Credit Wagering SportsbookAn old concept has taken a new twist with Credit Wagering (creditwagering.com), an online sportsbook that operates on the honor system. The premise behind Credit Wagering is that all new accounts are given a $1,000 line of credit to bet with and debts are only settled if the bettor is up or down more than $400. Otherwise, the tally is carried forward into the next week.
There are several rules that come into play with Credit Wagering, such as you cannot win more than your line of credit and you may only wager 10-percent of your line of credit on any game. You can't really fault the company for its rules, as the 10-percent rule of credit rule is in effect to keep people from doubling up on the final game of the week in an attempt to get even, or at least underneath the $400 mark. The notion of only being able to win your credit limit has tripped up several bettors, who had won over their limit, so be sure to pay attention to your balance at all times.
For deposits, Credit Wagering accepts Western Union and MoneyGram, along with American Express, Visa, Diners Club, and JCB cards, which shouldn't create any problems for bettors.
A quick glance at the two wiring methods shows MoneyGram to be the least expensive.
For withdraws, Credit Wagering offers several options, including Visa debit cards, where players may withdraw up to $500 per day. The company earns solid marks in this regard, as several people who I respect have received and used the previous debit cards without any problem. The fees ($4.95 to load debit card) are much more reasonable than many other sportsbooks, some of which charge outlandish fees. There is a $9,000 limit on the debit card and the initial cost is $30 to get the card.
Withdraws may also be requested by check or Moneygram, although fees do apply. Check the website for complete details.
The company's servers are located in Costa Rica and the rules clearly state that Costa Rica laws will govern dealings between the bettor and Credit Wagering, which for practical purposes would make them a Costa Rican sportsbook. There was some debate among bettors earlier in the year if the company was located in North America, in which they would be operating illegally, but that doesn't appear to be the case.
BettingThe lines offered at creditwagering.com during baseball are skewed in the direction of the favorite, so underdog bettors may be able to find value, despite the 20-cent baseball line. Other lines are comparable to the lines found at other sportsbooks, with some shaded a bit due to the amount of money wagered on a particular team.
As mentioned above, the betting limit per game will be different for each player depending on the bettor's credit limit. Players who do not make a deposit, but play on credit from the start, will have the $100 per wager limit, although players can wager $100 on the side, $100 on the total, make a $50 parlay and bet a $100 teaser on the same game.
The company accepts wagers on the four major sports, along with soccer, golf, auto racing, boxing and tennis. Additionally, Credit Wagering accepts horse betting, offers casino gambling, as well as lottery play.
Credit Wagering's GoalsA company spokesperson said that about 20-percent of sports bettors have proven to be trustworthy, which was a higher figure than they anticipated. Frankly, I was a bit surprised, assuming the figure would be much higher, but there are more stiffs among sports bettors than I realized.
Such a figure shows how difficult it is to show a profit over the long haul. If just 20-percent of the losing bettors pay their losses, you would have 83.5-percent of the bettors lose money to break even. But as most estimates have 90-percent, or more, of sports bettors losing money, it is possible for the sportsbook to show a profit even with such a small percentage of bettors paying their debts.
Credit Wagering does have several things in its favor, however, the main one being that bettors often make irresponsible bets when they are playing on credit. Games bettors would typically pass on if they were forced to put the money up front, become bets, often to the detriment of the player. The sportsbook also has the press factor, as bettors who are down more than $400 will be likely to bet the board on Sunday in an effort to get under the settlement amount.
As always, be careful when betting on credit, whether it's through a local bookie or creditwagering.com.
Bettors do have to submit a copy of their driver's license the first time collecting money, which helps protect creditwagering.com from people having more than one account and betting opposite sides of a game. That's understandable. But, your license also serves a detriment to collect money and then stiff the company should you lose, as your picture will be put up on the creditwagering.com site under the "Super Stiffs" category, which is a frequent source of amusement for many sports bettors.
SummaryThe ultimate question for creditwagering.com, or any relatively new sportsbook, is "Are They Safe?"
There isn't any easy answer to that, but what I do know is that so far creditwagering.com has been meeting its obligations to winning bettors. This comes from several sports bettors who I correspond with on a regular basis, as well as several bettors I respect on various sports betting forums. I will give creditwagering.com props for paying off bettors during baseball season, which is often the least profitable time of the year for sportsbooks.
When creditwagering.com first came onto the scene, there were many people calling for a quick demise, but that hasn't been the case. While the company has experienced several processor problems, which prompted the switch to the Visa debit cards, they have been few and the company has paid for Moneygrams to be sent to bettors, which costs more to them.