Yankee Bet Explained + Returns Calculator

Top Tips
  1. A yankee bet is part of a group called ‘cover bets’ and allows you to get returns when one or more selections loses.
  2. There are 11 parts to it – 6 doubles, 4 trebles and a four-fold accumulator.
  3. The stake you enter will be multiplied by 11 because of this.
  4. It is possible to make a profit with as few as 2 out of 4 winning selections.
  5. Use our yankee bet calculator to work out how much you could potentially win given the various different outcomes. 

A yankee bet is one of several that are commonly referred to as cover bets. It is a combination of eleven individual bets – six doubles, four trebles, and a four-fold accumulator – that are put together as one. Because of the distinct permutations involved, it is the case that just two winning selections will give you some sort of return, hence the “cover” if you fail to correctly predict all the outcomes.

Imagine, for a second, that you are looking to bet on events named A, B, C and D; the eleven components of a yankee bet are as follows:

Six doubles: AB, AC, AD, BC, BD, CD

Four trebles: ABC, ABD, ACD, BCD

One four-fold accumulator: ABCD

Because of the eleven bets that make up a yankee, when placing one with a bookmaker, the stake entered will be multiplied by eleven. So a £3 yankee bet will cost you £33 in total to place. Thus, if you only want to bet £15 in total, you have to divide this by 11 to get the stake (i.e. £15/11 = £1.36).

Let’s look at an example to make things a little clearer. We’re going to pick four imaginary football teams that will constitute our yankee bet:

  • Fairhedge Rovers
  • Redbeach Town
  • Greenlyn City
  • Northcliff United

This combination bet would be made up of the following:

Doubles on:

  1. Fairhedge and Redbeach
  2. Fairhedge and Greenlyn
  3. Fairhedge and Northcliff
  4. Redbeach and Greenlyn
  5. Redbeach and Northcliff
  6. Greenlyn and Northcliff

Trebles on:

  1. Fairhedge, Redbeach and Greenlyn
  2. Fairhedge, Redbeach and Northcliff
  3. Fairhedge, Greenlyn and Northcliff
  4. Redbeach, Greenlyn and Northcliff

And, of course, the four-fold accumulator on every team.

There are five possible outcomes for this bet and they are:

  • None of the teams win their matches – you lose your entire stake
  • 1 team wins – you lose your entire stake
  • 2 teams win – one of the doubles is a winner, but the remaining ten bets all lose (it is possible, although not guaranteed, that you’ll make a profit)
  • 3 teams win – three of the doubles are winners and one of the trebles (there will be a good chance of a profit, but it does depend on the odds of the winning selections)
  • All 4 teams win – each of the eleven elements is a winner and you’ll be guaranteed a handsome profit

What’s The Point Of A Yankee?

As you can see above, there is an outside chance that a profit can be made with just two out of four of your picks winning. If at least three are successful, you should come away with more money in your pocket than when you started. So, you see, unlike simply putting the four-fold bet on from the start, you can afford to be wrong and still be a winner.

This is why a bet such as this is known as a cover bet – you are covered in case one of your picks loses.

Are There Any Restrictions?

When it comes to a yankee bet, or a multiple of any kind, there is typically only one restriction: you cannot make more than one selection from a single event. For instance, you would be prevented from selecting a horse to win a race AND choosing another horse to place in the same race.

Similarly, you would not be allowed to bet on the winner of a tennis match AND on the score in the first set of that match.

The reason for this is that the outcome of one selection directly influences the chances of the second selection happening. So all of the picks within a yankee bet must be from independent events.

There are no restrictions, however, on bets made across multiple sports so you are free to predict outcomes in racing, snooker, rugby, motorsport, or any other event on offer. And you can bet on events spread out across as long a period as you like – you can bet on an event today, next week, next month, and even next year should the bookmaker be offering it.

How Much Will I Win?

Because of the nature of a multiple bet like this, you will not be shown or told your potential return when placing one – this is simply because the return will vary depending on the number of winning selections, and their respective odds.

But it is possible to calculate all the permutations yourself if you wish to do so. First, to make it easier, convert any fractional odds into their decimal equivalent. So a 3/1 shot becomes 4 in decimal odds while 11/2 becomes 6.5 – simply solve the fraction and add one to it.

Let’s assume, for this example, that the decimal odds of my four selections (A, B, C and D) are: 2, 3, 4 and 5. To calculate the combined odds of a multiple bet, you simply multiply the individual odds by each other.

So a double with odds of 3 and 4 will have combined decimal odds of 3x4 = 12. Similarly, a treble with odds of 2, 3 and 5 will have work out as 2x3x5 = 30.

You then take this and multiply it by your stake to get your returns should each selection win. Your profit is calculated by subtracting your total stake from your returns.

Assuming £1 individual stakes (that would be a total of £11 wagered), here is the complete list of outcomes, returns, and profits.





No selections win



One selection wins



Selections A & B win



Selections A & C win



Selections A & D win



Selections B & C win



Selections B & D win



Selections C & D win



Selections A, B & C win

£6 + £8 + £12 + £24 = £50


Selections A, B & D win

£6 + £10 + £15 + £30 = £61


Selections A, C & D win

£8 + £10 + £20 + £40 = £78


Selections B, C & D win

£12 + £15 + £20 + £60 = £107


All selections win

£6 + £8 + £10 + £12 + £15 + £20 + £24 + £30 + £40 + £60 + £120 = £345



The table above shows the separate calculations for each component when three or four selections win. When three selections win, you have three winning doubles and one winning treble; when all four win, each of the eleven elements results in a return.

In this example, if two selections win then either a small loss or a small profit is made. If three or more selections win, the profits are pretty healthy from just an £11 stake.

Rather than sit there and work everything out by hand, you can get a copy of the yankee bet calculator featured in the video above by clicking on the link (a Google account is required).

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Further Reading

  • Learn about other types of bet including the trixie bet.
  • Check out our other detailed guides that show you how to place bets on all of the big sports.
  • If you’re into football and fancy a flutter on the upcoming games, check out our Premier League odds page.



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