888 Sport Review
Although probably better known for their casino operation, 888 actually run one of the biggest online only sportsbooks in the UK, cleverly named 888Sport.
This sportsbook breaks away from the more traditional bookies with an alternative layout and range of promotions, plus a selection of markets that carry an international appeal. If you are looking for something different to mix in with your regulars then this is a great bookie for you.
Full live betting and streaming is available with cash out and excellent news and results features too. A great range of payment options are on hand and social media engagement with their customers is plucky and fun. There isn't a single sport or market that 888 are not good for.
- Modern Alternative to Old High Street Brands – Taking a slightly different direction in every sense.
- International Pedigree – Boldly going where most other bookies don’t bother.
- Live Betting Package – The blog, stats tool, results service, cash out and streaming amount to a great in-play offering.
Market range and depth are very good with 888 Sport.
They have been in the business long enough to know what range their UK customers want.
The international pedigree shines through too with some markets available that are hard to bet on elsewhere such as floorball, surfing, and trotting.
More popular sports such as football enjoy global coverage that explores even the minor leagues and reserve teams, while American sports - especially basketball and ice hockey - are also well stocked.
Rugby league and Aussie rules are two other sports with a healthy roster of available fixtures.
Pre-event and in play markets are as big as you would expect from a bookie of this size with well over 100 lines available for a typical European football game, and over 340+ for top flight UK fixtures.
I don’t think I have seen anyone else get as high as that and 888 push consistently in other sports categories too, although tennis seems to have been given the cold shoulder for some reason.
Non-sport and specials markets are a little hit and miss. UK and International politics are covered to a basic level as are entertainment awards and TV specials, but in general this is more of a sportsbook.
You are unlikely to find any comedy bets here.
Specials markets within sports, such as predicting next managers, transfers, etc, are well covered however.
Odds & Offers
The raw odds at 888 are generally fairly average, but they are certainly stable enough to be there or thereabouts and you won't get ripped off, and combined with some cracking regular enhanced odds, money back and free bet offers there is certainly value to be found at this bookie. If you are backing outright markets without an offer you may be better off elsewhere, it depends, but 888 are worth having in any betting portfolio for sure.
There was a bet request feature called #marketmaker allowing customers to ask for odds on anything, although depth of market is excellent at 888 which may explain why it has gone quiet. Worth a try if you are struggling to find what you want, though.
Typical enhanced odds promotions such as fixed odds accumulators and offers like 'Messi to score and Barca to win 3/1' for example are less common with 888. This bookie tends to prefer money back, profit boost and free bet promotions. In many ways this is actually preferable, enhanced odds offers often tempt you into betting on an outcome that you wouldn't otherwise have bet on whereas the free bet and money back deals are widely applicable allowing you to back the markets you want to wager on.
Horse racing enthusiasts can enjoy best odds guaranteed on all UK and Irish races from 888 along with full streaming coverage and plenty of non-runner and acca saver deals too.
Odds are available in fractional, decimal and American formats, and this is changed at the bottom of each page.
Style of the Site
When it comes to their look and interface, 888 are one of those love / hate bookies. The bright orange colour scheme is synonymous with all 888 Sport products and goes some way towards explaining their shouty casino style reputation. To their credit though the flashy graphics and distractions have been kept to a minimum, with most offers and adverts being contained to the appropriate section of the site.
There is a professional feel to all of 888’s features in spite of the slightly obnoxious colour scheme, and they have certainly used the Kambi platform the site is built on to their best advantage. Quick links on the home page display popular events, main events of the day are scattered across the remaining screen space and top offers are clear.
The sports list is easy to use, although they have chosen to list a handful of popular sports at the top before listing the rest A-Z which is momentarily confusing. They do all show the current number of available events though, so you are made instantly aware of any busy markets.
Accessing live scores, results and stats is done via the grandly titled Players Lounge, which is a thorough detailed betting aid that is great to use especially alongside live betting. The blog/news section accompanies this feature nicely.
Using the Interface
Unlike most online bookies the 888 homepage is designed to provide a quick overview for punters to browse, so to get to anything else you will have to navigate the site. It’s a good job then that this is so easy.
Once a sport category is chosen you are in for a treat as far as usability goes. It goes without saying that the site moves at speed, but the interface layout and design is so spacious and clear while simultaneously offering more options and information than most other sites at every stage.
For example, your initial choice within any category is to view Live/Upcoming, Outrights, or All Fixtures. Then, you can view the fixtures by date broken into blocks of four which really helps the eye scan the page, and match odds and total goals are displayed by default, but you can display any line of your choosing (Asian handicap, double chance, both teams to score, etc).
The event view feels as though it is running out of space but the betting lines are clear and incorporate a built-in bet builder which feels state of the art. Pre-match stats are on show as well as easy access to the main stats tool. It could do with some space to breath but there is a lot to like here.
Cleverly collapsed markets at every stage of the process give you more for less on each page and allow you to cut out anything you are not interested in.
Payout & Betting Rules
It is important to consider maximum payouts; even if you only ever bet low stakes you can still run the risk of hitting them. Some markets and lines can have much lower limits than others, and this is particularly important when placing large multiple bets that can have really high odds. Always check the payout limits for markets if placing large bets, bets with high odds or bets on less common markets and lines.
The terms are incredibly dense at 888 so finding the payout limit is no easy feat, even the support team struggled with it when I contacted them. What is clear is that 888 reserves the right to cap any payout at £250,000 so bear that in mind. This is the highest figure I could find mentioned in the terms and since the support team were unable to help further I have to assume that £250k is the cap.
That is much lower than many other online bookies who go up to £1 million or more. Most major sports at 888 will not be less than £100,000 and the lowest cap is £10,000 for outright specials such as ‘next manager’ etc.
The minimum bet amount is clear and stated at £0.10, maximum bets are less clear. 888 more than other bookies set their limits quite low and will then manually review your bet each time for larger stakes. This lack of clarity really can annoy you as a punter. 888 do not offer telephone betting either.
If you want to place high stakes bets or bets with high odds at 888 I would contact them first and hope you get a team member who knows what they are talking about…
About 888 Sport
Founded back in 1997 as Virtual Holdings Limited by Israeli businessmen, Aaron & Avi Shaked plus Ron & Shay Ben-Yitzhak, the company was originally based in the British Virgin Islands but obtained its first gaming licence through its subsidiary in Antigua. The first product, Casino-on-Net was subsequently launched under this licence in late 1997. Renamed 888 Holdings the company launched secondary casino brand, Reef Club Casino, as well as 888.com poker room in 2002.
In 2003, like many online bookies, they moved their entire operation to Gibraltar where their licence is now based. The holding company listed on the London stock exchange in 2005 and became the founding member of eCOGRA, an industry consumer protection watchdog.
888 Sport launched in 2008 under subsidiary company Cassava Enterprises LTD. 888 Holdings became one of the first integrated bookies offering Casino, Bingo, Poker and a fixed odds sportsbook, and all brands were brought under the 888 umbrella by 2010 (888poker, 888sport, etc.).
Famously, the Pacific Poker brand became defunct in the US in 2006 following the passing of the unlawful internet gambling enforcement act (UIGEA). Due to their interaction, reach, and status 888 were not as exposed in the US as some others and were able to carry on their operation growing to become the world's 4th biggest poker network by 2012.
The Cassava Enterprises 888 Sport brand has fed on the success and expertise of the wider 888 Holdings operation. The online bookmaker have found a niche in the market as a colourful and exciting betting site with unconventional offers and a lot of cross product promotions. This bookie certainly has a marmite feel to them, with many punters loving them for their different style offers and book, while others can't stand the flashy casino style appearance.
888 Sport is one component of a massive corporate entity and one of the richest gambling companies in the world. This means there is no personable back story like you might get when talking about traditional bricks and mortar UK bookies. What you do get though is a hugely resourced, highly engaged and thoroughly modern betting site that gives great value and good features with different style.
Live Betting Package
The in-play feature at 888 is better than most others and I definitely recommend you try it for its range and depth.
The initial interface offers clear sports icons so that you can filter which events you are looking at and then lists the events by country and/or competition. Along with the collapsible header bars this allows for a quick and effective selection process and the whole thing has plenty of space. You can also favourite any events you want to keep an eye on, access stats, and see how many markets are available before opening the event view.
Odds are clear and updated very quickly, while depth of market is fantastic with hundreds of live betting lines available for big events like major European football, top tennis, etc.
When you click on a live event the markets are again collapsed down into logical categories and this makes finding the bet you want a piece of cake. Instant bets are available which are bets on what will happen in the next couple of minutes – this can really liven up a dull game.
You can simultaneously use the basic live commentary text and/or match graphic in event view and use the in-play interface via a minimized column to the left. This is useful but feels squashed. Luckily, you can hide this by expanding the match graphic and only bring it up again when you want it. Good thinking from 888.
It’s the added features that really make this live betting package what it is, though. The full statistics feature is brought up using a button available for all live events and is an excellent companion alongside the news and blog feature when used pre-event; it’s full of news digests, tips and previews. 888 live betting seems to be more about minimalism backed with all the information and depth you need at the click of a button. As a punter you cannot help but be impressed with the package.
If watching sports that you bet on is an important feature for you then 888 Sport will be a welcome addition to your list of live streaming betting sites. Live sport is on offer every day and anything from football to table tennis is included, with thousands of fixtures streamed each year. A lot of it is free too (funded account or bet placed within 24 hours), although to watch live horse racing you will need to have placed at least £1 on the race in question.
The integration with live betting is very good. The fact that live betting markets are easily collapsible means it's easy to keep the stream alongside the lines you want to wager on, and the live calendar is very useful to find current and upcoming streaming events up to a week in advance. Streaming availability is denoted by a small TV icon displayed next to the event.
The overall live betting feature mixed with streaming, news and stats makes 888 Sport one of the best betting sites for this service.
The Mobile Punter
In some senses 888 created a mobile mirror image of their main site, although if I had to choose between the two my mobile would be staying in my pocket.
The mobile app is actually more crowded than the desktop site with lots of scrolling required and this is the opposite of what you might expect. Mobile betting requires quick access with fast loading interfaces and clear market definition. While 888 Sport have all of these features on the desktop site, speed and responsiveness aside, they somehow lose this on mobile.
The homepage is rendered almost useless as the events displayed are in a random order, so unless you are happy to browse it’s no good. Your only other options are the A-Z menu which floats in from the left or the account menu which floats in from the right.
There is a search bar which is something of a saving grace but a few quick links wouldn’t have gone amiss.
This is by no means a bad app but certainly not the most fit for purpose. The orange and black theme is carried over, odds are still clear in white against orange, and once you get into event view the experience is a good one – but getting there can be tedious, especially if you are looking for future markets.
In-play betting on mobile actually works quite well, and streaming is available too. However, there is room for improvement, as if there are several live events on at the same time the mobile version can require a lot of scrolling and all of the markets look very samey lacking distinction.
I do wish 888 Sport would put a little more effort into their mobile sports app. All of the right ingredients are in there and it really would be a top app if they sorted the interface. The casino and gaming apps are definitely better and it would be nice to see some lessons carried over from these.
|Method||Min Deposit||Min Withdrawal||Fees||Withdrawal Time|
|Debit Card||£10||£3||0%||Up to 6 Days|
|Bank Wire||£10 BACS £100 Wire||£10||BACS Free||5-8 Days|
|Entropay||£10||Not Available||0%||Not Available|
Notes on Payment
Like a lot of the terms at 888Sport, the banking information is muddled in places with some conflicting information. If you are ever planning on depositing large amount of money get in touch with them first to avoid complications.
Withdrawal time frames are one such area of confusion, so while the information given in the cashier itself says all withdrawals will be processed internally within 24 hours, the official guidelines state much longer timeframes which are listed in the table above.
The other thing to note is that while this processing period is in place you are able to reverse your withdrawal, which is a sneaky way of them allowing you to bet away your winnings. A black mark from me.
888Sport will allow you to manage an account in the following currencies: British pounds (GBP), Euros (EUR), Danish, Kroner (DKK), Swedish Krona (SEK) and United States Dollars (USD).
Cash Out and partial cash out availability is provided for pre-event and in play bets on desktop and mobile with 888 Sport. Bets and lines that qualify for cash in are clearly visible and cash in amounts can clearly be seen by clicking on your wager. Unlike some other bookies you cannot cash out the bet until the event becomes live which can be a bit of pain.
Cash Out is great fun, and it’s all about risk management; do you wait for your bet to run to completion or take the guaranteed winnings now before the end of play? Only you can decide.
For example, imagine you have bet on England to win a Cricket test match. At the end of Day 4 England are chasing 100 runs to win with 8 wickets remaining in the second innings. Let's say you stand to win £100 if England win but there is a forecast of rain possible and cash out is offering you a £60 payout. If you take the payout and it rains then you have won where you otherwise wouldn't have. But beware; cash out amounts will always be less than potential winnings should you allow the bet to run to completion.
888 have a long history of online casinos and gaming going all the way back to their first casino-on-net site back in 1997. With one of the best casino features available, if you fancy a spin on the roulette or a quick hand of poker there are few places better.
888 are particularly strong at cross product promotions and as a sportsbook member there are plenty of incentives to give the casino a go, although they are hosted on two different sites and so are kept apart from each other in that respect.
The casino itself is a lively one, full of slots and jackpots from big name providers as well as plenty of proprietary software, a live casino, slot races, and table games.
Read our full 888 Casino Review for more.
What Makes 888 Special?
For me it has to be the offer types available. This is a great bookie if you are bored of constantly seeing the same types of promotion from other bookmakers.
888Sport have a nice mix of free bet offers, bonuses and money back deals that are different from the norm. For this reason alone I would keep them as one of your betting sites simply to give you more options.
Those punters who like American sports will find a lot of range and depth at 888, and the in-play package on the desktop site really is quite something.
As an overall sportsbook 888 seem to have everything nailed down from the betting perspective, with a full range of markets including some more unusual ones, great live betting, streaming, cash out and excellent news and stats features, so there is little you will be left wanting for as a punter. It’s the customer service side where they come unstuck.
Looking After Their Customers
888 Sport customer services are available 24 hours a day and 7 days a week by message service and email. Staff are quick to respond and fairly knowledgeable as long as your query is easy - although they seem to have no idea about payout limits and no interest in finding out either. To be honest some of the team members I have had interactions with have bordered on rude.
They also have a freephone number if you would rather be half assisted on the phone, although this has limited opening hours between 9am and midnight. The Twitter account is for offers and news rather than support.
There is an FAQ but, similarly to the terms in general, it is dense and full of contradictory information. It needs going through with a fine-tooth comb and making more user friendly. A lot of the FAQ articles half answer your question but then make you follow a link to another page for the rest of it, so it ends up feeling like you have fallen down the rabbit hole.
The site is available in 10 different languages, although I wouldn’t advise using them because it’s confusing enough as it is.
All Their Contact Info
- Name: 888 Sport
- Parent Company: Cassava Enterprises Limited
- Holding Company: 888 Holdings PLC
- URL: www.888sport.com
- UK Licence ref/No: 39028
- Customer Services: 0203 478 0670 (UK & Ireland) +442034781875 (Germany) 855-765-2356 (Canada)
- Phone betting (sportsbook): Not Available
- Text betting: Not Available
- Twitter: @888sport and many more.
- Registered Company address: 888 UK Limited, Suite 601-701 Europort, Gibraltar, GX11 1AA.