Bookmakers have offered propositions on non-sports wagers since before online betting even existed. For example, in July 1969, the moon landing cost one UK betting shop franchises millions. Years earlier William Hill had offered punters a prop will a man walk on the moon this decade?. In 1964 the yes was 1000/1. Others are not so exotic, such as the will there be a white Christmas? proposition that bookies have been taking bets on for over half a century now.
Almost Anything Can be Bet Online
The internet has greatly expanded the number of non-sports wagering options available, not all of which are politically correct. Such examples are actual props many sites offered on how many Cincinnati Bengals would be arrested during an offseason and how long OJ Simpson would spend in prison. Another that had many perturbed was the large number of hurricane betting odds some online bookmakers offered after Katrina. Since UIGEA these have been less common as many betting sites no longer want the attention. Still, for anything not too controversial plenty of props can be found.
Prop Betting Sites
Understand it is possible to bet practically anything online. You can bet on WrestleMania, the 2016 presidential elections, the results of your favourite reality television show such as American Idol, how much a movie will gross in the box office, and so much more. If you’re a fan of wagering celebrity, entertainment, business, world events and political propositions the websites below are the ones I recommend browsing for current markets.
In the remainder of this article I’ll cover only some of the propositions that are regular fixtures. I do strongly suggest navigating the websites listed above because they tend to have the most prop markets. While some are just tongue-in-cheek and offered for entertainment value, if you dig around a bit, you can most certainly find +EV bets. That said let me run through some of the popular non-sports markets offered online.
While not too popular in the Americas and Asia, many Europeans are really into financial betting. For this, UK betting sites tend to offer a wide range of markets. This can be anything from FTSE prices, currency exchange rates, commodities such as gold, silver, Nymex and even share prices of major companies. While the average sports bettor might find such betting complex, understand it’s often easy to do and simply involves luck when using an online bookie.
www.paddypower.com is probably the easiest site to use. They have live in-play betting on many of the markets mentioned above. Let’s use FTSE 100 to explain. Here on the screen you’ll see the opening price, time left to bet and the current level. You can then choose from a host of betting options which might include the over/under on where the FTSE will close a few minutes from now. All of this betting is easy to do, and you know it’s fair because you’re betting on actual official shares prices. Do however be warned live-in betting on financials can be fast paced and addicting. Do be careful to manage your bankroll well, and keep your mind focused.
American Idol Betting
American Idol is the top singing reality show in the United States. It’s been running since 2002 and its concept is to find new solo recording artists. Winners are determined by viewers’ votes.
Past winners include Kelly Clarkson, Ruben Studdard, Fantasia Barrino, Carrie Underwood, Taylor Hicks, Jordin Sparks, David Cook, Kris Allen, Lee DeWyze, Scotty McCreery and Phillip Phillips. There are many sites for American Idol betting the most popular accepting US players is www.bovada.lv.
X Factor Betting
X Factor is one of the biggest singing shows in the UK with millions of people watching the show every weekend. This is covered by all the major UK bookmakers. Those with the most markets include BetVictor, PaddyPower, Ladbrokes, William Hill and Betfair which is the world’s largest peer to peer betting exchange.
Their specific markets include winning act, top boy, top girl, top group, winning manager, first to lose all acts, audience figures, top three finish, deadlock, match-ups and specials markets which exclude the favourites. This only a sample, X Factor betting is highly popular and the markets offered by UK bookmakers are extensive.
Snow at Christmas
As mentioned in the intro this is a market UK betting shops have been offering for over half a century now. Apparently, many in the UK are obsessed with the weather, especially around Christmas time where people dream of having that picturesque white Christmas. This market is offered well in advanced by www.bet365.com. A full 1.5 months before Christmas 2012 they had odds at: yes (5/1), no (1/9).
Strictly Come Dancing
Strictly Come Dancing – or Strictly as it’s more affectionately known – is another massive TV show set up by the BBC to combat the success of ITV’s X Factor. The show brings together a number of celebrities who are then taught to dance by a professional partner. Each week a pair is eliminated before a winner is found around Christmas time. Bookmakers open up markets each week to determine the overall winner, highest points scorer that week, top man, top woman, next elimination, bottom three and even who will replace host Bruce Forsyth. Although many bookmakers offer Strictly Come Dancing betting, the bookmaker known for having the most markets is www.ladbrokes.com. Also there are plenty of markets and great odds at Betair.
Dancing with the Stars
This is the US version of Strictly Come Dancing that began in 2005. The show airs on ABC and is hosted by Tom Bergeron and Brooke Burke.
Anyone living in another market that catches this on television can bet Dancing with the Stars at www.bet365.com (No US players) while those living in the US can use www.bovada.lv (US players only). Betting odds are offered on both who will win markets and a market on sex of the winner.
Sports Personality of the Year
The annual award ceremony for presenting the top British Sports Personality of the Year is one that is hotly contested and highly debated. 13 athletes from a variety of sports compete for the public vote at the awards ceremony held in Birmingham. Sports Personality of the Year betting can be done on a variety of markets including the outright winner of the event, the team winner, highest male, highest female and special markets which exclude some of the favourites. The betting is often pretty tightly contested with this market and its one that will be more common than say the White Christmas betting market. This one needs no special references. Sincerely most all sites mentioned in this article thus far plus 188bet, 888sport, Coral, Betfred and countless others have betting odds on this award.
Politics betting is one of the biggest markets outside of sports betting. A topic that is held in high regard to many and often divided opinion makes this an ideal betting opportunity for bookmakers to open up. For those living the United States, the two best options for betting the election and senate races are no doubt 5Dimes and Bookmaker. Most other US betting sites only cover which party will win the presidential election. 5Dimes opens first, with Bookmaker copying later.
Here you can bet on the popular vote, electoral vote winner, and can even bet on which candidate will win each state. In some cases they even have ballot questions such as bets on marijuana reform.
If you live outside the US, Paddy Power is perhaps the most ideal for politics betting. At any given time they offer over 50 individual markets covering a range of US, Irish, UK, Scottish, European and local election markets. Some of the more common include next US President, winning US party, most seats, year of next election, next prime minister, next leader of each associated party, London mayor, overall majority, majority wins, independent referendum results and even growth over the coming year.
I’m A Celebrity – Get me Out of Here
I’m a Celebrity is another in a long list of entertainment programs ran in the UK. The program brings together 12 celebrities and places them in a jungle cut off from the outside world. They need to successfully perform a task each day to get food parcels. Celebs are voted off every couple of days before a king or queen of the jungle is crowned. Betting is pretty limited on this program with just the overall winner and rather disgustingly, the first celebrity to throw up market on offer. Bet365, Coral and Boyle Sports offer some of the most competitive odds on this program.
Christmas Number 1
The Christmas number one is one of the most prestigious honours for any recording artist. Held as one of the highlights of the year in the music industry you can bet on which artist you think will be Christmas number one. You don’t need to pick the name of the song, just simply which artist will be there. Included is the ‘X Factor Winner’ as this is unknown until just a couple of days before but is often as good a bet as any to be there or thereabouts. BetVictor, PaddyPoker and Ladbrokes offer most competitive odds on Christmas Number One betting.
The Oscars is the highlight award ceremony in the movie industry and is one of the highest honours an actor, actress or anyone related to the industry can receive. Betting starts early with some bookmakers but more markets are on offer the nights before the awards. You can expect markets to include best picture, best actor, best actress, best supporting role and pretty much all other ceremony categories. All the websites mentioned at the top of this article offer Oscars betting.
Other Props Not Mentioned
Again as mentioned earlier almost anything can be bet online. You can wager New Year Honours List, (including “to receive a Damehood/Knighthood”), William and Kate’s baby, whether alien existence will be proven, and even movie props. These include who will be a new Ghostbuster in the trilogy and who will be the next James Bond. You can also place business prop bets such as if Apple will trade for over $1,000 a share and who will be the next Facebook CEO. There are also many additional television shows such as Big Brother, the Voice and Survivor. The list sincerely goes on and on. If you are interested in this type of betting, navigate around the various betting sites linked in this article.