How To Bet On Golf

Looking to start betting on golf? Read our expert guide to find the best golf betting sites and learn what wagers are available.

Golf Ball Dropping in the Hole
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Golf is one of the most exhilarating sports globally, where renowned superstars can carve their legacy with every tournament, and dark horses can unexpectedly make their mark. If you've played golf, you comprehend both the fun and frustration the game can bring. However, you can ramp up your enjoyment by placing bets on your favorite events.

Read our comprehensive guide to betting on golf, including our suggested golf betting sites and some golf betting tips to improve your chances of winning.

Choosing a Golf Betting Site

If you want to bet on all your favorite golf events, you need a betting site that caters to your needs. However, with a great many sportsbooks licensed to operate in the US, choosing the right betting site can be daunting. That's why our experts have taken the time to select the sportsbooks ideal for golf bettors. Check out what factors we've considered to make our picks below.

Welcome Bonuses

Every US sportsbook will provide you with a welcome bonus when you sign up. A welcome bonus will allow you to boost your bankroll while risking less or no money. Usually, you need to make a minimum deposit to unlock your welcome bonus rewards.

Top golf betting sites will give you welcome bonuses like free bets you can use to wager on golf competitions like the PGA Tour. We consider which promotions work best for golf bettors when selecting our best golf sportsbooks.

Live Golf Betting

While many players are primarily interested in betting on players to win a tournament, you can also find many markets once an event has started. The best golf betting sites will let you place a variety of wagers on live golfing events, including selecting tournament winners.

However, you'll also find betting options for moment-to-moment play. For instance, you can bet on a player to hit a birdie on the next hole if you think they'll maintain a good run of form. Live odds are continually changing, so you'll have to be quick with your bets, but you'll find great value if you jump on odds in time.

Best Golf Odds

The more generous betting odds you can find, the more profit you can make from risking the same amount of money. We assess the betting odds sportsbooks offer and select the operators who consistently provide the best betting lines. Our experts also consider which sportsbooks offer regular odds boosts for golf competitions, which can give you more chances to increase your profits without spending more money.

Range of Golf Betting Markets

When it comes to betting, having more options will give more bettors a chance to find a bet that suits them. We only recommend the betting sites which allow you to place a wide variety of bet types. So when you sign up with our recommended sportsbooks, you can bet on outright winners, scores for upcoming holes, winner nationality, and much more.


Of course, the most important thing when betting online is that you use a safe and legal sportsbook. Before anything else, we check that the betting sites we are reviewing have appropriate licensing from the relevant US authorities, such as the Nevada Gaming Commission. These regulatory bodies run stringent tests of player safety measures before approving any site, so a license should give you the confidence to play.

However, we also go further by examining the security measures employed by each individual operator. This includes testing the SSL encryption, firewalls, and privacy policy of every online betting site.

Deposit Methods

When adding money to an online sportsbook, you want to use a payment provider you can trust. Our experts seek operators who welcome well-respected payment methods such as Visa and Mastercard.

Golf Betting Tips

Golf betting can be very challenging as each tournament has such a large field. In addition, weather conditions, the crowd, and more can affect each golfer's game, making it so hard to predict a winner. However, there are steps you can take to improve your odds of a successful wager. Read our golf betting tips below to improve your chances of winning your golf bets.

  • Research Golfer Form: Golf is very much a mental game, and the golfers that perform best are the ones in the best headspace. That’s why, while every course is different, if a player has competed well recently, they are more likely to play well in the near future.  
  • See Past Performances at Competitions: While recent performances do play a key factor in who will win a golf competition, a player’s familiarity and comfort with a tournament also make a huge difference. For example, over 50% of the Masters have been won by players who have won the event multiple times. So if a golfer has played well at a previous competition, they are more likely to do so again in the future. 
  • Look at Green Speeds: Putting is considered the most challenging part of golf by many players, as golfers have to consider various factors, including the lie of the green and how a riskier shot may affect their overall score. However, one significant factor in putting is green speed. The faster a green is, the more likely a player is to misjudge a shot and end up dropping shots. So research green speeds before betting on how players will perform on individual holes. 
  • Watch the Events: While many bookmakers allow you to follow golf events from hole to hole, it’s hard to track the emotions and significance of a shot from statistics. For example, if a player sinks a par shot after hitting the rough and the bunker, this can really build their confidence and help them with future holes. However, on the scorecard, this will show the same as a par where the golfer missed an easy birdie putt. So watch golf tournaments where you can to get the best sense of how players are performing. 
  • Consider the Course Type: There are six different types of golf courses, including links courses, parkland courses, and championship courses. While professional golfers will be adept at playing on all courses, golfers will have preferences. For example, players who spent a lot of their youth playing on links courses will prefer these types of environments.
  • Claim Golfing Bonuses: For the most significant golfing events, many of the best US sportsbooks will provide bonuses you can claim to let you win money for less. For example, you’ll find plenty of odds boosts where you can increase your payout without risking more cash. Some sites may even provide free bets if you make a certain deposit or wager.

Types Of Golf Betting

There are dozens of golf events you can bet on throughout the year, and you'll find loads of bet types available for each tournament. If you're a fan of placing bets from moment to moment, there are plenty of in-play markets for golf. Likewise, if you like to think long term, you can wager on some bet types well ahead of time.

Outright Winner Bet

The most straightforward type of bet, an outright winner bet is a wager on which player you think will win a particular tournament. The earlier you place your outright winner bet, the better your odds will be. For majors, you'll get outright betting markets available months in advance.

Nationality Bet

Instead of betting on a particular player to win, you can bet on the nationality of a tournament winner. This gives you more leeway if you pick a nation that produces a lot of golfing talent like the US or Europe.

Each-way Bet

Predicting which player will win a golf competition is tricky, which is why many sites will let you place each-way bets (sometimes referred to as ‘Win/Place’ bets) on outright winner bets. You can double your stake and get 1/5 of your profits if your chosen player doesn't win but finishes near the top. How many places a sportsbook will pay out depends on the site, but many of the best golf betting sites will pay out down to ten places.

Head-to-Head Bet

Many golf betting sites will let you bet on the head-to-head scores of leading players, which is handy for bettors who want to block out overall results and focus on specific golfers. With a head-to-head bet, you wager on which of the players you think will finish with a better score at the end of a round or competition. If your matchup players finish with equal scores, you get your bet back as a push.

First Round Leader

Most professional golf tournaments have four rounds of play spread across four days, with the winner of the tournament the player with the best score at the end. However, some sportsbooks will let you bet on players to make a fast start and take the lead just after the first round of play.

Finishing Positions

With a finishing positions bet, you can wager on a golfer to finish in the top 5, top 10, or even top 20 of a competition. Your sportsbook will pay out if your player secures a place in the positions you predicted. However, you won't win extra money if they come out as the winner of the competition.

How To Bet On Golf FAQs

Yes, betting on golf is entirely legal in the US. As long as you use a betting site licensed by a recognized US gambling authority, such as the Nevada Gaming Control Board or the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement, you can wager on a wide range of professional golf tournaments. This includes all the majors, the PGA Tour, and the LPGA Tour.

What is the best golf betting site?

You’ll find the best golf betting sites in the US right here on this page. Our experts have selected the sportsbooks which provide you with the most golf betting markets and the best golf odds and listed those operators on this page.

Am I able to bet on golf live?

Yes, the best golf betting sites will let you wager on golf events that have already started. This includes betting on players to win the overall tournament or moment-to-moment betting, like what score a player will record on an upcoming hole.

Can I bet on the PGA Tour?

Yes, you can bet on the PGA Tour if you are using a licensed US sportsbook. There are 47 PGA Tour events every year, and you’ll find betting markets for every single competition. Throughout the season, the PGA Tour pays out more than $400 million.

Can I bet on the LIV Golf Tour?

Yes, you can bet on the LPGA Tour using the best US golf betting sites. The LPGA Tour is the leading professional golf tour for female golfers and hosts tournaments from January to November.

Tom Jacobs

In addition to hosting the Lost Fore Words golf podcast, Tom Jacobs has been writing betting articles on golf for the past decade. Tom also co-hosts the DP World Tour Picks & Bets show on the Mayo Media Network, and has his finger on the pulse on all the major Tours. A long-suffering Nottingham Forest fan, Tom also enjoys watching Soccer on the weekends!