Asian Handicap - Guide and Tips for Smarter Play

Asian Handicap - Guide and Tips for Smarter Play

Asian handicap is a popular type of bet used in football betting. However, compared to match-winner or over/under, it isn’t an easy bet to understand and execute. In this brief guide, we take a look at the definition of handicap betting and a few examples. Furthermore, we’ll offer a few tips on how to fully execute this type of bet in both pre-match and in-play betting.

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What is Asian Handicap?

So what’s the meaning of handicap and betting? Is this only available in Asia or Asian-facing sportsbooks? Well, the term ‘Asian handicap’ can be traced to a popular form of betting in the region called hang cheng which has been in use for decades. According to one story, a London-based journalist named Joe Saumarez Smith was conducted by a certain person from Indonesia. He was asked for the best translation for this word. Without exerting too much effort, Mr. Smith immediately suggested an ‘Asian handicap’. He felt that it was the best description for this bet type and the term stuck until today.

In most Asian-facing sportsbooks, you can now find the Asian handicap as one of the most popular betting options. It offers an exciting way to read the market and bet on outcomes. However, it requires a more complicated set of rules. As a beginning punter, make sure you understand how it works and the principles behind this bet.

asian handicap betting

Two Types of Handicap Available

To easily understand the handicap, it’s best to think about it in terms of a ‘virtual head start’ or an advantage. Before the start of the match, the bookmaker will identify which is the favored team and one at a disadvantage. There are two types of handicaps that are used in football, the half goal (0.5), and the whole goal (1.0). If the sportsbook uses the half goal, a clear winner is assured since it’s impossible to score a half goal in football. But in the whole goal, the result after the Asian handicap in football may level, thus your bet can be refunded.

Here’s a simple example of the meaning of handicap betting in football. In your standard odds market, you will find three options for a football match: a win for Team A, a Draw, or a win for Team B. If you play the handicap football betting, the chance of a draw is eliminated so that punters will only have two options. In many sportsbooks, you can choose your soccer bet from the following: Team A (-1.5) and Team B (+1.5).

The example above is the simple representation of Asian handicap betting. Here, a team is given a head-start of 1.5 goals. The football team that scores the most with the handicap wins. For example, if you back Team A to win, you can collect a payout if it wins by 2 goals. You lose the soccer bet if Team B wins, or if A only wins by 1 goal, or if ends in a draw.

What Happens If the Sportsbook Uses a Whole Point Handicap?

In a half-point handicap, you are provided with clear guidelines in betting and determining which team will win. So what happens if the sportsbook uses the full-point handicaps in ISL betting or other leagues? If this is the case, then there’s a chance that a void comes to play.

Let’s say that the odds stand at -1 and the team wins by 1-0, this means that your bet becomes void and you get back your original wager. In short, you can only collect the win, if the team wins by at least two goals. However, a draw or defeat for the team will end up as a loss on your part! This makes the Asian handicap an interesting type of bet to play as it requires some basic analysis.

asian handicap football

A Few Tips to Keep in Mind When Playing the Handicap

The point of Asian handicap rules is to eliminate the possibility of a draw in a football match. In short, as part of the handicap meaning in football, you will only choose from two options- a win for Team A or B. In short, the Asian handicap 1.5 or -1.5 in our example simplifies your betting experience.

To fully maximize this type of bet, you must always compare the odds presented by several Asian handicap betting sites. Just like in other sports, the challenge is to find a value bet that can provide you with better payouts. Since the sportsbook also incorporates a profit into the odds, you must learn how to compute for the potential payout using the published odds.

Also, you may want to consider the type of handicap used by the sportsbook. As discussed in this guide, there are two general types of handicaps used in football betting- the full point and the half-point. Each has its benefits and you should only play what’s comfortable for you. In the half-point Asian handicap, there’s a guaranteed winner since it reduces the line into a 2-way bet. However, the full-point handicap offers a chance of a void. And when it happens, your wager is returned. So, your overall football betting strategy relies on an appreciation of the type of handicap.

Where to Bet on Football using Asian Handicap

Handicapping is popular in football and it’s covered by many Asian-focused sportsbooks. If you’re looking to expand your knowledge in online sports betting, then we recommend that you try this out online. However, don’t just play this bet on the first sportsbook that you encounter online.

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As a beginning punter, you should also pay attention to your choice of a sportsbook. As a minimum requirement, look for a sportsbook that accepts real money bets from Indian punters, in local currency. Also, check and compare the odds before diving in. Remember, the computation of the payout depends on the published odds. Finally, check out if the Indian sportsbook offers lucrative promotions and bonuses. You can easily improve your handicap betting strategy if you have access to exciting promotions like free football bets or boosted odds.

For guidance, you can always check out our reviews and comparisons of the top sportsbooks for Indian punters. On this website, we review the best Indian betting sites so you can play in a fun, secure, and reliable betting platform.


? What is an Asian handicap and why is this an exciting type of bet to play?

Handicapping is a type of bet on football where the element of a draw is taken out of the equation. A team is ‘handicapped’ to even up the playing field.

⚽ What does it mean when a team I want to support is handicapped at -1.5?

If the sportsbook publishes a line with one football team at -1.5, it only means for your bet to win, this team should win the match by at least two goals. If the team wins by just one goal, you end up losing your bet.

❓ How can I start betting online using the handicap system?

You need to register a sportsbook account to start placing bets using the Asian handicap. Check out our recommended list of Indian sportsbooks when shopping for your sportsbook.