If you're a casino newbie, then bonuses can be a confusing subject. Have you heard stories of people signing up to a casino then feeling ‘scammed‘ out of what they were promised? Of course, genuine scammers are a real concern, but more often than not it's all a case of misunderstanding. We're all guilty of not reading the small print, but when you're claiming a casino bonus it's important to really know what's on offer. Today, we're discussing the common grievances players have with bonuses and how to make sure you know what you're signing up for.
“The Advert Promised Me £500!”
Casinos are always going to advertise the very maximum bonus that's available. In terms of deposit bonuses, adverts will often say you can get a certain figure. The emphasis here should be on the ‘can'. It's important to understand that not every player will receive the maximum amount the minute they deposit.
For example, a typical casino bonus advert may say that when you sign up to a casino you can receive a welcome package of up to £1,500. £1,500 sounds enticing right? More enticing than say, £20. These bonuses are called deposit match bonuses and usually work as a percentage. This means that if the bonus is a 100% bonus, you'll receive double your deposit, 50% is your deposit plus half and so on.
The maximum amount that's advertised, the £1,500, is a figure calculated on the hypothetical idea that you'd make a maximum deposit. So, the bonus really reads, ‘You can claim £1,500 if you deposit £750', for example. If you deposit less than the maximum amount, then you'll receive your percentage of that figure.
Most of the time, a bonus like this will be quite clearly advertised as a percentage, but we can understand that players often overlook the finer details and just see the big numbers! Make sure you read through the bonus details carefully and work out what you'll receive based on what you want to deposit.
“My Bonus Isn't In My Account!”
Once you receive a bonus, you may be a little confused as to why it isn't showing up on your balance or in your account. How a casino decides to release a bonus is entirely up to them, and it's usually stated in the terms and conditions. Many players assume that they'll be able to see their ‘free cash' straight away in their account.
Casinos, however, aren't going to fund your real cash account for several reasons. Firstly, if a casino were to put your bonus in your account straight away, there's nothing stopping a player from then withdrawing it. For instance, if you'd deposited £20 at a casino and received a 200% bonus of £40 into your cash account, then you could withdraw the £60 and make money for doing nothing! We'd all be off work and in our pajamas!
Bonuses are not paid into cash accounts, which is why they sometimes won't show up on your balance too. They'll go into a bonus account, which is accessed when your real cash has been spent. If you withdraw your real cash, your bonus will be forfeited.
“My Bonus Has Disappeared”
Another important thing to consider when claiming a bonus is how long it's available for. Many casinos offer bonuses which must be played within a certain time scale, which can be anything from one day to 30 days.
Many players assume that their bonus is theirs for the keeping, so it can be worrying when one day it's no longer there. However, casinos impose this time limit as the whole point of the bonus is to get you spinning on their site. If they think that you've deposited once but aren't playing anymore, then they've wasted their cash by giving it to you. This is why time restrictions exist, as it gives the player a sense of urgency and a bigger incentive to continue playing at the casino.
A lot of the time, casino's may require you to also clear the wagering requirements on the bonus before the time period is over. So, for example, if you win a game using a bonus that's tied to a 20x wagering requirement, then you need to play so many times before you can withdraw your winnings. This isn't the casino being mean, it's important to remember that casinos are businesses and they cannot go around giving hundreds of pounds of free cash to players who won't spend anything at the site.
You'll be able to find the time restrictions to any bonus in the terms and conditions supplied. It's useful to know this information before you opt in to a bonus, as some sites do impose wagering requirements that aren't realistically going to be cleared within the time period. If you've got 14 days with a bonus, but it's tied to 60x wagering requirements, then these are often best to avoid because you won't be seeing your winnings anyway.
In general, a bit of common sense needs to be exercised when claiming a casino bonus. Like we said above, a casino is a business and they're not going to reward you hundreds of pounds just because you play with them. Your bonus is a thank you for signing up, but it's to be taken with a pinch of salt. Casinos need to see your investing in playing with them before they really reward you, and this is why things like wagering requirements and time restrictions exist. As the phrase goes, if it sounds too good to be true it probably is!