After starting life in Brisbane in February 2012, Bookmaker.com.au instantly made a splash in the Australian betting scene. Focussing on the home market, with only Australian and New Zealand residents permitted to open accounts, it made a unique name for itself among the betting public. Barely 18 months after it began operations, it had attracted attention to such an extent that UK Gaming giant Ladbrokes bought it to gain access to what was, for it, a brand new territory. The following year Betstar were also bought out. Now all three sites operate with the same markets, using the same odds, but with different promotions, special offers, sign up deals and bonus bets.
As well as the financial backing and security having the likes of Ladbrokes behind the scenes, Bookmaker.com.au customers can also take advantage of the Bookmaker Card, which gives them access to their winnings almost instantly via an ATM, by simply transferring their them from their account to their card.
Another influence Ladbrokes has had is to broaden the number of sports that are available to its customers. Bookmaker.com.au still has comprehensive coverage of its traditional base of Australian sports, but there is a more international flavour as well now.
There are three ways to get to the AFL section. Go via the quick links at the top of the left hand column; the AFL link under the long list of sports on the left hand column, or by the large AFL box centre screen.
It depends on the time of year, but mid-season expect there to be close on 200 events listed with nearly 700 markets available, which is very impressive.
Click on the match you are interested in, and all the normal markets unfold. Bookmaker.com.au operates the same odds and markets as Ladbrokes, so there won’t be any surprises, but it this works both ways.
The most popular AFL markets are:
- Half Time/Full-Time Double
- Quarter by Quarter Leader
- Quarter Time Leader
- Half Time Leader
- 3 Quarter Time Leader
- Tri-Bet Over/Under
As in other sports, Bookmaker.com.au offers a comprehensive range of margin markets on AFL and $2 lines for 2 hours prior to every AFL game.
Despite sharing markets and odds with Ladbrokes it utilises a different interface. Whereas this could have been a problem, it certainly isn’t and the Bookmaker.com.au website is a fantastically polished, slick, neat looking site. Navigation is quick, easy and intuitive, and the layout is pleasing on the eye.
Once you click on the sports tab at the top of the screen you are presented with stylish boxes, representing all the sports covered, in alphabetical order. Nice animation highlights part of the box when you hover your cursor over it – only a small touch but an example of how well thought out and executed the whole site is.
Bookmaker.com.au, like many Australian betting sites, uses the three column layout, so in this aspect, it isn’t particularly groundbreaking, but it still does manage to look different to other sites on the market, and different in a good way.The betting slip and account area functionality are very slick. There is a quickbet option which lets you bet a pre-defined amount without having to go through the betting slip, though that process is far from laborious, and intuitively takes you through your options.
When placing a bet, you can either enter the stake you want to put down or the amount you would like to win, with the stake then automatically calculated for you. Multiples are easy to add, as your options are constantly displayed depending on your selections.
As a pure betting site, Bookmaker.com ticks every box and ticks them emphatically. It takes you through the whole process of finding a market, exploring your options, and placing a bet in a way that is easy and enjoyable with none of the frustrations or repeat steps that some sites are prone to.
There are a couple of areas where some people may wish for slight additions or improvements, such as those looking to watch live streams, or who want detailed previews and tips will be disappointed, but overall this fantastic site is very hard to find fault with.
The Bookmaker.com is similar to the Ladbrokes site, with the added touches brought over from its own site. It is easy to use, looks good, and allows you to do everything you would expect from a modern betting app. Free to download and available on all Apple and Android formats, it is essential for the punter on the go.