canucks. But we need to work out the multiplier, so we will take the above calculation and do the math.
For the Bruins, you would have won $275 (your stake and your winnings), then divide that by 175 = 1.57
For the Canucks, you would have won $260, and you’ll need to divide that by 160 = 2.6
Now, if you are going to calculate your payout on a parlay with these two wagers, you will multiply those two numbers together (2.6 x 1.57) and you’ll get 4.08 odds. This means, you would multiply 4.08 by the amount you wish to bet on the parlay. Because you included the risk amount you will need to subtract 1. If you decided to bet $40 on this parlay, you would multiply 3.08 x 40 which would end up being a $123.20 ticket if both teams win.
This calculation will help you determine what your parlay is worth before you place your bets and determine if the risk is worth the reward.
How to Buy Points for a Parlay
If your bet slip has any point spreads or totals on it, you can buy points to make the bet more favorable for you. You will be able to buy up to 10 points and all points are available in half point increments.
Buying points allows you to move the point spread or totals line in your favor or more towards where you believe it will actually be. This is actually really helpful when you think the score might actually result in your bet being a push – then you won’t hit the number exactly and you would still reap the reward. You will have to pay for your points, obviously, ten cents a pop.
For instance, you might want to bet on a Boston Celtics game and the odds are set at (-4) -110, but you want to buy a half point to make the odds (-3.5) -120. You will have to add 10% for each half point you buy. You can do this for up to ten games in your parlay.
Now that you have a better grasp of parlay betting and how to calculate your odds, head over to the sportsbook and give it a try – maybe you’ll win big!
How to Place a Parlay at BetUS
Go to the sportsbook page at BetUS. If you only want to see the lines for one sport, such as football, click the football link in the menu on the right to see what options are available for wagering on football. The options will show up in a dropdown menu underneath the main football tab.
If you want to bet on NFL, click on it and the available games will show up in the middle of the page in what is called the betting engine. Choose which NFL events you would like to bet on by clicking on the odds displayed in the betting engine. After your choice loads, you will see it in the right-hand column under Bet Slip.
To choose another sport to add to your ticket, go back to the Sports column on the left and click another sport. Choose again from the available events and add them to your Bet Slip.
The system will automatically inhibit you from choosing two correlated wagers on the same game. For example, choosing Team A to win on the point spread and also on the moneyline. You will only be able to choose one or the other, as they are otherwise too similar (correlated) to allow on the same ticket.
BetUS also allows you to place what is called a Rolling If-Bet on Parlays. This allows you to place a new bet with the funds from a previous bet, with a few conditions. Click the link to find out how if a Rolling If-Bet can work for you.
All your chosen events will be listed in the Bet Slip with your wager options above.
As you are choosing your events, you will see wager options for placing a Parlay, If Bet, Reverse and Teaser in the Bet Slip. Straight will be the default wager type until you choose something else. Whatever wager type the Bet Slip is set to will be grey, as below.
Click the Parlay button and you will see all your selections listed in the Bet Slip. You must enter a Risk amount of at least $5, and your payout amount will automatically calculate.
Three-team parlay ticket, standard odds.
Three-team parlay ticket, after buying points.
To add more selections or an event from another sport in the menu, just bring up the lines for that sport in the betting engine again and select another event. The Bet Slip will add that event and keep itself in Parlay mode. If you have already entered a Risk amount, the Payout amount will automatically readjust with the new event’s odds.
Placing Your Parlay Bet
To place your bet into the system, click the Place my bets button under the Bet Slip:
Here, your BetUS Bet Slip gives you one more chance to view your pending wager before it is placed. This includes the game information, lines, and Risk and Win amounts. To confirm your wager, simply click Confirm. After you do this, you will be unable to change your wager and BetUS will be unable to cancel it.
Once your wager is confirmed, the Bet Slip will again show you all your wager details and ask you to print a hard copy of your Slip. In case of emergency or other circumstance, no internet claims will be honored unless a printed copy of bets in question is supplied.
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Frequently Asked Questions
What is a Parlay bet?
A parlay is a sports betting option that allows you to combine the odds for two or more wagers into one bet, allowing you to create a much larger payout if you correctly predict all outcomes of your bet. You must pick the correct outcomes on every leg of your wager for your bet to win.
What happens if there’s a push on my parlay?
If one of your bets results in a push (canceled game, tie, etc) your parlay is still safe, you will just lose some of the juice on your parlay slip. Your odds will just reduce based on that individual game, so you could lose -110 off your parlay odds.
How do I calculate my parlay odds?
If all selections are using standard odds of -110, you will refer to the parlay payout table listed above, if you are dealing with true odds, you will have to calculate the (risk amount + win amount)/risk amount.