As more Brits turn to online casinos for a spot of entertainment, the need to weed out the downright dodgy from the hidden gems becomes crucial. The savvy punter knows that there’s more to what makes an online casino reputable than the flashy graphics and welcome offers. From iron-clad licensing to customer service responsiveness and the fine print, there are clear markers that separate the best from the rest. So before you roll the dice, take a good read through our checklist to keep your time online safe, secure, and enjoyable.
Choosing an Online Casino: Useful Tips From the Experts
With new online casinos and betting sites cropping up all the time, it has become an essential skill to be able to expertly vet whether they’re worth your time (and money!). Here’s what our experts recommend looking out for.
Check the Casino’s License
If you nod off during the rest of this article, let this be the most important takeaway! The importance of only engaging with online casino and betting sites that have legitimate licenses cannot be overstated. While it brings a sense of comfort when one sees the trusty UK Gambling Commission license slapped onto the footer of a website, it goes far deeper than peace of mind. Reputable online casinos and betting sites that take licensing seriously can generally be trusted to engage in fair dealing and above-board business practices.
You can usually find an online casino’s license number in the footer of the website or in its terms and conditions. However, again, a reputable site will always show them off prominently. Can’t find a license no matter how much you squint? It’s time to fold and walk away. An online casino’s license is much like the Crown’s stamp on a fiver—assurance that you’re getting the real deal.
Variety of Games
Reputable online casino and betting sites are willing to invest good money into game development and licensing. They will have a large variety for punters to choose from, ranging from slots to online poker. The same goes for betting sites. Unless they’re a niche site, they should offer betting in multiple markets to appeal to the diverse tastes of bettors.
While there isn’t a universally agreed-upon minimum, we’re big believers that game quality should always take precedence over quantity. It will always be better to enjoy 100 high-quality, hand-picked games than 1000s of sub-par rubbish.
More important than the quantity is whether there is a good mix of games. A good rule of thumb for players is to look for casinos that offer the standard varieties of games, such as
- A variety of slot games, including classic slots, video slots, and progressive jackpot slots
- Table games, like blackjack, roulette, baccarat, and craps
- Video poker
- Specialty games, like keno, bingo, and scratch cards
- Live dealer games, which have become increasingly popular and are a sign of a well-invested online casino
Check the Bonus Offers
Bonus offers can be quite telling when assessing the reputation of an online casino. They may be the flashy storefront that draws you in but it’s important to check there is substance behind the claims.
Firstly, a reputable online casino or betting site is unlikely to ever make outlandish bonus offers. It’s kind of like the Goldilocks porridge rule—it shouldn’t be too low or too high but just right! Very high or very low bonus offers should serve as a giant red flag that something’s not right. Middle-ground, consistent offers are realistic and sustainable for online casinos to offer members.
Another overlooked aspect of bonus offers is the withdrawal conditions. Do you have to wager the amount 60x before withdrawing your bonus and any winnings? That feels like a trap to get you to spend thousands and maybe come out with little to show for it. Do they offer an unrealistic time period in which to cash out? Do you have to wager the amount on a game you have no interest in playing? These are all important questions to answer before diving into any bonus offers.
Choose Safe Payment Methods
Just as reputable online gambling websites will invest in a good variety of high-quality games, they will also offer safe and secure payment methods. Generally, if you see PayPal, Skrill, Neteller, and similar popular payment integrations, you can count the casino as reputable. They would have had to go through verification prior to offering these payment options, which brings added peace of mind. If an online casino is only offering bank deposits or card payments, it’s time to look for your entertainment elsewhere.
Ensure Good Customer Support
Customer service is the cornerstone of any successful business and when there’s so much at stake, it becomes an even more crucial factor for online gamblers. You will want to read reviews and ascertain what level of service the casino can offer you. You could test them out for yourself before signing up to gauge their response to your query. Consider the following
- How long did it take to receive a reply?
- How helpful was the response?
- Were you assisted by an actual human or a bot?
- Were they polite?
- Was there any follow-up?
Confirm Data Protection and Security
The large majority of online casinos are trustworthy and are worth your time, despite the few bad apples out there detracting from their generally good reputation. If you take the time to vet casinos before spending a penny with them, you can safeguard your cash and your personal information while enjoying all that they have to offer.