Union Jack Bet Explained

This article is about the bet that is known to punters as the ‘Union Jack’. In it, I’ll explain what it is, how you place a Union Jack bet and what the risks and rewards of the Union Jack are.

First and foremost let’s look at the question ‘What is a Union Jack bet?’.

What Is A Union Jack Bet?

The Union Jack bet is named for the shape that, with a bit of imagination, is made from the selections – it resembles a Union Jack. You make 9 selections for this one, and they are arranged in a 3×3 grid to provide 8 trebles – 3 across the grid, 3 down the grid, and two diagonals, hence the Union Jack:


So in this example, you’d have ABC, DEF, GHI, ADG, BRH, CFI, AEI, and CEG as your treble bets. On the face of it, this looks like a good way of putting together a number of trebles, but when you look a bit more closely you’ll realise that it isn’t quite that simple. Another look at the grid tells you that A, B, F, G and I could all be winners, yet your bet would still be a total loser with no payout at all as they don’t come together to form a treble in themselves.

To be honest it’s a bit of a mug bet and I’d suggest anyone looking for a good multiple bet option checks out accumulator bets.

How To Place A Union Jack Bet

There isn’t any particular trick to placing a Union Jack bet. You should be aware that not all bookmakers offer it, and the ones that do may not offer it all the time, but when it is available the process for creating one will be roughly as follows:

1. Go to your favourite betting website. I’ve used Betfred for this example, but you won’t find it much different if you go somewhere else.

2. On the main ‘Sports’ page, you’ll see a menu offering a variety of different sports.

3. Choose the sport you want from the menu. For a Union Jack, you are probably looking at horseracing or possibly greyhound racing.

4. When you’ve chosen your sport, all the upcoming races will be listed on a new page.

5. Choose the 9 races you are going to make your selections in by putting a check mark in the box at the side of them.

6. Click the ‘create coupon’ icon, which is the one that looks like a pencil on Betfred.

7. You will now see the individual cards for each race you chose. Click the name of the runner you want to include in your bet, and remember that you need to make one selection in each race.

8. As you make each selection, it will be added to your bet slip or basket.

9. When you’ve made all 9, check that the list in your betting slip is correct – all your selections should be in here.

10. Click the ‘Multiple Bet Options’ link, and from the list select the ‘Union Jack’ option. Ignore all the others, unless you want to place some other bets at the same time.

11. Enter your unit stake. The total on the betting slip will update to show you the total amount the bet will cost you.

12. Place the bet and get a receipt by clicking the ‘Confirm’ button.

Not only are Union Jack bets a bit of a mug punt but it’s pretty hard to find them anywhere. Unless you like setting fire to money then I suggest you consider placing a double bet, treble bet or even an accumulator as mentioned previously.

Risks & Rewards Of A Union Jack Bet

To be frank, the Union Jack bet has a lot going against it and not much in its favour. It’s generally seen as a bit of a novelty bet, and it doesn’t form part of any serious gamblers regular betting portfolio.

The only real benefit to this bet is that it really makes the most of your stake when you get a few of the trebles winning. You aren’t reducing your profit on singles or doubles as you do with some other combination bets, so profits can be significant if you manage to get it right.

The problem with it is that it’s so easy to lose on it, as I’ve shown in the example. You can get 5 predicted winners right from the 9 in the bet, and yet you can still lose, which isn’t very good value by anybody’s standards. There are plenty of other bet types around which will provide a decent profit for getting a couple of trebles right, and they may also have additional advantages such as including singles and doubles as well.