What Am I Signing Up For? Understanding Casino Bonuses T&CPublished January 28, 2017 by Ivan P
Learn everything you need to know about online casino bonuses terms and condition and find out how to pick the best value.
Online casino bonuses represent one of the biggest draws that attract players to a particular casino and make them choose one over the other. While most gambling venues on the internet these days offer similar games and good software solutions, they try to win the war for players by offering attractive and competitive bonuses which outmatch the competition.
However, players are often confused about what online casino bonuses really are and how they work. This article will offer answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about casino bonuses and terms and conditions attached to them.
Playthrough / Wagering Requirements: What Are They?
If online casinos really gave new and existing players cold, hard cash, it would often happen that someone simply cash out their bonus and go about their business. This is clearly not in a casino's interest, so they came up with a system to prevent it: playthrough or wagering requirements.
These wagering requirements dictate a number of times you need to turn over your bonus before you are allowed to use the extra funds for anything other than playing. For example:
- You receive 100% bonus on your $200 deposit
- Wagering requirements are 30x the bonus amount
- You will need to place $6,000 in bets before you can cash out any of the bonus funds
There is nothing wrong with getting some extra cash, of course, just be aware that all bonuses come with special playthrough requirements dictated by the casino.
Wagering Requirements Explained in Detail
Not all casinos set the same wagering requirements and it can't be emphasized enough that there are huge differences between various offers. Some online casinos will offer really attractive bonuses for astonishing amounts, like $1,000+, but they will also attach very unrealistic playthrough conditions to them.
If the bonus comes with a 30x bonus + deposit stipulation, the amount itself is not that important. Say you are offered 250% on your next deposit. You go ahead and deposit the same $200. Now you have a total of $750 to play with and you are all smiles.
However, careful examination of bonus terms tells you you will need to wager a total of $22,500 to clear the bonus! Now, that's a lot of bets and it will take a lot of hours of play. As opposed to this, there are, in fact, some rare online casino which offer bonuses without wagering requirements, and you can find them by visiting our specialized page.
Wagering requirements are not the only thing preventing you from easily clearing your bonus. Casinos are very keen to stop any kind of abuse or advantage play and want their bonuses to be used exclusively by recreational players looking to have fun.
That's why you will usually not be allowed to place more than a certain percentage of your bonus on the line in a single bet or spin (5% - 10%) and low variance games will not fully count towards meeting wagering requirements. Although casinos differ in particular rules, game contributions roughly look like this:
- Most slots: 100% ($1 wagering for $1 bet)
- Roulette games (10%-20%)
- Blackjack and video poker (2%-5%)
Apart from these game restrictions, many casinos also place specific rules as to what deposit methods will make you eligible for the bonus in the first place, and often some popular e-wallets will be excluded. Likewise, there are country-specific restrictions, where online casinos simply refuse the bonus to players from particular countries due to bonus abuse concerns.
Cashable vs. Non-cashable Bonuses
One final thing you should know when signing up for a bonus offer is whether the bonus is cashable or non-cashable, as this makes all the difference in the world. Receiving 500% bonus on your $100 deposit sure sounds nice, but these will usually be non-cashable bonuses.
You will receive the money to play with and you can use it for any non-restricted games, but once you make a withdrawal, the entire bonus amount will be removed. Cashable bonuses, on the other hand, are yours to keep once you meet the wagering requirements.
When picking your casino bonus, this is a very important distinction to consider. Cashable bonuses have much bigger value (since you get to keep them), even if the number itself seems smaller.