In a Nutshell
- Top highlights: A well-designed website with distinctive Sky branding; option to use other Sky gambling sites with a Sky Bet account
- VIP or loyalty programme: Yes
- Other offerings: Casino, live casino, poker, bingo
This largely Leeds-run sports betting arm of Sky Betting & Gaming has complex origins that can be traced back to when BSkyB - now known as simply Sky UK - acquired the online sports betting firm Surrey Sports in 2000.
Two years later, Sky rebranded that company Sky Bet, into which other online betting companies ukbetting and totalbet were later consolidated. Sky Bet has continued to grow, such as by adding Jamie Redknapp as the face of its football betting.
The promotions are easy to reach by clicking ‘Promotions’ on the left-hand navigation tab. We found horse racing to be especially prominently represented among the sports for which promotions were available online.
Nonetheless, we have to admit to seeing a more plentiful and diverse selection of sports betting promotions on many of Sky Bet’s rival sites.
Sports Betting Types and Betting Markets
Given the massive breadth of sports that Sky broadcasts through its Sky Sports television channels, you are unlikely to be too stunned to see the wide variety in the sports represented on the Sky Bet site. The football betting offer is especially strong.
All of the major football divisions appear here, as does probably every other football division that you can even faintly remember. Things get especially exciting during a major game, for which the different betting lines can number in the hundreds.
If football isn't your thing, you can still place bets on dozens of other sports; the choice on Sky Bet's site includes these established and obscure favourites:
- American football
- Greyhound racing
- Horse racing
- UFC and MMA
One of our favourite aspects of using Sky Bet is definitely its mobile app. Available for iPhones, iPads and Android devices, the app lets you bet on all of the same sports as the main site - including the virtual sports. The many forms of betting available include in-play...
Whether you call it live betting or in-play betting, Sky Bet enables you to enjoy such betting with a range of sports much akin to the variety on Sky Sports. In fact, Sky Bet's in-play football betting might well be the best on the online gambling market.
However, given how many sports Sky Sports has the rights to broadcast live on its channels, you could be very surprised to learn that, on the Sky Bet site itself, the live streaming options are actually pretty slim - certainly compared to what other sports betting sites offer.
Software and Graphics
Whether you opt to view the site or mobile app, you will get a very similar interface decked out in the same white and royal blue that has become strongly associated with sports-based Sky brands, like - naturally - Sky Sports.
While many sports betting sites also offer other forms of online gambling such as casino and bingo games, Sky Bet leaves such pursuits to its partner brands like Sky Casino, Sky Poker and Sky Bingo - all of which have their own websites.
This allows the Sky Bet website to look pleasingly uncluttered and focused. That's before we even mention how smoothly the sports betting engine itself runs when you repeatedly click to select one bet after another and add those bets to your easy-to-find betting slip.
As we have already mentioned, Sky Bet has many partner brands in online gambling, each of which has its own website. However, once you have signed up an account with Sky Bet, you can use the same account for the likes of Sky Casino and Sky Bingo as well.
This gives you effectively the best of both worlds. You get a sports betting site that is very much focused on its intended aim without allowing other distractions to creep in; however, you can still switch between these Sky sites fairly easily and in a largely hiccup-free manner.
We also like that Sky Bet is currently among the few sports betting portals online to accept Apple Pay for deposits. Apple Pay lets you pay with your fingerprint on many recent Apple devices, although Sky Bet doesn't accept this service for making withdrawals as well.
Loyalty or VIP Programme
The closest that Sky Bet has to a loyalty programme is Sky Bet Club, although it may be more accurate to call it an ongoing offer rather than a VIP scheme.
Basically, it works by giving you free money on a weekly basis with which to bet - provided that the amount of your own betting has reached a particular minimum threshold that week. Once a free bet is given, it remains valid for about a week.
Although Sky Bet Club is available to both new and longstanding customers, failing to qualify for a free bet for two consecutive weeks will opt you out of this promotion. To rejoin it, you would have to take the initiative to opt back in.
Do you fancy some casino gaming - live or non-live? Or would you prefer some poker, bingo or Vegas games? All of those types of games are available through - respectively - Sky Live Casino, Sky Casino, Sky Poker, Sky Bingo and Sky Vegas.
You can try all of those sites without having to register any whole new account. Sky Bet also allows its users access to various online sports games including Soccer Saturday Super 6, Sky Sports Fantasy Football and Sky Sports Fantasy Six-a-Side.
Deposit and Withdrawal Methods
You are unlikely to be disappointed with the deposit methods accepted on Sky Bet:
|Payment Method||Fee||Processing Time||Minimum Deposit|
|Mastercard Credit Card||None||Instant||£5|
|Mastercard Debit Card||None||Instant||£5|
|Maestro Debit Card||None||Instant||£5|
|Visa Credit Card||None||Instant||£5|
|Visa Debit Card||None||Instant||£5|
|Visa Electron Debit Card||None||Instant||£5|
*Current as of February 2018; please check Sky Bet’s website for updates
Almost every method available for deposits can be used for withdrawals as well:
|Withdrawal Method||Fee||Processing Time||Minimum Withdrawal|
|Mastercard Credit Card||None||2-5 working days||£10|
|Mastercard Debit Card||None||2-5 working days||£10|
|Maestro Debit Card||None||2-5 working days||£10|
|Visa Credit Card||None||2-5 working days||£10|
|Visa Debit Card||None||2-5 working days||£10|
|Visa Electron Debit Card||None||2-5 working days||£10|
|PayPal||None||Up to 24 hours||£10|
*Current as of February 2018; please check Sky Bet's website for updates
We found looking up the Sky Bet customer support team's contact details on the site surprisingly arduous at first. However, getting in touch with the team is largely a case of "easy when you know how".
Once you reach the ‘Contact Us’ page in the site's ‘help & support’ section, you are given an online form through which to narrow down the categories into which your query falls. Eventually, you will be given what you need to phone, email or live chat to staff.
If you want to call the customer support staff, keep in mind that the phone lines' daily opening hours are 8 a.m. until midnight. You might not therefore always find phone support to be an option if you like to save your sports betting for late-night sessions.
Who Can Play?
Sky Bet says it accepts customers from any of these territories:
- United Kingdom
- Channel Islands
- Republic of Ireland
If you register an account in one of these territories, it will still not be possible for you to use that account outside them, due to local laws that prohibit or restrict online sports betting.
Sky Bet's Great Britain customers can rest easy, as this sports betting site is regulated and licensed by the Gambling Commission of that territory.
While Sky Bet could benefit from adding many live streaming options, in almost every other area, this online sports betting portal excels. It's well-recommended to both novices and veterans in sports betting.