How Does An Each Way Bet Work?

7 Aug 2024

An Each Way (E/W) bet consists of two bets combined into one. You’re splitting your bet for your chosen selection to “win” or to “place” (in the number of places predetermined by the bookmakers). This gives you a higher chance of winning if your selection fails to win but finishes in the places offered by the bookies.

Each Way (E/W) betting has become a very popular way of betting and is most commonly used in Horse Racing betting but is also used in other sporting events too.

In this article, you’ll learn how an each way bet works, how to place them and how you can use them to make a profit.

Setting Up An Each Way Bet

To place an each way bet you first need to choose a total stake you would like to bet on your selection.

• Half of your stake is placed on your selection winning the race or event.
• The other half is placed on your selection finishing in the top places specified by your chosen bookmaker. More often than not, these can be the top two, three or four positions with horse races.
• If your choice wins, you’ll be paid for both parts of the bet.
• If your choice doesn’t win but places, you’ll only receive money back for the place part of your bet.
• Place returns are paid as a fraction of the win odds and are usually a quarter or a fifth of the win odds.
• Should your selection not win or place, you lose your full each way back stake and get no winnings back.

How To Calculate Each Way Bets

With each way bets, the two bet elements are calculated differently due to the fractions the bookies use on the place part.

As an example, let’s say you placed a £10 E/W bet on Liverpool to win the Premier League at odds of 8.0 (7/1) and the E/W terms are 1/3 for 2 places. If Liverpool won the league:

Win Part - This is as calculated as a normal win bet & you would multiply the stake by the odds. £10 x 8 means you would get £80 returned.

Place Part - This calculation differs in that you have to deduct 1 from the original odds and then divide that by the fractions for the place part and then add one back on.

In this case it would be:

8-1 equals 7, then 7 divided by 3 equals 2.33 and then you add one back on for 3.33.

So the place part odds are 3.33.

You then multiply you stake by these odds so £10 x 3.33 = £33.33.

Your total returns would be £80 + £33.33 = £113.33.

If Liverpool finished 2nd then you would only use the above Place Part element and your returns would be £33.33.

Example Of An Each Way Bet

A punter decides they quite fancy the chances of Amerjeet winning or being close in the 3pm at Lingfield Races. Because they aren’t certain it will definitely win, they decide to back it each way at Bet365. Not wanting to go mad, they decide to back £10 each way at decimal odds of 11 (10/1 in fractional odds). The win odds here are 10/1 but Bet365 are offering 1/5 of the win odds on the top three places.

The below image shows how the bet looks:

So the total bet is £20 (£10 to win and £10 to place in the top three)

You’ll see the possible outcomes of your bet once the race has finished.

Outcome One: The horse wins

• Win element: £10 x 10/1 = £110 returned less £10 stake = £100 profit.
• Place element: £10 x 2/1 (1/5 of 10/1) = £30 returned less £10 stake = £20 profit.
• Total return: £140 (£110 + £30) less the original stake of £20 = £120 total profit.

Outcome Two: The horse finishes second or third

• Win element: -£10.
• Place element: £10 x 2/1 (1/5 of 10/1) = £30 returned less £10 stake = £20 profit.
• Total return: £30 less the original stake of £20 = £10 total profit.

Outcome Three: The horse doesn’t win or place

• Both elements of the bet lose and you lose £20.

As can be seen, placing each way bets gives customers a slightly better edge to win some money. However, the returns aren’t as great as just betting on the win only.

When Should You Bet Each Way?

People usually do each way bets to provide them with a bit of protection if they back something that might have a chance of winning but is by no means guaranteed. Ideally, you’ll back something that has at least a small chance of winning but this is easier said than done when it comes to backing horses.

As with our previous example, it’s more suitable to avoid short odds bets and do each way bets with longer odds (usually 5/1 or above). This is because you have a better chance of at least breaking even, if not making a small profit. Betting each way on shorter priced selections will offer little value unless you are value betting or using free bet credits.

Other things to consider are:

• Picking competitive events or races where there is no obvious likely winner.
• Studying form to look for competitors that consistently finish in the higher places.
• If you’re thinking about backing more than one selection, it could be more economical to back them each way.
• Pick events where the favourite isn’t a certainty and could be beaten.
• If you prefer to be a little more cautious, each way betting provides a better balance between risk and reward.
• Backing horses each way in larger field races will usually offer more places and can increase your chances of a place.

What Are The Advantages Of Each Way Betting?

• You can still profit on selections that don’t win an event.
• Offers a more measured approach than just betting on the winner.
• It mitigates risk of near misses and provides an element of insurance.
• Provides entertainment as you have multiple chances to be rewarded.
• Suitable for events with larger, more competitive fields.
• Very good for multiple bets such as “Acca’s” (Accumulators).
• Less risk when betting on selections with high odds.
• Great potential for larger profits on high odds winners.
• Can be useful when placing ante-post bets (bets placed before the race course or dog track has opened their markets.
• Even more places offered on larger events or races.

What Are The Disadvantages Of Each Way Betting?

• The stakes are higher as you are doubling them when doing them each way. You could half your stake but the potential returns are less.
• Your profits on winners are less with each way bets than if you placed a win only bet.
• Betting each way is more complicated than straight win bets meaning it may not suit less experienced bettors.
• Low odds each way bets may lead to losses even if your selection places.
• Not all markets offer each way betting options.

Placing Each Way Bets On Different Sports

Whilst horse racing is considered to be the main market for each way betting, there are other sports that offer it as an option including Football, Golf and Cricket.

Let’s take a look at some examples of how each way bets work for different sports.

Horse Racing

As mentioned, Horse Racing is undoubtedly the biggest market for each way betting.

Placing the each way bet is quite straight forward. Click on the odds next to the horse of your choice, enter your chosen each way stake (remember, the total stake will be double the amount that you enter), tick the E/W option and then place your bet.

The below example is a horse called Tideways Hero that is running in the 4.28 at Wexford. The win odds are 21 (20/1) and the place odds are 1/5 of the total odds. Therefore, you’re placing £10 at 21 (20/1) for the win and £10 at 5 (4/1) for it to place.

Should Tideways Hero win, you would get £260 returned (£10 x 20/1 = £200 for the win part) & (£10 x 4/1 = £40). Once you remove the original stake, your profit is £240.

Outcome One: The horse wins

• Win element: £10 x 21 = £210 returned less £10 stake = £200 profit.
• Place element: £10 x 5 (1/5 of 21) = £50 returned less £10 stake = £40 profit.
• Total return: £260 (£210 + £50) less the original stake of £20 = £240 total profit.

Outcome Two: The horse finishes second or third

• Win element: -£10.
• Place element: £10 x 5 (1/5 of 21) = £50 returned less £10 stake = £40 profit.
• Total return: £50 less the original stake of £20 = £30 total profit.

Outcome Three: The horse doesn’t win or place

• Both elements of the bet lose and you lose £20.

Football

Placing each way bets on Football is mostly done for outcomes that are in the future such as winners of the Premier League, FA Cup Winners and Teams to be Relegated. There are other markets such as Top Goal Scorer which offer 4 places on each way bets.

Always remember to check the E/W (Each Way) terms when placing an E/W bet as the place fractions can differ depending on the markets you are betting on. As an example, the place fractions for the Premier League are 1/3 for 2 places and the Top Goal Scorer is 1/4 for 4 places.

Below is an example of an each way bet on the Premier League Winners for the 2024/25 Football Season. Liverpool are 7/1 (8 in decimal) to win the league and they are paying 1/3 (3.33 decimal) if they finish second.

Outcome One: Liverpool win the Premier League

• Win element: £10 x 8 = £80 returned less £10 stake = £70 profit.
• Place element: £10 x 3.33 (1/3 of 8) = £33.33 returned less £10 stake = £23.33 profit.
• Total return: £113.33 (£70 + £33.33) less the original stake of £20 = £93.33 total profit.

Outcome Two: Liverpool come Runners Up

• Win element: -£10.
• Place element: £10 x 3.33 (1/3 of 8) = £33.33 returned less £10 stake = £23.33 profit.
• Total return: £33.33 less the original stake of £20 = £13.33 total profit.

Outcome Three: Liverpool finish outside the top two

• Both elements of the bet lose and you lose £20.

Golf

As with betting each way in Football, each way bets on golf are usually done on the tournament winner. The majority of PGA Tour events have vast numbers of competitors in the region of 160. This means that the odds can vary hugely and there is very rarely a low odds favourite. Because of this, each way betting on Golf Tournaments can offer bettors massive value. As with most sports and events, it’s important to pay attention to the each way terms on offer.

In this case, we are going to look at the 3M 2024 PGA Tournament and in particular, Sam Burns. Burns has achieved five PGA tournament wins previously between 2020 and 2023. In addition to this, he has finished in the top ten on six occasions during the Golf Tournaments in 2024.

At odds of 21 for him to finish in the top five, there is good value on offer.

As you would with other sports such as Horse Racing and Football, click on the odds next to the player of your choice, enter your chosen each way stake, tick the E/W option and then place your bet.

So, what are the possible outcomes from this each way bet?

Outcome One: Sam Burns wins the 3M Open

• Win element: £10 x 21 = £210 returned less £10 stake = £200 profit.
• Place element: £10 x 6 (1/4 of 21) = £60 returned less £10 stake = £50 profit.
• Total return: £270 (£210 + £60) less the original stake of £20 = £250 total profit.

Outcome Two: Sam Burns places second to fifth

• Win element: -£10.
• Place element: £10 x 6 (1/4 of 21) = £60 returned less £10 stake = £50 profit.
• Total return: £60 less the original stake of £20 = £40 total profit.

Outcome Three: Sam burns finishes outside the top five

• Both elements of the bet lose and you lose £20.

How To Profit From Each Way Bets

A lot of bookies offer extra places on each way bets on some horse races in order to compete against competitors for customers. This provides great value to bettors as their selection has an extra chance to finish in the money places.

There are times when a bookie will even offer 2 places more than their competitors such as 5 places instead of 3.

Extra places can be a huge source of profits for Matched Bettors and offer incredible value. This is because a Matched Bettor will back their horse at the bookie and lay it at the exchange. Should the horse finish in the extra place, you get paid by both the bookie and the exchange.

Matched Betting on Extra Places (EP’s) is for the more advanced Matched Bettor and you can find out more here.

Updated: 9 Aug 2024

Outplayed PRO

The Author

Paul brings over four years of Matched Betting experience to Outplayed. His extensive background in financial services and e-commerce, combined with his expertise in online marketing and Matched Betting, makes him a valuable asset to the team.