How Bonuses at Online Casinos Work

What are online casino bonuses?

When you first enter the growing world of online casino gambling, you’ll come across ‘bonuses’ almost immediately. These can take various forms, with the most common and probably most popular being ‘welcome bonuses’. The function of bonuses is to promote the site and attract new players, in much the same way as special offers in shops. Knowing what to expect can help you find the best bonuses and make the most of your time online.

Bonuses usually take the form of welcome bonuses which you get after your first deposit, registration bonuses which you can claim immediately and reload bonuses which use the same mechanics but are used later on. There are also general promotions which can come from various sources. Casino sites will usually make their bonuses clear, but it pays to have an understanding of them. Many veteran slots players will join several sites just to shop around for bonuses! Let’s take a look at how they work and how you can cash in.

The ever-valuable welcome bonus.

More often than not, when an online casino or another player talks about a bonus, they mean a welcome bonus or first time depositor bonus. This is (usually) the first promotional cash you can claim when you join a new site. Because there are so many online casinos now, they need to compete to get your custom. Sites are often confident that their games will keep you around, so the first hurdle is getting you to register and try them out when you first visit.

This is exactly what welcome bonuses are for. Like a sale sign in a shop window, they aim to take window shoppers (or site visitors) and turn them into paying customers (or registered site members). The good news here is that with so many sites competing for your attention, you’re in a great spot as a new online slot player. You have the pick of hundreds of sites offering you more cash or better terms to become their latest member.

How do online casino bonuses work?

The good thing about these welcome bonuses is that they tend to follow a pretty standard pattern. The vast majority use this system, with a few variables. The bonus is awarded when you make your first deposit and the amount you get depends on how much you deposit. A typical offer is phrased as ‘100% up to £100’. What this means is that your deposit is matched 100%, with £100 being the most you can claim. Therefore, if you deposited £10, you would get 100% extra on top: another £10. That’s £20 to play with. To be more competitive, sites often offer more than 100%. This works just as it sounds, so if the offer was a 200% bonus and you deposit £10, this time you get £20 extra (leaving you with £30 in total). Higher percentages are generally good!

Reload bonuses usually work in exactly the same way, except they are done at any time rather than just on your first deposit. They are often a weekly thing intended to bring you back and they tend to be less lucrative. Some sites even offer registration bonuses, which means you can get some free credit to play with before you’ve even deposited! This is ideal for trying things out.

How to claim bonuses.

Claiming your bonus is very easy, because after all, the casinos want you to have no problem joining up and spending. Usually you’ll see a huge graphic on the home page leading you in the right direction, but if not, it’s just a case of following the registration process and looking for mention of bonuses when you make your first deposit. Sometimes these offers are automatically applied, sometimes they need you to enter a voucher code and sometimes you just tick a box to accept it. The site will tell you.

The important thing to note in the case of any bonus is that there will be wagering requirement (sometimes called rollover). To prevent fraud, players who accept bonus cash need to spend it on-site, maybe several times over, before they are able to withdraw winnings. Always check the terms of a promotion before accepting it!