Did I Get Rich Quick?

The 2018 FIFA World Cup is over, and France took the big-ass trophy home with them. But how did my personal, get-rich-quick scheme turn out?

My month long career as a betting man did not start well. I’d planned to use Betfair as my online bookie. That way, I could take advantage of some of their bonus offers for new players. But I couldn’t for the life of me manage to transfer any money to the service. Every time I tried to make a deposit from Neteller, I got a absolutely worthless error message. “Transaction failed”. But, why, Betfair? Why!? Since I had an account with Unibet that I used during the European championship in 2016, I tried to transfer money from Neteller to Unibet as well. But Unibet gave me a similar meaningless error message.

In the end, it turned out the problem was between the chair and the keyboard. When Betfair and Unibet was asking me for a Neteller authentication code, I entered the code Neteller generated when I registered my account with the site. But that was not the code Betfair and Unibet were looking for. Instead, the correct code was the Neteller two-factor authentication code. Unfortunately, I figured that out when trying to deposit money to Unibet, which meant that my entire betting NOK 1000 fund suddenly found itself on Unibet. Not a complete disaster, but I missed all the Betfair bonus offers.

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How To Get Rich Quick.

It’s only two days left until the 2018 FIFA World Cup kicks off. I planned to use the championship to get rich quick, but Norwegian law (and perhaps President Vladimir Putin himself) is fighting against me.

To prevent the entire nation from turning into compulsive gamblers, The Man has changed the law since I last gambled two years ago. Now you can’t use Norwegian credit or debit cards to deposit money to international gambling sites. It doesn’t matter if it’s a MasterCard or Visa card. As long as it’s issued by a Norwegian bank, no serious gambling site will accept it. Everything’s all fine and dandy if you want to use the national, state-owned lottery company, though. Then you can use any Norwegian credit and debit card. Because when you use the state-owned lottery, you don’t run the risk of getting a gambling problem, right? Riiight…

There are good intentions behind the no-international-gambling-allowed-laws, but do they actually help? I’ve not bothered to do any research, but I honestly doubt it, since the laws don’t really make a big difference. They don’t make it impossible for Norwegians to gamble on international gambling sites, it just makes it a little bit harder.

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Sports Betting Terms Guide.

We’re edging closer to the start of the 2018 FIFA World Cup, and with it my biannual betting bonanza. It’s a good time freshen up on the jargon with my sports betting terms guide.

As we’ve covered many times before, I’m not a betting man. It happens so rarely, in fact, that I forget what different kinds of bets and terms actually mean. As I’m preparing to get back on the wagon for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, I figured it was time to write this guide for myself. I’m writing it as I’m learning, so there might be errors! If you spot any, please let me know so I can correct them.

As with everything I write, please don’t trust it blindly. If you lose your house, wife, and kids to gambling, you’ve only got yourself to blame.

Odds

So, no, I don’t actually forget what odds are. I’m including it here because some of you might be totally new to gambling, and to explain different ways odds are presented. Odds are basically numbers telling how likely it is that an event occurs. The higher the odds, the less likely it is that a particular event occurs. But the less likely it is – the higher the odds are – the more money you’ll win. There are several ways to present odds, and how they are presented depends on which bookmaker you’re using to place your bets. We’ll cover the three most common ways here: Decimal odds are used in Australia, Canada, and in continental Europe. Fractional odds are used in the UK, while US bookmakers use their own weird format.

Here’s a table with examples (conveniently lifted from Wikipedia):

Decimal Fractional US Implied probability
1.50 1/2 -200 1 in 1.5 = 67%
2.00 Evs (1/1) +100 1 in 2 = 50%
2.50 6/4 +150 1 in 2.5 = 40%
3.00 2/1 +200 1 in 3 = 33%

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The Final Bet.

On Sunday evening, Portugal beat France to take home the UEFA Euro 2016 Championship title. I didn’t watch the match, but from the headlines I’ve read, it was a match that led to more yawns than celebrations of football as splendid entertainment. After the match, French football “fans” did their best to burn down Paris, and Philippe Wojazer shot the awesome picture I’ve shamelessly used without permission above.

But this entry is not about riots, football or the poo-lice throwing tear gas canisters, it’s about my bi-yearly betting spree. How did I fare this year? Well, according to my Bettin.gs profile I didn’t have much luck. After I revealed my bullet proof way to get rich quickTM three weeks ago, I lost 11 bets and only won 4. Now that the championship is over, I’m looking at a loss of NOK 189 (~$22).

But that number isn’t entirely correct. Thanks to Unibet‘s bonus trickery, and their many attempts to lure their players into spending more money than they have, I’m actually NOK 15 ($2) in the black! That won’t buy me anything anywhere, but I’m still in the black. But what to do with the money? I can’t just let the NOK 515 (~$60) stay untouched in my Unibet account, and transferring them back into my bank account would probably cost me the entire profit in transfer fees.

Since the European championship is over, I’m not placing any more bets this year. But there are other options on Unibet for people who want to part ways with their hard earned cash, and one of the most effective ones is probably the roulette table. One of the items on my infamous list of 100 things to do before I croak is item number 49: Try my luck at the roulette table. I went to Las Vegas in 2012, but since I’m a risk averse pussy, I never sat down at one of the many, many tables in the city.

But now is the time to strike item number 49 off the list! Should I put everything on red? Or black? Oh, man, the pressure!

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What’s the Chance of That?

We’re nine days into the UEFA Euro 2016 Championship, and it’s time for a short betting retrospective. According to my bettin.gs profile, I’m currently looking at a 68 NOK (~$8) profit. While it isn’t an impressive amount – it’ll buy me a beer at a half-posh restaurant in downtown Oslo – it’s still a profit. It’s also a 5.54% return of investment, which is a hell of a lot more than you get with the money in the bank.

This year’s betting adventure didn’t start out too well, with three quick losses in a row. The money I put on the first bet – Romania to beat France in the opening match – was refunded, though, courtesy Unibet, and their “one bet without risk”-campaign. Then I had a win on low-paying odds, and another loss because Portugal’s superstar Cristiano Ronaldo can’t hit a barn door from a distance of 11 meters. But he is pretty good at participating in taking selfies on the field.

Including the last loss, I’d placed bets based partly on the odds, partly on my female intuition, and partly on gut feeling. Then I realized that my female intuition and gut feeling didn’t matter. I know absolutely nothing about football. Placing bets on high-paying, thus low possibility and risky odds, was plain stupid as long as I didn’t have any knowledge about the teams, players, referees, the pitch, and the weather to know something that would make it more possible than the odds indicated that I’d win a particular bet. Besides, the people deciding the odds know everything there is to know about what can influence the chance of a win or a loss – that is, after all, how they make their living.

So the question wasn’t whether or not I thought I’d win a bet, the question was what kind of risk I was willing to take.

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