The online casino business is thriving in the UK, and fans of casino games who like the convenience of playing their favorite games at home are able to choose from hundreds of reputable casino sites.
In such a competitive market, casino operators need to work hard to attract and retain new customers. One of the most common ways to do this is by offering casino bonuses. In fact, if you check out any casino site, you will usually find that it offers some kind of bonus incentive to sign up, often with headline-grabbing bonus amounts.
All casino bonuses have terms and conditions attached, however, and may not be as attractive as they appear on the surface. To help you sort the good from the bad, and to find the best bonus for your bankroll and casino gaming style, we’ve put together a short guide on finding the best online casino bonuses in the UK.
Types of casino bonuses
There are many different types of casino bonuses and UK online casinos are regularly coming up with new forms of bonuses to promote their platforms. Most of these bonuses, however, can be grouped into categories. Here are some of the most common forms of bonuses you are likely to come across:
Undoubtedly the most common type of bonus promotion, the deposit bonus is usually offered as an incentive to sign up with a site as a new customer. Deposit bonuses can also be available to regular players at a site, in which case they are often described as reload bonuses.
As the name suggests, a deposit bonus is awarded when you make a deposit to your online casino account. Typically, the deposit bonus is a match bonus through which a casino pays you a percentage of your deposit in bonus funds, up to a maximum amount. This percentage can range from 50% up to 200% or more, but the 100% deposit match bonus is the most common.
No deposit bonus
This is probably the most sought after form of bonus, typically awarded to new customers simply for signing up with an online casino site. No deposit is required, which is why this form of bonus appeals to many casino players; however, it is worth noting that the no deposit bonus is typically much smaller than a deposit bonus and may be as small as $10.
Cashback bonuses are usually paid to regular players and are calculated over a period of time. With the cashback bonus, you typically receive a percentage of your losses at the casino site as bonus funds. A typical cashback bonus may refund you 10% of the money you’ve lost at the casino over the course of a week, although the terms of this type of bonus vary widely.
Free spins bonus
Slot games are the most popular casino genre, and casinos sometimes offer free slot game spins as a bonus. Sometimes these are bundled with a deposit bonus for new customers, but they can also be awarded as a loyalty bonus for returning players. It is common for free spins to be related to a particular game or game franchise that the casino wants to promote.
Casino bonus terms and conditions
As we mentioned above, all bonuses come with terms and conditions and some of these can be significant. This is why it is important to always check the legal and financial conditions of any bonus offer before you sign up as they can lead to significant disappointment if you don’t. Here are the main terms and conditions that you are likely to find with UK casino bonuses:
- Wagering requirement: Ranging from as little as x10 up to x80, the wagering requirement is the number of times that you must wager the bonus amount before you can withdraw it.
- Minimum deposit: Deposit bonuses usually require you to make a deposit of a minimum size.
- Time limits: There can be multiple time limits on bonuses, including limits on how quickly you must claim a bonus, make a qualifying deposit and meet the wagering requirement.
- Game limits: Many bonuses, particularly free spins, are restricted to certain games.
- Maximum win: It is common for a casino to impose a limit on how much money you can win when you are using bonus funds to play its games.
Choosing the best bonus
The key to finding the best casino bonus is to avoid being taken in by the headline figure. Remember that all bonuses have terms and conditions, and you can’t judge the attractiveness of a casino bonus unless you factor these in, as they can make a significant difference.
It is rarely a good idea to sign up for a casino site simply because you are attracted by the bonus, so make sure that you are likely to want to play at the site in the future, and that it is a reputable, licensed site with good reviews and a range of games that suit your preferred style.
It is also important to remember that playing casino games is a form of leisure activity, not a source of financial income. Choose the bonus that is most likely to enhance your enjoyment, and that way you can stay in control and ensure that you are gambling safely and responsibly