Online gaming has its upsides, chief among them being the fact that online casinos offer regular bonuses. In a nutshell, the bonuses offered by most online casinos can be classified into two groups; deposit bonuses and non-deposit bonuses. A deposit bonus is a bonus whose main requirement is tied to making a deposit and in most cases; it is usually a percentage of deposited funds. On the other hand, non-deposit casino bonus is a bonus which does not necessarily require a deposit to be activated. However, most players tend to misconstrue casino bonuses to be free money. So, does a casino bonus qualify to be free money?
What is a casino bonus?
First things first, a casino bonus is an incentive given by an online casino to a player. As mentioned earlier, there are various types of casino bonuses and they include welcome bonus, deposit bonus, non-deposit bonus, free spins bonus, and comps bonuses among others. As the name alludes, a welcome bonus is usually given to players after successful registration. Depending on an online casino, the welcome bonus can either be deposit or non-deposit bonus. However, sometimes, it can be a hybrid of both. The free spins bonus is a casino bonus given to slot games enthusiasts. In simple terms, a free spin is a free credit which can be redeemed on a slots game at no additional cost to the player. Free spins allow players to spin virtual reels for several rounds without necessarily having to place a wager.
Why is casino bonuses not real money?
To most players, a casino bonus is more like free money dished by online casinos. However, although I would hate to disappoint you, casino bonuses are not real money. When giving out bonuses, online casinos usually have a set of terms and conditions which must be followed lest the bonus is cancelled. One of the most common conditions is the wagering requirement. To prevent abuse of the bonuses by avoiding instances where players would just sign up, receive the bonus and make a withdrawal instantly, casino bonuses are subject to a play-through requirement before they can be withdrawn.
A wagering requirement stipulates the number of times the bonus must be wagered to qualify for a withdrawal. If by any chance this requirement is not met, a player can’t be able to withdraw the bonus plus accrued winnings. Interestingly, not every wager counts to attainment of the wagering requirement; online casinos may have an additional condition on games that can contribute towards the wagering requirement. That being said, it is clear that casino bonuses are not free money but playing credits whose winnings are tied to a wagering requirement.
Free spins are also not left behind. The winnings accrued from free spins are transformed to a bonus which is subject to wagering requirement. Therefore, from every perspective, casino bonuses can never be free money.
To understand how the wagering requirement works, let’s say an online casino has a x40 wagering requirement on the welcome bonus which can amount to £400. To be able to withdraw the bonus, you must wager a cumulative total of £16,000. In addition, if let’s say you win £200 using free spins, you must wager a total of £8,000 to be able to withdraw your winnings.
How to best wager a casino bonus
If the extra financial edge offered by the cash bonuses is to be beneficial, you have to wager it like you would your own money. The truth is, most online gamers wager the bonus carelessly since a loss would have zero financial ramifications. For the offered bonus to have maximum impact in your gaming life, it is important to wager one tenth of the bonus for each round. That way, whenever you make a loss, you will always have 10 more plays to recoup your loss. Also, it is important to wager on games having the highest return to player percentages (if usage of the bonus is not restricted on one game). Usually, the return to player percentage (RTP) is found on the left hand side of the gaming window.
To avoid inconveniences when making a withdrawal, it is important to read the fine print of bonus terms and conditions. Well, following the adage “the devil is in the details”, online casinos may have additional terms and conditions which if violated can lead to forfeiture of your entire winnings.
If you are a slots player, it is advisable to wager the maximum amount allowed and wait for the big win. If you get lucky and win a substantial amount, you can significantly reduce the size of your wager and ride out the wagering requirement.
Additionally, you must at all times know that you can also decline a bonus. Even if it’s almost free money, sometimes rogue online casinos use bonuses (tied to astronomical wagering requirements) to make withdrawals virtually impossible. Therefore, since you are not obligated to accept a bonus, you can as well decline a bonus if you are about to make a withdrawal.
Free Spins are just free credits, not withdrawable money
Free spins is arguably the most common casino bonus in online gaming. As pointed out earlier, free spins allow you to spin virtual reels without having to place a wager. Therefore, obviously, you have to understand that free spins are just but credits which you can use to play slots instead of placing a wager. There is absolutely no way you can withdraw free spins!! They are not money!
In conclusion, casino bonuses are not free money owing to existence of wagering requirements. With most online casinos, requesting a withdrawal before a wagering requirement is met usually leads to forfeiture of your winnings as well as the bonus. Therefore, it is imperative to enquire from the customer support about your progress as far as the wagering requirement is concerned. Finally, to use a casino bonus optimally, it is advisable to wager on progressives with high RTP’s and wager only a fraction of your bonus at a go.
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