Three Things to Keep in Mind When Choosing an Online Casino Bonus

By  //  April 20, 2020

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Online casino bonuses are great. Whether it’s a welcome promotion for signing up with a new company, an offer for a specific game, or one of the many sporadic bonuses featured at different casinos throughout the year, who doesn’t like free cash to take a punt with?

Of course, casinos aren’t in the habit of just giving money away. They are businesses, after all. For this reason, they build various terms and conditions into their offers to make it harder for a player to actually win any money. Naturally, they don’t promote this small print quite as heavily as they do the “Free Cash” they’re apparently giving away!

Different casinos have different terms and conditions for their offers. Some are more generous than others. Choosing good promotions will mean you are more likely to take away profit.

With so many different iGaming venues out there today, deciding which promotions are worth your time requires a thorough understanding of the terms and conditions. Even two different no deposit bonuses (like those here) can vary wildly in their potential profitability.

If, like many, you’re at a loose end of late and want to take advantage of one of the many great casino bonuses offered at online gambling venues right now, there are a few things you really should keep in mind when looking for the best.

Wagering Requirements

It’s incredibly rare for a casino to offer strictly free cash. Even if a casino uses the word “cash” in the description of a bonus, you will almost certainly discover that it’s actually “bonus cash”. Bonus cash cannot be withdrawn. It must be turned into real money by wagering.

Although the online casino might neglect to mention anything relating to wagering requirements on whatever advert attracted you to the bonus in the first place, if you check the terms and conditions, it’ll be there.

Wagering requirements might be called something different in the terms and conditions. You could see it referenced as a “playthrough requirement” too. Usually, the casino will denote its playthrough or wagering requirements as a number followed by an “X” – 30x, for example, is a common wagering requirement. The number refers to the number of times you will need to bet the total bonus and/or your deposit.

It’s very important to note whether it’s only the bonus cash that needs wagering or the deposit, or both. You might need to effectively do twice as much playing before you can withdraw any winnings!

Players can complete their wagering requirements on any eligible game. Eligible games will be detailed in either the promotion-specific or the casino’s own terms and conditions. Since different games have different return-to-player ratings (RTP), certain games might only contribute a percentage towards wagering.

For example, a high RTP slot, like BloodSuckers by Playtech, might only count 50%. For each $1 you bet on that particular slot, the casino will only acknowledge 50c when considering playthrough contributions.

Other games might be excluded entirely from wagering. Blackjack is known for being one of the lowest house edge games at a casino. In order to protect their profits, casinos will often not allow players to complete a bonus playthrough using the game.

If they do allow wagering on blackjack, don’t be surprised to see just 1c for every dollar wagered contributing towards wagering!

Cash-Out Limits

Cash-out limits are another way in which casinos will try to limit their losses when offering bonuses. Like all other information about the bonus you are claiming, full details of any cash out limits will be available in the terms and conditions.

If the casino you are playing at enforces a cash-out limit on bonuses, any winnings above the limit at the time you complete wagering will be surrendered. This happens automatically. Your new real money balance will be whatever the set limit is and not a penny more.

Limitations on the amount you are allowed to cash out are easily the most annoying part of a casino bonus. Say you’ve been spinning through a bonus and you hit a massive prize.

Worse still, imagine you are playing a progressive jackpot game and you actually drop some life-changing money. If the casino has a cash-out limit, you can probably kiss goodbye to all but a small fraction of the winnings.

For this reason, we recommend completely avoiding progressive jackpot games if you are playing with a bonus with a cash-out limit. Part of each bet you make goes into the progressive jackpot total.

If the casino’s terms and conditions exclude you from winning anything close to the top prize, you really shouldn’t be pointlessly feeding the prize pool.

All that said, cash-out limits aren’t necessarily tiny. It’s possible to find really large ones that protect the casino from a devastating loss but still give players a good chance to win a decent stack. You’ll probably find that the more generous a promotion appears on first glance, the lower the cash-out limit will be once you really get into the small print.

Excluded Deposit Methods

This final point usually only applies to a welcome bonus that will involve you making your first deposit with a casino. It’s common for a casino to exclude many deposit methods from activating their promotions.

It’s very easy to create an account at many eWallet services like Neteller, Skrill, and other services. Once created, users can receive money via inter-account transfer. This means that one user can create many accounts using different names and email addresses.

If casinos did not exclude deposits with these methods for their welcome bonuses, bonus hunters could easily take advantage. It would be incredibly straightforward to create a potentially infinite number of Neteller accounts and sign up to play the same welcome bonus from the same casino with each account.

Again, you should check the terms and conditions before signing up with a casino to see just which deposit methods are eligible for welcome bonuses. Although this can be inconvenient to many players, you should find that all subsequent bonuses from a casino will not require a specific deposit method.

Are Welcome Bonuses Even Worth it?

These are just three often-overlooked terms and conditions that apply to casino bonuses. You will find a lot more when you start actually inspecting the small print of an offer.

As you should now know, casino bonus terms and conditions are specifically intended to make it more difficult for you to actually win any money from an offer. Wagering requirements, cash out limits, and other clauses mean that you can’t just win a load on a single spin of roulette using the casino’s money and immediately head for the hills!

That doesn’t mean that casino bonuses aren’t great though. If players fully understand what they’re getting themselves into when claiming one, promotional offers represent a useful way to get much more action than a player could typically with their own money.

If you plan to spend a lot of time playing at the casino, you should certainly attempt to max out the welcome bonus on your first deposit. Just make sure you read all the terms and conditions before signing up!


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