Ladbrokes is a British gambling institution founded by Schwind and Pennington in 1886, originally as a commission agents for horses trained at Ladbroke Hall in Warwickshire. The Ladbrokes name was officially adopted in 1892 when the firm moved to London and Arthur Bendir joined the partnership, and their growth has been steady throughout since a relatively small beginning. In 2018 GVC plc acquired Ladbrokes Coral, making them one of the biggest global bookmakers across the world.
The name is synonymous with gambling has gone on to become one of the leading brands in the industry. They remain the market leader in retail bookmaking in the UK, Ireland and Belgium as well as a major player in the online betting sector (which offers a vast array of sports betting possibilities).
Sports markets available
As you would expect from a bookmaker so entrenched in the fabric of gambling history, Ladbrokes offer a mammoth choice in sports betting. There is an A-Z list of markets available covering all major sports, with in-depth markets for each and niche sports such as chess, speedway and cycling. You will also find a growing esports offering, and Ladbrokes are also all over the novelty markets such as politics and entertainment. In alignment with many of their rivals Ladbrokes also offer virtual sports (greyhoung racing, football, horseracing) and live streaming. We rate their sportsbook very highly because it has something for everyone, and the app has improved much over the last year of two (with big investments made to try and improve the punter experience from a rather glitchy past).
Range of racing markets available
Ladbrokes’ wealth of knowledge in horse racing shows and it ranks as one of the best firms for understanding the market. It features international race meetings as well as focuing on the British and Irish racing scene (virtual racing is also available). There is a lot going on and a multitude of racing features all easily accessible from the site and the app. The ‘Build a Racecard’ feature is hugely popular and allows the punter to select any race from either an international or UK & Irish meeting and focus on a bespoke card of races that you want to concentrate on. Here you can also tweak by a particular odds range, form, course winner or distance making your selections easier. Racing information is top-notch and is closely linked to Racing Post insights. Ladbrokes also offer one of the best In-Play and Live Streaming services on the market for British & Irish racing. In the past Ladbrokes were quite opinionated, especially in the ante-post arena, but they tend to avoid going out on a limb these days. The original betting shop model means they have a large number of recreational, smaller stakes punter, and they look after their requirements very well with a terrific range of horse racing prices.
Price competitiveness & special offers
Ladbrokes expertise in the market means that they are able to offer strong odds throughout their markets but particularly horse racing – although it has to be said that there is room for improvement in some of the most popular sports (certainly in relation to more internet based bookmakers like Bet365). Their best odds guaranteed feature means that if an SP returns a bigger price than your original prices, they will pay you the bigger price and boost the price further. The Ladbrokes Tote offering also includes products such as totePlacepot, Scoop6 and totePlacepot. There are also plenty of boosts and special offers to entice both the novice and professional punter and this impressive list can be found here, but includes meeting specific offers, odds boosts on ITV races and ‘Getaprice’, 10 free spins and specials. The Ladbrokes new customer offers £20 in free bets for a £5 stake which is one of the best introductory offers on the market. There is also an ‘Exchange’ tab which although in no way competes with Betfair has 20+ sports markets and an impressive number of competitions and leagues on offer (took over from betdaq as the main rival to betfair, but still struggles with liquidity issues).
Website, mobile & app, account & ease of use
Ladbrokes have finally invested heavily here (after struggling to compete with similar rivals for many years), and the user experience across the platforms (as you would expect) is now excellent. With their familiar red & white branding, the website is packed full of great features and plenty of tools and resources which make the user experience fantastic. It is surprisingly clean, and it is easy to locate the sports market of choice, and ‘bet slip’ and ‘my bets’ tabs to keep you on track. Navigation is logical despite a lot of content and page transitions and loading times are quick. We experienced the same reliable functionality via the mobile app too. Account sign-up is simple, safe and secure. Overall, one of the best in our opinion, and Beth. Bet subscribers can bet here with confidence.
Account limitations, accepted stakes & transactions
Making deposits and withdrawals is made easy with Ladbrokes, and they offer the customer a large number of options to make playing smoother and easier. You can use the major debit cards and also ApplePay, PayPal, Neteller and Skrill. Once you have opened the account all the information you need is displayed and is clear and easy to follow. For withdrawals there are different times and possible fees depending on the method. Getting funds back to the source can also come with a fee and times will differ depending on the method again. There are reports that transfers back to some banks are a little sticky, but in our opinion, Ladbrokes are transparent and reliable.
With regard to accepted stakes, Ladbrokes are one of the strongest layers on the internet and are willing to lay horses to much bigger sums than most of their rivals. Especially on the busy Saturday racing, or big Festivals like Cheltenham or Royal Ascot, they are the online bookmaker to go to for a decent sized wager. Obviously, any punter regularly beating the SP, is going to find his bet size restricted, but Ladbrokes in our experience are more willing to give an account a fair run before doing so.
As one of the longest standing and established bookmakers in the industry, punters can be assured that all the relevant checks and balances are in place that enable a fair and enjoyable betting experience. All information is encrypted, and they employ the latest in secure technology across all platforms which means your data is secure. Ladbrokes holds a dual license with the UK Gambling Commission and the Gibraltar government, and are regulated by the operating standards required. Ladbrokes also adhere to the guidelines regarding responsible gambling and are affiliated with all leading agencies that help prevent and support those struggling with addiction. Across the platforms users can also set gambling control measures such as setting deposit and betting limits through the ‘My account’ section. Support services are easily accessible via the homepage header where you will find clear guidelines and information.
Ladbrokes are a major player and employ a huge team dedicated to customer service. There are many resources available on the website and information is broken down into logical help sections. The FAQ section is really comprehensive, and they offer free support via phone & email 24/7. We have found issue response time to be generally very good, however more urgent queries are dealt with quicker via live chat. All agents were friendly and had great knowledge of the site, products and account service issues.
There can be no doubt that, despite stiff competition in recent years, Ladbrokes fully deserves its reputation as one of the best operators in the business. The user friendly platform, resources available and sheer number of markets and submarkets puts them at the very top of the pile. They are highly reputable and continue to evolve striving for better on/offline services. Merging with old rivals Coral has made them a force to be reckoned with as they use their industry expertise to bring punters a dynamic, fair and cutting edge gaming.
For Beth subscribers
Beth.bet gives on average 13 winning predictions per day for Ladbrokes (based on default settings, which each user can set up based on his/her own strategy and therefore influences the daily number of recommendations).
PRO’s – Wealth of Industry expertise, trustworthy, in-depth knowledge of racing markets, special betting offers & incentives, excellent website and mobile app.
CON’s – Top sports market odds could be punchier, and their pricing is not especially aggressive on midweek horse racing (with their old betting shop mindset of not needing to be top price to get the turnover).