Extreme Premium Charge Levels: How Do You Escape Them?

There are many challenges to highly profitable sports trading, and minimising costs is one of them…

Recent changes have made managing these issues a little bit trickier. For those on the premium charge levels above the initial 20%, it’s very frustrating, hence this blog update.

Let’s take a look at a few potential solutions.

Note: If you’re unfamiliar, there’s a full explanation of Betfair’s premium charge here.

Premium Charge Problems in 2023:

The rise of affordability checks isn’t just a problem for advantage play and matched betting. It seems the betting exchanges are using the checks as a way of linking profitable trading accounts. Particularly those who may have been escaping the excessive levels of premium charge beyond the initial 20%.

For those unsure, lifetime profits on accounts that qualify for the PC in excess of £250,000 are subject to a rate of 40% and over, depending on efficiency.

Obviously, this is a real hit below the belt once your qualify. For context; a trade that profits just £2,000 per week will see a jump in their premium payments by £400. Over the space of a year, that’s £21,800 in Betfair’s coffer for, well, erm, nothing extra…

geeks toy ladder betfair trading

Payers still get to take the same amount of risk for significantly less reward. A mere £26.73 profit on a race like the one snapped above leaves just £16.04 in the pocket.

It’s not all that hard to see why savvy bettors might be seeking the use of additional accounts, is it?

But beware, people who get caught doing this face having their accounts closed (and the additional PC taken).

How Are Multiple Premium Charge Accounts Linked?

Now obviously I can’t condone deliberate premium charge avoidance, but it’s interesting to know how multiple accounts might be linked…

Having spoken to a few friends about it, these appear to be the main methods the premium charge police have caught them!

  • Deposits and withdrawals – questions have been raised around linked accounts when requesting affordability documentation. The obvious answer is not to deposit and increase the balance for larger trading events like Cheltenham or Royal Ascot. If your friend has a premium-charged account and you’re seen to be transferring money back and forth, it’s game over.
  • Financial and KYC data – similar to the above bullet. Accounts that have previously not been through the full KYC process have experienced additional checks later on. The links might not even be financial, so watch out there.
  • Betting patterns – if your trading strategies mirror that of another account, it’s traceable. Times of day, automation, the same sporting events and staking present potential links, especially if they’re coupled with the last to points on this shortlist.
  • Physical data – the kind of stuff that plagues matched bettors and arbitrage players, IP address, cookies and graphical location are all believed to feed into identification.
  • £250,000 limit – an obvious one you might think, although several have been foolish enough to do this. Simply hoping to an alternate account as they his the £250,000 limit is somewhat obvious. When linked with betting patterns it’s a key identifier.
  • Software partners – automation players are easier to see here but if you’re successfully milking the exchange markets with the same API software, or even your own custom build it’s a direct link.

Often it’s believed to be a blend of the points listed above there so bear that in mind.

Alternative Options:

It sucks paying all that extra money when you’ve found a successful horse racing trading strategy, but there are other options to consider. Treating your trading like a business is wise because it is in some sense. Cutting costs can be easier than increasing profits most of the time. Granted, some options might not be ideal depending on how you operate but it’s worth considering other exchanges or betting brokers if you’re outside the UK.

If you have other suggestions or ways you suspect they have linked accounts please leave them in the comments below…

Related: Betfair Premium Charges Explained Fully

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