What Are Sucker Bets and How to Avoid Them?


If you have spent a reasonable amount of time in the gambling arena, you must have heard the phrase “sucker bet.” You can probably tell that it’s not something pleasant and for all good reasons!

Sucker bets are something that only a “sucker” or fool would place. Non-serious gamblers who play just for fun are the ones who usually make these mistakes. But even the most successful bettor is bound to make the wrong decisions. Casual bettors most often ignore game strategy, and the factors influencing the outcome. Hence, they are the ones who end up falling prey to sucker bets. 

What Are Sucker Bets?

A sucker bet is one whose potential return is way lesser than the odds of winning. Whether it is a casino game or a sports bet, it is common sense that bettors rarely receive entirely fair odds. It is one of the ways by which the bookies and casinos make money. However, when there is a significant difference between the probability of an outcome happening and the money you’ll win by betting on that event, it’s called a sucker bet.

Sucker bets are not always the ones that have low odds of winning. There is nothing wrong with such bets as long as the payout is steady and reasonable. Say, if an event has a 10% of happening, your payout should be around ten times the initial bet. But, if you get back only $20 for an initial wager of $10, that’s a sucker bet. In short, sucker bets are the ones that do not return much value from placing a wager.

Common Types of Sucker Bets

If you’re wondering what kind of bets fall under the sucker category, here is a list of some of the most common ones:

  • Placing a bet without shopping around: It is the most blatant mistake bettors commit, especially the ones playing for leisure. After all, why stick to one sportsbook if there is another one offering better odds on the same bet?
  • Coin toss: It looks simple with a 50/50 chance of landing a head or tail. But coin toss wagers are not at all profitable and are quite unprofessional.
  • Parlays: These are sucker bets for the sole reason that the house is at the most significant advantage. Parlays rarely have any value, and there is a risk involved for the bettor. You have to make the right pick on multiple games. But one wrong selection, and you lose your entire money.
  • Pleasers: These bets are quite similar to parlays. But unlike parlays, pleasers mostly turn out to be sucker bets no matter which side you choose.

How Can You Avoid Being a Sucker?

If you have a flawed idea about wagers and odds, you will be a victim of sucker bets. We’re not saying that you can completely dodge these suckers. But, with the right tips and tactics up your sleeve, you can lessen instances of losing a lot of money. So, here are some tips that can come in handy while avoiding the suckers:

  • Avoid betting on sports that you don’t understand: It makes no sense to bet on sports that leave you clueless. Blindly following the market trends without understanding the sport you are wagering is nothing less than foolishness. The same applies to casino games.
  • Make sure to shop around for odds: We can’t stress enough on the importance of this betting practice! One of the main reasons why bettors fall into the trap of sucker bets is that they don’t look around for better odds. Negatively valued bets are the biggest suckers.
  • Don’t let emotions influence your betting decisions: When it comes to sports betting, being an emotionless robot is the best you can be. Remember, the goal is not supporting your favorite team as much it is to beat the sportsbook.
  • Avoid wagering parlays and pleasers: Whether you are a casual bettor or a hardcore one, avoid parlays and pleasers as much as you can. Reason? They are simply not easy to win.
  • Try not to bet too much money: As a bettor, your bankroll is all you’ve got. So, avoid increasing your standard betting amount. In other words, avoid betting more when you’re on a winning streak. Likewise, chasing losses is no better.

There is rarely any red flag warning sports bettors and gamblers about the sucker bets. But that doesn’t mean that they don’t exist. Betting is tricky, and there will often be times when the payout is not worth the risk. So, these are the sucker bets that you should look out for and always avoid. The best way to keep away from sucker bets is to know what they entail and adopting rational choices while betting.

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