Vigs? How Much Do Bookies Charge?

9 June 2022
Vigs How Much Do Bookies Charge
Vigs How Much Do Bookies Charge

Interested in venturing into the world of bookmaking? The question on your mind is likely, “How much do bookies charge?” It’s a question that reveals both curiosity and ambition, indicating a serious interest in the betting business and the potential for lucrative profits.

But here’s the thing: there’s no one-size-fits-all answer to this inquiry. Each bookie operates with their own distinct goals, strategies, and fee structures. Understanding the dynamics of bookmaking requires delving into various factors that influence a bookie’s earnings.

Firstly, let’s dissect the role of a bookie. Essentially, a bookie serves as an intermediary between bettors, facilitating wagers on various sporting events or other outcomes. Their aim is to balance the betting action, ensuring they can turn a profit regardless of the outcome. This balancing act is achieved through a mechanism known as the vigorish, or “vig” for short.

The vig is essentially the fee charged by the bookie for their services. It’s built into the odds offered on bets and ensures that, regardless of the outcome, the bookie stands to make money. The precise vig percentage can vary depending on the market and the bookie’s strategy.

So, how much can bookies make? Well, it depends. Some bookies operate on a small scale, serving a local clientele and taking modest profits. Others, particularly those in larger markets or operating online, can rake in substantial earnings.

Consider a few examples: In highly competitive markets like Las Vegas or online platforms, bookies might charge a vig of around 5% or more. This can translate to significant profits, especially when handling large volumes of bets.

On the other hand, smaller-scale bookies might charge a lower vig to attract clients, perhaps in the range of 3% to 4%. While their profit margins per bet may be slimmer, they can still generate steady income, particularly if they maintain a loyal customer base.

In essence, the answer to “How much do bookies charge?” is as diverse as the industry itself. It’s a question that underscores the intricacies of bookmaking and the potential for lucrative rewards for those who navigate it wisely.


To get a clear picture of how much do bookies charge, you need to understand the roles of a bookie. A bookie is also referred to as a bookmaker, bookie agent, or sportsbook agent. His job is to accept bets on various events, including sports, horse races, TV series, celebrities, politics, and shows.

Another bookie’s role is to collect wagers and pay winning bettors. A bookie can also create and adjust odds, hire an oddsmaker, or work with a pay-per-head company that assumes the role of creating and adjusting odds.

For example, a player can bet on a specific team to win. If the team wins the game, the player gets his money back plus the profit. However, if the team does not win, a bookie keeps the wagered money.

This would mean that a bookie can only earn his profit when a player loses his bet. Suppose a player has wagered on the Dallas Cowboys at -6.5 against the New York Giants. This means the Cowboys have to win by 7 or more points for the player to win his bet.

If the Cowboys win, the bookies have to pay up the wagered amount plus the profit a player made. Unfortunately, this is not a good way of doing business. Therefore, bookies charge a vig to ensure their income no matter which team wins the match.


Vig, also known as vigorish or juice, is the lifeblood of bookmakers, serving as the commission that facilitates the art of betting. This fee, typically around 10 percent, is the glue that holds the betting ecosystem together, allowing bookies to operate and bettors to participate.

Let’s break it down with an example: Imagine a bettor lays down $100 on a game. To do so, they need to risk $110 due to the 10 percent vig. If luck is on their side and they win, the bookie takes their 10 percent cut, returning the original $100 stake along with the winnings.

However, vig charges aren’t set in stone; they fluctuate depending on various factors such as the event, sport, and even the bookmaker’s discretion. Picture this: Two bettors, one wagering $50 and the other $2000. The former needs to put up $55 to win $50, while the latter must risk $2200 to walk away with $2000.

Here’s the crux: the profit margins for the bookie shift with each wager, determined by the vig percentage and the amount at stake. In our example, the bookie could pocket $5 from the $55 wager and a hefty $220 from the $2200 bet.

This vig system ensures bookies stay in business, as it guarantees them a slice of the action regardless of the outcome. Yet, it’s a delicate balancing act. Bookies must constantly strive to maintain equilibrium in their books. If they fail to do so, they risk being on the hook for payouts, potentially eating into their hard-earned profits.

So, the next time you ponder, “How much do bookies charge?” remember the vig – the essential cog in the wheel of sports betting, ensuring a fair game for all parties involved. And if you find yourself with more questions or need further guidance, don’t hesitate to reach out.


The answer to how much do bookies charge varies. But, several factors influence bookies’ decisions on how much they charge. These include;


When it comes to setting the vig, a bookie’s approach can vary based on the number and type of players they serve. Picture this scenario: You’ve got 20 players in your roster. Now, you could charge anywhere between $10 and $20 in vig per player. But here’s the catch: you need to tailor your vig strategy to suit the dynamics of your player base.

Let’s say you’ve got some high rollers on board – folks with hefty bankrolls who aren’t shy about splashing the cash. For them, a vig of $10 to $20, or even more, might not raise an eyebrow. They’re willing to pay a premium for the thrill of the game and the convenience of betting with you. However, if your clientele consists of more modest bettors with smaller bankrolls, you might need to adjust your vig downwards to keep them engaged and coming back for more.

Now, let’s zoom out a bit. Imagine you’re overseeing a bookie empire with over 1000 players in your fold. In this scenario, playing the long game might mean charging a lower vig. By doing so, you not only attract more players into the fray but also ensure steady daily earnings, even with a lower individual vig rate. It’s a numbers game – more players mean more action, and ultimately, more profits.

Contrast that with a bookie handling just a handful of players. In this case, a higher vig might be the name of the game. With fewer players to rely on, each bet becomes more critical for your bottom line. By charging a higher vig, you can accelerate your profit accumulation, albeit at the risk of potentially turning away some players.

Setting the right vig is a delicate dance, balancing the needs and expectations of your players with your own profit goals. Whether you’re catering to high rollers or nurturing a growing player base, finding that sweet spot in vig pricing can make all the difference in your bookie business.


Indeed, the popularity of sports plays a significant role in determining the vig percentage set by bookies. Take American football, for instance – a beloved pastime ingrained in the culture of many. With its massive following and high levels of engagement, bookies often hike up the vig for football matches, knowing fans will still flock to place their bets, regardless of the vig percentage.

On the flip side, consider sports with a lower profile, like soccer in certain regions. While die-hard fans exist, the overall betting activity might pale in comparison to that of American football. In such cases, bookies face a challenge: how to entice players to wager on these less popular sports. The solution? Adjusting the vig downwards.

By offering a lower vig on these niche sports, bookies can attract players who might otherwise be deterred by high vig percentages. It’s a strategic move aimed at broadening the betting landscape and tapping into new markets. After all, a diverse range of sports means more opportunities for players to engage, and ultimately, more action for bookies.

The vig percentage isn’t just about maximizing profits; it’s about understanding the nuances of sports fandom and catering to the diverse interests of players. Whether it’s the adrenaline rush of American football or the finesse of soccer, bookies must strike the right balance in vig pricing to keep the game exciting for all involved.


The competitive landscape among bookies plays a crucial role in determining the vig percentage set by each operator. Take, for instance, the bustling betting scene in New York, where bookies have established a norm of charging a 5 percent vig on American football.

For a new entrant into the market, this prevailing vig percentage serves as a benchmark, influencing their own pricing strategy. While there may be a temptation to undercut the competition by offering a lower vig, it’s not always a straightforward path to attracting more players.

Why? Because player behavior is driven not just by vig percentages but also by factors like trust, reliability, and the overall betting experience. Players may stick with established bookies they’re familiar with, even if a new player offers a slightly lower vig.

So, while charging a lower vig might seem like a quick way to gain traction, it’s essential for new bookies to tread carefully. Instead of solely focusing on undercutting competitors, they must take a holistic approach. This involves evaluating not just how much other bookies charge but also understanding the needs and preferences of potential players.

By conducting thorough market research and assessing player demographics, a new bookmaker can tailor their vig strategy to strike the right balance between competitiveness and profitability. It’s about finding that sweet spot where the vig is attractive enough to draw players in, while still ensuring sustainable profits for the business.

Setting the vig isn’t just about following the crowd or undercutting competitors. It’s about crafting a pricing strategy that reflects market dynamics, player preferences, and the unique value proposition of the bookie. By carefully weighing these factors, a new bookmaker can carve out their niche in the competitive world of sports betting.


While vig remains the cornerstone of a bookie’s earnings, it’s not the sole avenue for profitability. Bookies can augment their income through various means, such as capitalizing on bad bettors, cultivating a roster of quality players, and diversifying their offerings to include different forms of gambling. Nonetheless, charging a vig remains the most reliable method for bolstering a bookie’s bottom line.

Consider the sportsbooks in Nevada, where in 2017, they amassed a staggering $4.87 billion in total bets. After settling all wagers, they were left with $248,780,000 – a testament to the lucrative potential of the vig. With an average vig of 5.1 percent, it’s evident that this commission structure serves as a robust revenue generator for bookies.

Let’s delve into a hypothetical scenario: Imagine a bookie with a clientele of 100 players, each subjected to a 5 percent vig on all wagers. To estimate the bookie’s potential earnings over a given period, one can employ a simple formula: multiply the number of players by the vig percentage and the total number of wagers placed.

For instance, if we aim to forecast the bookie’s monthly earnings, we’d calculate the total vig revenue generated by the number of players active during that month and the volume of wagers they place. This formula provides a ballpark figure of the average earnings a bookie might expect in a week, month, or year.

To streamline this process, bookies can leverage pay per head solutions, which offer comprehensive platforms for managing player accounts, processing bets, and tracking revenues. By utilizing such tools, bookies can optimize their operations, freeing up time to focus on growing their business and maximizing profits.

In summary, while bookies have various avenues for generating income, the vig remains their bread and butter. By understanding the mechanics of vig-based revenue and leveraging modern solutions, bookies can navigate the complexities of the betting landscape and thrive in an increasingly competitive industry.


Pay per head industry has simplified bookmaking. It allows bookies to venture into the sports betting industry without spending thousands of dollars. Apart from that, working with a pay-per-head solution helps bookies make good profits.
So, if you are still wondering how much do bookies charge, the answer lies with Power Pay Per Head. Having worked with over 2000 bookies, Power Pay Per Head has a better answer to your question, “how much do bookies charge” The company can tell you how much do bookies charge based on where they operate.

Whether you want to launch your bookie in New York, New Jersey, Alabama, or any other state and do not know where to start, the Power Pay Per Head agent can guide you. The agent will help you set ideal vigs for each event, ensuring an optimal outcome.

A bookie can charge as much or as little as he wants. But, it is crucial to consider several factors before setting vigs to games.
For example, if you are a new bookie, you might prefer charging a smaller vig for the first few weeks to attract new clients. You might want to increase that vig to the industry standard to appeal to professional bettors interested in competitive odds and good experience. Whichever road you choose, let a professional such as Power Pay Per Head hold your hand.

Unlock Your Bookie Potential with Power Pay Per Head

Are you ready to take your bookie business to new heights? Look no further than Power Pay Per Head – the ultimate solution to supercharge your operations and maximize your profits. With our cutting-edge platform, you’ll gain access to a suite of powerful tools and features designed to streamline your bookie business and drive success.

Why Choose Power Pay Per Head?

1. Seamless Management: Say goodbye to tedious paperwork and manual processes. Our intuitive platform empowers you to effortlessly manage player accounts, process bets, and track revenues in real-time, all from one centralized dashboard.

2. Customizable Solutions: We understand that every bookie is unique. That’s why we offer fully customizable solutions tailored to your specific needs and preferences. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or just starting out, our flexible platform adapts to your business requirements.

3. Competitive Edge: Stay ahead of the competition with our competitive vig rates and market insights. With Power Pay Per Head, you can set vig percentages that attract players while maximizing your profits, ensuring you remain a force to be reckoned with in the industry.

4. Exceptional Support: Our dedicated team of experts is here to support you every step of the way. From onboarding to ongoing assistance, we’re committed to helping you succeed and achieve your business goals.

Join Power Pay Per Head Today

Don’t miss out on the opportunity to elevate your bookie business to new heights. Join Power Pay Per Head today and unlock the full potential of your operation. With our advanced platform and unparalleled support, the sky’s the limit for your success. Sign up now and experience the power of Power Pay Per Head firsthand.

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