Matched Betting and F.I.R.E.

A few months ago i got the chance to be a guest on the Aussie Firebug podcast, which is very popular within the Australian F.I.R.E. community.

If you are unfamiliar with F.I.R.E., it stands for ‘Financial Independence, Retire Early’ and it is a movement which is gaining popularity in Australia. 

The idea is that, by reducing costs, increasing income, and saving/investing as much as possible, a person can achieve financial freedom and bring forward their retirement age by a significant amount.

The movement was popularised in the USA by a blogger known as Mr Money Mustache, who was able to retire at just 30 years old.


Side Hustles

In order to achieve F.I.R.E. many people will start a side hustle. This is something that is also encouraged by popular Australian financial expert The Barefoot Investor.

A side hustle is basically any type of money-making activity that you can undertake in addition to your full-time job.

For many people this could just be an additional part-time job, such as shifts at a bar on the weekend. Others may set up their own business doing anything from dog walking to interior design.

Some people will also look for ways that they can make money online. This is where matched betting comes in.


Impact of Matched Betting on F.I.R.E.

After the podcast was released in early May we had a lot of new members sign up to bonusbank. Much more than we would have in a normal month.

This seemed like a good opportunity to do some data gathering. So, a couple of weeks ago, i created a survey specifically for people who had signed up after listening to the podcast. There were 62 responses in total.

Here is what we learned:

  • 82% of respondents had never heard of matched betting before listening to the podcast. Only one person had ever tried it before.

    This just goes to show that matched betting is still pretty underground in Australia. There is a long way to go before we reach the saturation levels that you can see in the U.K.. That means that there will be lots of money-making opportunities for years to come.

  • 66% of respondents had made at least $1000 profit since signing up, with 21% making over $2500 and 5% making an amazing $5000+
    Given that this survey took place just two months after the podcast was released, those are some impressive numbers. Some of the respondents had only been matched betting for a month.
  • Shares (72%) and cost cutting (69%) were the most popular other methods that respondents are using to achieve F.I.R.E.
    Other activities included , property investment (32%), credit card point (29%) and travel (6%) hacking, and side hustles like tutoring, P2P lending, and creating and selling products on Redbubble.

    However, my favourite answer to this question was “I work a shitload of overtime and live in a toolshed to cut costs”.

  • 13% of respondents had been able to bring forward their retirement date since joining bonusbank.
    Considering this is just based on 1-2 months membership, that is pretty incredible. Even if it is just one extra month that they don’t have to set an alarm clock and go to the office, that is a great achievement.
Additional Feedback

Some of the respondents were also good enough to provide a bit more detail of their experience with matched betting and with F.I.R.E.

Here are a few snippets…

I found out about the FIRE concept 12-18 months ago. Prior to then I’d been investing heavily in real estate with a goal to retire at 50 anyway. Since finding out about FIRE I’ve switched to investing mainly in index funds and will sell off the property portfolio over the next 5-10 years before retiring at 45 hopefully. 

My experience with bonus bank has been amazing. Roughly 2 months in and I’ve made $4229 profit.

Interestingly, since finding out about fire I’d really restricted my betting activities to try and save more. I love now that I have an interest in pretty much every footy game all weekend and love cheering on my horses to run 2nd and 3rd of a Saturday.

Keep up the good work, love the site – have just signed my first mate up through your affiliate program and he’s up $300 after the first weekend and loving it too!


I’m probably pretty early in the path to F.I.R.E, but at the same time, maybe it’s something I’ve been doing without really being aware of it. I’ve always been a saver, and started investing pretty soon after getting a full time job. 
When I heard about Matched Betting on the Aussie Firebug podcast, to me, it was a way to earn a bit of income just for entertainment expenses.
If I can just chip away quietly and hit a few promos and lay a few mug bets and earn maybe $4k-$5k a year to pay for going to the movies or the football etc without the F.I.R.E guilt of “Do I need to spend money on this?”, and use this as my entertainment budget, and keep as many bookies as possible on side, that’s the aim of my game (maybe I’m dreaming, but for the most part so far so good). 
I’m not necessarily using matched betting as a path to F.I.R.E, but more to give me a bit more money to play with so I can keep investing without sacrificing. Matched betting might just allow me to have my cake and eat it too. 

Discovered FIRE in the last 6 months, but have effectively being doing FIRE for the past decade or more. I’m now in the explore what you do when you don’t work full-time stage. This is how I stumbled across FIRE movement and BonusBank – amongst other things – whilst exploring opportunities. 

My goal is for in 3 years or less be earning enough income through properties and investment to free up my partner so that she can give up work if she wants and then we can travel using geographic arbitrage – i.e. earn $ in Aus and spend them in a much cheaper country. 

Matched betting was an eyeopener for me. I’ve been a member since late May and have made just under $4K so far.

My goal is to move to a mechanical system as much as possible and limit the amount of time I take to construct plays and place/record bets. Last weekend was my first with this new approach and my best yet with over $800 in winnings,.

BonusBank guys are great to chat to over forum and email – no complaints at all.


Get involved

If you are interested in learning more about F.I.R.E we highly recommend checking out the Aussie Firebug blog. You can also follow on Facebook to get updates whenever new content is added.

For more info on matched betting just sign up for a free account which will give you access to our basic tutorials, plus all of the tools you need to bank your first bonus.


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