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How to Bet on Golf 101

How to Bet on Golf | Tipico
How to Bet on Golf | Tipico
Alex Valdes
Published: 2023-04-05

Thanks to an increase in legalized betting across the country, there’s a surge of opportunities to make some serious cash on the sports you love — including golf.

Whether you’re a seasoned golf vet who counts down the days to each major PGA tour or a new golf fan looking to get into betting, the fun remains the same. The trick is knowing how to get started — keep reading to learn all about how to bet on golf.


Like any type of betting, there isn’t a perfect recipe or strategy to win. Often, it comes down to cold hard luck. But there are things you can do to give yourself a better chance at beating the house.

In golf, one of the first things you should familiarize yourself with is how odds work. These are essentially the rankings that are put together leading into each tournament, and they’re based on several different factors — and they can fluctuate.

In golf, some of the factors taken into account include recent performances and PGA Tour rankings in things like strokes gained and driving accuracy.

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In the simplest of terms, the odds for each player in an individual tournament relate to their likelihood of winning. The easiest type of golf bet is betting on who will win outright. That said, there can be several other types of bets you can swing at.


To place your bets, you need to sign up for a sports betting app or website. There are lots of online betting options to choose from, but keep in mind these factors as you’re searching for your new golf betting hub.

Reviews – Customer reviews can tell you a lot about a betting site or app. Do a deep dive on review sites and betting forums to see how other bettors enjoy the functionality of the betting platform you’re considering.

Bonuses – The promise of turning a few bucks into a few hundred (or more) definitely entices pros and amateur bettors alike. But some platforms up the ante by offering bonuses with your bets. For example, some sites offer bonus cash for sign-ups.

Ease of use – When the itch to bet hits, you don’t want to waste time fiddling with an unnecessarily difficult betting portal. Take the platform for a user-experience spin—is it easy to use? Is it simple for you to place the bets you want to make?


You’re logged in, the match is about to begin, and you’re ready to turn your love of golf into profit. The only question is … what bet are you going to make?

Golf offers a wide field of betting options. Here are some of the most common for you to choose from:

Overall Winner
Despite being one of the most common types of golf bets, the overall winner bet can often be one of the most difficult to get right. Unlike other sports where you bet on one team versus another, golf requires you to choose one tournament winner out of a field of hundreds of players. The four biggest tournaments where overall winner bets are most popular are:

  • PGA Championship
  • The Masters
  • US Open
  • Open Championship (British Open)

The good news is that if you do bet on the right tournament winner, the payouts will often be high. For more on how to bet on PGA golf, check out our guide.

Round Leaders
A round leader's bet stands out in the sports world. Since tournaments are always played over the course of four rounds, you can bet on who the individual round leader might be.

For example, you could place your wagers to look like this:

Round 1 leader – Phil Mickelson
Round 2 leader – Tiger Woods
Round 3 leader – Rory McIlroy
Round 4 leader – Dustin Johnson

Matchup Winner
Instead of just betting on one player to win the entire tournament or an individual round, you can place bets on a matchup between two different players.

For example, maybe you love the long-standing rivalry between Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods. If you wager that Tiger will win the matchup and he has a moneyline of +150, a $100 bet would earn you a payout of $150 if he wins.

For the golf bettor who wants to play the field, a parlay bet may be a perfect choice. A parlay bet lets you place more than one bet. You can choose to bet on several outcomes, but in order to win, each of the outcomes you bet on would need to be correct.

This can often be a little bit of a riskier type of bet since there are more moving parts to bet correctly, but the rewards can also be higher.

For example, you could place a bet that Jordan Spieth will win the PGA Championship outright; that Justin Thomas will be the leader after round 1, and that Phil Mickelson will beat Tiger Woods in a matchup bet.

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If each of the bets placed had the correct outcome, you would win the parlay bet.

Prop Bets
Prop bets allow you to wager on more specific outcomes. They’re considered to be fun types of bets, and there is usually a prop bet for almost anything you can think of.

Will Tiger Woods wear red on Sunday? Will Phil Mickelson wear sunglasses for the entire round? You could even bet on who might have the best score in the third round. Whatever it might be, you can probably wager money on it.

Match Play vs. Stroke Play
The majority of tournaments are stroke play, which means the golfer who takes the fewest strokes total wins the golf tournament.

The Ryder Cup, one of the most prestigious golf tournaments, uses the Match Play system, in which the lowest score on a hole earns you a point. Certain golfers frequently perform better in match-play circumstances, when golf can be played as a team.


Now that you’ve familiarized yourself with how to bet on golf and the different kinds of bets you can use, what happens next?

Let’s grab a $100 and see the different ways your bet could turn out:

Let’s say that you’ve done a bit of research and like the chances of the player who won the latest major tournament. They put on a masterclass of tee-to-green prowess and are leading the field in driving accuracy and strokes gained.

This would be a comfortable bet to make, and the player's odds going into the next golf tournament are +1200, or 12-to-1, to win outright. If you were to place a $100 bet and that player won, you would end up winning 12 times your investment, or $1,200.

The above example would be similar to pulling an iron out—less risk but still rewarding. But if you bet on a golfer with higher odds, it would be like risking going for the green in two over water, but the rewards could make up for the potential risk if it’s accurate.

Hypothetically, if you placed that same $100 bet on a golfer with odds of +40000, or 400-to-1, and they win the tournament, you would win $40,000.

However, things can change a little bit when it comes to the golf odds in different types of golf bets.

For example, let’s say that you want to bet on a matchup between two players. If the player you bet on has odds of -120 and they win, you would need to bet $120 to win $100.


Golf is a beautiful, complex game. When it comes to betting, it can be important to have an understanding of some common metrics and terminology. Knowing how they work can play a role in some of the bets you make.

Strokes gained – One of the most common is strokes gained. If a player is leading the field in strokes gained, it means that their overall performance on each individual shot is better than the rest. It’s broken into four main areas:

  • Strokes gained off the tee
  • Strokes gained on approach
  • Strokes gained around the green
  • Strokes gained from putting

Driving accuracy – Another common metric that can come into play is driving accuracy. When a player is more accurate off the tee, they’re going to have a better chance at a low score on each hole.

These are the little details that can help you make your betting choices and swing the golf odds in your favor.


Even though betting can often come down to luck (or what you make of it), there are still some golf betting tips and tricks to keep in mind:

Pay attention to the course – Some players do exceptionally well at some courses, and incredibly poorly at others. The course is going to play a big role in who will play well and who won’t. Does it have lots of forgiveness? Are the greens fast and difficult?

Diversify your bets (don’t just stick with your favorites) – They’re favorites for a reason, right? Yes, but this can be an easy mistake to make. Each week brings different demands and course conditions. A favorite might have played well the week before, but this can change quickly in golf.

Stick to a betting budget – Betting is fun, but it can be easy to get caught up in the highs and lows. Always try to set aside a specific amount of money and stick to it (no matter     how tempting another wager may be).


Put your money wager into safe hands with Tipico’s Golf sportsbook the next time you place your golf bets. Try your accuracy on live betting, matchups, outright winners, parlays, and more, and experience effortless deposits, simple withdrawals, and faster payouts.

How to Bet on Golf | Tipico


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