What types of online casinos are out there?

Plenty! However a typical online casino will offer a mix of real-money gaming in the following categories; online slots, table gaming (covering classic casino staples such as Roulette and Blackjack), video poker and ‘Instant Wins’ such as scratchcards.

Some online casinos will be exclusively powered by one software developer – Microgaming and Playtech being two common examples – whereas some will source their games from a variety of suppliers.

Are online casinos legal?

The best online casinos are all legally operated under remote gaming licenses issued by a number of internationally recognised gaming control authorities. Your eligibility to play them (and reciprocally their willingness to accept you as a player) is dependent on the territory you’re playing from, but UK players are free to do so.

What are my chances of winning at an online casino?

The same as every other player! Licensed casinos offer scrupulously fair games with an advertised RTP (return to player) percentage for each game. Overall you can expect the best online casinos to pay back well over 90% of all wagers they accept as winnings to players. That means a lot of bets paid back as wins, but doesn’t guarantee you personally can expect that percentage back.

What makes for a good online casino?

Our firm opinion is that a good online casino should have three things. First, one of the most sought-after remote gaming licenses to endorse its legal operation; two, a shed load of great games from one or more of the leading casino software developers, and finally; three, top-notch customer support including promotions that bring extra value for players’ money.

What are free spins?

Free spins are bonus games played on a slot machine. They can be either awarded as a bonus feature within the game itself, or as a promotional feature by an online casino to gift its players some extra entertainment on existing titles, or introduce them to a new slot.

Aren’t free spins a scam?

No. Free spins are free spins. These are chances to enjoy some extra games which are funded by the online casino as a promotion. You don’t lose anything by using them, and there’s no obligation to use them if you don’t wish to.

How can I deposit money at a casino?

All the best online casinos provide a number of payment options to let you deposit funds into a player account with them. The most common choice for players is to use a debit card, however e-wallets such as PayPal, NETeller and Skrill are very popular and prepayment services like Paysafecard offer a convenient way to pay-as-you-go if you don’t have, or don’t wish to use, a bank account to source the funds.

How long will it take after depositing before i can play?

The most popular payment options allow near-instant depositing. You should be able to play almost as soon as you’ve confirmed the transfer of the funds into your chosen casino’s player account.

What’s better – download OR instant play online casino software?

This is not always an option, but some players like the extra features and slightly richer sound and graphics possible with download casino software. Us? The sheer convenience of Instant Play always wins the day, and with modern broadband speeds letting developers get bigger files to us so quickly, the games now have production values that easily rival many download versions.

Another factor is that download casinos are exclusively for Windows PCs. If you’re a Mac user (or perhaps even Linux?) it’s going to be Instant Play or no way.

Can I play on my mobile?

Yes. The best online casinos have recognized that many players prefer to use mobile devices like smartphones and tablets for their online entertainment, and so have ensured they offer ‘mobile casinos’ as part of their service. These mobile casinos usually support most modern mobiles that have web browsers, and many even offer the extra convenience of native apps for iOS and Android users.

How can I find out if a game or casino will work on my operating system?

Other than Download Casinos that require Windows PCs, all other online casinos and their games are designed to work in recent web browsers. If you’re reading this page now, it’s a good bet that an online casino and its games will work too. You many need to have Adobe’s Flash plug-in installed, but this is free and your browser should assist you to sort things out if it’s not present.

Can I play games for free?

Yes. Online casino games from every major developer that we’ve ever reviewed include a ‘demo’ or ‘free play’ mode. This allows you to test drive the game without limitation to either learn how to play it, or experience its novel bonus features without needing to make any real-money bets. For good reason, any wins when playing in a game’s demo mode cannot be banked or turned into real-money winnings – they’re simply ‘for fun’ and have no monetary value.

How do i know the games aren’t fixed and the spins and hands are random?

To operate legally under one of the recognised remote gaming licenses, an online casino can only offer games that have been formally certified as fair. This requires rigorous testing of the underlying maths of the game and the software built upon that. The Random Number Generator (RNG) that is used to determine the outcome of a spin on a slot, where the ball lands in Roulette or which cards are dealt from a virtual deck is also subject to such testing and certification to ensure no bias either.

How can I learn the payout percentage for a game?

Check the game’s rules. All online casino games have a built-in menu that includes their rules and the RTP percentage is usually advertised at the end.

How can I tell that a casino is safe?

Holding a license from one of the foremost online gaming authorities is a very good indication that the casino can be trusted. All those gaming authorities have their own websites too where you can verify the casino’s claim to have an active license if you want to double-check the facts for your own peace of mind.

What types of bonuses do the casinos offer?

The best online casinos always welcome new players with ‘Welcome’ bonuses, and seek to retain them with on-going ‘loyalty’ bonuses. These can be bundles of extra money to play with and / or free spins that might or might not need the player to deposit a minimum amount of funds into their account to trigger the bonus.

What is the welcome bonus?

The Welcome Bonus is a traditional promotion offered by online casinos to encourage new players to register with them. It may comprise an element that requires no deposit, an element that matches a number of deposits with bonus money and a gift of free spins on specific slot games. The Welcome Bonus can be an excellent way to trial a new casino you wish to play and get extra value for money from any funds you commit early on.

What is a wager requirement?

The wagering requirement is a condition of use routinely applied to any bonus money paid to a player. It specifies the number of times that money must be played through the casino’s games before it can be considered as funds the player may withdraw to spend elsewhere.

How do I withdraw winnings?

A player account at an online casino will include a ‘cashier’ section where you may make a request to withdraw winnings. You will need to specify one of the payment options via which the casino can credit the funds to you, and there may be a slight delay while the request is processed (no more than two to three days is common) however the process is very simple and secure.

How long does it take to make a withdrawal?

An online casino should take no more than 48 hours to process a request for withdrawal. Thereafter the time for the funds to clear for your use is dependent on the payment service you use. Debit cards can take a further three days to transfer the funds back into your bank account, however e-Wallets like PayPal, NETeller and Skrill allow much faster access to your funds if that is important to you.