Most of us simple make a game interesting by laying a few dollars on a game against a buddy for the straight win. Team A vs. Team B. But when you venture for the first time, or attempt to try a different type of betting, it can be somewhat confusing. For example, can you quickly understand the odds for American odds vs. Decimal odds vs. Fractional odds? No? That’s ok because in this post I’ll help simplify the different types of sports odds so you can learn the basics and be better prepared on the next opportunity to make a game a little more interesting.

#1, can you quickly spot if the odds for a game are attractive, bad, or fair? Ask any avid sports bettor or sports investor and they’ll tell you the difference between a win or loss, and maximizing profit, is buying value on the odds.

I admit, it can be even more challenging to figure out how to read the odds in the first place as there are a few ways sports odds can be posted. Is this done to confuse the sports bettor and give the house the edge? Hmmmm…I like to think that…but no. The various ways of writing the odds do translate into the same thing, it can definitely be confusing.

So lets dip our toes into this and start with the most common odds you’ll find at North American and International sports books. These are the Decimal odds and Fractional Odds. And if your looking at this for the asian markets, you’ll want to get familiar with the Hong Kong odds.

You’ll find at SocialSportsBettingPicks.com when you check out the NFL experts weekly picks or place a prediction on an English Premier match or other Euro fixtures, you’ve got the options to filter the odds by Decimal, Fractional and American.

**Fractional Odds**

Fractional odds are the easiest to understand, and they are the ones that most people who don’t know much about sports betting talk about.

Fractional odds are most popular in the UK sports betting markets, and these odds are presented as fractions (obviously). For example, if the odds are 3/2 then for every two dollars you bet on the game you would make a profit of three dollars.

At 3/1 you would make three dollars for every dollar you bet, and so on. An even money payoff is 1/1, and payoffs of less than even money are represented by fractions less than one – like with odds of ½ you would make a profit of one dollar for every two dollars you bet. All you have to remember here is that the top number in the fraction represents the amount of profit you are making, not the total amount paid. at 3/2, for example, your total return on a winning two dollar bet would be five dollars – your three dollar profit, plus the original two dollars you bet.

Fractional OddsOdds expressed in a fraction where 1/1 is a break even. The denominator (bottom number) is amount you would bet, and the numerator (top number) is the amount you would divide the bottom number into to determine your profit. So you can see why 1/1 (1 divided by 1) would be 1, or break even. But you want profit, so a long shot bet of 5/1 would mean you would wager $1 (or $100) to win $5 (or $500).

**American Odds**

These are the odds used most often in the U.S. and Canada markets and sportsbooks. You’ll find these odds represented as either positive or negative numbers, and they are at least three digit numbers bigger than 100.

Negative numbers are for bets that will pay off at less than even money. The easiest way to think about these is that they are the amount of money you would have to bet to win $100.

For example, odds of -200 means that you would make a profit of $100 for every $200 bet – the same as fractional odds of ½. Odds that pay more than even money are represented by positive numbers, and can be thought of as the amount you would win if you bet $100. Odds of +150 means you would make a profit of $150 if you bet $100 – the same as fractional odds of 3/2. Even money bets are expressed as +100.

American oddsOdds expression indicating return relative to 100 unit base figure. With money odds, whenever there is a minus (-) you lay that amount to win a hundred dollars, where there is a plus (+) you win that amount for every hundred dollars you bet.

**Decimal Odds**

If you’re in the Euro markets these Decimal odds are the most popular throughout these Euro countries. Decimal odds are shown as numbers greater than one, and can be thought of as the amount you would get back for every one dollar bet including your original bet.

Decimals odds of 1.50 mean that for every dollar you bet you make a profit of 50 cents. That’s the same as fractional odds of ½ and U.S. odds of -200.

Decimal odds of 2.00 are even money, and 2.50 would be the equivalent of 3/2 or +150. They are most commonly listed with two decimals places, but can be expressed with more than that in some cases.

Decimal OddsThis odd type means that if the odds are 2.00, you break even. Same case if it were fractional odds at 1/1. So at 1.5 odds for every dollar you bet you make a profit of 50 cents.

A number of different online sportsbooks allow the sports bettors to switch the views on the various odd types to personalize the game lines to the users preference. And guaranteed, the American odds, Decimal odds and Fractional odds are the core 3 you’ll find at almost any online sportsbook and Vegas books.

Hope this helps simplified your understanding of the different types of sportsbook odds available. And at least the top three odd types can be easily understood and make more sense the next time you challenge your friends at SocialSportsBettingPicks.com on a friendly gam, or you try your luck at the books.