What’s the Deal With…Decimal Odds?

Guide to decimal odds
James Pacheco profile image

Betting Expert, James Pacheco

Updated 18/02/2022

Categories: WTDW

Decimal odds are a way of expressing betting odds in a way that’s simpler to understand and work with than fractional or American odds. This is why the vast majority of odds for online betting and in particular those sites focusing on the Indian market, are in the decimal format.

In our guide to decimal odds, we’ll use our expertise to explain in detail what they are, how to use them and why they’re easier to work with than other forms of odds.

What are decimal odds?

Decimal odds were introduced in the early 2000s to replace the traditional fractional odds that had been used mostly by UK-based betting sites up to that point.

They’re now the type of odds used by the vast majority of betting sites, though in most cases you can convert odds shown on a betting market to fractional or american odds if users prefer to use those instead.

Odds-on decimal odds

In decimal odds, all odds that are shorter than 2.0, eg, 1.8, are odds-on chances meaning that a) they are deemed to have a greater chance than 50% of winning and b) are odds where you need to bet more than what you can win.

So for example, if you bet 100 Rupees on a 1.8 chance, you’d win less as profit (80 Rupees) than what you’re willing to risk.

Odds-against decimal odds

Alternatively, if you bet at decimal odds greater than 2.0, they’re odds-against and you win more than you’re willing to risk. For example, betting 100 Rupees on a 3.0 chance (2/1) would win you 200 Rupees profit if the bet wins.

In decimal odds, a bet that has exactly a 50/50 chance of winning is expressed as 2.0, known as ‘evens’ or ‘even money’ in fractional odds.

How to use decimal odds

As we said above, your starting point should be the number 2.0. Bigger and it’s odds-against, smaller and it’s an odds-on chance.

One of the reasons decimal odds were introduced is that they already include your stake when calculating how much you can win from the bet.

If you bet 100 Rupees on something at 5.0, then your payout would be 500 Rupees. Customers should be aware that this means you get your 100 Rupees back, while the other 400 Rupees would be profit.

So a 5.0 chance is actually a 4/1 shot, a 10.0 shot is 9/1, a 25.0 bet is at odds of 24/1 and so on.

In other words, you need to subtract 1 (which represents your stake) from the decimal odds to get the number you’ll win at.

Not all decimal odds are nice, round figures, though. But the principle is the same; If you placed a bet at 2.8 for 100 Rupees, you’d win 180 plus of course, your initial 100.

Did you know?

Tic-tac is a form of sign language used by bookies to communicate the odds on horses during a race meeting.

They involve people using hand signals to represent different odds. But they’ve gone out of fashion recently, with the move to decimal odds and online betting substituting the more traditional forms of betting.

What was interesting is that some fractional odds were replaced by expressions using Cockney slang and backslang, relating to how the odds sounded.

So for example ‘Burlington Bertie’ meant 100/30, ‘Major Sevens’ meant evens and ‘century’ referred to 100/1.

More Betting Guides

Advantages of decimal odds

Let’s look at some of the main advantages of using decimal odds and why you should always stick to using them for online cricket betting and for any other form of betting online.

Advantage 1- Easier to understand

It’s not hard to know that a 10/1 (using fractional odds) chance will pay out 10x your bet, plus your stake back.

But what about 13/2, 16/5 or 7/4? These are far more difficult to understand and given not everyone is a whizz at maths, some customers may take some time getting their head around what those odds actually mean.

As explained already, decimal odds paint a much clearer picture.

Advantage 2- Easier to work out payouts

If you place a bet for 50 Rupees at 9/1, you first need to multiply 50×9 to get 450 and then remember to add your 50 Rupee stake on top of that in a two-step process to see how much you’ll walk away with, should you win.

But with decimal odds, you work it out all at once. When placing a 50 Rupee bet at 10.0 (9/1), it’s easy to work out that your total payout is 500 Rupees.

Decimal odds tricks

One of the most important parts of cricket betting is to always get the best odds, which is why we advise you to hold several betting accounts at any given time. That way, once you’ve decided what to bet on, you can then place the bet with the site offering the highest odds.

With that in mind, it’s easier to compare odds in decimal format. Let’s say you’re thinking about betting on India to beat England in an ODI match.

Using fractional odds, different bookmakers may quote India as:

  • Website 1- evens
  • Website 2- 11/10
  • Website 3- 10/11

Not so easy to know straight away which is biggest, right? But using decimal odds, they would be:

  • Website 1- 2.0
  • Website 2- 2.1
  • Website 3- 1.9

Much easier to see that website 2 is the one offering the highest odds.