The rise of darts’ popularity in recent years has been staggering. Once dismissed as a mere pub game, it’s now one of the biggest televised sports in Britain, with the main events – like the World Darts Championship – having become highlights of the sports calendar. Of course, all this has led to a significant rise in the popularity of darts betting too. While it’s not quite up there with the likes of football and horse racing, it’s still a massive market… and one which can be extremely fun to bet on!
The mechanics of how you should do so differ from those of the aforementioned sports, so – if you’re not an experienced darts bettor – this guide will serve as a perfect introduction. We’ll explain where to get your darts odds, take you through the main events to bet on, and give you some expert tips on how to turn a long term profit.
Given that darts has essentially become a mainstream sport, it should come as no surprise to learn that most sportsbooks – large and small – will offer darts betting nowadays. The actual quality of their offerings varies wildly, though, whether relating to special offers, available markets, or simple darts betting odds.
Fortunately for you, we’ve tested all of the best offers and experiences for darts bettors. We therefore have no trouble at all in recommending these as the best darts betting sites on the market right now.
Having only been founded in 2000, the speed of Bet365’s meteoric rise to the top of the sports betting scene has been staggering. While football has always been their priority, they’ve still done a great job of consistently providing for fans of other sports too, including darts.
Bet365 cover every major darts contest, and do so with a massive range of markets. Aside from simple Match Winner, you can get darts betting odds on Most 180’s, Set Winners, and even whether there will be a 9-darter. They provide in-play betting, and – crucially – live streaming of ongoing matches, including those at the World Championship. Go to Bet365 >>
William Hill have long been one of the most prestigious names on the British betting scene. They’ve managed to stay relevant over the decades not only through the sheer quality of their offering, but through excellent sponsorship deals too.
As anyone who’s watched the World Darts Championship will surely know, William Hill are the primary sponsors of the biggest darts event on the calendar. This already gives an indication of how seriously they take darts betting, but that commitment becomes even more apparent on the actual sportsbook. You can bet on the likes of Most Trebles and correct score, and William Hill are constantly offering Enhanced Odds on some intriguing multiples markets. Go to William Hill >>
While not quite as well known as the other brands on our list, Betfred are still a massive sportsbook in their own right. Horse racing and football – probably in that order – are their biggest focuses, but they still remain one of the best darts betting sites around too.
There’s an extremely deep darts betting section within the Betfred sportsbook, which covers all the major contests, as you’d expect. Betfred also provide you with a little analysis for all the major matchups, to help guide you r bets, which is tremendously helpful if you’re a newcomer to darts. There’s a solid selection of bet types too, including Handicaps, and live streaming is available for PDC events. Go to Betfred >>
Paddy Power are most famous for their innovative, cheeky marketing campaigns, for which they should be applauded. Make no mistake, though; they also execute the fundamentals of sports betting brilliantly.
We’re pleased to say this is the case with their darts betting section too, which contains every feature you could ask for. Along with an excellent array of markets and bet types, you can also place in-play bets, and watch ongoing matches for free via live streaming. Paddy Power also currently have the best range of special offers for darts, with Power Prices (i.e. enhanced odds), a variety of specials, and even a Darts Power Up promotion (granting you a daily odds boost for darts) all available. Go to Paddy Power >>
While there are some similarities between all sports wagering – like balancing risk and reward, and prioritising value – darts betting really is its own unique area. In order to start actually betting on darts, the first thing you need to understand is what your options are. Here’s a quick and easy introduction to the main types of darts betting odds.
This is the most basic bet type of all, and works in the same way as it does in other sports. You’re ignoring what the score will be, how long the match will go, and so on… and simply betting on who you think is going to win in the end!
While you might occasionally get a traditional ‘1×2’ split here – as in football – draws are normally not an option in the major tournaments. Thus, you have only two options to choose from, making it an extremely straightforward wager.
Technically, you’re still picking a winner here… but, you’re making it so that the match starts with a fake score; a ‘handicap’. That starting score can be either positive or negative, depending on whether you want to back the favourite or underdog.
Let’s say van Gerwen is playing Wade, in a best-of-9-legs match. van Gerwen would be an obvious favourite here, so his match winner odds would be low. If you still want to bet on him, though, you could take van Gerwen on a -2.5 leg handicap at better odds. This would mean that – in your bet – van Gerwen would need to win by at least three legs for your wager to triumph.
This one is pretty self-explanatory: you’re simply betting on who will win a particular leg, with the most popular leg to bet on being the first. Make sure you know who’s throwing first in whichever leg you’re betting on, as that player will always carry an advantage.
In longer matches – like those in the later stages of the World Championship – Set Winner bets are more common in darts betting. These work in the same way, though… only using sets instead of legs!
A 180 (three treble 20’s) is the maximum amount you can score with three darts, and is what players will almost exclusively target until they get down to a finish. While Most 180’s might seem like a novelty bet type, therefore, it’s actually anything but. If their finishing doesn’t let them down, the player with the higher scoring average will usually come out on top in a match. And, by betting on the most 180’s, you’re basically betting on the better scorer. Total 180’s is a slightly more random bet, which will usually be presented as an over/under. In a short 9-leg match, for example, the Total 180’s might be set at 2.5. You’ll then pick over or under that number, depending on how many combined 180’s you expect the two players to hit.
In a standard game of 501, nine darts is the fewest you can possibly throw to win a leg. It is incredibly hard to do, even for the very top players, making it one of the most exciting sights in the sport. That also, however… makes it a very tough thing to bet on!
9 Dart Finish is the definition of a long shot bet. You’ll certainly get good odds on it… but you should probably keep your stakes nice and low regardless!
Along with Match Winner, this is probably the most common type of darts betting odds you’ll find. Pleasingly, it’s also one of the most straightforward!
As the name suggests, with these wagers you’re simply taking a player to win a given competition. One common (and reliable) example from recent years would be van Gerwen to win the World Darts Championship. You’ll find a nice range of odds here, from favourites to long shots.
Do be aware, though, that these are pretty tricky bets to win. The bigger tournaments will regularly see around 100 players duking it out, with even the best still needing to win seven separate matches to take the title.
The darts calendar is long, and it’s busy. In fact, with so many tournaments taking place throughout the year, it can be genuinely hard to keep track of them all! If you’re just getting started in darts betting, though, these are the events you should be targeting.
This is the big one. Held at the famous Alexander Palace in London each year, the World Darts Championship is by far the most popular darts tournament. In fact, its unique timing – starting in mid-December, and finishing on New Year’s Day – has made it a cornerstone of many people’s celebrations in the festive period!
Whether it’s the sheer prestige of the event… or the hefty £500,000 prize pot for the winner, every major darts player attends this competition. If you’re new to betting on darts, the Darts World Championship odds are the perfect place to start.
Starting shortly after the World Darts Championship, usually in mid-February, Premier League Darts is arguably the second-biggest event on the calendar. It’s also unique in a few different ways.
Firstly, rather than being a knockout format like the World Championship, it’s a league table-based competition. Contestants will play a hefty 16 matches in all, on a weekly basis. Those matches are relatively short, being only best-of-12 legs in the first phase, best-of-14 in the second, and best-of-21 in the final. Also, rather than being played at one venue, the Premier League moves to a different location in the UK, Ireland, and northern Europe each week.
This is one of the bigger events on the calendar, in terms of both its length and the size of its field. Its intriguing format has led to it being called ‘the Darts FA Cup’.
As with the football FA Cup, players are ranked heading into the tournament, with the lower-ranked contestants duking it out in the first couple of rounds, and the higher seeds added in later. This all happens at a furious pace, with the whole tournament taking only three days to complete, usually in early March. Since its inception, the UK Open has been held at the Butlin’s holiday camp, in Somerset.
The World Matchplay is another excellent place to go searching for PDC odds. Held in the classic seaside destination of Blackpool each July, this contest – like many others – has been dominated by Phil Taylor, who’s won 16 of the 23 editions thus far.
It’s a mid-length tournament, lasting around one week, and – like the Premier League – is played in a legs format, rather than as sets. Only 32 players compete each year, making it one of the most exclusive major contests on the calendar, and the winner takes home a healthy £150,000 in prize money.
Another major event on the PDC’s schedule, the World Grand Prix lasts for around one week, and usually takes place in late September or early October. It also has a couple of things which separate it from every other contest on this list.
For starters, it’s the only one held exclusively outside the UK, having taken place in Dublin ever since 2001. There’s also a fascinating twist on the regular darts format. In addition to finishing with a double, players must also start each leg with a double too, making everything that little bit harder for them!
As noted earlier in our darts betting tips special, you have plenty of choices when it comes to picking a bookie. You can simply go with one of our chosen few. If you want to choose a sportsbook for yourself, though, these are the most important things to look for.
As with all sports, there are no ‘sure things’ in darts, and therefore no guarantee that you’re going to make money. Follow these darts betting tips, though, and you’ll greatly increase your chances.
The colossal rise in the popularity of televised darts has, inevitably, led to a parallel rise in the popularity of darts betting. If you’re already a fan of watching darts, we’d highly recommend that you try betting on it too, to add a little extra excitement to the experience!
If you do intend to do so, don’t go in blind. Instead, pick the right bookie using our identified criteria, follow the betting tips we outlined earlier, and hone in on the biggest tournaments using our ‘Popular Darts Events’ guide. Above all, remember to be smart and sensible in your darts betting… and, of course, to have fun along the way!