What Is a Lucky 15 Bet?

Number 15

There are myriad options when it comes to betting on sport. Just one such option is the ever-popular ‘full cover’ bet, with one of the best of the lot being the famous ‘Lucky 15’. The Lucky 15 involves punters picking our four individual selections, though placing 15 individual bets in total. Singles, doubles, trebles and a four-fold accumulator are all included.

This bet is popular with punters looking to bundle numerous horses or football teams into one potentially lucrative multiple bet. Picking out only four selections but ending up with 15 different bets is one way to make a day’s sport particularly exciting.

Even just one selection winning will yield a return in this case while two, three and especially four of the selections being successful increases the returns greatly. In many cases, bookmakers even add bonuses onto your returns depending on the number of selections you get right.

How the Lucky 15 Works

The Lucky 15 involves picking out four selections. These can be football teams to win the game, horses to win their race, etc. The bet is made up of 15 selections, namely:

  • 4 x Singles
  • 6 x Doubles
  • 4 x Trebles
  • 1 x Four-Fold Accumulator

Punters should remember that this increases their bet cost. At £1 per line, a Lucky 15 would cost £15 in total as all 15 bets need to be covered. The four selections involved must be from different events – i.e. four different horse races or four different football matches. Here’s an example of a horse racing Lucky 15 selection:

Lucky 15 example

In this case we’re going for four horses in their respective races at Chelmsford City. At a basic £1 stake, the total bet is £15. For that money, the punter is placing the following 15 bets all on one coupon:

  • £1 single on Miss Marianne in the 4.45
  • £1 single on Ramdon Rocks in the 5.55
  • £1 single on State Secretary in the 6.30
  • £1 single on Asraabb in the 8.15
  • £1 double on Miss Marianne and Ramdon Rocks
  • £1 double on Miss Marianne and State Secretary
  • £1 double on Miss Marianne and Asraabb
  • £1 double on Ramdon Rocks and State Secretary
  • £1 double on Ramdon Rocks and Asraabb
  • £1 double on State Secretary and Asraabb
  • £1 treble on Miss Marianne, Ramdon Rocks and State Secretary
  • £1 treble on Miss Marianne, Ramdon Rocks and Asraabb
  • £1 treble on Miss Marianne, State Secretary and Asraabb
  • £1 treble on Ramdon Rocks, State Secretary and Asraabb
  • £1 accumulator on Miss Marianne, Ramdon Rocks, State Secretary and Asraabb

In the very rare case that all four of these horses were to win at the odds shown, the total payout would be over £1828. Even if Ramdon Rocks and Asraabb only were to win, however, then the punter would be paid out on that double plus the two singles. This would lead to a payout of £48 based on:

£1 win Ramdon Rocks @ 5/1 returns = £6
£1 win Asraabb @ 5/1 returns = £6
£1 double on Ramdon Rocks and Asraabb returns = £36

It’s important to keep in mind how Lucky 15 payouts are calculated in order to keep track of whether you think your bet will be a successful should not all of your selections win.

Calculating a Lucky 15 Payout

If you’re placing your Lucky 15 bet with an online bookmaker, they will tell you immediately how much the bet is worth if all of your selections happen to win. There are also free online bet calculators you can use. To calculate Lucky 15 payouts manually, however, follow this guide:

Bet Type Bets Selection 1 Selection 2 Selection 3 Selection 4
4 x Singles Bet 1 x
Bet 2 x
Bet 3 x
Bet 4 x
6 x Doubles Bet 5 x x
Bet 6 x x
Bet 7 x x
Bet 8 x x
Bet 9 x x
Bet 10 x x
4 x Trebles Bet 11 x x x
Bet 12 x x x
Bet 13 x x x
Bet 14 x x x
4-Fold Bet 15 x x x x

Here you can see which selections are put together in each different bet. Simply multiply the odds you’ve been given in the normal way, as you would with any double, treble or accumulator, to see what each leg of your bet is worth.

The Lucky 15 gives you these 15 bets and it’s associated cost, though it’s not the only 4-selection cover bet available as you can also use your four selections within a Yankee bet.

Lucky 15 Versus Yankee

The whole point of multiples and full cover bets is to try to find yourself a bet that is higher risk, but also comes with the potential to yield massive returns for little outlay. That’s the betting dream! When you have four selections in mind and singles, or even a simple four-fold acca will not cut it for you, then you’re left with the choice of either a Lucky 15 or a Yankee.

Just like the Lucky 15, the Yankee consists of four initial selections, however, the way those four selections are spread out differs. The Yankee is laid out in the same way as the Lucky 15, but without the single bets included. Thus, the Yankee is made up of:

  • 6 x Doubles
  • 4 x Trebles
  • 1 x 4-Fold

This brings us to a total of 11 bets instead of 15 and that is important in terms of the overall cost of the bet. In order to yield a return, a bettor must get at least two selections right as opposed to the Lucky 15’s one selection. Once again though; the more winning selections, the greater the ultimate return.

The choice of which is best is yours and depends on your betting needs. To help you decide on that, however, we’ve given you the major plusses and negatives of the two four-selection bets:

Lucky 15 Pros & Cons

Pros & cons concept


You Get a Return for Just One Winner

Only one winner is needed on the Lucky 15 which may at least cover some of the cost of the bet. The Yankee requires you to find at least 2 winners.

All Bet Options Are Covered

The Lucky 15 covers each and every conceivable winning combo from the four selections you choose. This includes single bets, meaning that if you win only with a single at big enough odds, you could be in the green.

The Full Acca Is Included

There would be nothing worse than picking out four selections and all of them winning without you backing them in a win accumulator. The Lucky 15 covers this.


Hard to Calculate

With 15 bets included, some newbies find it hard to keep track of how to calculate a Lucky 15. Practice makes perfect though, so use our table above to keep tabs on what multiples to keep in mind.

It Can Be Expensive

15 possible outcomes means 15 x the initial stake. At £1 a line that’s a £15 bet. You can, of course, go down to £0.20 per line, however, if you win just one or two legs of the bet, your returns will not be very much at all so that needs to be kept in mind.

Less Net Wins

Based on the above, your budget has to be more spread. If you had £20 to spend, then that would allow you to play at around £1.30 per bet on a Lucky 15. On a Yankee, you could go at closer to £1.80. This means that when selections come in, you’re getting more back on a Yankee, though singles don’t count.

Yankee Pros & Cons


Cheaper to Place with More Net Wins

As mentioned above, there are 11 bets here rather than 15 so at the same stake per line the Yankee costs less to play. It also means that if you spend the same amount overall, the Yankee will bring you more of a net win per winning selection.

The Full Acca Is Included

Much like with the Lucky 15, your 4-fold acca is part of the bet. This is the one we all want to win, with other combos, especially the doubles, are essentially there to offer us just a little bit of a net win overall.


There Are No Singles

This is a biggie for some players. Singles offer insurance. If you want to bet in multiples but want just a little insurance on your side, the Yankee doesn’t offer this. A winning single is sometimes the difference between a advantageous bet and a losing one.

While the choice between these two bets is ultimately down to you, the punter, the lack of cons with Yankees suggests that for many this would be the one to go for. For those who like to aim for a little betting insurance, however, the Lucky 15 potentially keeps those returns coming in.