About Casino Bonuses
Online gaming has become hugely popular, and there's one reason why it's gained extra popularity - the bonuses. Unlike land-based casinos, online sites are able to offer players lucrative bonuses and promotions that can really boost your bankroll. However, online sites will differ dramatically with what and how they offer these promotions so you will need to know what to look for to find the best bonuses out there. UK players, read on! We're about to help you!
How to find casino bonuses
With so many different bonuses out there, it can be very hard for you to know which ones are the best ones to take on. With that in mind, we're here to help you out. We're all about providing you with the best information so that you can go out and make an informed choice about where to get the best bonus deals from. In order to do this, we cover:
- Different types of bonuses
- Which bonuses make the best bonuses
- What wagering requirements are
- ... and more!
Part of the way we help you out is by offering up comprehensive information regarding bonuses. We take a look at all the bonuses found at casinos online, compiling the ones we think are the best and presenting these to you on a platter. In this way, you can save a lot of time, and just jump right on into playing along with any promo codes we provide for you.
We also want to give you the tools for you to go out and look for bonuses of your own, helping you choose one that best suits your needs. To that end, we provide you with a wide range of information about online casino bonuses. This includes expanding on what the different bonus types are, what casinos get out of offering them, and more importantly, what you can get out of taking on a casino bonus.
Types of bonuses out there
Bonuses are hugely popular at online casinos, something which helps to make them stand out from offline venues. However, within these bonus offers, there are a number of different options available, some of which can be more appealing than others, depending on what you are looking for in your bonuses. There are two main types of bonuses: those which you have to make a deposit in order to gain, and those you can get without doing so.
- Deposit bonuses include match deposit bonuses, cashback and reloads
- No deposit bonuses include free spins, small bonus cash offers
Of these, the more commonly found bonus option is the deposit bonus. What this means is that in order to get this bonus, you will need to sign up to the casino and then make a deposit. The amount you need to deposit will depend on the casino - there's always a minimum. Deposit bonuses can also be affected by the payment method you use. In some cases, you may be required to add a code to claim.
The welcome bonus is one of the most commonly found online casino bonuses. Generally, this is given as a match deposit bonus, though some welcome bonuses can be found where no deposit is required. A match deposit bonus is the option that tends to vary the most online. Often this is where the casino will match your deposit 100%, boosting your bankroll for when you play online. However, the amount awarded can vary.
- Match deposit bonuses can range from 50% to 400%
- Welcome bonuses can be split
Some casinos will only offer a single welcome bonus that's attached to the first deposit you make. However, some casinos will spread this deposit across a number of deposits. Often these deposits will have different percentages available for each part of that bonus. They will also differ in how much the casino will match up to - there's always a cap, so a high match percentage doesn't necessarily mean a better bonus. More on that later!
No deposit bonuses
Needless to say, most players are always on the lookout for an exciting no deposit bonus. These bonuses truly give you a gaming experience completely for free. For the most part, though, you will need to sign up to the casino in order to access this bonus, but that's it. Once the registration process has been completed and your account verified, the bonus is usually added to your account automatically.
Similar to the deposit bonus, there are some cases where you might need to input a bonus code in order to claim or show your interest in this bonus. In these cases, we will be giving you the bonus code here on AboutSlots.com. Within no deposit bonuses, there are a number of different options that you might come across - which one you choose is completely up to you and what you are looking for.
No deposit bonuses aren't completely without a catch though, there are always some wagering requirements attached. Some of these bonuses are also sticky, meaning you'll have to play through the entire amount for any requirements. However, many are completely free with no requirements at all, so it's worth keeping an eye out for those options. There are usually a couple of different no deposit bonus options available when you join a casino, and these include:
- Free spins for specific slot games
- Free bonus credit to use on any casino game
Free spins are the most popular bonus option. When they're part of a no deposit bonus, then usually only a small number, around ten, are offered for use on a specific slot. If the free spins are part of a match deposit bonus, arguably, you've still not put any money down to receive them and therefore they still count as a no deposit option. These types of spins are often awarded in much higher quantities, sometimes hundreds.
The only major downside to taking on free spins is that they are usually only applicable to a specific slot game. If you get free spins on a slot you don't want to play, unfortunately that's just tough. It is worth looking around to see which slot the spins are attached to and choosing your bonus that way. It's also worth pointing out that these spins will be played at the lowest bet value.
The other option available for no deposit bonuses is a no deposit credit offer. Similar to the free spins, all you will need to do is sign up to the casino and the credit will be added instantly to your account. Usually, this is not a large amount - often just £5 - but it can go a long way if you know what you are doing. Plus you can get in some practice.
This is because, in contrast to the free spins, this bonus credit is usually available on all the games at the casino. There are no specific games this bonus can be played on, which means you can test out virtual games, live dealer options or choose to play the slot of your dreams. The only issue comes at the end if you need to meet wagering requirements, but we will discuss that in detail below.
Bonuses for those who stay on
Good casinos that consider their players will have additional bonuses that are awarded to loyal players long after they were new. In this way, casinos are able to encourage repeated visits to their site while keeping you happy. Commonly casinos will offer reload bonuses when you make another deposit into your account. Often this will be a weekly thing, with casinos setting aside a specific reload match deposit day for players.
Some casinos will offer this only once a month. The difference between this and the welcome match deposit relates simply to how much you are playing, winning and depositing at the casino. Usually, the percentage match that you are offered, and the maximum deposit you can make, are actually calculated on the basis of how much you deposited in the time-frame leading up to the reload. In short, the more you deposit, the more you will get.
High roller and banking bonuses
Casinos will also make sure they cater to VIP or high roller players too. In most cases, the style of the bonus is exactly the same, i.e. there are match deposit options and no deposit options. However, the differences lie in how much money is deposited and how much is matched. High rollers tend to make larger single deposits; however, casinos will generally only match these at lower percentages such as 50%.
You can also score additional bonuses depending on the banking method you use. It's worth noting here that some methods such as Skrill, PayPal or Neteller are often excluded from bonuses entirely, meaning you will have to choose a different deposit method. However, the use of other banking options may actually elicit additional, or larger bonuses when you use them for a first deposit, so make sure you check out these options.
Finally, many casinos will have loyalty programmes in place. Now, these are not just aimed at high rollers and VIPs, but for all players joining in the site. Most casinos will have the loyalty programme available for free, and as soon as you start playing with real money you will be added to that programme, joining on the bottom tier. By playing with real money, you will earn points from the casino.
As you accrue these points from real-time gaming, you will go up the tiers. Each loyalty programme will have a specified number of tiers, each with a point goal to reach before you can move on to the next level. Some casinos will also offer a bonus shop where you can exchange points received for some extra prizes or goodies. The higher up the levels you go, the better the prizes will be.
Casino bonus wagering requirements
You'll have heard us talking about wagering requirements a lot now, and there's a good reason for it. These requirements are in place to protect casinos from fraud! That's right, online casinos can be cheated by players. In order to prevent players from using and abusing a bonus, casinos will have wagering requirements in place so that players can't simply grab a bonus and cash out, essentially stealing the money. It also prevents money laundering.
The playthrough requirement is different at each casino and can be anywhere from 2x to 70x. What this means is that the money you gain from the bonus must be played through that number of times. Getting a £5 bonus with requirements of 20x means you need to play £100 before you can withdraw any winnings. This can be quite hard, especially with higher requirements, which is why we recommend choosing bonuses at 20-30x max.
On top of the playthrough requirement, there are usually a number of other restrictions in place too. One of these is which games contribute to the playthrough requirement. Not all games are eligible for this. This means that even if you wager money, it might not count. Generally, playing slot games counts 100%, although some slots are exempt. Other games such as virtual table games, video poker or live dealer games will contribute smaller amounts.
It's also important to check out the expiration date of your bonus. Many bonuses will need you to reach the requirements within a certain timeframe. Some casinos give you up to a month to do so, while others will only give you a couple of days. Make sure you check these requirements, because overlooking them can mean that you end up not meeting them and forfeiting your bonus, and any winnings entirely.
Taking on a casino bonus
With all this to think about, you may be wondering whether it's worth taking on a casino bonus at all! The quick answer here is that yes it is. However, you need to know what to look for and how to use it properly. Casino bonuses are a great way to check out the casino as a whole, giving you the perfect opportunity to test out the setup and the games on offer.
While you may not end up winning any money, or walking away any richer, you will have gained valuable experience with not much of your own money being put down. If you get a no deposit bonus you won't have spent anything at all! Taking on a bonus can also give you an idea of the processes behind the casino and, of course, you may end up getting lucky and getting a win for free as well.
Cons to casino bonuses
Of course, as we have already addressed, there are a number of downsides when it comes to accepting casino bonuses - those wagering requirements for one. In some, very rare, instances, casinos will offer bonuses with no requirements at all, and these we recommend snapping up at once. Another downside is those sticky bonuses. This means that the free credit remains in your account even when you clear the playthrough, allowing you to only cash out any winnings.
The limited timeframe to meet any requirements is also a hurdle, especially for those of you not playing regularly. There are also issues with country restrictions. Some countries can't even get a bonus at a specific casino. With that in mind, we only recommend casino bonuses that you will be able to get. Finally, there are often withdrawal minimums in place so even if you meet the requirements, your winnings might not be enough to withdraw.
Top tips for spotting the best bonus
We are always on the lookout for the best bonuses out there, so keep checking back with us to see what's on offer. However, you can also go and check out some of the options yourself. So, here are a few tips on what to look for when searching for a quality bonus. First, check out those playthrough requirements. Avoid anything that's over 30x as it will be hard to reach.
Look at ALL aspects of the bonus. While a bonus that offers a 400% match may sound great, you will also need to check out how much this can be matched up to. A 400% match only up to £20 will give you £100 in total to play with, but a 100% up to £200 will give you £400 if you choose to deposit the maximum that is allowed from that casino.
When looking at free spins offers, you should take a look at the slot games that the spins are attached to. Some casinos will have a large number of free spins on offer, but they might be attached to a small, unknown game that offers low variance play and a low RTP. You should always take on spins that are attached to quality games with an RTP of 96% or higher to make the most of them.
Trends relating to casino bonuses - 2020 and onward
Over the years, casino bonuses have grown in popularity. Traditionally, land-based casinos never gave players bonuses, so this is something developed specifically for the online gaming community. These bonuses have proved to be very successful, giving players more incentive to get playing and enjoy their time online. One of the more recent changes and trends relating to casino bonuses is the ability to access them via a mobile phone, not just on desktops.
With the arrival of mobile phones and their growing usage, it has become more important than ever for casinos to offer bonuses that not only work across platforms but also can be accepted via mobiles. Welcome bonuses are also growing in size and in what they offer. With more welcome bonuses essentially offering players a free trial at the casino, they are able to encourage more players to check out their site and potentially sign up.
- Mobile phone bonuses
- Bigger and better welcome bonuses
- Increased gamification
The latest trend is to offer more gamification features within an online casino. This means that more sites are offering additional missions, tournaments or other ways for players to get hold of bonus points that can then be exchanged for rewards within the casino. It's probable that this will grow in the future, giving players more ways of accessing bonuses and even providing players with more choice for which bonus they choose to accept.
Why do casinos give bonuses?
At this point you may be thinking it's counterintuitive for casinos to be, essentially, giving away money to players. What's in it for them?, you might think. Well, casinos are all about getting customers to their sites and keeping them. By offering you a lucrative welcome bonus, they encourage you to sign up in the first place. With some bonuses awarded over a span of days, they encourage you to return daily to claim it.
In this way, they start to build a habit of logging in to their site. If you're successful with a bonus, those wagering requirements will keep you playing, putting money back into the casino as you hope that you will score a win. At the end of the day, they're simply hoping you enjoy their platform so much that you will be ready to deposit your own money in order to keep playing.
Despite those pesky wagering requirements, casino bonuses are a great way to get in some experience at a casino or game. If you choose wisely, taking note of our suggestions, then you might even be able to withdraw some of your bonus winnings too, making the experience an even better one. Don't forget to consider all the tips we've given when bonus hunting or check with us here for the latest and greatest bonuses.
Is it safe to take on a casino bonus?
Yes, it is, as long as you are playing at a casino that's properly licensed and regulated. Bonuses and any information you provide will be protected by the casino's encryption protocols, plus you're often not making a deposit anyway so there's no need to worry about losing money.
Are casino bonuses worth it?
There are a number of different bonus types out there, so it is important to select one that will give you the return you're looking for. That being said, simply getting experience of playing a specific game or at a casino is worth it even if you don't win money.
What are bonus wagering requirements?
Wagering requirements are a series of terms and conditions that are attached to a bonus. Players will need to meet these requirements if they intend to withdraw any winnings made from the bonus. It will include playthrough, the timeframe to use the bonus and a minimum withdrawal amount.
Why do casinos give away bonuses?
Casinos give players bonuses in order to encourage them to sign up to their site. These bonuses may seem like they are giving away money, but in the end, they will receive more than they give out. Ongoing or loyalty bonuses encourage players to return to the site.
Can I win money using a casino bonus?
Yes, you can, but it can be a little difficult. Being able to win and withdraw the cash will depend on whether the casino has high wagering requirements in place, whether it's a sticky bonus and even on the minimum withdrawal limits that are set by the site.