3 Way Handicap in New Zealand

Steven D. Thompson


Kiwi bettors looking for a more varied wagering experience will enjoy 3-way handicap betting markets. With 3-way handicap bets, you bet on higher odds for favourites and get a significant advantage when backing the underdog. Wondering what 3 way handicap means? Benefit from competitive handicap odds at top bookmakers and place your first 3-way handicap bet!

Table of Contents

    3 Way Handicap Explained

    When a bookmaker creates a 3-way handicap betting market, it levels the playing field between the teams, and there are three outcomes that you can bet on, hence the name 3-way. The bookie evens the contest by putting the favourite at a disadvantage and giving the underdog a point or goal advantage. The possible outcomes are: Home Win, Away Win, or Draw.

    Let's say you are betting on the football match between Juventus and Verona. These are the 3 options in the handicap betting market:

    • Juventus (-1) 2.13
    • Draw 3.90
    • Verona (+1) 2.90

    The Old Lady from Turin is the favourite and would normally get much lower odds. However, because the bookmaker has handicapped the home side (-1 goal), the odds of the favourite become much better. The trade-off is that Juventus will need to triumph by a winning margin of more than one goal to be the winning bet in the handicap line.

    Here's a breakdown of all the possible scenarios:

    • Juventus wins by 2 or more goals - Juventus is the winning bet
    • Juventus wins by only 1 goal - The Draw outcome is the winning bet
    • The match ends in a draw or Verona wins by any margin - Verona is the winning bet

    As you can see, when you are betting on the 3-way handicap line, you are betting on the final score adjusted by one or more goals, depending on the strength of the favourite and the odds the bookie gives you.

    3 Way Handicap Examples

    Let's explain the 3-way handicap betting market through another example. Let's take an international football game this time and present a handicap wager where the favourite needs to cover a two-goal disadvantage:

    • Portugal (-2) 2.05
    • Draw 3.95
    • Lithuania (+2) 2.40

    To win this bet, Portugal will need to triumph by three or more goals. If the Portuguese win by a margin of only one or two goals, they won't win you money in this market. These are the three possible outcomes:

    • Portugal wins by 3 goals or more (e.g. 3:0, 4:1, 5:0, etc.) - Portugal is the winning handicap bet
    • Portugal wins by exactly 2 goals (e.g. 2:0, 3:1, 4:2, etc.) - the outcome is a draw
    • Portugal wins by 1 goal, the match is a draw, or Lithuania wins (1:0, 1:1, 1:2, etc.) - Lithuania is the winning handicap bet

    Please note that the handicap Draw is not an actual final score Draw. It is actually a winning margin bet, where you predict that the favourite will win by exactly the same margin as the negative handicap assigned to it by the bookie. In this case, that is a two-goal win by Portugal.

    How to Place 3-Way Handicap Bets in New Zealand

    Placing handicap wagers in NZ is pretty straightforward, and the same goes for 3-way handicap betting markets. So, if you have never placed a handicap bet before, now is a great time to start. Here's what you need to do to place bets on the handicap market.

    • Estimated Time Needed: 05:00
    • Tools Needed: PC or Mobile Phone
    • Supplies Needed: Time
    Compare 3-Way Handicap Odds Step 1

    Compare 3-Way Handicap Odds

    To make the most of each 3 way handicap bet, you need to get the most competitive odds. So, your first task is to put the best online betting sites side-by-side and see which sportsbook offers better odds than competitors. Since that may take you a lot of time, a good idea is to read Betpack sports betting reviews and find the bookie with the best handicap odds that way.

    Analyse Handicap Markets Step 2

    Analyse Handicap Markets

    You want to be able to wager on as many sports handicap betting options as possible. After all, even though handicap football betting markets are the most popular, football is not the only sport with 3-way handicap lines. So, before joining an online bookmaker, look at the number and variety of handicap betting options it offers.

    Join a Top Sports Betting Site Step 3

    Join a Top Sports Betting Site

    By now, you should have found at least a couple of bookmakers with enticing handicap odds and markets. The next thing to do is sign up with the one you like the best and make your first deposit. While you are doing that, check if the sports betting site has a welcome bonus that you can use to wager on 3-way handicap markets.

    Place Your Wager Step 4

    Place Your Wager

    You are now ready to place your first bet on the popular 3-way handicap market. To do that, find the sporting events you will wager on and choose which handicap outcome you will bet on. Then check your bet slip, and if everything is as it should be, place your first 3-way handicap bet.

    Strategies and Tips for 3-Way Handicap Betting

    Betpack's handicap betting guide covers more than just explanations and examples about how 3-way handicap betting works. We also equip you with a wide range of wagering tools, from proven sports betting strategies to useful tips and tricks on how to make the most of lucrative betting offers and bonuses. Here's how you can build on that handicap advantage or make the most of the high odds resulting from negative handicaps.

    Learn the Difference Between European and Asian Handicap Betting

    Analyse Recent Performances and Previous Match History

    Look at the Bigger Picture When Placing a Handicap Bet on a Favourite

    Asian handicap markets are different from the 3 way handicaps (European) this guide covers. Unlike European handicap markets, Asian handicap lines are 2-way i.e. they only produce two outcomes Home Team Win and Away Team Win. If the handicap result is a draw, it is either a losing bet, a push, or half your stake is returned. So, if you want a sports betting experience with fewer potential outcomes, Asian handicaps might be better for you.

    Many bettors in New Zealand try to use complex betting strategies but forget about the basics and are surprised they cannot get the desired results. One of the smartest things you can do is to start with the fundamentals. That means analysing one team and then examining the other. Go through the teams' chances, goals scored, their recent performances, as well as the skill, ability, and talent they have in their ranks. Don't forget to check their head-to-head record too.

    To improve your chances of winning, always analyse the future fixtures a team will play. Often, favourites take part in several competitions and play matches every few days. They may try to remain professional for each game, but the reality is that some matches are more important than others. For instance, Manchester United will always prioritize a Champions League game ahead of an FA Cup clash. You want to bet on favourites fired up to score one goal after another and not teams preserving their energy for more important duels.


    Three-way handicap betting markets in New Zealand make your online betting experience more diverse and enticing. Because handicap betting markets apply a negative or a positive handicap on the teams involved in a match, you can bet on the favoured team at odds far superior to those offered on the moneyline bet but can also benefit from the positive handicap given to the weaker team and profit by backing underdogs.

    However, to get the most value out of each handicap bet, you must join the best New Zealand betting sites for handicap betting. At Betpack, we review top NZ bookies and put a lot of focus on the sports betting markets they offer, including three-way handicaps. So, if you are looking to join a bookie that excels at handicap betting markets, but also has enticing bonuses and works with a wide range of payment methods, start by going through our top-rated online bookmakers.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    How Does Handicap Betting Work?

    In handicap betting, the bookmaker handicaps the favourite (-1, -2, -3, etc.) deducting goals or points from its final score total and helps the underdog by assigning a positive handicap (+1, +2, +3, etc.) As you can see, handicap betting counters the difference in quality between Team A and Team B, meaning you bet on a market where the two teams are more evenly matched.

    What Does a Handicap Bet of -3 Mean?

    It means the favourite must win by four goals or more to be the winning bet in the handicap market. If the team wins by a margin of exactly three goals, the winning handicap line bet is a Draw. If the favourite wins by 2 goals or fewer, the handicap result is a win for the underdog.

    Is 3-Way Handicap the Same as Asian Handicap Betting?

    No, it isn't. In Asian handicap betting, the draw outcome is more or less removed, and you cannot bet on it. When there is a draw, the bet is either a push or half of the bet loses. In 3-way handicap markets, on the other hand, the draw outcome is one of the options you can bet on.

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