Asian handicap bets are a special form of traditional handicap bets. This type of bet appeals above all because of the wide variety of tactical wagering opportunities and the increased chance of winning as compared to regular “results bets”. Moreover, Asian handicap bets offer an additional potential outcome in that, even if your prediction is inaccurate, your entire wager or at least part of it may be returned to you. Asian handicap bets are very multifaceted with a variety of options to choose from – that’s why we wish to show you what this type of bet is all about, the opportunities it presents and how to put AHC to optimal strategic use!

Reading time: 7 min
Topics covered in this article:
  1. What is an Asian handicap bet exactly?
  2. What are whole Asian handicaps?
  3. Asian Handicap 0
  4. Asian Handicap 1
  5. What are half Asian handicaps?
  6. Asian Handicap 0.5
  7. Asian Handicap 1.5
  8. What are quarter Asian handicaps?
  9. Asian Handicap 0.25 (0, 0.5)
  10. Asian Handicap 0.75 (0.5, 1)
  11. Why are Asian handicap bets so popular?
  12. What do you need to bear in mind with Asian handicaps?

What is an Asian handicap bet exactly?

Asian handicap bets – frequently abbreviated to AHC – are very special and multifaceted handicap bets. The underlying principle is essentially the same: By starting the underdog at an advantage or the favorite at a disadvantage, greater balance is given to a sporting matchup, simultaneously generating more even and thus more attractive odds. Ideally, these will hover around 2.00. Logically, the underdog is given the bonus in the form of a goal-advantage – in other words, a certain number of goals are added to the actual result. Or vice versa: A certain number of goals are deducted from the favorite’s score. In other words, fictional advantages or disadvantages are assumed, so-called plus- and minus goals. As a consequence, when annotating Asian handicap bets the majority of bookmakers use the following system:

  • Favorite I tag ( - )
  • Underdog I tag ( + )

The major difference to normal handicap bets is that, with Asian handicaps, in addition to whole handicaps, you can also choose from half, quarter or three-quarter goal handicaps. As a consequence, there are virtually countless opportunities and strategies you can pursue through AHC, some of which we present to you below. As the name suggests, this type of betting is extremely popular in Asia, where it is well established. But here in Europe, too, AHC is becoming increasingly popular, with more and more betting providers recognizing the potential of this kind of bet. There are basically two reasons for this: On the one hand, AHC is used mainly for football bets, a sport that clearly dominates the market in Europe. On the other, in addition to the fact that they are incredibly varied, Asian handicaps offer yet another gigantic advantage for sports tipsters: increased chances of winning and the opportunity to have your original wager, or parts thereof, refunded to you. How is that possible? In this form of betting, the option of a draw as an outcome does not exist – which means quite simply, your wager will be returned to you. No wonder, then, that professional sports tipsters who are focused on safety like to use this to their advantage, resorting ever more frequently to AHC bets. In this way, a 3-way bet is turned into a 2-way bet, and your chances of winning climb from 33% to 50%. Which means, in this type of betting you are only required to make a simple choice between the two opposing teams.

What are whole Asian handicaps?

Whole AHC are most closely related to traditional handicap bets. Your advantage: in addition to the two outcomes 1) you win the bet or 2) you lose the bet, there is also the option 3) that your whole wager is returned to you. We will take a close look at how that works.

Asian Handicap 0

This variant, which is also called “draw no bet”, comes into play when two well-balanced teams with virtually identical odds go up against each other. The kicker in this case: the draw option disappears. If the match ends in a tie, the wager is returned. Which substantially minimizes the risk factor to your advantage. Because of this, you have only two choices rather than three, meaning you have a 50:50 chance of doubling your wager! A match such as the one between Stoke City and Leicester City would lend itself to this scenario, since the danger of a draw is very real.

  • Bet: on Stoke I AHC 0 I Odds 1.85
  • Bet: on Leicester I AHC 0 I Odds 2.05

Further details, Tipps and betting strategies for draw no bets can be found here.

Asian Handicap 1

Asian Handicap 1 works very similarly to a traditional handicap, with one of the teams starting out the match with a 1:0 advantage. The difference being, you also have the possibility of having your wager returned to you. Let us take a match between Bournemouth and Chelsea as an example. You have two options – you can place either an AHC -1 or an AHC +1 bet on the match:

  • Bet: on Chelsea I AHC -1 I Odds 2.10
  • Bet: on Bournemouth I AHC +1 I Odds 1.80

Let us assume you wagered €10 on Chelsea in the form of an AHC -1: In other words, one goal will be subtracted from the Londoners’ actual final score. If Chelsea now wins with more than one goal advantage, the bet is won and you will pocket €21. If Chelsea wins, but only by one goal, then the fictional result is a draw and your €10 would be returned to you. In contrast, you also have the option to bet AHC +1 on underdog Bournemouth. What would the conditions be like in that situation? If Bournemouth wins or the match ends in a draw, you will win the bet and receive €18. If your team loses by one goal, at least your original wager will be refunded to you. In this case, your AHC bet would only be lost if Bournemouth were to lose by two or more goals. Naturally, you would also have the option of placing an AHC +1 bet on Chelsea or an AHC -1 on Bournemouth. Logically, this would mean your odds would be very low. As a consequence, those variants would be less appealing and make less sense.

What are half Asian handicaps?

AHC are based on the same principles as traditional handicap bets. In this variant, the decisive difference is that you now lose the option of having your wager refunded to you. Due to the “half goals” that are either added or deducted, it becomes impossible to have a fictional draw as one of your outcomes. The result: With half Asian handicaps, there are only two outcomes – either the bet is won or it is lost.

Asian Handicap 0.5

The most obvious betting strategy involving half AHC is either to subtract 0.5 goals (= -0.5) from the favorite’s score or add 0.5 goals (= +0,5) to the score of the underdog. As a consequence, betting on the underdog becomes substantially more attractive. As a concrete example of this variant, let us look at a match between Everton and Watford.

  • Bet: on Everton I AHC -0.5 I Odds 1.95
  • Bet: on Watford I AHC +0.5 I Odds 1.95

Everton enters the match as the favorite and receives a handicap of -0.5. Watford, on the other hand, is the underdog and receives a half goal advantage. Let us assume you wager €10 on Everton. The bet is only won if Everton actually wins. If the match ends in a draw, the bet is lost. On the other hand, if you bet on Watford: If the match ends in a draw, due to the additional half goal, Watford would be the winner and you would receive a €19.50 payout. If Watford managed to win the actual match, you would win anyway, of course. The bet is only lost if Everton does indeed live up to its role as the favorite. The variant AHC +/-1.5 works on the same principle.

Asian Handicap 1.5

AHC +/-1.5 bets work on the same principle as +/-0.5. The only difference: If you decide to go with a win by the favorite at AHC -1.5, your team would have to win by at least two goals to ensure the success of your sports wager. On the other hand, if you bet on the underdog at AHC +1.5, a defeat by just one goal would mean your bet wins: In this format, a real result of 2:1 would be transformed into a 2:2.5. AHC bets +/-2.5, +/-3.5 etc. function in the same way.

What are quarter Asian handicaps?

Quarter Asian handicaps essentially involve a double bet. In this variant, your wager is divided between two AHC bets. Depending on the quarter you opt for (e.g. 0.25 or 0.75), you will be betting on the two Asian handicaps on either side. Due to this, there are numerous scenarios in which you can win, which we describe to you in more detail below. At first sight, this betting principle may seem rather confusing or complicated to you – but it isn’t at all. This table will help clarify it for you:

Asian Handicap 0.25 (0, 0.5)

As previously mentioned, an Asian handicap bet 0.25 basically involves placing two different bets. Your wager is divided equally between AHC 0 and 0.5. For you, this primarily means substantial risk minimization. Allow us to explain precisely how it works by means of a concrete example. According to the bookmakers, Bayern Munich is a slight favorite away at BVB. That said, the best betting strategy would be either to give Dortmund a slight advantage or give Bayern a slight disadvantage. With this in mind, you decide in favor of AHC 0.25 so as to receive relatively balanced odds.

  • Bet: on BVB I AHC +0.25 I Odds 2.10
  • Bet: on Bayern I AHC -0.25 I Odds 1.90

Let us assume you wager €20 on the presumed underdog Dortmund – this wager will then be split, with €10 placed on AHC 0 and €10 on AHC +0.5. If BVB manages to win the match, clearly both of those bets will be successful and you will have winnings of €42 (= €22 net profit). If the match ends in a draw, you will win the bet AHC +0.5 and also have your wager on AHC 0 refunded to you. Your winnings would then be €31, equating to a net profit of €11. If Bayern wins, your entire wager is lost. Now, let us assume the reverse scenario, with you placing a bet of AHC -0.25 on Bayern. If the favorite were to win, you would be assured of €38 since both bets also win. If the match ends in a draw, you will lose your Asian handicap bet -0.5, though you will receive a refund of your wager from the AHC 0 bet. You would then be left with 10 of your original €20. If BVB wins, you will lose both bets and leave empty-handed.

Asian Handicap 0.75 (0.5, 1)

Asian handicap +/-0.75, which consists of the two variants +/-0.5 and +/-1, is very similar to AHC +/-0.25. Your wager is split between these two bets. The bookmakers see Southampton as a clear favorite over Burnley – but thanks to AHC 0.75, you will be able to receive attractive – and something we strive for in this type of betting – very balanced odds, somewhere in the range of 2.00. Let us again assume we are wagering €20, which is then split up between AHC bets 0.5 and 1.

  • Bet: on Southampton I AHC -0.75 I Odds 1.80
  • Bet: on Burnley I AHC +0.75 I Odds 2.10

In other words, the chances of you doubling your wager are roughly 50%. If we assume you choose the variant as described above and wager €20 on Southampton, if Southampton manages to win with at least a two-goal advantage your bets AHC -0.5 as well as AHC -1 would both win. In that case, your winnings would be €36. However, if Southampton only wins by one goal, you will only win the AHC -0.5. However, you will also have the wager for the AHC -1 refunded to. In other words, you will step away with €18 in winnings, equating to a net plus of €8. If the match ends in a draw or a win by Burnley, you will lose your entire wager. But how would it look if you had decided to place a AHC +0.75 bet on underdog Burnley? A win by Burnley, but also a draw would be all it takes to win both bets and have €42 in winnings. If Burnley narrowly loses to Southampton by one goal, then your +0.5 bet is lost. However, from your second +1 bet, your €10 wager would be returned to you. You would then step away with a loss of €10, though at least you would not have lost your entire wager. If Burnley suffers a clear defeat (a goal differential of two or more goals), you will lose both of your bets. Quarter Asian handicap bets +/-1.25, +/-1.75 etc. function very much the same way.

Why are Asian handicap bets so popular?

The increasing popularity of this type of bet hasn’t simply happened by chance. One prime reason for its incredible popularity on today’s market is, of course, and as we have previously mentioned, the lower risk when compared to traditional handicap or results bets. Whereas a results bet, which works according to the principle of 1X2, is a 3-way bet, AHC is actually only a 2-way bet, with your chances of success 50%. Yet another advantage: The possibility of a draw, which is unpopular if not hated in the betting community, is eliminated – there is simply no place for ties in this special form of betting. You are only betting on a win by one of the two teams involved. In the event of a draw on the field, you will be refunded either all or half of your original wager. Furthermore, Asian handicaps offer you a wide selection of betting opportunities. This immense range of opportunities is due, in part, to the fact that AHC bets, in contrast to traditional handicap bets, allow you to go with whole, but also half and quarter bets. This offers maximum flexibility to all of the sly tacticians amongst you, allowing you to employ the betting strategy that appeals to you most. The popularity of quarter handicaps has much to do with the fact that your wager is split between two independent bets, thus increasing your chances of holding on to your wager even if your prediction was wrong. We have compiled all of your relevant options and possible betting outcomes in the following table to provide you with a better overview:

Chart: modalities of winnings (Asian Handicaps)

What do you need to bear in mind with Asian handicaps?

Beginners, especially, should seriously consider whether or not they wish to start out with this somewhat more challenging and complex form of betting. A certain degree of experience in sports betting is indeed needed in order to estimate whether the various bookmakers are offering more or less good odds. After all: Even with the possibility that you will receive a refund of your wager in the event of a draw, even in this type of betting there is no such thing as 100% certainty! In order to find a successful mixture of probability of winning, risk and attractive odds, it is worthwhile to study and compare the various betting opportunities that are available. So: Get a broad overview to begin with, then choose the ideal variant to accompany your preferred strategy, thereby using the various AHC bets to YOUR complete advantage.

nach oben