It’s always important to remember that while online casinos are fantastic fun, they couldn’t exist without the players. That’s why most will go to extraordinary lengths to create enticing and seductive bonuses and rewards which keep their players happy and, as importantly, playing. Nowhere is this more noticeable than with the welcome bonus.
If you want to learn not only how to recognise a great welcome bonus, but also how to capitalise on it and maximise your earnings, then just keep reading. We’ll also include a table of the latest and greatest online casino welcome bonuses, chosen for their blend of value, low wagering requirements and other specific terms. Trust us: they’re the best available.
Why Welcome Bonuses?
As online casino continues to move from strength to strength, more and more casinos are appearing on the horizon. Not only that, but the bigger casinos are producing better games, with higher payouts and similar website performance.
How, then, are we supposed to decide where to do our gambling? The simplest answer is usually the best, and that’s the case here: choose the casino which offers you the most lucrative joining deal!
Say you had two comparably performing casinos with similar games selections, but one offered you $500 to play with them while the other extended no extra benefit. It’s a no-brainer. Every casino today has its own version of the welcome bonus – free spins, bonus cash, extra benefits, unusual rewards – but they’re all designed for one specific purpose: to get players in the door.
There’s never been a better time to get involved in online casino!
Welcome Bonus Breakdown
Not all welcome bonuses take the same shape. As a rule, however, you’ll be presented with at least one of the following:
- A small, no deposit bonus
- A matched deposit
- Free spins
A no deposit bonus is exactly what it sounds like: you don’t pay anything into the casino, yet they still give you a load of spins at one of their most popular pokies. Once you’ve used them up, you get the chance to wager your profits and, if you manage to meet the wagering requirements, take your profits home with you!
A great example of the no deposit bonus can be found at Dunder Casino. Register with your name, email address and phone number (no bank details) and your account will be immediately credited with 20 free spins. In addition, you can join their mailing list to receive 55 free spins on Starburst, one of the most popular online casino games of all time!
Not all players are interested in the small-ball game and prefer instead to inject money into the casino so they can play the big boy games, wagering up to several hundred dollars per spin on pokies! For those players, only a matched deposit will suffice.
At Jackpot Casino, you can boost your account with a free $1,600, for example. This is done over 3 separate deposits as follows:
- 100% matched by the casino, up to $800
- 50% matched by the casino, up to $800
- 25% matched by the casino, up to $1,600
As you can see, you have to invest quite a lot of money to add the full $1,600 to your balance, but it also makes you a hugely powerful player! Smaller players can also take advantage of this bonus, by turning as little as $30 into $60.
A very common bonus comes in the form of a big bag of free spins. At Dunder, as soon as you’ve deposited at least $20, you’ll receive 180 free spins on top of the 20 you received when registering. These are released in 20-spin batches, so every day you have the chance to run through the playthrough and make a profit!
Wagering requirements are essentially the “catch” which allows casinos to make money while still offering free cash and spins to players. Every time you use an online casino bonus, you’ll be told the wagering number, usually between 20x and 50x.
Let’s say you received that $1,600 free cash bonus from Jackpot City, and the wagering requirement was 30x. This would mean that in order to withdraw any profits, you’d have to place $1,600×30 = $48,000 worth of bets. This isn’t infeasible, but it’s a seriously big number and only a small percentage of players make it to the withdrawal stage. Remember though that they have still done it with free money.
The best way to make money off a casino bonus is to find one with low wagering requirements. Drop the playthrough down to 15x, perhaps even lower, and you’ll be much better-placed to take home some proper winnings!
Terms & Conditions
Before agreeing to a casino bonus, it’s incredibly important that you actually read the terms and conditions. This isn’t an iOS update – you’re playing with real money and the terms can contain all sorts of hidden surprises, including game contribution rules, time limits and the cashable nature of the bonus.
Some casino games are “easier” to win than others. Or, more accurately, they are easier to break even at. By betting black on European roulette, for example, you’re likely to win (on average) about 48% of the time. Logically, you should choose this kind of game for playing through your wagering requirement – but the casino wasn’t born yesterday.
Roulette, low-risk blackjack and similar games often contribute 10% or even 0% to the wagering requirement. At 10%, you’d have to make ten times as many bets as you would playing slots, which contributes 100%. This info can be found in the terms & conditions of every bonus.
Each bonus has a time limit, ranging anywhere from 24 hours to several weeks. If you breach your limit, whatever bonus balance you have on your account will be wiped and it’ll be game over for you. Always check the time limits are feasible. A 30x wagering requirement on $1,600, for example, will probably take a long time to complete even if your luck is in.
Cashable vs Non-Cashable
Always try to get cashable bonuses. With a cashable bonus, once the wagering requirement has been met and it’s time to take home your profits, you can withdraw both your deposit and the bonus amount you received. This may seem intuitive, but non-cashable bonuses only allow you to take home the deposited amount, not the bonus funds.
It’s not always clear whether or not a bonus is cashable, hence you should always check the T&Cs.
Are Casino Bonuses for Me?
Casino bonuses are for players who enjoy the game and aren’t in a hurry to spend as much money as quickly as they possibly can. If you enjoying doubling your bank account with free cash, or earning free spins for nothing, then of course you can’t go wrong with a bonus!
How Do I Clear my Wagering Requirements Quickly?
There’s no secret method of “clearing the requirements quickly”, since playing any game other than slots will ramp up the required time. However, we recommend gambling as high as possible. You’re never going to clear a $50,000 requirement by wagering $1 spins; choose a game where you can spin at $50, or a $100 or more. It’s not guaranteed, but it’s certainly the fastest way to play through your requirements.
Recognizing and Claiming A Good Bonus
For a start, the best bonuses always offer more than one attraction. Take Jackpot City, for instance. Their welcome bonus allows you to earn over 300 free spins in addition to $1,600 in free cash. Another thing is the wagering requirement – low wagering requirements often make a lower face value bonus much more lucrative, so it’s important to consider all of that – plus the extra T&Cs we discussed – before jumping at a deal.