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The Pools Betting Review UK 2021 – Markets, Features, Pros & Cons Revealed

  • Large number of pool betting sports
  • Virtual sports markets found
  • Huge jackpots to be won
18+, UK only. Deposit and place a £20 cash bet at single or accumulated odds of 1/1 or greater and we will give you £15 in free bets. Applies to first cash bet only. Free bets credited as 3 x £5 bets on Football, Horse Racing & Virtual. Cashed out, Void or 'Draw No Bet' wagers do not qualify for this promotion. Free bets are credited upon qualifying first bet settlement. 7-day free bet expiry. Available once per customer. Full T&Cs apply.'
18+, UK only. Deposit and place a £20 cash bet at single or accumulated odds of 1/1 or greater and we will give you £15 in free bets. Applies to first cash bet only. Free bets credited as 3 x £5 bets on Football, Horse Racing & Virtual. Cashed out, Void or 'Draw No Bet' wagers do not qualify for this promotion. Free bets are credited upon qualifying first bet settlement. 7-day free bet expiry. Available once per customer. Full T&Cs apply.'

Overview

Betting on the football pools was all the rage in the seventies and eighties but declined after the launch of the National Lottery in 1994. It never truly went away though and in 2018 The Football Pools company targeted a whole new generation of punters, adding the pools casino and the pools sportsbook for the first time.

So just what is the pools betting site? The pools review will outline everything punters can expect from the pools.com sportsbook, covering everything from the the pools welcome offer, existing customer bonuses, ways to bet, responsible gambling measures and much more!

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  • Large number of pool betting sports
  • Virtual sports markets found
  • Huge jackpots to be won
18+, UK only. Deposit and place a £20 cash bet at single or accumulated odds of 1/1 or greater and we will give you £15 in free bets. Applies to first cash bet only. Free bets credited as 3 x £5 bets on Football, Horse Racing & Virtual. Cashed out, Void or 'Draw No Bet' wagers do not qualify for this promotion. Free bets are credited upon qualifying first bet settlement. 7-day free bet expiry. Available once per customer. Full T&Cs apply.'

What is The Pools?

thepoolsThe Football Pools works like a lottery in that punters compete for a prize “pool” by predicting results of British league football matches. Long before the internet, people used to fill in paper betting slips every week that were often collected at their door.

However, as times changed the Football Pools moved online and in 2017 the company was bought by a private equity firm, with a sportsbook swiftly following in 2018 under the separate name of thepools.com. The pools betting site offers a sportsbook, casino and traditional pools betting, but for the purpose of this pools review, we will be concentrating solely on the sportsbook.

Is The Pools Safe?

At SafeBettingSites we only promote safe and regulated bookies and the fact that the pools betting site is licensed and regulated in Great Britain by the Gambling Commission is an excellent indicator of their reliability.

In terms of security measures, Secure Socket Layer (SSL) encryption technology is used at the pools betting site to keep personal details safe. And their privacy and cookies policies are there for all to see on the website, to reassure punters that not only is their personal information safe but it is being used in the correct way.

New customers may also be required to upload additional identification documents such as a passport and utility bill, if for example they have moved house recently, which is a reassuring sign that the pools betting site is on the ball when it comes to who is registering with them.

Responsible Gambling

The responsible gambling section is comprehensive and we particularly like the fact that it includes a number of questions such as “Do you regularly gamble alone for long periods?” so punters can be encouraged to self-diagnose problematic gambling habits.

The pools betting site also offers a number of tools to help punters gamble responsibly, including daily, weekly and monthly deposit limits, session time limits, along with time out and self-exclusion options.

Punters are also offered support through GAMSTOP and also the Gamcare helpline and website if they think that their gambling is becoming an issue.

The Pools Sign Up Offers

With so much competition out there, a good welcome offer is key to attracting punters, and the pools signup offer certainly delivers on this score, offering a generous £15 in free bets to new customers.

You just need to deposit and wager £20 on a single or accumulator bet at odds of EVS or greater, and once the bet has been settled you will be credited with three £5 bets – one for football, one for racing and one for virtual games.

Bonus funds expire after 7 days which is par for the course among online bookmakers, and don’t forget that if you’re lucky enough to win any of your free bet wagers, you will only receive the win part of the bet and not the value of the initial free bet, which again is standard practice among online bookies.

There’s also a welcome offer for casino players at the pools of free spins, with the table below outlining exactly what you can expect from both pools welcome offers.

The Pools offer Offer description Wager requirement Min qualify odds Offer expiry Min deposit
Free Bet Bet £20, get £15 None EVs 7 days £20
The Pools Casino Bet £10, get 100 free spins None n/a 7 days £10

It’s not just new customers having all the fun though, the pools know that it’s important to keep your existing punters sweet as well. The pools betting site has some really tasty ongoing promotions, with free bets on UK racing, accumulator bonuses, a loyalty club and much more!

So let’s take a closer look at the current promotions available to those already registered at thepools.com, and don’t forget to check the exact terms and conditions for each offer:

  • Racing Free Bets – Place a cash bet of at least £20 on a particular race and if the qualifying conditions for that race are met, such as a certain horse winning or the favourite emerging victorious, you will receive a £5 free bet which can be used on any sport within the next seven days. And if you stake £10 you will receive a £2 free bet.
  • Loyalty Club – For every 10 bets you wager at £5 with minimum odds of EVS you will receive a £5 free bet to be used on any sport within the next seven days. Single horse racing bets, cashed out bets and void bets do not count towards this promotion.
  • Acca Boost – Place a pre-match acca of at least £10 on any sport where each selection has minimum odds of 1/3 or greater and get up to a 50% cash bonus boost to your winnings. The bonus depends on how many legs there are in your acca, with 5 legs netting you a 5% bonus, 6 legs bagging you a 10% increase on your winnings, working all the way up to a whopping 50% bonus for 12 winning selections.
  • Extra Place Races – Every day on the pools betting site there will be at least a couple of races with extra places on offer when you place an each-way bet. Generally it will be four places instead of three but for the bigger races it could be five, even six places .
  • Best Odds Guaranteed – Best odds guaranteed is available on all UK & Irish horse racing at the pools. This means that regardless of when you placed your bet, winnings will be paid out at the starting price, if it was greater. This type of promotion is available at many betting sites today. Be sure to check out the best bookies for best odds guaranteed.

The Pools Review

At SafeBettingSites.com we always take the time to test every aspect of a betting site and we know what’s important to punters because we’re punters ourselves.

So how does the pools betting site score in the areas that are most important? Let’s take a closer look.

Which Sports Can I Bet On With The Pools?

You can bet on 28 different sports at the pools betting site including all the usual favourites, less well-known sports such as Pool, Hurling and Gaelic Football and the rapidly-growing phenomenon that is Esports. You can also have a punt on the winner of the next General Election, 2021’s Sports Personality of the Year, or even the winner of Strictly Come Dancing!

All sports are conveniently listed in alphabetical order down the left-hand side of the web page, or if you’re looking at the app it’s just as easy to access them by tapping the menu button at the bottom of the screen.

The Pools Odds & Value

An extensive comparison of the odds at thepools.com and those on offer at a number of other bookmakers has shown that the pools betting site compares well to other sites, without their odds ever being best in class in any particular sport.

So, we can assure punters that you can bet with confidence on thepools.com, knowing that you are rarely missing out on much better odds elsewhere.

Bet Limits

At the pools sportsbook you can place a bet for as little as £0.10, with maximum bets varying depending on the sport and the type of wager.

The maximum amount that can be won in a 24-hour period is £50,000, which is less than many of the more established bookies. We’re confident this will do for the vast majority of punters but may put off the big-money punters or those looking for a massive acca payday!

Create A Bet

Create a Bet is a nice option if you want to construct your own multiple bets on a particular football match. After you’ve clicked on a certain game you will see the Create a Bet option at the top and once you have clicked on it you will be able to add different markets such as match result, total goals and first goalscorer to your accumulator, giving you total control over what you bet on.

In-Play Betting

Fans of In-Play betting are well served by the pools betting site, with a massive range of in-running markets on offer covering all the major sports, most of the minor ones and Esports too. And the In-Play button is easily found at the top of the desktop site or the bottom of the app.

Live Streaming

The Pools betting site does not have a live streaming service at the time of writing, but if you click on a major football match, you will always find up-to-date information in the In-Play section on what’s happened in the game, so you can make the best possible betting decisions.

The Pools Cash Out Feature

Full and partial cash outs are available on the majority of markets, meaning punters can settle their bets before completion. To cash out you need to find the open bets section, which you can access by clicking on your name on the desktop site or tapping your balance on the app.

From there you need to click on open bets and then a full or partial cash out button will appear next to the wagers that qualify. Bear in mind though that not all bets are eligible for the cash out option.

Customer Service

Customers can communicate with the pools.com customer service team via email, live chat and even in writing. The live chat feature is certainly the quickest way to reach someone at the site, with agents becoming active in seconds in most cases.

Support is not available 24/7 but runs from 8:30am to 10:00pm Monday to Saturday and 12pm – 10pm on Sunday. And a very detailed FAQ page is also available on the site.

How To Get Started At The Pools

Registering a new account and depositing for the first time is a quick and easy process, and even if supplementary identification is required before registration can be completed, the time between sending it and your account being up and running is generally no more than four hours.

The following step by step guide explains how you can sign up for the pools.com sportsbook.

Step 1: Visit The Pools

Before you can start the sign-up process, the first thing to do is choose which platform you will use. The desktop site thepools.com is the most convenient for registering a new account. However, their sportsbook can also be accessed on the app and mobile site.

Step 2: Sign Up

Click or tap on the “SIGN UP” button which is located in the top-right hand corner of the page, enter your email address and pick a password. At this stage you can also choose to receive exclusive customer bonuses by email, SMS or Phone.

Clicking on Next automatically accepts the T’s & Cs, privacy and cookie policies, which saves a click or two! You will then need to add your full name and date of birth on the second page, click next again and pick a username, add a phone number and input your address to complete the process.

 

the pools betting

Step 3: Deposit Funds

Once your account is up and running, log in and click on the green deposit button at the top of the screen. Enter your card details and deposit amount and then you will be good to go! You will also be prompted at the bottom of the screen to add a deposit limit if required.

Conveniently the site will also remember your payment method meaning that any subsequent deposits will just require you to input your card’s security number.

the pools sports

Step 4: Place Bets

Now you can do what you came here for and get some bets on, and don’t forget your first wager of £20 or more at EVs or better will be rewarded with £15 worth of free bets!

Check out the available markets in the sport you are interested in betting on and when you click on a price it will be added automatically to the bet slip on the right-hand side of the screen on the desktop site or at the bottom of the app.

Once you’re happy with the bets in your betslip you can add individual stakes to each one or check out the multiple options if you have more than one selection. And for each bet you will be able to see your potential winnings alongside.

the pools sign up

Step 5: Withdraw Winnings

If you’ve made a successful bet and you want to get your hands on the winnings rather than leaving them in your account for future wagers, click on your name at the top right of the screen on the desktop site or tap your balance if you are in the app and then click on withdraw.

Once you’re there you just need to select your chosen payment method, enter the withdrawal amount and then you’re all set. Withdrawals will take anywhere between 1-3 working days, depending on the method selected.

The Pools App

These days any betting site worth a dime should have a mobile app, so it’s a positive sign that the pools app is a good one! The colour scheme is a nice combination of navy blue, black and white and there’s a nifty carousel at the top to remind you about the latest offers.

The user experience is a pleasant one with the biggest in-play markets available at the time front and centre on the main page. However, if you want to find another sport it’s really easy to just tap the menu icon at the bottom of the screen and all the sports will appear in alphabetical order for you to tap on and find your preferred markets.

And once you’re there you just need to tap on a price and it will be automatically added to your betslip, which is accessible by tapping the betslip icon at the bottom of the screen.

Available on iOS and Android devices, the app can be found via the Apple and Google Play stores, but if you don’t want to download the app the pools betting site works just fine on mobile browsers.

The Pools Bonus Code

There’s no need to input a bonus code to unlock the pools betting site’s welcome offer, but many of the UK’s leading betting sites do make use of promo codes:

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The Pools Payment Methods

British punters are unable to use credit cards to deposit into their betting accounts, so Visa, Visa Electron, Maestro and Mastercard debit and prepaid cards are the only payment methods accepted on the pools betting site.

You can deposit a minimum of £5 and punters will be pleased to know that there are no fees charged to deposit or withdraw funds. And the table below provides a breakdown of your payment options on the pools betting site.

Banking method Fees Min Deposit Min Withdrawal Withdrawal times
Debit Card none £5 £10 1-3 days

The Pools Pros & Cons

There are certainly pros and cons to wagering with the pools betting site and based on our extensive research we can confidently outline what we like about the pools.com site and perhaps more importantly, what we don’t like!

What We Like:

  • Existing Customer Offers – The pools betting site has an impressive array of offers for their existing customers, including free bets, loyalty bonuses, acca boosts, extra place races and best odds guaranteed.
  • Mobile Betting – Placing bets on your smartphone or tablet is a breeze thanks to a quick, easy to use and easy on the eye app.
  • Responsible Gaming – All the necessary gambling controls are present and correct but Including links to the Gamstop and Gamcare sites and encouraging punters to look for signs of problem gambling  are also great ideas. 

What We Don’t Like:

  • Welcome Offer Restrictions – The offer for new players is generous, but we don’t like the fact that your three £5 free bets have to be used on a football, horse racing and virtual market, instead of the flexibility offered by most other sites.
  • No Live Streaming – The lack of live streaming is most noticeable when you’re betting on horse racing, given that almost all of the major betting sites in the UK offer that service.
  • Limited Payment Methods – With no option to use Neteller, Skrill or Paysafecard, punters are limited to their debit and prepaid cards when it comes to deposits. 

Bottom Line on The Pools

As one of the new kids on the betting block, thepools.com needed to make a positive impression, and in our opinion that’s just what they’ve done with a user-friendly website and app, a huge number of sporting markets, a decent welcome offer and a fantastic array of existing customer promotions.

The pools also scores highly when it comes to customer service and security, with the only disappointments being relatively minor ones related to the lack of live streaming options, limited deposit methods and the restrictions on how you spend your welcome bonus.

Overall we’re happy to recommend the pools betting site to any punter and we suggest you go check it out for yourself – good luck!

The Pools Betting FAQs

When was The Pools launched?

Their parent company the Football Pools has been around for a number of years but the pools sportsbook was only launched in 2018.

Is The Pools safe?

Yes. The pools is licensed and regulated by the UK Gambling Commission and should be regarded as 100% trustworthy. Security and encryption measures are also in place to protect customer details at all times.

Which payment methods are available at The Pools?

The only deposit methods available are Visa, Visa Electron, Maestro and Mastercard debit and prepaid cards.

Is there a Pools bonus for new customers?

Yes. The main sportsbook bonus is bet £20 get £15, with a casino bonus of bet £10, get 100 spins, but don’t forget to check the individual Ts & Cs.

Is live streaming available at The Pools?

Live streaming is not available at the time of writing, but live updates of major events is one aspect of the in-play feature.

About Lee Bassin

Lee Bassin is a sports betting and strategy specialist with experience writing for a number of publications during a 20-year career. An expert in football and golf, Lee also has a passion for American sport, particularly the NBA and NFL.

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