Online casino guides written byGiorgia Rose
How to choose an online casino?
Online casinos take all the fun and excitement of Las Vegas straight to your home! You can find everything casino related, from card games to live tables, all on websites and even mobile apps. From big name casino brands to smaller sites, there is the perfect online casino for every player. Enjoy your favourite games all from the comfort of your own home or on the go with casinos optimised for mobile and tablet devices.
You might be spoiled for choice when you look at the huge variety of sites available to you, so our guide below is designed to help you choose the right one. Read on!
Does it have the games you want to play?
Obviously, when signing up for an online casino the games selection is an important factor. While games may be available across multiple sites, not all will be in the same place and some sites will have different deals with providers and developers. Most sites will have slots, table games, and live dealer tables, though some will specialise in different categories and have a wider selection of one than the other.
Online casinos are not just for playing table games or live dealer tables, you can also play slot games. From classic slots to exciting video slots filled with bonus features, the choice is endless. You can also find instant win scratch cards, bingo, and big progressive jackpots online. The variety of titles under these categories can vary widely between casinos, so if you particularly favour a certain game, you should check if your chosen casino has a good selection on offer.
For example, some casinos will only have a handful of table games and no live dealer options, while others will have different types of Blackjack, Roulette, Poker, Baccarat, and more- including both live and normal versions.
Likewise, some online casinos won’t offer bingo and will simply focus on slots and table games. Meanwhile, there are also bingo specific sites to delight any bingo fan, with a variety of rooms to choose from with varying jackpots and prizes.
Want to play on your mobile or tablet device?
Many online casinos are optimised for mobile gaming so you can access your favourite games wherever you are. Make sure to check the site you choose is a mobile friendly casino if you are planning on playing on the go, or see if your chosen site has an app available to download.
All online casinos can be played from your desktop or laptop, meaning you can enjoy the best gaming experience to suit your needs. Some casinos follow a particular theme, while others sport the classic casino look. This could sway your choice of casino, but you can see the layout of the site before you sign up and make your first deposit.
What’s the right welcome bonus for you?
Online casinos will usually have a welcome bonus that gives new players an introduction to the site’s offerings, or as a thank you for signing up. These are usually a cash bonus or free spins to claim on slot games.
Some casino bonuses may match your first deposit, up to a certain figure, while others will simply be a fixed sum whenever you deposit a minimum amount. Some casinos may offer rolling bonuses all the way up to the fifth deposit in some cases! This is of course an enticing offer, encouraging players to form a loyalty to a specific site.
Welcome bonuses often come with caveats. Some are no deposit – enticing! But these often have high wagering requirements. Others have lower wagering requirements but require a minimum deposit.
No deposit casino offers give new players the chance to play on a site up to a certain amount, without depositing any real money of their own. You will need to sign up to the casino in order to claim this bonus and start playing.
While these offers may sound tempting, no deposit bonuses often come with high wagering requirements before you can win and withdraw real money. Additionally, free spins and bonuses may be attached to a certain game, so you will have to spend the bonus on the game chosen by the casino.
Wagering requirements are multipliers that represent the number of times you have to play through a bonus before you are able to withdraw any winnings. For example, if you receive a cash bonus of £10 with a 40x wagering requirement you will have to play through the £10 and any bonus winnings 40x to £400 before it becomes ‘real money’ that you can withdraw.
Sometimes wagering requirements will include a conversion requirement too. These limit the amount of money you can convert from your bonus funds into real money. For example, if you had a cash bonus of £10 with a 40x wagering requirement, if the offer terms & conditions state 4x conversion requirements, you would only ever be able to withdraw £40 of any winnings earned using that welcome bonus.
Of course, bonuses extend beyond the introductory period, and can include free spins, happy hours, cashback offers, and more. Some sites even offer loyalty programmes with their own particular benefits. These bonus offers may be a good way for a player to decide on an online casino, although it is important to read the terms of each offer before playing, and checking how much and how often you can withdraw and deposit your funds.
You can’t play at an online casino without depositing some cash, not for long at least, but there are multiple ways to top up your account. There are the obvious options such as visa debit cards, but you can also use eWallets, paysafecards, or even pay with your phone bill.
There are advantages to each method, and some will suit you more than others. It is important to also check that you do not miss out on any welcome offers by using a certain payment method. Check the terms and conditions of a new player bonus before making your first deposit.
Visa debit is the standard option. This is completely secure as long as you make sure to use a trusted casino. Simply sign up and enter your card details just as you would when shopping online. Credit cards are no longer an option at UK casino sites.
eWallets are an increasingly popular method of depositing to your account. These are sites/services such as PayPal, Neteller, and Skrill. These are some of the most secure and convenient ways to deposit at UK online casinos. With built-in security and fraud prevention, you can play without sharing your bank details and withdraw faster than with most traditional banks.
This type of payment method is popular for its fast withdrawals and the security provided, as you never need to give a casino operator your sensitive banking information. With eWallets withdrawals usually take just 24 hours to reach your account, but are often instant.
Pay by phone casino sites let you charge your deposits to your phone bill or pay as you go (PAYG) balance. They provide a safe and secure way of playing at your favourite bingo sites without sharing your private bank details. The most common pay by phone payment system is Boku which can be used by almost anyone with a UK mobile phone number.
Deposit limits via phone payment options are most commonly set at £10 per transaction, £30 per day and £240 per month. However, these limits vary by payment system and network provider and apply per phone, not per site. Unfortunately, you can’t withdraw to your phone, so would have to use an alternative method, such as visa debit or eWallets to claim your winnings.
Paysafecard is the only voucher payment system accepted at online bingo sites that isn’t attached to your bank account. The card allows you to use a 16-digit PIN number to deposit, making it a great option for anyone wanting to keep their financial information private.
Until recently, it wasn’t possible to withdraw your winnings to your Paysafecard as it was essentially a prepaid cash voucher. However, the service’s Payout service does allow you to withdraw funds if the online bingo site supports it. If your Paysafecard bingo site doesn’t support the Payout functionality, you’ll need to withdraw using a different valid payment method.
What makes an online casino trustworthy?
When choosing an online casino it is vital you choose one that is properly licensed and regulated. All online casinos should hold a gambling licence- which will prove that you can trust the site and that they abide by necessary rules and regulations.
The UK Gambling Commission and Malta Gaming Authority are two of the main groups that can license a casino, but sites may also hold accreditation from Alderney or Curacao authorities, and others. Proof of license should be clearly indicated on the website, and it is highly recommended for UK players to only use sites licensed by the UK Gambling Commission.
One of the other things to look out for on online casinos and games is certification of a Random Number Generator (RNG). This confirms that games are fair and aren’t rigged against the player. Most casinos are also open and transparent about a game’s return to player (RTP), so you know how much the game pays out.
Because they are operating online, good online casinos will take measures to ensure a player can sign up and deposit safely. This normally means they use Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) encryption and firewalls to ensure player details and payment information is secure and protected.
It is always a good idea to read player reviews and to check what security measures a casino has in place to keep you and your information safe. Players should also make sure that a casino they are signing up to has contact details available. This helps prove their trustworthiness and authenticity.
Whether you’re new to playing at an online casino or you’re an experienced spinner, there’s always more to learn. From picking a casino to understanding what payment method is right for you, our casino guides can help you get the most out of your time online!