Matchbook is yet another betting exchange challenging the industry leaders Betfair. There is no shortage of such competitors, but so far there are few capable of making a decisive move. This particular operator has been around since 2004, which makes it one of the longest standing betting exchanges. Since 2011 it is owned and operated by Triplebet and has greatly improved the quality of its service.
They are licensed and regulated by the Alderney Gambling Control Commission in the Channel Islands. They decided to change the license issued by the authorities in Antigua and Barbuda for one issued by the UK Gambling Commission. This makes them more reliable, easier to trust and as a result more attractive to professionals and savvy punters. In order to differentiate itself from competitors, the betting exchange has reduced the commission charged to 1.5%. The industry standard is a 5% on most sports.
Key facts about Matchbook
- Matchbook underwent a complete overhaul in 2013, to better serve its customers.
- New players benefit from zero commission on selected sports and such offers are recurrent.
- Matchbook is a direct competitor to Betfair and has a significantly lower commission on all sports.
- Liquidity used to be a problem, but it is no longer an issue on football and tennis.
- Matchbook doesn’t charge winning punters a premium and has low minimum stakes.
Matchbook Sports and Odds
Matchbook has a betting system that is slightly more complicated than those used by traditional bookies. Players can assume the role of both punters and the house, by backing or laying teams and athletes. The result is far more flexibility and players have the possibility of winning more if they place the right back. There also held by the 1% commission structure, which is lower than the industry average and doesn’t eat into their profits.
In order to successfully compete with established betting exchanges such as Betfair, Smarkets, Betdaq or CrownBet, they had to lower the commission structure. It also differs based on whether the players make the offer or accept the one made by another member. In terms of sports offered, both the popular and obscure ones will feature on the list. The decision to choose one or the other will impact liquidity, which is the most important element for betting exchanges.
Popular and exotic sports are covered
NRL, AFL, MLB, NBA, NHL, rugby union and also MMA, golf, boxing and politics are offered. It is easier to find someone willing to bet against you if you focus on long-term events. Those who want to bet in real-time or on events that are about to start, are advised to focus on the more prominent sports. The number of markets available as well as the leagues covered differs greatly, but overall liquidity has improved significantly.
The betting exchange still needs to make some amendments when it comes to futures markets. At the time of writing, they feel restrictive and offer very few options to savvy players. Horse racing is limited to the events that take place in Ireland and the United Kingdom. Compared to Betfair, which charges a flat 5% commission on winnings and lease losses untouched, Matchbook acts differently. One percent is charged on profits and the same amount on your stake if you lose.
Live Betting and Streaming at Matchbook
Matchbook has a clear advantage over betting exchanges from Australia. This is where some of the best operators of this type are located. They have to abide by local rules which deny players the chance to bet in real-time. If you have an account here, you can place your bets after the first whistle and lock in on profits by activating the cash out feature. Some restrictions do apply when other players are involved, but they are few and not enough to hurt the gaming experience.
The live betting interface is every bit as intuitive as the classic one for long-term bets. It is a bit disappointing for players that live streaming was not introduced, despite the sheer advantages. Access to useful information is limited to the streams of data provided by the betting exchange. This can be enough to make an educated decision, but still not a good enough substitute for the live streaming. Using mobile devices for gambling and betting in real-time is encouraged and there are even special promotions for those who switch from desktop computers to smartphones and tablets.
Matchbook promotions and bonuses
Betting exchanges have the nasty tendency of not offering a welcome bonus. They promise better odds, which in the long run are more effective at offsetting the house edge. However, if you open an account here, you will be eligible for the Matchbook welcome bonus. This is actually a cashback deal, which is limited to €50 or currency equivalent. What this means is that players don’t receive money up front, but instead have some of their losses reimbursed.
Players are supposed to use the MAXBET promotional code when signing up. By doing so, they will accumulate Matchbook points whenever they bet real currency. There is an indissoluble link between the number of points collected and the amount invested, so highrollers are at a clear advantage. This introductory offer is less likely to appeal to amateurs, who seek immediate gratification. However, the very nature of betting exchanges makes them more suitable to professional players.
Besides the introductory bonuses, the betting exchange also brags about offering lower commission. This is not a bonus per say, but the kind of incentive that matters the most if you play the long game. All bets placed over the course of one month qualify, so don’t have to bet on sports and events that you don’t know. There are very few other promotions available, which makes them a hard sell for most players.
How do you register at Matchbook?
Matchbook has a very similar registration process to Betfair. Those who have played and other betting exchanges will confirm the fact that here are silky smooth. Compared to other bookmakers however, they require more information up front. This is because you will be betting against fellow players and transparency is very important. Issues such as gambling addiction are taken seriously here and they offer professional and immediate counseling to those in need.
Is Matchbook safe and reliable?
Matchbook uses the SSL encryption technology to safeguard the information shared by players. When information is exchanged between players and the betting exchange, it is properly protected. This prevents cyber criminals from having a real shot at stealing data. Confidentiality is also ensured, so if you care a lot about privacy, you won’t be disappointed. Those who plan on focusing on the few casino games they offer should also know that they are audited for fairness.
Payment options and cash out times at Matchbook
Matchbook payment methods are not the most diverse, but they don’t have to be. Credit cards are routinely used by conservative punters despite the waiting time of five days. The same goes for bank transfers, but savvy players prefer electronic wallets such as Neteller and Skrill. You will still have to wait 48 hours to receive the money you are entitled to. No commission is charged but the pending period ranges from 24 hours to up to two days.
Matchbook service and support
The Matchbook customer support is available via live chat, email and telephone. There are a couple of toll-free numbers for residents of certain countries, including Australia and United Kingdom. The problem is that assistance is only offered during business hours, from 9 AM to 3 AM.
What are others saying about Matchbook?
This betting exchange is much appreciated by punters who seek value above everything else. Matchbook reviews frequently compare them to Betfair, the world’s leading betting exchange. On one hand, they are happy that commission is overall lower. They are obviously less happy about the fact that you are charged even when you lose money. Another frequent complaint is that the mobile version of the website isn’t the best. The availability of a dedicated app for Android isn’t enough to offset its sluggishness.
My experience and rating of Matchbook
Matchbook is the kind of company that actually pays attention to what customers require. This makes perfect sense given the fact that they chase the industry leader. I can’t decide if I like the lower commission they charge more than I hate the fact that you are charged on losing bets as well. In the long run, it all evens out, but this is not the kind of disadvantage they can afford.
Liquidity is not their strong point, especially if you compare them to Betfair, but that is understandable. One thing that is more difficult to explain is why they are so cheap when it comes to promotions. It’s impossible to justify the ridiculously low introductory offer and overall poor bonuses. It’s fortunate that most of these problems have quick fixes, so there’s room for improvement from a rating of 7/10.