Betting is not just about sports anymore!
Punters can now place wagers on television shows, film and awards programs, and politics.
We put together a comprehensive guide to help you navigate the world of novelty and entertainment betting sites, starting from the basics of entertainment betting all the way to the qualities of the best novelty betting sites and apps.
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What is Entertainment Betting?
Despite the popularity of sports betting, a lot of punters actually bet on entertainment and showbiz events.
Novelty betting comprises all non-sports betting and can range from predicting which film will win Best Picture at the Oscars to who will get eliminated from Strictly—the possibilities for entertainment betting are truly endless.
The best part is that betting on reality TV and film awards is not that different from sports betting. The most popular sportsbooks cover these markets (usually found under the Specials or Entertainment section), giving great odds on novelty bets, much like they do with sports events.
So what events can you actually bet on in the UK?
A guilty pleasure for many in the UK and across the world, reality TV shows like Britain’s Got Talent, MasterChef and Love Island probably attract the largest number of bettors.
Both loyal fans and casual viewers of these programmes can bet on who will get eliminated first or which contestant will win the whole thing, making each week’s episode all the more exciting.
From the X Factor to Eurovision, these are the most popular TV programmes for bettors to place wagers on:
- I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here!
- Dancing on Ice
- Strictly Come Dancing
- Big Brother & Celebrity Big Brother
- Eurovision Song Contest
- Love Island
- The Voice
- Britain’s Got Talent
Music and Film Awards
Award shows like the Brits and Oscars rake in more than just millions of viewers every year; they are also a great way for punters to get some betting action. Markets abound here as well, from who will bag an award to which actor or actress will get nominated.
Here is a brief list of the some of the media awards you can bet on:
- MTV VMAs
- Grammy Awards
- Brit Awards
- Tony Awards
- Mercury Prize
- Golden Globes
Other Entertainment Betting Markets
Gamblers can also bet on the development of plots in TV programmes, such as character deaths and resurrections (once a big hit thanks to Game of Thrones) as well as how the show will end.
Many sportsbooks even take wagers on niche markets like the Nobel Prize or the Miss Universe competition.
And it’s not just entertainment! Novelty bets also include wagering on politics and the outcome of the general election, as well as niche events, changes in the value of cryptocurrencies, and even betting on the weather forecast.
What to Look For in an Entertainment Betting Site?
If you’re new to the scene and not sure where to open an account, these are some of the most fundamental things to look out for:
- Coverage of entertainment events—Make sure that the website you choose has a lot of variety, meaning it covers not only the most common entertainment events (like The Voice and the Golden Globes) but also has a great selection of unique markets as well, such as political betting and wagering on the Nobel Prize winner.
- Bonuses and Promotions —There is nothing better than a free bet as part of the welcome offer or a weekly cashback promo. However, before you get too excited about bonuses, read the T&Cs to check if the promotions extend to betting on Specials as well.
- Safety and Security—You have to ensure that the bookie is licensed and has the latest encryption technology in place to protect your privacy.
- Banking Options—Find an online sportsbook that accepts deposits and withdrawals in your preferred method and currency, whether it’s gambling in BTC or paying by phone bill.
- Mobile Compatibility—The website should be easy to navigate and have a user interface that will not give you any headaches. And since some punters like to bet from the comfort of their own home, it pays to check the website’s mobile compatibility as well or see if the bookie has a native app.
- Customer Support—Ideally, you would go for an online bookmaker with 24/7 live chat support. If that is not available, try one whose customer care team can be reached by phone to resolve any potential issues with payments, account registration and verification.
Before You Place Your Entertainment Wagers
Entertainment betting is definitely as fun as wagering on sports, and anyone, from experienced gamblers to complete novices, is sure to find something that is up their alley.
All that’s left to do is tune in to your favourite programme and place your bet! Just remember to start with small amounts and always gamble responsibly!
Frequently Asked Questions
What are some common types of entertainment bets?
The most popular novelty betting types are as follow:
- A Win bet, also known as a Moneyline bet, involves betting on who comes out as the winner. Alternatively, you can bet on who will finish second, third or fourth, depending on the event you are gambling on.
- Spread bets allow you to bet on the difference in the votes between two competitors. This is a standard bet in shows like the X-Factor or in betting on politics, i.e. anywhere where there are votes involved.
- Prop bets are standard wagers that are not related to their outcome. A great example is the “first to mess up a recipe” bet for a Great British Baking Show.
- Totals or Over/Under Bets. These are some of the less common bets, but some bookmarkers may offer a line such as “How many Grammys will Adele win?”
Is novelty betting the same as entertainment betting?
Yes, they are! Entertainment betting is also known as novelty betting; the terms differ depending on the websites you visit.
Is entertainment betting legal?
Yes, betting on entertainment is legal in the UK. Just make sure the bookmaker you choose is licensed by the governing body in the country, i.e. the UK Gambling Commission.
Which TV programmes can you bet on?
You can bet on any TV programme you choose, from Big Brother to the Masked Singer. As long as the entertainment bettings sites you visit cover the TV programme in question, there is no limit on the shows you can bet on.