Winter betting: Our ultimate guide

Winter betting is something that keeps many people entertained over the cold winter months and makes a change from betting on summer sports such as tennis and athletics. As the winter months draw in, we look forward to betting on the sports such as speed skating, alpine skiing, cross country skiing, ski jumping, biathlon and slalom. 


Since these sports rely on a certain type of weather, naturally the season is short, which means we need to make the most of the betting opportunities while they last. Here is our guide to winter betting. 

What winter betting opportunities are there?


Though many sports are played throughout the winter, there are some that are solely confined to this time due to the conditions needed to play them. Although ice hockey could be classified as a winter sport, it is played indoors in controlled facilities, so it can be played throughout the year. 


The main winter sports competitions


Make the most of the best bonuses by betting on the main competitions of the season. There are many different winter sports competitions, but one particular highlight is the Winter Olympics, which takes place every four years. This started in Chamonix, France in 1924 and has taken place almost every four years since. There were naturally exceptions during World War II. Nowadays, people can look forward to the Winter Olympics in the middle of each Summer Olympics, so you only ever need to wait two years until the next Olympics event. The Winter Olympics last 16 days and the best-performing country historically has been Norway. 


In addition to the Winter Olympics, there are other popular winter events like the FIS Alpine World Ski Championships, the Arctic Winter Games, The Winter X Games and the Ice Hockey Major events.


Winter sports for betting


There are many different winter sports available. Here are some of our favourites to bet on:


  • Skiing: There are lots of skiing disciplines. Ski jumping and cross-country skiing were among the first features in the Winter Olympics, so these are two of the most popular for betting too. 
  • Biathlon: This combines cross-country skiing with rifle shooting. 
  • Ice hockey: Ice hockey is probably the most popular sport for winter betting. There are many major leagues and tournaments, including the North American National Hockey League (NHL) which is a competition for the Stanley Cup. 
  • Snowboarding: This is a sport that takes place in the winter but there are only a few betting opportunities. These usually involve the Winter Olympics, the FIS Snowboard World Cup and the FIS Snowboard World Championships. 
  • Curling: This is a game played on ice that uses large flat stones that are slid to a mark. The team use brooms to control the speed of the stone. 
  • Bobsled: This is a sport that uses a mechanically steered sled. It is manned by crews who race down an ice-covered run. 
  • Figure skating: This is ice skating in prescribed patterns on an ice rink. It is a mixture of dancing and gymnastics. 
  • Speed skating: In speed skating, competitors race against one another around a track.
  • Skeleton: This is a winter sliding sport where a person rides on a small sled down a frozen track.
  • Luge: This involves racing on a sled in pairs down an ice track.


Tips on choosing a betting site for winter betting


There are lots of bookmakers out there but not all sites offer a full range of winter sports to bet on. Some don’t have any coverage at all. There are over 100 events in the Winter Olympics alone, so you need to ensure your chosen betting site offers the sports you’d like to bet on. Top betting sites for winter sports include:


  • 888sport – This site tends to offer the best odds for ski jumping.
  • bet365 – This site has a lot of options though its odds are fairly average. 
  • SpreadEx – This site tends to offer the best odds for biathlon. 
  • William Hill – This site tends to offer the best odds for figure skating. 
  • Red Zone – This site tends to offer the best odds for bob sledding.


Another thing to look out for is live betting options. Some bookmakers with markets on winter sports won’t have in-play or livestreaming availability. If this is something you’re keen to be involved in, make sure your chosen site offers this. 


Don’t forget to check out what bonuses are on offer too. If you’re new to a site, you’ll be able to take them up on their new customer offer, which might give you free bets on your favourite winter sports. Be sure to read the terms and conditions of any offer though. 


Above all else, be sure to only use legitimate, licensed and regulated sportsbooks for your winter betting. Also, check out how good the customer service is. This is something that many people forget about, but once you’re a customer, if you can’t get help when you need it, you’ve got a problem. 


Final thoughts on winter betting 


Now winter is upon us, we love nothing more than betting on winter sports again. Surprisingly, there aren’t as many opportunities to bet on sports such as skiing and speed skating as there are on summer sports like the UEFA European Championships. Nevertheless, opportunities are there if you know where to look. Always remember to use a licensed bookmaker that will take care of you, your data and money. ‘