You have had a big win on a bet you placed at your local betting shop and decide to collect it that Saturday evening as you need the cash for something important.
You eagerly hand over your betting slip only to be told that your winnings exceed their maximum cash payment so you will need to come in on the following Monday to collect your winnings in the form of a bankers draft. Not the best result at all. But you could have avoided the situation had you been aware of the maximum cash payout your bookmaker will make.
We have been trying to find out the various cash payout policies of the big UK high street bookmakers, but gathering that information isn’t easy; with some exceptions, they don’t seem to want anybody to know.
There might be a good reason for the secrecy. Perhaps bookmakers don’t want to inform criminals of the amount of money they carry in their shops. Some betting shops make frequent bank deposits during the day to limit the cash to hand that is available in the shop.
But this is what we have discovered so far.
Ladbrokes doesn’t publish information on the maximum cash payout, but this is what some of their customers and employees have to say on the subject. It appears to depend on specific circumstances.
- One punter reported that, on going to collect a £1,400 win, they could not pay him cash immediately, but if he returned two hours later, they would be able to pay his winnings in cash.
- Another report was of a punter who had insisted that his £8,000 winnings and £2,000 stake be paid to him in cash. The bookmaker which had previously agreed to pay him in cash did so, but he had to wait several days before the payment was ready for him to collect.
- One bookmaker ex-employee reported that when he worked at betting shops, it was not possible to pay out £5,000 on demand and that punters were encouraged to accept their winnings in the form of a cheque or bank transfer. However, if the customer insisted on cash, they would pay it, but it would take a few days to do so.
It appears that the amount of cash you can obtain from Coral betting shops is unlimited, though there are likely to be some complications.
Coral’s terms and conditions state that winnings can be paid in cash or by cheque, but as large amounts of cash are not held in Coral shops any winnings over £10,000 will be paid by cheque. However, they state that alternatively, they could arrange a larger cash payment at a later time, in another branch, or at their bank. As Coral operates a time-locked safe, customers might have to wait for some time while staff access the money.
William Hill operates a cash direct deposit voucher scheme. You can redeem your cash-direct voucher for cash at any William Hill betting shop up to a maximum amount of £5,000. While the company doesn’t state the maximum for a cash payout on a cash bet made at a shop, we can assume that standard cash payouts of up to £5,000 are available.
Betfred’s terms and conditions make no mention of the maximum amount of cash you can withdraw from their betting shops. However, if you have an online account, you can withdraw cash from one of their shops up to a limit of £250 a day, but to do so, you must phone customer services in advance and tell them from which shop you intend to withdraw cash.
Paddy Power rules don’t cover the maximum amount of winnings you can withdraw in cash. However, Paddy Power operates a cash card service which you can link to your online account. You can use the balance on your cash card to place bets in shops and to withdraw cash. The maximum amount of cash you can withdraw in a day using your card is £1,000.
Unfortunately, we have not been able to obtain any reliable information on the maximum cash payout available from bet365 shops. We can only assume that there is no corporate policy on this and that it depends on the specific shop.
There seem to be no hard and fast rules regarding cash payouts from any of the main bookmakers’ shops. Coral appears to be the only one that is willing to pay their customers in cash whatever the amount, though we suspect that in reality it might be more difficult than it appears. If you have any stories regarding cash payouts, please let us know; we might include it in a follow-up article.