Please keep in mind that this is our personal review of 888, not a blatant promotion for the company. We discuss what’s good and bad with the goal of giving you a realistic idea of what it’s like to bet at 888.
888 is an old and experienced name in online betting. The brand went live in 1997 and has since served more than 25 million customers from around the world. As a publicly traded company on the London Stock Exchange and holder of a license from the UK Gambling Commission, 888.com is well established as one of major players in the international gambling market.
888 is a reputable betting site run by a publicly traded company. They cover every major sport and boast one of the largest real money poker rooms on the internet.
- Licensed, regulated and safe
- Thousands of betting options every day
- 888 Poker is a large and high-traffic poker site
- Casino is home to massive jackpots
- Live streaming only available in the UK/Ireland
Today, 888 Holdings PLC achieves yearly revenues in the range of £300 million through its online sports betting, casino, poker and games products. I note those facts because one of the main things I look for in any betting site is financial stability. With 20 years in online gaming and revenue numbers well into the nine figures, 888.com has done more than enough to win me over.
Safety and security are all well and good, but we still need to decide if this is the right betting site for you. I’ll devote the rest of this review to detailing everything 888.com has to offer, what it does well and what it doesn’t do as well. By the end of it all, you’ll have all the information you need to decide if 888 fits your unique needs.
This is quite a long review so I’m adding a table of contents to assist in navigation. You’re welcome to read the whole thing from start to end or skip ahead to the section that interests you most.
Review Table of Contents:
- Sports Betting Review
- Horse Racing Betting
- Online Casino
- Online Poker
- 888 Games
- Customer Support / Deposit Methods / Restricted Countries
Sports Betting Review
888 is heavily invested in its sports betting division with extensive coverage of about 36 different sports. Each sport is covered in great detail with hundreds of markets for events big and small. Whether it’s a UEFA Champions League Final or a handball match between Montenegro and Serbia, 888 Sport is there with numerous markets that range from picking the winner to predicting who will score the last goal.
Major sports such as football, cricket, baseball and basketball often have upwards of 100 different bets for each match. I find it impressive that one betting site is capable of managing so many different lines for so many different matches. Overall, the odds for major bets are competitive when compared to other bookmakers. I would definitely recommend adding 888 to your list of sites to check when shopping around for the best line.
Any bookmaker with this many betting options needs to be easy to navigate, and 888 also does well in that regard. Choosing any sport from the left navigation pane brings up a list of all upcoming matches. You can select a straight-up bet on the winner from the main sports page or click on the name of the event to see a full list of wagers available for that event.
When you select a bet, the proposed bet appears in a betting slip on the right side of the page. This slip shows how much you will be risking and how much you stand to win. You can confirm all wagers through the betting slip before you actually place the bet, which reduces the chances of placing a bet you didn’t intend to place.
Live in-play betting can be found by clicking on the “live betting” tab near the top of the screen. Doing so will show you a list of events that are running right now. Choose any event and you’ll be able to place in-game bets at constantly updated odds. Select the schedule and you’ll see a list of all live betting events for the next week.
888 may have the most in-depth in-play schedule of any bookmaker in the world. On any given day, they open the markets on at least 30 live events. What stands out is the fact that 888 doesn’t just offer live betting on major games. They offer it for everything from major international matchups to obscure Asian events that you probably won’t find anywhere else.
Additionally, 888 offers live streaming of a whole variety of events for customers based in the UK and Ireland. If you have money in your account OR have placed a bet of at least £1 in the last 24 hours, you can watch live sports for free online at the 888 website or through your mobile device. Major matches in football, basketball, ice hockey and more are all streamed live at no cost.
One of the more unique things offered by 888 is a statistics screen you can visit from any individual matchup page. If you click on the little graph icon below the names of the two sides, a pop-up will appear with information about each side’s last few matches, any information about past contests between the two, individual players of note and a variety of other stats. I find the stats screen useful whenever I’m on the fence between two closely-ranked teams.
Sports on Offer
888 provides wagers on all the following sports: horse racing, greyhounds, football, tennis, cricket, basketball, snooker, darts, golf, ice hockey, American football, Australian rules, baseball, beach volleyball, boxing, chess, cycling, e-sports, field hockey, futsal, handball, motorsports, netball, pesapallo, politics, rugby league, rugby union, surfing, trotting, MMA, volleyball, winter sports and entertainment/pop culture.
Horse Racing Betting at 888.com
The 888 horse racing betting section has some very strong points and some not-so-strong points. On the strong side, this is a sleek racing betting interface that is easy to use for newbies and veterans alike. Just click on “horse racing” from the main sports betting menu and you will be presented with a quick view of the next races slated to go off and all the betting options for those races.
A clean interface makes it so that you will have no trouble placing bets, seeing how much you are risking and what you stand to win. Each bet type is clearly labeled and you will see at a glance how to select multiple horses for your forecasts/tricasts.
On the negative side, the racing betting markets here are somewhat limited. 888 Sport does not offer many advanced wagers beyond the basics. The only bet types I’ve been able to find to date are straight up win bets, forecasts and tricasts. Additionally, there is no way to sort through all available tracks. 888 only shows today’s races and future major events such as Cheltenham, the Grand National and so on.
Back on a positive note, 888 has top-notch handicapping tools. The iCard Predictor as explained below is by far the best handicapping tool available at any racing betting site. The best part of all is it’s completely free. Just read on for all the detail on iCard at 888.
888Sport has the most advanced horse racing handicapping tool of any betting site I have encountered to date. It’s called iCard and it serves as an all-in-one handicapping tool complete with advanced predictions, horse analyses, track overviews, jockey histories, recent form, head-to-head matchup statistics, trainer information and more.
One thing you will notice immediately is every time you select a race inside the iCard predictor, it shows a graphical representation of what it anticipates to be the first, second and third place finishers. iCard comes to these conclusions by looking at every horse in the race and comparing dozens of parameters related to everything from each horse’s recent outings on down to the minutest detail such as which direction the horse seems to prefer running.
As if that wasn’t enough, the predictor can also be toggled to compare horses according to four different filters: its predictions for each horse winning, each horse achieving a place result, each horse according to recent form and each horse according to the jockey and trainer.
iCard is so in-depth that it even provides detailed information on every major course around the world. You can select any track for its background information, address, website, phone number and a visual depiction that shows distances, turns, jumps and even which directions the course runs.
You can also use iCard to find lists of steamers (horses which are seeing heavy betting action) and travelers (horses that have traveled the farthest) for help in quickly finding promising bets. Additionally, iCard provides constant news updates on racing from around the world with more than a dozen news articles added every day.
Note: iCard is free and anyone can use it. In fact, you do not even need an account at 888 to use iCard. You can try it for yourself right now at www.888sport.com and then select “horse racing” and then look for the iCard banner.
888 was one of the first online casinos, ever. The casino portion launched in 1997 and has grown since then to include a collection of nearly 300 games from a diverse range of software developers. You’ll find hundreds of slots, table games and live dealer games powered by the likes of Dragonfish (formerly Random Logic), NextGen, NetEnt, Amaya and more. Game selection has improved significantly over the past couple years and 888 Casino now has a selection on par with the biggest names in casino gaming.
In fact, Dragonfish is owned by 888 Holdings as one of its proprietary business-to-business software solutions. 888 doesn’t just license games from other providers, it has its own in-house software provider in Dragonfish. The fact that 888 has its own software development arm displays a higher than average understanding of the online gaming market.
The casino has a PC-friendly download option as well as an instant play option for players on Macs and other operating systems. One account will grant you access to the casino wherever you are and you’ll be happy to know that the payout rates approach 98% for almost every game on offer.
If you want to play on the go, 888 has mobile casino apps for all Android and iOS devices. You can download the software by visiting 888.com and scanning the QR code or inputting your mobile number/e-mail address to have the download link sent to you. The mobile casino consists of about 100 games, so there’s not quite as much selection as you will find by visiting the full website.
As far as graphics and features go, it’s a mixed bag due to there being games by a multitude of software providers. However, I’ve found almost all of them to be high quality games and have no complaints there. There’s enough of a mix here that you should be able to find something that fits exactly what you want in a casino game.
Overall, I’m pleased with the software but do have one complaint. The instant play interface on the website constantly logs me out whenever I switch between individual games and the lobby. I suspect this could be a result of cookie settings in my browser, but I don’t have the same problem when playing at other online casinos with the same browser. In any case, something isn’t quite right there. If you have a PC, I recommend downloading the actual casino software for maximum performance.
You’ll find a variety of games that range from simple 3-reel slots to 3D video slots complete with skill-based bonus rounds. In addition to slots, 888 is home to a plethora of tables games such as blackjack, baccarat, craps, Caribbean Holdem, casino war and many more. At last count, there were more than 270 unique games on offer.
Slots account for a big portion of the game selection here with 200+ different slot games. The selection includes classic mechanical slots, video slots and high tech 3D games. Themes include a range of slots based on sports, entertainment franchises such as Superman, Nightmare on Elm Street and more. I’ve included a few screenshots below so you can get an idea of what these games look like in action.
The list of table games at 888 includes all the classics you would expect to see at any major casino site. I had no problem navigating to the games section to play real money roulette, blackjack and all the others. In many cases, there are multiple variations of each game with unique rules and optional jackpot side bets. The casino even has a few 3D table games with graphics that are a tough above the industry standard.
Live Dealer Games
888 Casino boasts a large collection of games with real human dealers that you can watch and chat with in real time thanks to streaming video technology. If you’re not sold on the idea of computerized random results, the live dealer games give you the traditional casino experience complete with actual cards and real tables.
The live dealer casino at 888.com consists of roulette, blackjack, baccarat, Casino Holdem and three card poker. Each of these main sections includes at least a dozen tables for each game with varying betting limits and rule variations. The main live dealer lobby makes it look like there’s a limited selection, but choosing any game shows you that there are actually quite a few tables to choose from.
I was surprised to find a few tables with minimum limits as low as £0.50 per hand. This is almost unheard of in any live dealer game because of the expense associated with hiring dealers and maintaining a table with low limits. My guess is that 888.com is such a big company that they can afford to lose a little money on certain games just to keep everyone happy. Maximum limits go as high as £40,000 per round (that’s a higher max than I’ve ever seen anywhere else).
One other thing that caught my attention was the amount of interaction between dealers and players. I visited one of the English tables earlier today and it actually had two dealers who speak native English bantering with players, talking with each other like radio hosts and generally making it a significantly more interactive experience than I’ve ever had at any other live dealer casino on the internet.
Speaking of which, 888 Casino does host tables in multiple languages. You can join tables hosted in English, German, Russian, Swedish and possibly other languages depending on the time of day.
888 Poker is now officially the second-largest poker network, ranking behind only PokerStars for number of players. Peak hour traffic approaches 11,000 with about 3,000 cash game and 8,000 tournament players online at once. You can log in any time and find thousands of real money players ready to go.
Traffic has always been one of the main things I look for in any potential poker site. Not only does it indicate the site is trusted by many, but it also insures you’ll find the games you want at the stakes you like. So on that count, 888 Poker gets an easy A+ rating. Traffic is not a problem.
Competition here is definitely softer than average. You can even research this one on your own if you don’t believe me. Most people agree that this is one of the softer poker sites today. It probably helps that the 888 Network is almost exclusively dominated by 888.com and therefore draws many of its players from the casino or sportsbook.
I should also note that the default currency at 888 Poker is US dollars. It’s fine if you keep your account balance in some other currency (most people do in fact), but your money will be converted to dollars whenever you’re actually seated at a table.
Withdrawal times are decent but lacking behind other major poker sites. Sometimes you’ll be cashed out on that same day and other times you’ll wait up to a week. It’s hit or miss but you will definitely be paid if you win – it just might not be as quick as you’d prefer. Like most other sites, 888 Poker does require ID documentation before processing your first withdrawal.
Texas Holdem, Omaha, Omaha Hi-Lo, 7 Card Stud and 7 Card Stud Hi-Lo are all offered as cash games in the fixed limit, pot limit and no-limit formats. As usual, the majority of the traffic congregates at the Holdem tables. However, 888 is a big enough poker site that it does manage to get tables running for every format it offers. If you have had a hard time finding action for your preferred game at other sites, you should give 888 a try.
No-limit stakes start out at $0.01/$0.02 and go as high as $25/$50 for regular games. They also have a variety of “push or fold” only tables at stakes as high as $500/$1,000. Fixed limit stakes start out at $0.02/$0.04 and go as high as $50/$100.
The tournament variety at 888 as a huge selling point for me. 888 Poker hosts a ton of tournaments at all different stakes and of all different types. Whether you’re a beginner with a tiny bankroll or a salty vet with money to burn, you’ll get what you need here. The tournament lineup consists of all the most popular variants at stakes that range from free to $1,000 or more.
888 hosts a big lineup of guaranteed events every day with prize pools as high as $200,000 and sometimes even higher. You can play for seats to live events, compete in heads-up challenges, multi-table the SNGs and even compete tournaments that award odd prizes such as shares in racehorses or box seats to major sporting events. This is by far the most diverse lineup of poker tournaments anywhere.
In addition to those mentioned above, 888 Poker hosts deep stack events, rebuys, knockouts, step SNGs, double-or-nothings and satellites to the World Series of Poker.
As a Mac user, I was happy to see that 888 Poker has both a PC and Mac software download in addition to its no-download instant play option. I have played extensively on the Mac software and was happy with the simplicity of the graphics and speed of gameplay. I estimate that I see somewhere around 85-90 hands per hour in the cash games. From what I can gather, the software is equally functional on the PC.
888 Poker also offers a mobile poker app with more functionality than what you typically see from other mobile poker sites. The app is available for all Android, iPhone and iPad devices and supports cash games, multi-table tournaments, SNGs and fast-fold SNAP cash games.
The poker lobby is organized by game type and poker variation. If you want to see Omaha cash games, for example, you can navigate to the cash games tab and then select Omaha. From there, you can further narrow down the list of tables by various filtering options such as stakes and number of players.
Multi-tabling is supported but only up to a maximum of 6 tables at a time. Overall, the software is functional and about average in terms of speed and graphics. I’ve played at worse and better sites. I wouldn’t give 888 the “best software ever” award, but it’s not bad and it won’t detract from your experience.
The software has one unique feature that you might find fun: poker cam tables. If you have a webcam, you can play in cash games and tournaments against other people and actually see each other’s faces. Webcam poker feels a little gimmicky but it’s also kind of fun if you’re not busy multi-tabling.
888 Bingo, also called 888 Ladies, is a large but light-hearted bingo site that doesn’t take itself too seriously. A bright color scheme and emphasis on the community aspect make this a casual place to play real money bingo and make new friends. Game types include traditional 90-ball and 75-ball bingo as well as a fast-paced variation of 5-line bingo.
Individual bingo games come in a variety of formats with unique patterns, guaranteed prizes and a few progressive jackpots that pay as much as £50,000. Online bingo isn’t particularly known for big prizes so I was surprised to see numerous games with jackpots worth £10,000 or higher.
You can play bingo online at the website without downloading anything or you can download the app for any Android or iOS device (both tablets and phones). Just search the app store for “888Ladies” or visit the 888 website to scan the QR code. You can then log in with your existing account to play real money games wherever you are.
Other games include a variety of slot machines and scratch cards that can help pass time if you ever need a break from bingo. The progressive jackpot slots are home to prizes as large as £100,000 or more.
888 Ladies is big on promotions. You can visit the promotions tab on the website any time and find more than a dozen active promotions any day of the week. The lineup always changes, but a few recent promotions I found included a £200,000 jumbo jackpot, a “Race for Life” Pink Army promotion that donated money to Cancer Research UK, a variety of free-to-enter games with real prizes and buy-one-get-one-free offers.
I haven’t played enough bingo here to give you an honest review of the community, but I found everyone to be friendly and chatty the times I did play. I’ve read other reviews from players that say pretty much the same thing. One person called the community “cliquey” but it’s hard to imagine cliques being a thing when all we’re talking about is online chat. Anyways, my few experiences were positive and I am sure yours will be as well.
The chat moderators are most definitely friendly and sociable enough to break the ice if you find yourself in a quiet room. Chat games are a regular occurrence with free bingo cards up for grabs all the time.
And now we enter the most confusing part of this 888 review. The “Games” section at 888.com is home to a variety of instant play casino games that include slots, table games and even live dealer games. It’s unclear to me what the difference is between “888 Games” and “888 Casino” because they both have a similar lineup of gaming options.
The only thing I can tell is the games section has a more casual approach. It doesn’t seem quite as serious as the regular casino area. In any case, if you play casino games it’s nice that the games section has its own bonus. You can claim the regular casino bonus first and then head over to the games section for a second bonus.
Overall, the game lineup here is similar to what you’ll find at the casino. A big variety of games from multiple software providers is handy for keeping things fresh and the graphics range from basic to quite advanced thanks to some of the newer NetEnt slots.
Customer Support / Deposit Methods / Restricted Countries
Whew, we’re almost done. Let’s wrap up this long-winded review with a look at the customer support, deposit methods and restricted countries and territories at 888.com.
888 has a large customer support team with 24/7 support that you can reach by phone, e-mail and live chat. They speak multiple languages and have a whole list of numbers that are free for players in most countries. The only complaint I have is that they make it difficult to actually find the support team’s contact details. Clicking on the “help” link at 888.com only brings up a list of FAQs without any contact methods. You have to log in to your account and then find the right page to find the numbers you need.
Toll free contact numbers are available in the UK, Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Ireland, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Russia, Sweden and Taiwan.
888 accepts an impressive variety of deposit methods so you won’t have any trouble funding your account wherever you live. Some deposit methods have variable maximum deposit limits based on your location and history so I don’t have information on the max deposit for all of these methods.
|Chinese Debit Cards||Varies|
|Entropay Virtual VISA||€10|
|Qiwi Virtual VISA||€10|
|iDEAL||€10 / 55DKK / 65SEK|
|Citadel Instant Banking||€10|
888.com does not accept players from Portugal, the United States, Israel and Turkey. This is not a comprehensive list, however, and 888 frequently updates its list of restricted territories. Most of you should be fine no matter where you live. 888 is not a very restrictive betting site so my advice is to just try and sign up no matter where you are. The odds are high they will accept you.