What Are The Odds Of A White Christmas In The UK?

What Are The Odds Of A White Christmas In The UK?

Dreaming of a white Christmas in 2020? A fairytale ending to a less than perfect year?

Stranger things have happened. They really have. And let’s face it, waking up to see a sparkling layer of snowy magic on Christmas morning is just the tonic we all need.

The betting markets for a white Christmas are some of the most sought-after of the year, with forecasts starting months in advance.

So, with the festive season just around the corner, here is your guide to the latest white Christmas odds in the UK. Let’s see what the bookies are saying this year…

Latest Odds For A White Christmas In The UK

First things first, let’s take a look at the important stuff — the odds.

What are the chances the UK will transform into a winter wonderland? Here’s what some of the biggest bookies are offering.

Paddy Power Odds For Snow On Christmas Day:

3/1 Aberdeen (Airport)

3/1 Edinburgh (Airport)

3/1 Dundee (Airport)

3/1 Glasgow (Airport)

5/1 Belfast (Airport)

5/1 Cardiff (Airport)

5/1 Birmingham (Airport)

6/1 Bristol (Airport)

5/1 Leeds (Leeds-Bradford Airport)

5/1 Liverpool (Airport)

4/1 London (Heathrow Airport)

5/1 Manchester (Airport)

6/1 Norwich (Airport)

For punters in the Republic of Ireland, there are odds of 4/1 for snow on Christmas Day in Dublin (Airport).

Betfair Odds For White Christmas 2020:

16/5 Belfast

6/1 Birmingham

7/1 Cardiff

11/5 Edinburgh

2/1 Glasgow

7/1 Liverpool

13/2 London

5/1 Manchester

And for those seeking longer odds and a longer shot, there’s William Hill’s 16/1 for snow on Christmas Day in Penzance (RNAS Culdrose).

What Defines A ‘White Christmas’?

snow flake close up
Just one snowflake will determine whether you win your bet. Image: Aaron Burden on Unsplash

Before you place any bets, it might be worth making sure you know exactly what a white Christmas is.

The official definition by the folks who know weather best — the UK Met Office — is that the country needs at least one snowflake to be officially observed falling during the 24 hours within 25 December, to count as a white Christmas.

But crucially, the snow is not required to settle.

The bar for what a ‘white Xmas’ is, is actually quite low.

Basically, you don’t need blankets of the stuff to bank your bet. Just a little bit of powder will do. And airports tend to be used as the location of choice for confirmation of snow in your chosen area.

When it comes to the bookies’ definition, which let’s face it is pretty important, it’s very close to that of the Met Office.

But to collect your payout you’ll need to ensure that the snowfall is fresh on Christmas Day — slush still coating the ground from Christmas Eve won’t cut it.

When Was The Last White Christmas?

In the UK, according to the Met Office, the last white Christmas was in 2017.

There were no reports of snow staying and laying on the ground, but 11 percent of weather stations picked up some snowfall on the day.

But if we’re talking serious coverage, then the last ‘proper’ white Christmas in the UK took place in 2010, with the most snow ever recorded on the day.

A wintry flurry meant 83 percent of the Met Office’s recording stations reported snow on the ground. Brrrr.

What Else You Need To Know About White Christmas Betting

Snowy countryside
Image: Aurora Wheeler on Unsplash

For many, the white fluffy stuff conjures up images of Santa’s sleigh and snowball fights.

But now it’s also synonymous with a yearly, festive wager all based around whether a single snowflake will hit the ground.

Brits have already had a sprinkling of snow this year, a hint that there could be more to come.

But don’t start getting those sleds out just yet.

Although the UK gets roughly 33 days of snowy goodness per year, it usually only falls for 3.9 days in December, with January, February and even March statistically more likely to see snowfall.

It’s up to you whether you like those odds.

If you want to make the most of the odds, check out some long-range weather forecasts for the UK now.

Or wait to place a wager closer to the big day and check forecasts a few days before Christmas, when prediction accuracy should increase.

For more festive content, check out our gift guide for gamblers this year: