Every online casino operator offers some form of incentive to potential new customers: a deal that says thank you for signing up with a hope that you’ll keep an account here for some time to come. There is a wide range of figures and terms to consider so how do you cut through what can be a baffling list of welcome offers and decide which one is right for you?
Money, money, money
Among the wide range of welcome bonuses on the market, we’re all very familiar with this one. Sign up and you can get a cash boost up to a certain sum. The numbers vary but what are the essential points behind this type of offer?
Typically, the bonus is a match on your initial credit so, for example, if you deposit £500.00 into your new account after signing up, the casino will match that exactly so you get another £500.00 to play with. Occasionally, the sum may be listed in Euros or even USD so check with a currency converter tool to make sure you know what figures are involved.
Naturally, a bonus of £1,000.00 sounds much better than £500.00 and there’s no real reason why you shouldn’t go for the higher amount but this is where you must check the operator’s ‘rollover’ terms.
The rollover is the amount of times you have to play through your bonus before you can withdraw any money. So, if a provider states that the rollover is x10 and you have a bonus figure of £500.00, you have to wager £5K before taking any profits.
Rollover amounts can vary greatly so check what they are and as a general rule, be sure to read all the terms and conditions before signing up with any online casino.
It’s on us.
A number of casinos have traditionally offered ‘Free Play’ – a nominal sum such as £5.00 which allows you to test out the casino before you officially become an account holder. You will have to register some basic details but these are easy to get hold of.
Rollovers are important here too and as we’re dealing in smaller sums, they can be much higher at x30 or even more. In addition, you may be restricted to certain slot games – Starburst is a popular one – and you may not be able to play for free at the tables.
Once again, do check all the relevant Ts and Cs, but if you are interested in free play, there are other ways in which you can access it. Many online casinos have versions of their card and table games that can be played via Flash Software without the need for any downloads.
The point to remember here is that no real money changes hands: you are given some ‘dummy’ chips that you stake for fun but there are no real transactions taking place.
What other aspects should you look for when it comes to choosing a casino provider? It’s worth considering whether you want the full Las Vegas experience or if you’re just looking to play without any distractions. Live Dealers are available at many casinos for games such as Roulette and Blackjack and you can talk and interact with them provided you don’t disturb the flow of play too much. Some players like this option but others prefer to play in silence so they can concentrate on the table and the wheel / cards, so if having Live Dealers sounds important to you, check that they are available.
There are a number of things to look out for when signing up but for most of us, the generosity of the welcome bonus is the most important factor. Check terms and conditions, know what to look out for and take advantage of the deal that’s right for you.