What does ‘Gubbed’ mean?

Getting gubbed means that the bookie doesn’t like you anymore and they stop giving you any bonuses and free bets. They usually inform you of this with a nice email. Nobody wants to receive this email but sometimes it can be hard to avoid. Being gubbed doesn’t mean your bookie account is getting closed or that you’ve lost any money. It just means you can no longer profit from the free bet offers that the bookies hand out. Particularly annoying if you are into matched betting.

Why do people get gubbed?

There a few reasons why a bookie might choose to end your free bet offers. Usually they have deemed that you are “taking too much value”. So if all you do is place arbitrage bets or just place bets that have a special offer attached you will likely end up getting gubbed. Bookies use free bet offers to hook customers but the fact is they don’t want you to profit from them. They want all their customers to be losing money, that is their business after all.

How do I avoid getting gubbed?

Firstly we should say that despite your best efforts you will eventually get gubbed by a bookie or two. Some of them are notorious for it and some people have been reported as getting gubbed after one bet. They didn’t get time to start mug betting. Certain bookmakers are more tolerant that others as well. Sometimes it’s not possible to know what we did wrong. Asking the bookie will shed no light either, the standard response is that it is a ‘traders decision’ and the traders never interact with customers so you are out of luck if you think they will tell you anything useful.

In order to avoid getting gubbed need to look like a mug punter. Bookmakers love mug punters. These are regular bettors who aren’t looking to exploit any special offers or to take value. Bookies know they will make a fortune from a mug punter over a long period of time so they give them incentives to keep betting. Incentives like free bets. There are a few things we can do to make ourselves look like a mug punter:

Bet on the big events

Most mug bettors are betting on Premier League football and horse racing. So we should be doing that too. A good tactic is to pick a Premier League team and bet on them to win every time they play. Of course we will be laying these bets off at the exchange for small losses but the bookmaker doesn’t know that. To them you just look like someone who likes a bet on the team they support.

Do accumulator bets

Bookies love an acca. They are terrible value to the customer unless you know what you are doing. They are difficult and time consuming to lay off so if you are wanting to lay them off to make them risk free then you will need to pick selections that start a couple of hours apart.

Play the casino games and slots

Every game in the casino has a house edge. Even if it’s a really small one they are all set up for a long term bookie profit. So they love any customers spending their money here. Obviously it is impossible for us to lay off our stakes on the casino so tread carefully with your stakes.

Bet on non offer events

If you only bet on the events that the bookies are running a free on they are going to cotton on that you are only there for the bonuses. So place plenty of mug bets. Always laying them off of course. Look for close odds matches at the exchange to minimise your losses.

Take poor matches

So I’ve just told you to look for close matches at the exchange. This should be your tactic most of the time but every now and then drop in a poor match. It’s going to keep your account healthy. Constantly taking 95% matches is going to get your account flagged for review.

Change it up

Vary your stakes. If there is an offer for a free bet of up to £25 don’t always go for the full refund. Drop in a few £15 and £20 bets, you can go the other way as well and bet too much. Bet £30 on a £25 refund offer for example. Betting the exact amount of the maximum refund every single time will identify you as a bonus hunter.

Don’t arb

Avoid taking arbs no matter how tempting they may be. The bookies particularly hate people who take arbs. It leaves them no room to make a profit from your bet. Price boost arbs are ok but don’t take too many with the same bookie.

Cash Out

Cashing out at the bookie is terrible value. You are always better off laying the bet at the exchange to get the full value. A mug bettor will cash out at the bookie though so every now and then you should too.

I’ve been gubbed, can I get the restrictions lifted?

Sometimes yes, you can get your account offers reinstated. By continuing to bet with the bookie even after a gubbing can sometimes get your restrictions lifted. Sometimes you can request an account review and get they offers reinstated that way too.

The chances are though is that you have lost the offers for good. Getting ‘ungubbed’ is extremely rare and it probably isn’t worth the effort to continue mug betting a gubbed account. The account isn’t completely useless though, there are still certain offers you will be able to do. Usually you can still do all the casino offers which can be incredibly lucrative so don’t completely ignore the account after a gubbing.


Getting gubbed is annoying and it cuts off a potential income stream from that particular bookie. We want to avoid this at all costs so following the advice is a must if you want to continue matched betting long term.

Mug betting is frustrating, time consuming and will cost you money. You need to treat it as part of the process of matched betting. Every bookie account can be worth thousands of pounds to you over the course of a few years or even a few weeks so keeping your accounts in check should be a top priority.

Giving the bookie a little bit of money back can feel a little strange but we are still profiting hugely from their offers, mug betting losses are a drop in the ocean compared to the profits we can make. So remember – you might not be a mug but you should always act like one when betting online.