What Do You Do When Betfair is Down?

Betfair downThe screenshot shows the same screen that many Betfair traders were left staring at for many hours from Saturday afternoon going into the early evening too. Betfair was down! Actually that screen shot is quite generous as most of us simply had the “sorry for the disruption” message up.

You might be reading this thinking that a website being down for a few hours isn’t newsworthy, however this wasn’t the first time in recent months this has happened. On January 31st Betfair even did an “upgrade” which was meant to prevent such situations however it seems to have actually made it all much worse. For it to go down on a Saturday which is easily any sports traders busiest day is just ridiculous. I got lucky on Saturday as somehow Betfair came back briefly for just enough time to exit all my positions and actually green up nicely on the expected drift on the Man Utd price. However, it could have been much worse and it was for many people.

I was told of a person on MSE who lost £5k due to this madness. Not sure how they did it, but that just underlines why I have said Matched Betting is NOT risk free!

So what do you do if Betfair goes down?

Well you can call Betfair on 0844 871 5555 and quote your Telephone account number. This can be found in your account, “my profile” and at the bottom. You had better make note of this as obviously if the site is down then you won’t be able to access your account to find out!
If the site is down and its API is also down then calling Betfair wont actually help as they wont be able to do anything from their end either. This is when you need to open an account with Betdaq and hopefully have some spare cash ready to deposit to close your position. This can get tricky to do as liquidity on Betdaq can be poor depending on the market but it really is your only option. So it’s worth signing up with Betdaq just in case!
I was ready and prepared to close my Man Utd position on Saturday via Betdaq but thankfully it didn’t come to that. In a way, the site being down actually saved me on Saturday as I am sure I would have ended up losing money on the Leeds and Nottingham Forest 0-0 draws as I fancied goals in both those games! Perhaps Sods law was smiling on me?
I really do hope Betfair get this all sorted out very soon though as you really can’t work like this. The fact they literally monopolise sports trading doesn’t help either as there isn’t a viable alternative. Betdaq have been trying for years to gain a market share but its just never happened. Fingers crossed, things will change very soon!
Anyway, thankfully they offered an explanation in the end, however it seems like a lot of gobbledegook unless you are an IT wizard. Read for yourself here and let me know if you understand a word of what they said!


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  1. The IT speak, basically means that betfair had a setup that is fine with load of users (multiple threads running, think of this as a casino having multiple tables available for usage), but when they make a change to content on the site (web pages, images etc), they have to shut down all the table and revert to single threading (ie one table only to service everyone).

  2. Denis Vahey says:

    Is there any chance Betdaq are somehow hacking?!

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