Your Guide to Understanding Casino Bonuses: Cashback, Match Deposit, and Reload

Elana K. - December 20, 2021

Many online casinos offer enticing promotions and specials to their players. Some of the most common are cashback, match deposit, and reload bonuses. This guide will help players get a deeper understanding of all these promotions.

Many online casinos offer enticing promotions and specials to their players. Some of the most common are cashback, match deposit, and reload bonuses. Despite the popularity of these promotions, players might not always be clear on what offer’s on the table and what exactly they’ll be getting.

For this reason, we’ve created this guide to casino bonuses: cashback, match deposit and reload. Read on to get all the information you need so that you can make the best decision about which ones are worth your while.

What Is a Cashback Bonus?

A cashback bonus allows you to get a portion of your losses deposited back into your account. Here’s an example of how it works: An online casino offers 25% cashback on losses incurred after you make a deposit. If you make a $50 deposit and lose $20, you’ll be eligible for $5 (since 25% of 20 equals 5).

Cashback deposit bonuses have wagering requirements (also known as playthrough). Let’s say you play at a casino that offers 20% cashback and has a 25x wagering requirement. This means that if you deposit $100 and lose half, you’ll be eligible for $10 cashback (20% times $50 = $10). However, you then need to meet the 25x wagering requirement before being able to access that cashback. 25 times $10 = $250, which is how much you need to bet before claiming the cashback.

Some casinos also require that you lose your entire deposit before claiming the cashback. So in the above example, you would need to lose $100 (qualifying for $20 in cashback), and then meet the wagering requirements of 25x.

Pros and Cons of Cashback

Cashback is an attractive bonus because it gives you something after you incur a loss (which happens to even the best casino players). The main drawback is that casinos often limit the amount of cashback you can receive. However, if you’re aware of the limits, you can make sure to deposit only the amount that will yield the maximum cashback, and not above that.

What Is a Match Deposit Bonus?

Match deposit bonuses are offered to new players and to returning players as recurring promotions. They differ from cashback bonuses in that they’re based on the amount of money you deposit, not on the amount you lose. In other words, right when you make the deposit, you know how much bonus cash you’re eligible for, unlike cashback bonuses when you only know how much you’ll get after you play and incur losses.

A typical match deposit bonus looks something like this: 100% match deposit bonus, up to $500. If you deposit $200, you’ll be eligible for $200 in bonus money. But if you deposit $600, you’ll only be eligible for $500, since that’s the cap.

Some deposit bonuses (usually those offered to new players) take place over the course of several deposits. For example, a casino might offer 100% on your first deposit (up to $500), 50% on your second deposit (up to $300), and 25% on your third deposit (up to $200).

No matter what offer is on the table, deposit bonuses also come with wagering requirements that are important to note before taking advantage of them. Knowing what the wagering requirements are will help you calculate how much you need to deposit altogether before being able to claim the bonus. Other requirements you may see in the fine print revolve around maximum bets, eligible games, and minimum deposits.

Pros and Cons of Match Deposit Bonuses

The main attraction of match deposit bonuses is that you have the opportunity to earn a large sum of money when you make a deposit (and anyway, you need to deposit in order to play at a casino). The main drawback is that there are wagering requirements, which mean you have to deposit a large sum of money in order to win your bonus cash.

What Is a Reload Bonus?

A reload bonus is another popular type of casino bonus that awards you once you’ve already made a deposit. In essence, reload bonuses are any bonuses that players can get after they use the initial welcome bonus. Reload bonuses include:

  • Deposit match bonuses
  • Deposit match + bonus spins
  • Loyalty points
  • Cashback

Like cashback and match deposit bonuses, reload bonuses have wagering/playthrough requirements that require you to deposit a certain amount of money in order to qualify for the free money the casino is offering.

Pros and Cons of Reload Bonuses

The main attraction of reload bonuses is that they reward returning players who have already used their welcome bonus. So if you’re going to make a deposit anyway, these reload bonuses help you get more bang for your buck. The drawback is the same as that of match deposit bonuses—if you don’t meet the wagering requirements, you won’t get anything. And in some cases, the wagering requirements can be very high.

Which Casino Bonus is Best: Cashback, Match Deposit, or Reload?

The question of which type of online casino bonus is best is highly individual and depends on several factors:

  • Your bankroll
  • Your personal preference and playing style
  • The terms of conditions of each specific offer

Only you know your budget and can decide how much you are willing to spend. It’s important to set limits for yourself before jumping into any promotion so you can do the calculations and make sure you don’t overspend. 

The terms and conditions for each offer can also be a deciding factor in which one is most worthwhile. Things to look at include the cashback percentage and limits, the match deposit percentage and limits, wagering requirements, and game restrictions.

Being an informed player can go a long way toward making sure you get the most worthwhile bonus. Take your time and read the fine print so that you can have the most enjoyable—and rewarding—casino experience possible.


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