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Guide To Online Casino Bonuses

Many people choose to sign up to an online casino as they’ve been lured in by an exciting bonus, promotion or offer. Whether it’s a welcome bonus, free spins, lucrative VIP club or bonus codes, there are enough offers to be used on roulette, blackjack, baccarat, slots and poker to make your head spin. To help you decide which bonus is the best for you – or if you even want to participate in casino bonuses – read on to find out everything you need to know.

What is a Casino Bonus?

In the increasingly competitive world of online casinos, each operator will want to stand out from the others by offering a bonus or promotion a potential player can’t ignore. When a casino bonus is offered, the player is given something extra in return for carrying out an action such as signing up, making a deposit, being active regularly or spending a certain amount of money. They can be part of a welcome package, come in the form of spendable points, be offered as competitions or regular incentives or be included as part of a VIP club, encouraging people to use the casino more often in order to be allowed access to additional perks.

Welcome Bonus

A welcome bonus allows the player to develop a positive relationship with the online casino from the beginning, as they are rewarded simply for signing up, and in some cases just for making their first deposit, which is often only required to be a small amount. Often, welcome bonuses come in the form of a sum of virtual money, designed for use on casino games, which matches the deposit amount. So if a player receives a welcome bonus of a 100% match and deposits $/€10, they will have $/€20 in total in their virtual wallet – $/€10 of their real cash and $/€10 of virtual casino money designed to encourage the player to stay active on the site for longer by playing more games.

No Deposit Bonus

These types of bonuses can either be provided to new players, as an incentive to keep them playing on the site, or to existing players, as a reward for continuing to use their games. A no deposit bonus is a reward offered without the need for a player to make a deposit of real money to be eligible. No deposit bonuses can be offered in many forms – for example, they could be an amount of virtual cash deposited in a player’s virtual wallet, which could be designed specifically for a game, type of game or for general use across the site. Sometimes free spins will be offered on slots games to get new players involved in the offerings on site without needing to part with cash first, or as a reward for players who have already spun the reels a lot.

Deposit Bonus

The clue is in the name – a deposit bonus is a bonus offered when a player makes a deposit at an online casino. It is often also referred to as the welcome bonus, as they serve similar functions and have the same requirements in many cases. In other words, both a deposit bonus and a welcome bonus will usually require a player to sign up for an account, then make a deposit of real money into their virtual wallet. This will unlock the bonus, which will be either a match up to a certain amount, free spins or a fixed amount of virtual cash to be spent on casino games. Deposit bonuses can often come in stages, with different rewards being offered for subsequent deposits. The most common patterns seen for deposit bonuses offered in stages go up to the third or fifth deposit, with many offering a match bonus for each deposit.

Daily Deals

Daily deals can make life at an online casino much more varied and interesting. The casino will create incentives for players to keep logging into the site and playing games on a regular basis by introducing bonuses, rewards and prizes based on them performing a particular action. Sometimes this can be as simple as signing in on a particular day of the week, and receiving a benefit such as 10 free spins in return, or there could be clues that require unlocking in order to receive a mystery prize, a chance to win a grand prize or a special bonus game available for a limited time only.

Weekly Bonus

In some ways, the weekly bonus is similar to the daily deal. This offer involves a reward which is given on a weekly basis to players, often requiring certain actions on their part. Sometimes, this can be as simple as logging in a certain number of times or being active for a certain number of hours. On other occasions, you may have to meet particular requirements in order to be eligible for a reward. These types of bonuses are regularly seen as part of a VIP club’s perks, and require players to wager a certain amount of money each week in order to receive their bonus.


There are often many competitions available for players using an online casino. These can come in the form of cashback prizes, holidays to locations such as Las Vegas, iPhones, Xbox bundles and more. Sometimes these are random draws, and other times players need to play certain games, wager a certain amount of money over time or remain active for certain time periods. Competitions can be seasonal, monthly, or weekly, depending on how the casino operates. They can also be carried out on social media or email, which requires users to keep engaged with these platforms.

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Free Spins

Many people say that free spins are their favourite casino bonus, as there is often no deposit required in order to eligible for this offer. They are often attached to welcome or no deposit bonuses, and if you choose your casino carefully, you can be eligible for hundreds of free spins before parting with any real cash. The catch to free spins is that they are usually tied to slots games, which don’t require any skill or strategy to play and are based on luck only. However, that won’t stop players from enjoying the suspense of spinning the reels for free. Often, casinos will only allow free spins for certain games, in order to get more players hooked on a new game.

Bonus Codes

Bonus codes are used by casinos to ensure players stay engaged with certain parts of the company operation, such as their social media or email. They are similar to money off vouchers at many online merchants in that they offer discounts once the player enters them into dedicated sections on their account, or when making a deposit. These can be offered as part of a welcome bonus, used to see if you’ve won a competition, or be part of weekly or daily deals.

VIP Club

Although not strictly an online casino bonus, VIP clubs are often the backbone of casinos, as they provide a goal for players to aim towards and come with a plethora of perks. Some VIP clubs are invitation only, while others will allow membership if you meet certain requirements, such as wagering a certain amount of money. Many VIP club members enjoy the benefit of a personal account manager, which allows them assistance with their account and prompt responses to any queries they may have. There is also access to exclusive bonuses, prizes and promotions, with the chances of winning often made higher due to the smaller number of participants. Special trips for VIP members are often also available, such as stage shows and sporting events. Holidays can be won, as can other luxury prizes. An additional perk with VIP clubs is being able to rise through the ranks and achieve different levels until reaching a top tier, with each level offering increasing amounts of perks, offers and rewards.

Loyalty Points

Loyalty points boost customer engagement with an online casino and provide players with an incentive to continue using a particular site, as these points will increase over time to unlock bonuses, offers and prizes. Some casinos will offer a loyalty points shop, where you can choose a particular prize, or set your sights on an item and keep playing until you’ve earned enough points to redeem it. Often, loyalty points can be exchanged for cash, which can be a very lucrative option for players when combined with game winnings.

Wagering Requirements Explained

In order to receive the winnings from many online casino bonuses, there will often be a wagering requirement in place. A wagering requirement refers to the amount a player will need to bet in order to have their winnings released into their main cash balance. So if you receive 30 free spins as part of a no deposit bonus, and land a big win, there will more than likely be a wagering requirement you have to meet before you can have the winnings released. This condition applies to deposit-based bonuses too. For example, if a 100% bonus up to $/€50 on your first deposit with a 20x wagering requirement is in place, you will deposit $/€50 and receive another $/€50 for use on casino games. You will then need to wager $/€1000, the sum of 20 x 50, before any winnings from the bonus can be withdrawn into your main cash balance.

Casino Bonus on Mobile

An increasing number of online casinos are mobile friendly, meaning that players can access many of the same perks on their portable devices that they can on desktop. It’s usually the case that the same bonuses will be available for mobile players, as the operator won’t exempt people from these perks based on the device they’re using. Some casinos will offer different no deposit bonuses for mobile users, which could be based on the types of games available on mobile as opposed to desktop. Either way, there will be a bonus offer available for players who use their iOS, Android or Google device on the go.

Live Casino Bonus

Most casino bonuses will be focused on slots and table games, but if a site has a large selection of live dealer games, then bonuses and offers can be applied to this category too. These bonuses will often come in the form of competitions, such as being in the running to win a fixed amount of cash for playing live baccarat or blackjack, or being allowed free spins on live roulette. If you want to be able to use live casino bonuses and plan on playing these games more regularly than other kinds, do your research to find a casino operator that will meet your needs.

Choosing a Casino Bonus

There are several questions to ask yourself before choosing a casino bonus

  • Does the bonus fit your gaming style? It’s important to make sure you’ll actually use and enjoy a bonus. For example, a bonus offering free spins on a slots game isn’t much use if you’re a blackjack fan. Ensuring you can apply a bonus to your existing gaming style will mean you get the most enjoyment out of it. 
  • Will you use it before it expires? The terms and conditions of a bonus will explain when a bonus expires; for example there may be a 30 day limit to use a bonus. If you’re in the middle of moving house, are about to go on holiday, or don’t expect to have internet for a while, it may not be a wise idea to activate a bonus that could end up not getting used.
  • Do you agree with the wagering requirements? Every bonus on an casino site will usually have wagering requirements attached to it – as if you receive a bonus such as a 100% deposit match, this doesn’t mean you are receiving free money! You will usually have to wager a certain amount of money before you can receive any winnings in your account that can be withdrawn, and it’s worth checking you agree with these requirements before proceeding with a bonus.
  • Do the terms and conditions seem reasonable? There will always be terms and conditions linked to a bonus, and it’s strongly recommended you read these before accepting anything. This is because you may not be happy with some of the conditions you have to meet in order to receive the bonus.
  • Can you receive other bonuses at the same time? Some casino sites will only allow players to have one bonus active on their account at a time, while others may allow multiple offers to be claimed if a player is eligible. If you want to enjoy lots of offers and rewards, find an online casino that permits multiple bonuses to run at once.
  • Can the bonus be used on multiple games? This depends on the type of bonus being used. If it allows for a benefit such as free spins to be used on a genre of game, then check the terms and conditions to see if you can spread it across multiple games. However, some bonuses will state explicitly that the perk is only for use on a particular game.
  • Can the bonus be applied on mobile devices? There will usually be bonuses available on mobile devices, but you will need to check you can access the same bonus on mobile if you want to activate it on desktop then use it via a mobile device. Alternatively, there are often mobile-only bonuses available for players who like to gamble on the go.

Frequently asked questions

Bonuses will have terms and conditions attached to them which specify who is eligible for certain bonuses. For example, only new players will be entitled to a sign up bonus, only loyal high rollers will be invited to VIP clubs, and so on. It’s worth looking at the small print to avoid being disappointed.

This depends on the kind of bonus you want. Most people get a bonus upon signing up and making a deposit, then they can gain loyalty points over time, which can be redeemed for prizes whenever a certain amount has been gained. Some casinos offer daily, weekly and monthly bonuses and competitions. It’s up to you how often you get a bonus, and a lot is dependent on the type of casino you sign up with.

The best casino bonus depends on what you want. If you want more casino money to play games, a deposit match option could be the right choice for you. If you’re a slots fan and want as many spins as possible at a good price, then free spins is a great option. If you want to be rewarded for long-term gameplay and staying with the same casino, then it may be worth looking into loyalty points or a VIP club.

If you have a sign up bonus, this is usually credited to your account automatically. Bonus codes will need to be entered in the section specified, and you will be able to contact customer support if you need help with this. For the most part, redeeming instructions are either clearly stated along with the bonus details, or they are credited without you needing to take further action.

Some casino bonuses only offer free spins for certain games. This may be because the casino wants to promote gameplay on a particular game. Whatever the reason, it’s worth doing your research before signing up for a free spins bonus to ensure you have the right bonus for your gambling needs.

The full terms and conditions attached to a bonus will state if and how you can cancel the offer. Usually, you will be able to do this, providing that you accept any bonus winnings are forfeited as a consequence.

You can only withdraw your bonus balance once you have met any wagering requirements, or met the specified terms and conditions. A bonus balance is primarily intended to be used on games, and it isn’t permitted to sign up for a bonus and then simply withdraw the funds to your bank account.

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