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How Much Should You Wager on a Parlay?

by January 22, 2022
How much should you wager on a parlay?

We all have different styles of betting, so I want to begin this article by saying that however you enjoy betting, there isn’t a wrong way to do it. Parlays can get you into trouble if you blindly put together a bunch of games that “should” win, which is exactly why they created this type of bet. You should never wager more than you are comfortable losing. With that being said, I am going to approach this as a bankroll preserving question and give you guidance as to how I approach parlays.

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Due to the risky nature of the parlay, in comparison to the straight bet, the odds provided are meant to incentivize us to place the bet. Below are the odds provided, given that all plays have -110 juice:

As you can see, it is not a scale that doubles each time, but instead every few legs they add in an extra boost to it, given that the likeliness that the bet hits decrease with each leg added. This provides even more incentive to keep adding legs on to boost the payout, without having to risk more money.

One thing that I think is important is to build parlays that take place over time, rather than having all of the bets at once. Even if it is a six-leg parlay, with two afternoon games, two early evening games, and two that are late night, if you choose for it to all be on the same day. It can also be over the course of several days as well. This allows us to use the cash-out feature to reassess bets as time goes on, as opposed to making parlays that all play out at the same time. If a bet is going on but the flow of the game isn't on the trajectory as planned, there will be opportunities to make a fraction of your winnings to get out before the play ends.

To answer the initial question, a parlay between two and four money line legs is a unit play for me, however, I would only put a unit on parlays that are 2-3 spreads, as these are harder to hit. As the legs and payout grow, be conscious of what the payout is, and what you intend to profit from it, as there can still be good money in multi-leg parlays for a half or quarter of a unit.

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Whether you’re new to sports betting or a betting pro, our Sports Betting Strategy and Advice page is for you. You can get started with our 101 section — including 10 Sports Betting Tips for Beginners — or head to more advanced strategy — like Key Numbers When Betting Against the Spread — to learn more.

Josh Weil is a featured writer at BettingPros. For more from Josh, check out his archive and follow him @Josh_Weil.

Bet Types, Betting 101, How-To