Almost every casino offers sign up bonuses to new players. What can you expect to get? And what are the implications of accepting a bonus? I hope I can answer these questions in this article.
Nowadays competion amongst online casinos is very high and almost all casinos offer you bonuses to get you as a player.
There are two main types of sign up bonuses:
- no deposit bonuses, and
- deposit bonuses
Both types of bonuses are given to you when you sign up at a casino as a new player. The no deposit bonus is an incentive that some casinos give you without the need to deposit any money. The casino gives you $5, $10, or even $50 free, and you are able to play and to keep your winnings, without risking your money. The deposit bonus is given to you as a percentage of your initial deposit and can range between 30% to 500%. Nowadays a 100, 200, and even 400% bonuses are very common. This type of bonuses requires a deposit. You will need to risk your money to get this type of bonus.
There is no problem to accept these offers, but it is very important to understand all the implications.
Every casino has its own rules and it is important that you read them in order to not have any surprises when you win and want to withdraw your money. I advise you to read carefully through casino terms and conditions and bonuses terms and conditions before depositing any money and start playing.
As you know it is not likely that a casino would give you free money without requiring something from you. If a casino gives you, for example, a 200% match bonus on your first deposit of $100, it will impose you some playing requirements, otherwise you would be able to withdraw your money plus $200 from the casino without playing, making a no risk profit of $200.
The most common requirements are:
- Wager Requirement, and
- Game Exclusions
Let’s look at an example taken from the terms and conditions of an online casino:
- Please note that you must wager at least twenty (20) times on slots games only prior to withdrawing. For example, players who deposit $25 will be required to wager a total of 20x($25+$75) = $2,000 prior to withdrawing. Players who deposit $50 will be required to wager a total of 20x($50+$200) = $5,000 prior to withdrawing.
- Wagers on craps, all roulette games, bonus paigow poker, casino war, sic bo, all baccarat games, all Jacks or Better Video Pokers and Red Dog are not counted when calculating if the wagering requirement has been met.
The first clause requires you to play your deposit plus bonus at least twenty times. If you deposit $50, the casino gives you $200 free (400% match bonus), and you must place at least a total of $5000 in bets.
The second clause is a game exclusion requirement. You can play any casino game, but the games listed on this clause do not count towards fulfilling your playthrough requirement imposed on the first clause. This means that you will have to make $5000 in wagers on any other games before withdrawing any winnings.
Understanding these terms is very important since you must play by the house rules, otherwise you will be at the risk of not receiving your winnings.
The case I described of a wager requirement and a game restriction clauses is the most common case you will find when accepting bonuses from casinos. Please note that there may be further clauses on the terms like a maximum bonus withdrawal, a phantom bonus clause, and more.
You must look carefully at all these issues and decide wether you want to play with the bonus or not. Some bonuses are deposited automatically into your account, others require your action. Look at the casino to see how it works, and let them know that you don’t want to play with the bonus, if this is your preference.
Read all the terms, enjoy your bonus, and avoid problems by understanding this mechanism. Good Luck!