Parlay Insurance Guide

Written by: Alex Windsor
Fact checked by Brian Webb  
Updated: July 4, 2024

There are two types of bettors: those who play singles and those partial to multiples. If you’re in the latter category, you should learn more about parlay insurance.

As a long-time fan of the parlay system, I find it one of the most rewarding forms of betting but also one with considerable risk. That is, until I discovered parlay insurance, which is a sort of safety net for otherwise risky parlay bets.

Read on and see how а parlay insurance works and how you can benefit from using one.

Parlay Insurance Explained

Parlay insurance offers you a refund of your stake if one of your legs loses. In sports betting, insurance is a type of promotion that gives you some cover if your bet doesn’t go as expected. The main purpose is to at least give you the chance to break even and get a cash refund or a free bet if your bet loses.

An accumulator (acca) bet is another name for a parlay. It is a combined bet with two or more legs. A leg is one of 2, 3, 4, or more individual bets that form the parlay i.e. acca ticket. To win the parlays, all legs must win.

I can almost get on board with losing 2 or more legs. But parlays have an uncanny ‘habit’ of losing by just one leg, which is a particularly painful blow. The parlay insurance, as the name indicates, insures i.e. protects your parlays from the unlucky mishap of losing the entire ticket due to just one leg.

So, if you create a 7-leg parlay, and all but one (and just one) win, the bookie will return your stake or refund a specified amount of money.

How Parlay Insurance Works in Practice

Parlay insurance is basically a sports promotion. This is an important distinction because, unlike some betting features and tools, promotions are bound by strict and intricate rules, which I will go over in a bit.

To use parlay insurance, you must manually opt in for the promo after signing up. Then, make a minimum deposit of up to $20 or $30 and open the virtual book. Before you start making your selections, read the parlay insurance terms to see which events apply (specific bet or sport and minimum odds).

Start selecting the events you want to add to your ticket. You should see the selections in your bet slip, usually positioned on the right-hand side of the screen (on desktop). You should also see a button labelled ‘parlay insurance.’

4 Pick Parlay

Toggle the button to activate the insurance, enter the size of your bet(s), and follow the rest of the on-screen instructions to confirm the bet.

Depending on the bookie, the sum of the returned stake can vary. On average, bookies will refund anywhere between $10 and $30.

Parlay Insurance General Terms of Use

To be eligible for parlay insurance, you must be a registered member of an online bookmaker offering parlay insurance. Read the promo’s terms closely! You must be aware of whether it’s a same-game parlay (SGP) or a multi-sport parlay. Breaking this, or any other term, will void the parlay insurance. A few other important terms of parlays insurance bets include:

  • Minimum legs – The bookie will determine the minimum number of legs. Based on what I’ve seen, the average minimum leg requirement is 4 legs.
  • Minimum odds – Each leg you select must have minimum odds or longer as specified in the terms. For instance, the parlay insurance terms may require you to bet on markets with minimum odds of 1/2 or 1/3.
  • Eligible sports – Some bookies will insure a multi-sport accumulator ticket. Others, however, may only offer the insurance for sport-specific tickets, such as a football-only parlay.
  • Eligible/ineligible bets – The parlay insurance terms can limit your betting options. For instance, it may only apply to same-game parlays (SGP) or SGPs won’t apply. Odds boosts, in-play bets and bets where you use the cash-out feature may also be prohibited.
  • Refunded sum terms – The refunded sum will be granted either as a cash refund or as a bonus bet. A cash refund allows you to do with your funds as you please; a free bet refund is usable only for betting.

Parlay Insurance vs First Bet Insurance vs Progressive Parlay

First bet insurance and progressive parlays are similar to parlays insurance. However, there are differences between the three that set them apart as unique features.

First Bet Insurance

A ‘first bet insurance’ promo is also known as a second chance bet. The promo is self-explanatory. You place a single bet on a given sportsbook and if you lose, the bookmaker will refund the exact amount of your stake as a ‘second chance’ bet. Note that the second-chance betting credits may be subject to specified betting terms.

Progressive parlay

Progressive parlays usually require a minimum of 3 selections. Similar to parlays insurance, a progressive parlays allows you to lose one or more legs and still get some return. However, unlike parlay insurance, progressive parlays will pay out based on the cumulative odds of the winning selections, deducting the odds from the lost leg(s). The bookie will determine the number of legs that can be lost and still receive a payout. The more legs your parlay has, the more legs you can lose and still win.

Tips for Using a Parlay Insurance Promo

If you’re keen on parlays betting, parlay insurance will offer extra cover. The rest is the same as placing a standard parlays. However, we have a few insights and tips for you to consider to add extra value to your parlay insurance.

  • Tip 1: Don’t bet the minimum number of legs at all costs. Depending on the terms of use, if you bet on a minimum of 4 legs, and one leg is a push or is voided, it won’t count toward meeting the minimum leg requirement. That means the parlay insurance will likely be cancelled. On the other hand, a voided leg or one settled as a push in a 6-leg parlay means you have 5 remaining selections. If the minimum leg requirement is 4, the insurance will stand.
  • Tip 2: Read the parlay insurance terms. I cannot stress enough the importance of promotional terms. Even one misstep in your parlay insurance can void your entire bet. Compliance with minimum odds, eligible sports, maximum bet amount, restricted bets and other qualification and eligibility terms is key.

Ineligible Bets

  • Tip 3: Don’t go over the maximum insurance refund. If the bookie offers parlays insurance up to $25, it means it will refund no more than $25. Depending on the bookie’s policy, if you bet $40, you will either get refunded just the $25 (with a $15 loss), or the insurance will be voided for violating its terms.

Where to Find Parlay Insurance Bonuses

Parlay Insurance is not exactly an exclusive betting tool. Most licenced online bookies in the UK offer insurance promos regularly with fair terms. Here are a few bookies you should consider if you want to insure your parlay:

BetMGM, for instance, currently runs the Same Game Parlay promo for football markets. If you create a parlay with 5 or more football legs with minimum odds of 1/2 per leg, and all legs win, you get between 2.5% and 50% cash bonus on settled bets. If one leg loses, BetMGM will provide a $10 maximum cash refund.

Up To $1,500 Back In Bonus Bets
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Alex, a ten-year iGaming industry veteran and Managing Editor at BettingTools specializes in sports betting and betting tools. He also provides insightful reviews, ensures the accuracy of all offers, and maintains content quality helping you make informed choices. Combining professional expertise with a passion for football and soccer, Alex ensures we offer you a reliable resource, focusing on betting tools to assist with odds, accas, and other betting strategies.