The Number One Comparison for Slots & Casino Sites

Welcome to £5 slot sites. Our aim is to provide slots and casino sites that accept £5 as well as £10. Here we bring you a number of highly rated casino sites, focusing on quality over quantity. We only focus on those sites which offer the best choice of games, are considered safe with the right licensing and have fair withdrawal terms.

Bonus for New Customer, 18+, Wagering and T&Cs Apply

banner showing new customer offer at bet365 vegas
  • Up to 50 Spins Offer
  • Deposit Between £10 and £50 For Bonus
  • £5 Deposits Accepted

New Vegas customers only. Deposit between £10 and £50. Wager 4x on eligible games to receive 1 Free Spin per £1, up to a max. of 50. Time Limits, game restrictions and T&Cs Apply.

  • For every £1 deposited receive a spin up to £50. Spins only triggered with a deposit of £10 or more
  • The minimum deposit amount is £5.
  • Payment options include visa, master card, skrill, neteller, paysafecard, apple pay, entropay, PayPal pingit.
  • Withdrawals can take between 12 hours and 28 days depending on your withdrawal method. All the times are listed for each withdrawal method on the website.
banner showing new customer offer at betfred vegas
  • Deposit £5 Get 25 Spins
  • Register with code ‘GAMES’
  • No Wagering on Bonus Spins

New customers only. Register with code ‘GAMES’ then deposit and stake £5 or more to receive 25 Free Spins on selected games. Free Spins credited within 24 hours. Free spin equal to 20p per spin. The 25 free spins are only available on games Genie Jackpots, King Kong Cash, The Naked Gun or Ted. Any winnings from free spins will be paid as cash. No wagering requirements applicable to free spins.

  • Better known for its sports book, Betfred has Vegas and Casino dedicated sites. The majority of slots are provided by Playtech so some of the games featured can be seen as fairly dated. It does offer low minimum deposits and withdrawals, with some of the better withdrawal payment times around.
  • Bonus code ‘GAMES’ must be used to claim the bonus
  • A £5 deposit and £5 stake is required to also claim the bonus spins on selected games
  • The free spins must be claimed within the first seven days of receiving
  • £250 is the maximum withdrawal amount from bonus spins
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  • Deposit £10 Get 50 Starburst Spins
  • Promo Code ‘UK50’
  • T&Cs Apply. 18+ Only

New Players Only (exc NI). 18+. Minimum Deposit: £10. Maximum bonus: 50 Spins [Starburst]. Winnings from spins wagering x35. Promo Code: UK50. Withdrawal & Full T&Cs Apply. Valid until 31.12.2019.

  • Bonuses available to new customers and over 18s only
  • Minimum deposit to receive the starburst spins is £10
  • The wagering requirement is 35X
  • Wagering requirements need to be meant within the first 21 days of receiving the bonus
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  • 77 Spins on Sign Up
  • 100% up to £200 Bonus
  • £20 Min Deposit for Bonus

New players only • To withdraw bonus & related wins, wager 30 x (bonus amount) within 90 days • Wagering requirements vary by game • Bonus wins are capped at £500 • FreePlay & Free Spins expire after 14 days. 77 Free Spins: Predefined bet amount of £0.25 per spin • With the exception of a Jackpot win, max winnings = £20 Bonus • Must be claimed within 48 hours of receiving the email • Withdrawal restrictions & full T&Cs apply Deposit Bonus Offer: 100% up to £200 FreePlay • £20 minimum deposit • FreePlay winnings are credited as bonus and capped at the amount of FreePlay received, unless a Jackpot win • Withdrawal restrictions & full T&Cs apply

  • 777 is powered by a number of leading software houses including Netent, IGT, Eyecon and Dragonfish. Accepts deposits and withdrawals by PayPal. Players have the choice to use the instant play casino or can download additional software to gain access to the full range of gaming titles.
  • Wins from free spins capped at £20. The free spins expire 14 days after registration.
  • The minimum deposit for the bonus is £20. The wagering requirement is 30X the bonus. The minimum deposit required to trigger the bonus is £20.
  • Not all games count towards the wagering requirements. Check the T&Cs to see which games contribute towards the requirements.
  • £15 minimum withdrawal requirement which is processed within 48 hours.
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  • £88 Sign Up Bonus
  • 100% up to £100 Bonus
  • £20 Min Deposit for Bonus

No Deposit Offer: New players only • £88 is granted in FreePlay (FP) • FP must be claimed within 48 hrs of receiving the email and expires after 14 days • FP wins are credited as bonus and capped at £15, exc. JP win • Deposit Bonus Offer: £20 min deposit • 100% up to £100 Bonus • Bonus wins are capped at £500 • To withdraw bonus & related wins, wager 30 x (bonus amount) within 90 days • Restrictions apply to deposit until wagering requirement fulfilled • Wagering req. vary by game • This offer may not be combined with any other offer • Deposit balance is available for withdrawal at any time • General withdrawal restrictions & full T&Cs apply

  • Probably one of the first casino sites to ever go live as has been around for 20+ years. Powered by a number of leading software houses including Netent, IGT, Eyecon and Dragonfish. Accepts deposits by PayPal and also is now one of only a handful of Apple Pay casinos. Live dealer tables also available.
  • Wins from the registration bonus are capped at £500.
  • The wagering requirement is 30X the deposit amount + bonus awarded. The minimum deposit required is £20.
  • Different games have different wagering contributions so check the full list within the bonus T&Cs.
banner showing new customer offer at captain wins
  • Get up to £500 Welcome Bonus
  • + 45 Wolf Gold Spins
  • First Three Deposits Only

New customers only, First 3 deposit only, Min deposit £10, Max bonus £500 + 45 spins on Wolf Gold, selected slots only, 4X conversion, 40X wagering (bonus + spins), T&Cs apply.

  • Captain Wins is on the Nektan platform. The site offers over 600 different titles with new games and providers added on a monthly basis. There are over 18 different software providers on board. The site has numerous live dealer tables as well as a number of progressive jackpots. PayPal is available.
  • The welcome package is split across the first three deposits made. The full break down of this can be found in the T&Cs.
  • Bonuses are capped at 4X conversion. The wagering requirement is 40X.
  • Not all games available contribute to the wagering requirements so double check the terms and conditions.
banner showing new customer offer at cashmio
  • 20 Spins on Sign Up
  • 100% up to £100 Bonus
  • + 180 Bonus Spins

Spins: 20 on registration, 180 after deposit, winnings given as bonus funds, 20x wagering. Spins and bonus wagering on age of the gods games only. Welcome bonus: £20 min deposit, max bonus £100, wagering 40x. Game weighting applies. Betting limits: slots – £5 all other games – 10% of bonus amount. T&C Apply. Over 18s and new customers only.

  • One of the longest running casino sites, casino.com has some great offers but probably slightly lacks behind some of its competitors. The majority of games can only be played once the software has been downloaded, however there is still a large selection available on a mobile in instant mode.
  • 20 spins are given upon registering an account.
  • A minimum deposit of £20 is needed to trigger the extra spins.
  • The 180 spins are awarded as 20 per day after the first deposit deposit.
  • The deposit bonus must be wagered a minimum of 40x.
  • The free spins have a wagering requirement of 20x.
  • Only slots and scratch cards count 100% towards the wagering requirements. Check the T&Cs to see which other games contribute to the wagering requirements.
banner showing new customer offer
  • Deposit £10 Get £50 Bonus
  • Terms Apply, 18+ Only
  • £5 Deposits Accepted

Min £10 buy-in to get £50 bonus. 24 x (Bonus) wagering apply. Bonus is valid for 30 days (bonus and winnings removed). Certain deposit methods only. Bets covering 67% or more of Roulette table don’t count to wagering. New Players only

  • High street bookmaker that offers everything from live dealer tables to vegas slots and sports betting. Sadly predominantly offers dated virtue fusion slots and table games. Has low deposit and withdrawal minimums as well as fast withdrawal times, especially if PayPal is used to withdraw winnings.
  • Bonus is for new customers and over 18s only.
  • A minimum deposit of £10 is required to trigger the deposit bonus.
  • A limit of 20% of the bonus amount is all that can be bet.
  • The wagering requirement is 24X the bonus amount received.
  • Bonu valid for 28 days.
banner showing new customer offer
  • Get up to £500 Welcome Bonus
  • + 45 Wolf Gold Spins
  • First Three Deposits Only

New customers only, First 3 deposit only, Min deposit £10, Max bonus £500 + 45 spins on Wolf Gold, selected slots only, 4X conversion, 40X wagering (bonus + spins), T&Cs apply.

  • Captain Wins is on the Nektan platform. The site offers over 600 different titles with new games and providers added on a monthly basis. There are over 18 different software providers on board. The site has numerous live dealer tables as well as a number of progressive jackpots. PayPal is available.
  • The welcome package is split across the first three deposits made. The full break down of this can be found in the T&Cs.
  • Bonuses are capped at 4X conversion. The wagering requirement is 40X.
  • Not all games available contribute to the wagering requirements so double check the terms and conditions.
banner showing new customer offer
  • Deposit £10 Get 25 Book of Dead Spins
  • Promo Code ‘PLAY25’
  • New Players Only

New Players Only (exc NI). 18+. Minimum Deposit: £10. Maximum Bonus: 25 Spins [Spins on Book of Dead]. Winnings from spins wagering x35. Promo Code: PLAY25. Withdrawal & Full T&C’s apply. Valid until 31.12.2019.

  • Bonuses available to new customers and over 18s only
  • Minimum deposit to receive the book of dead spins is £10
  • Winnings from spins wagering is 35X
  • Wagering requirements need to be meant within the first 21 days of receiving the bonus
banner showing new customer offer
  • Up to £500 Welcome Offer
  • + 150 Bonus Spins
  • Split Across 3 Deposits

First 3 deposits only, Min deposit £10, Max total bonus £500 & 150 spins, Spin value varies, 30x wagering (dep + bonus), 30x on spins, 5x conversion, selected slots only, full T&Cs apply. IGT, All Rights Reserved. T&Cs Apply. Overs 18s only.

  • Specially designed with mobile players in mind, Kerching currently offer over 300 different titles. There are numerous live dealer tables including roulette and blackjack which is provided by Extreme Live Gaming. Boku is accepted as a payment method and the T&Cs offer favourable withdrawal terms.
  • The deposit bonus and free spins wagering requirement is 30X the bonus funds + amount deposited.
  • £10 minimum deposit is required to trigger the deposit bonus.
  • Bonuses are capped at 5X conversion.
  • Not all games available contribute to the wagering requirements so double check the terms and conditions
banner showing new customer offer
  • Get up to £500 Welcome Bonus
  • + 45 Wolf Gold Spins
  • First Three Deposits Only

New customers only, First 3 deposit only, Min deposit £10, Max bonus £500 + 45 spins on Wolf Gold, selected slots only, 4X conversion, 40X wagering (bonus + spins), T&Cs apply.

  • Captain Wins is on the Nektan platform. The site offers over 600 different titles with new games and providers added on a monthly basis. There are over 18 different software providers on board. The site has numerous live dealer tables as well as a number of progressive jackpots. PayPal is available.
  • The welcome package is split across the first three deposits made. The full break down of this can be found in the T&Cs.
  • Bonuses are capped at 4X conversion. The wagering requirement is 40X.
  • Not all games available contribute to the wagering requirements so double check the terms and conditions.
banner showing latest offer at kozmo
  • Deposit £5 Get 10 Sharknado Spins
  • Promo Code ‘SHARK’
  • No Wagering Requirements Apply

First-time depositors only (18+ UK exc NI). Min Deposit: £5. Max Offer: 10 Free Spins on Sharknado. Free Spins Winnings will be capped at 50p and credited to your real money balance. Free Spins expire after 7 days. Promo code: SHARK. Deposit balance is available for withdrawal at any time. General withdrawal restrictions & full T&Cs apply. Valid until 31.12.2019. Full T&Cs Apply.

  • Minimum deposit of £5 is required to get the 10 sharknado spins
  • Winnings from the spins will added to your account as cash
  • The max winnings from the spins is capped at 50p
  • The bonus code ‘SHARK’ must be used at the time of making the deposit
banner showing latest offer at miami dice
  • Up to £300 Welcome bonus
  • + 50 Bonus Spins
  • £20 Deposit Required

18+. New players only. One bonus offer per player. Minimum deposit £20. Max bonus bet is £5. Bonus spins on selected games only and must be used within 72 hours. Bonus funds must be used within 30 days otherwise any unused bonus shall be removed. Bonus funds are 100% match up to £300 on your 1st deposit, 50% match up to £500 on your 2nd deposit, and 75% match up to £500 on your 3rd deposit. Bonus funds are separate to Cash funds, and are subject to 35x wagering the total bonus & cash. Only bonus funds contribute towards any wagering requirements. Terms apply.

  • Miami dice has over 13 different software providers bringing you its gaming titles. Plenty of choice of games and withdrawal methods are available as are different currency options. Promotions are slightly limited and is currently licensed in Curaçao.
  • The minimum deposit required is £20 to receive the bonus funds
  • Free spins wins are capped at £50
  • Winnings from the free spins from the deposit bonus is capped at £100
  • The wagering requirement is 35x the bonus amount received
banner showing new customer offer at mr green
  • 100% up to £200 Bonus
  • + 100 Starburst Spins
  • £20 Deposit Required for Bonus
  • £5 Deposits Accepted

Full T&Cs Apply. Over 18s and new customers only. Bonus must be wagered a total of x35 in the casino. Max bonus to be claimed is £100. Starburst spins valid for 7 days from being awarded. Bonus Spins 35x wagering. begambleaware.org.

  • One of the best known names in the industry, this casino offers hundreds of different titles. Minimum deposit requirements are low at just £5 and withdrawal payments are made promptly. Continuously offering new and different promotions as well as known for looking after their VIP players.
  • The minimum deposit required to get the bonus funds and free spins is £20
  • An initial 20 spins are awarded upon first deposit followed by a further 20 spins a day over the next four days
  • The wagering requirement is 35x the bonus funds and free spins
  • Not all games contribute towards the wagering requirement, double check the T&Cs on the website for the full list
banner showing new customer offer
  • Deposit £10 Get £50 Bonus
  • + 20 Bonus Spins
  • £10 Deposit Required for Bonus
  • £5 Deposits Accepted

Over 18s and new customers only. UK & IRL only. Deposits made with e-wallets are not valid for this promo. Bonus wagering x35 on eligible games. Winnings from bonus capped at £500. Spins available after bonus is redeemed/lost. 10 per day with no wagering. Full T&Cs apply.

  • Paddy Power can be either used as an instant play casino or there is the less attractive option to download, but only for desktop users. Majority of games come from Playtech. There are different sections such as casino, games, vegas and live dealer tables. Has a low minimum withdrawal of £5.
  • Bonus available to new customers and over 18s only
  • The minimum deposit required to receive the bonus is £10. The deposit bonus is 500% up to a maximum £50 bonus
  • The 20 bonus spins are awarded as 10 on the first day and 10 on the following day.
  • The wagering is 35x the bonus amount received. Not all games count towards the wagering requirement so double check the site T&Cs.
banner showing new customer offer
  • Deposit £10 Get £10 Bonus
  • + 10 No Wager Spins
  • Use Code ‘BONUS’

First-time depositors only (18+ UK exc NI). Min. Deposit £10. Max Bonus £10 & 10 Free Spins on a game of our choice. To withdraw games bonus & related winnings, wager 60x the amount of the bonus. Free Spins Winnings will be capped at £1 and credited to your real money balance. Free Spins expire after 7 days. Promo code: BONUS. Deposit balance is available for withdrawal at any time. General withdrawal restrictions & full T&Cs apply. Valid from 22.08.2019

  • Slots site that is powered by Dragonfish / Cassava enterprises. This has over 300 different titles to play from the likes of NetEnt, Eyecon and WMS. The site has a low minimum withdrawal amount and unusually winnings from the free spins will be credited to your account in cash, not bonus funds.
  • Deposit £10 and get 25 Fluffy Favourites spins
  • Winnings from free spins are paid in cash and not bonus funds
  • There no wagering requirements to meet
banner showing new customer offer at slot crazy
  • 100% up to £100 Bonus
  • + 100 Bonus Spins.
  • £10 Min Deposit. 18+

18+ only. Welcome Bonus New players only. Min deposit £10. Max bonus £100. Wagering 30x bonus & 30x deposit. Wagering requirements vary by game bonus wins & withdrawal restrictions apply. Free spins terms apply. Full Terms apply.

  • Another one of the slots sites that is dragonfish / cassava powered. Bonus for new customers only. Wagering requirements 30x bonus & 30x deposit. Wagering varies by game bonus wins & restrictions apply to withdrawals. Terms apply to free spins.
  • 10 Free Spins are for Irish Luck slot. Winnings restricted to £5 bonus cash
  • £10 minimum deposit required to receive the free spins
  • 100 is broken down as 10 received initially and then the remaining received as 10 per day
  • The wagering requirement is 30 the bonus amount + amount deposited
  • Double check the terms and conditions here before proceeding.

Slots Heaven

banner showing new customer offer
  • 100% up to £100 Bonus
  • + 200 Bonus Spins.
  • £10 Min Deposit. 18+

Over 18s and new customers. Bonus Spins: 200 in total with 40 given on the first deposit. Winnings are given as bonus funds with 20x wagering. Spins and bonus wagering are on age of gods games only. Deposit Bonus: £20 min deposit, max bonus is £100 with wagering 40X. Game weighting applies. Betting limits apply – Slots £5 all other games 10% of bonus amount. Full T&Cs Apply.

  • A very well established slots site that has been around for a very long time. Uses Playtech software which means that the games available in instant play are fairly limited. If you chose to download software then more than 300 titles will be available for you to play. PayPal and Boku are accepted.
  • 20X wagering requirement on bonus spins
  • Minimum £20 deposit to receive bonus
  • 40X wagering requirement for deposit bonus
  • Bonus spins and bonus wagering only applies to Age of Gods slot
banner showing new customer offer at spins royale
  • 100% up to £10 Bonus
  • + 10 Starburst Spins
  • New Players & 18+ Only

New Players only (UK exc NI 18+) Min, Dep. £10, Max Bonus £10 & 10 Spins (Starburst). Wagering (x40) & Max Conversion (x4). Withdrawal & Full T&Cs Apply. Valid until futrther notice.

  • Deposit £10 and get up to a maximum bonus of £10. You’ll also be awarded 10 spins on starburst. The minimum deposit is £10.
  • The wagering requirement is 40X the bonus awarded
  • The bonus conversion is capped at 4x
  • Bonus only available to new customers
banner showing new customer offer at sunset spins
  • 100% up to £10 Bonus
  • + 10 Starburst Spins
  • New Players & 18+ Only

New Players only (UK exc NI 18+) Min, Dep. £10, Max Bonus £10 & 10 Spins (Starburst). Wagering (x40) & Max Conversion (x4). Withdrawal & Full T&Cs Apply. Valid until futrther notice. Please gamble responsibly.

  • Deposit £10 and get up to a maximum bonus of £10. You’ll also be awarded 10 spins on starburst. The minimum deposit is £10.
  • The wagering requirement is 40X the bonus awarded
  • The bonus conversion is capped at 4x
  • Bonus only available to new customers

Trada Casino

banner showing the latest new customer offer
  • Get 10 Spins on Registration
  • 100% up to £100 Match Bonus
  • +25 Spins Across 1st 4 Deposits

Max withdrawal from the 10 login spins on Book of Dead is £100. Value is 0.10 per spin. 100% first deposit match offer. Min deposit £10. Max deposit £50. Wagering 25x bonus. Max bet is £3.99 per spin. 18+ and New Players Only.

  • The 10 spins on registration are for Book of Dead. The wagering requirement attached the winnings from the spins is 25x.
  • The minimum amount to trigger the bonus is £10 up to a maximum £100 bonus spins will be awarded.
  • For the first four deposits that are made, 25 spins will be awarded with each of these deposits.
  • The wagering requirement is 25X associated with the deposit bonus

Wixstars

banner showing new customer offer
  • 100% up to £100 Bonus
  • + 100 Bonus Spins
  • £20 Deposit Required

New players only. 20 spins and 100% bonus upon first deposit. Another 40 spins are given upon deposit on the second day after the first deposit (min. €20), and an additional 40 spins are given upon deposit on the third day (min. €20). Spins expire after 24 hours. Wagering is 40x deposit + bonus. 18+. Full T&Cs Apply.

  • Wixstars is and instant play casino and will work on any smart phone or tablet, with no download required. All major software providers are on board from NetEnt to NextGen and NYX Interactive. UK Gambling Commission licensed with hundreds of major slot titles available to play.
  • Bonuses available to new customers and over 18s only
  • Minimum deposit to receive bonus funds is £20
  • Bonus spins expire after 24 hours
  • The bonus spins wagering requirement is 40X
  • The welcome bonus wagering requirement is 40X
  • Wagering requirements need to be meant within the first 21 days of receiving the bonus

Zinger Spins

banner showing new customer offer
  • Deposit £10 Get £10 Bonus
  • + 10 No Wager Spins
  • Use Code ‘BONUS’

First-time depositors only (18+ UK exc NI). Min. Deposit £10. Max Bonus £10 & 10 Free Spins on a game of our choice. To withdraw games bonus & related winnings, wager 60x the amount of the bonus. Free Spins Winnings will be capped at £1 and credited to your real money balance. Free Spins expire after 7 days. Promo code: BONUS. Deposit balance is available for withdrawal at any time. General withdrawal restrictions & full T&Cs apply. Valid from 22.08.2019

  • Slots site that is powered by Dragonfish / Cassava enterprises. This has over 300 different titles to play from the likes of NetEnt, Eyecon and WMS. The site has a low minimum withdrawal amount and unusually winnings from the free spins will be credited to your account in cash, not bonus funds.
  • Deposit £10 and get 25 Fluffy Favourites spins
  • Winnings from free spins are paid in cash and not bonus funds
  • There no wagering requirements to meet

More Than Just £5 Slot Sites

A 5 deposit casino is a rare thing. In fact, the number of casinos that accept £5 are so rare its very difficult to source them and put them in one place. Fortunately that is where this website comes into play. We focus on those £5 deposit casinos that offer a deposit bonus as well as accepting a £5 minimum deposit. So although you may not receive any bonus funds with a five pound deposit, you may be able to at least make a minimum deposit of a fiver. This is ideal for those who like to ‘test the water’ before gambling with larger sums. It may also be the case that you’re a casino player on a restricted budget. Whatever the reason, you’ll find what you’re looking for right here.

It is worth nothing, that us here at 5 Slot Sites do not purely focus on finding casinos accepting £5. Their number is just too small that it wouldn’t really make the website viable. So as a result, we present you the best of both worlds. We display the latest £5 deposit bonuses, casinos accepting £5 and those casino sites that have a minimum deposit of £10. On each of the offers listed, we’ll state what the minimum deposit requirements are. That way there is no confusion.

What, no RTP Rates on This Site?

On this site you won’t find that we’ve listed any Return to Player Percentages. Too many other sites show this as if they are a good gauge as too how successful you’ll be at a casino. Well this is not really the case. In fact these numbers are very misleading and here’s why…

There is surely no more revered a figure among regular slot players than the all-important Return to Player Rate (RTP). This is the supposed vital number that tells you what your real chances of winning are on a slot. But is it really as simple as that?

Theoretically, you would think so. Many players like to check this figure, which is normally given as a percentage. It is intended to give a guide as to how much money the game will pay out in winnings (i.e. returned to the player) as a proportion of the money paid in. If a slot has an RTP rate of 96% for example, that means (in theory) that 96% of the money staked on the game will be returned in winnings. This leaves a 4% profit margin for the “house” (casino). And a game with an RTP of 96% must be a better bet than one paying out 93%? Well you would think so, but it may not be as simple as that…

The first thing to remember is that any RTP figure is an average. If it wasn’t, you would know that if you put in £100, you would definitely get £96 back. Not much of a thrill or a gamble there. In reality, the percentage quoted is a long term return to player rate: if you were to play for a million spins, then you could be pretty sure that you would get something like 96% of your stake money back.

But of course in the real world, no-one plays that much. In reality, most players play much less. And gaming companies have the data (closely guarded of course) that tells them how much time, and how many spins, the average player will continue playing.

For example, we could invent a theoretical machine with an RTP of 100%, but you would be mad to play it. We could introduce a machine which, say, paid out a million coins, but only on one in a million spins. But boy it would be a boring game to play. Not only that, but almost every single player would win nothing. The chances are they would give up and instead of a theoretical RTP of 100%, in effect the machine would in reality pay out 0%. What you really need to know is the probability of every possible pay out on the pay table. This information does exist, but it is a closely guarded secret. Every machine (or online slot) has a table of probabilities called the Paytable and Reel Strips (PARS). Over time, the occasional titbit of information has slipped through the net, revealing some of the possible secrets of the game.

What seems to be happening is that win probabilities are arranged so that there are lots of little wins to keep short term interest high. Then there are a few mid-range wins to make it worth the while of the longer term player to keep spinning. But the chances of winning the jackpot are relatively tiny: so much so that the vast majority of players will give up long before winning one. Even the determined gamer who continues to play on will probably win a few middle range prizes but nothing more. Eventually, he will give up with frustration or boredom, or having run out of coins. Plus of course, even if the very occasional player does get lucky and win big, this can be turned into a marketing ploy to encourage more players. “Look, one lucky player won £xxx,000 on Superslots last week!”

The bottom line is, different slots have a different probability of a maximum pay out, but without knowing the individual odds of getting the jackpot, there is no way you can tell which the best option is. The RTP is too general a figure to tell you this information. A 96% RTP game may pay out more than a 93% game in theory, but in the real world, for most players, it may not! Indeed, a disproportionately large potential (but unlikely) jackpot may well be bumping up the RTP figure of the more generous 96% game, making it unrealistically high when played by a typical player, who would be better off sticking to the 93% game.

With online slots, the situation is further complicated by exciting looking bonus rounds and special features. Again, it seems likely that players are encouraged to keep playing until they reach these extra rounds, resulting in more mid-range wins, encouraging further play… Then there is the increasing use of the “Super Bet” style option, where you can opt to increase the number of special symbols on your reels (at a price) to increase your chances of winning. All these extras make it ever more complicated and difficult for the player to discern which are the most potentially profitable games to play.

So, in the end, it is probably best to stick with the games you enjoy playing most. Playing slots is supposed to be fun after all. It’s an entertainment, a recreational past time. The published RTP figures can be used as a guide, but no more than that. Ultimately, it’s probably best to accept that the casino or website probably always will have the upper hand, after all.

The History of Slots

So now that we’ve covered the RTP and how it works, lets have a little look into the history of slots, and specifically those online to find out how this huge industry has really taken off.

The humble slot machine has come a long way. From its origins as a simple mechanical device built for the amusement of Americans little over a hundred years ago, it has evolved into a multi-billion dollar worldwide industry. As well as this phenomenal growth, the entire design of the machine has evolved: the original concept of mechanical reels lives on, but the focus is now on computer technology and virtual games, rather than real world casinos.

The very first slot machine is generally accepted to have been introduced in 1891 in New York. This was a gambling machine which would have looked a bit like the one armed bandits still seen in amusement arcades in seaside resorts across the UK. Each pull of the lever cost the eager American a nickel. This would cause the five mechanical drums to revolve. The reels on these drums contained different playing card values, with the idea being to obtain a winning combination. Prizes were awarded according to similar rules as getting a good hand at poker.

In those days, there was no pleasing tinkle of coins for winning players. There was no mechanism for returning cash, so lucky punters were generally rewarded with whatever the machine’s operator had to offer. In a typical bar, prizes would have been beer or cigars. The scales were, as ever, tipped in favour of the House by the fact that the five reels contained only 50 cards, reducing the chances of getting a big win. But the practicalities of inventing a machine which could automatically pay out from the countless different winning Poker combinations proved insurmountable.

Nevertheless, the concept proved very popular, with new designs spreading quickly. Crucially, on the other side of the continent in San Francisco, Charles Fey devised a similar machine which replaced all these card values with some more simple symbols, some of which live on as symbols on many machines to this day, like the horseshoe and the bell. The link to playing cards was maintained by the use of symbols for diamonds, heart and spades. These machines were named the Liberty Bell, after the bell symbol on the reels.

But the real advance was that the simplicity of the new symbols meant that Fey could develop a machine which paid out automatically. With a jackpot of just 50 cents, no-one got rich quick, but the new game was a huge success. By the turn of the century, Fey’s own design had been copied by several competitors, and the machine was installed in bars, bowling alleys and various houses of ill repute across the land. This despite increasing attempts by the authorities to ban or restrict their use.

It was around this time that the traditional link to fruit arose. This is why slot machines are still colloquially referred to as “fruit machines” in the UK to this day. Flavoured chewing gum was often given as a prize by these early machines, and the different flavours, such as water melon and the cherry were often used as symbols. The still popular “BAR” sign was also introduced at this time, part of the logo of the Bell Fruit Gum Company. This payment of food prizes was a frequently used attempt to try to get round the anti-gambling legal restrictions put on these machines by many American states.

This one-armed bandit style mechanism remained the predominant design in slots for around seventy years. It was not until the early 1960s that new technologies began to revolutionise the slot machine. A new electro-mechanical design was popularised by the US manufacturer Bally. Money Honey featured an automatic pay out system, and the use of electronics meant that the mechanical arm could be replaced by the more modern buttons we see on real world machines today.

Las Vegas casinos were the first to see the next development in slot technology around ten years later, when the Fortune Coin Company’s introduced its video slot machine. This seems very simple by modern standards, featuring some very basic computing power (this was the mid-70s after all), with a pretty obvious colour TV monitor on top. But it was this machine that really enabled the slot to develop into the multi-billion dollar industry it represents today.

The use of virtual computer technology rather than mechanical reels enabled all sorts of new features to be developed. The development of integrated circuits in the 1980s enabled the introduction of further new innovations, such as extra bonus screens with additional themes and games. Designs became ever more imaginative and exciting with more detailed and realistic graphics.

Today of course, players can play slot machines from the comfort of their own homes, or even on the move using their smart phones. Online slots were introduced barely twenty years ago in the late 1990s, and with modern day superfast broadband and Wi-Fi, there is no need for James Bond to don his tuxedo and order his favourite cocktail from a luxury casino if he is after a crafty spin. He could satisfy his gaming desires with his customised smart watch from Q branch, whilst communicating with his nemesis via an encrypted chat room.

All this technology, plus the gradual relaxation of gambling restrictions has led to phenomenal growth in the playing of slots in the United Kingdom, both in the real world and online. Overall online casino revenue has increased from less than £5 billion in 2011 to over £7 billion in 2015 – an increase of around 50% in just four years. When you add on the money spent on Fixed Odds Betting Terminals (FOBTs) in high street bookmakers across the land, it’s clear that this is big business indeed.

The growth in online gaming has been even more phenomenal. In 2010, £86m was spent on online slots in the UK. By 2014 (the latest year for which official figures are publicly available) this had more than quadrupled to over £366m. Given that subsequent years have seen the even more rapid rise of smartphone and tablet play, it is likely that the billion pound mark will soon be reached, if it has not already been surpassed.

Indeed, play on mobiles and tablets has now overtaken old style desktop PC gaming. This exponential growth has no doubt been fuelled by the ability to pay by phone bill, ridding the busy “on the go” player of the need to register their personal financial details before spinning the reels.

The slot machine remains a favourite with gamers across the world. In the United Kingdom, there is no doubt that the relaxation of legislation since 2005 has been a major contributor to the amazing rise in the popularity of the slot machine. Future governments may well not be so relaxed about gaming in all its forms. In fact changes are already starting to be made by governments. There is strict control over the advertising of gambling campaigns. Shortly, a new tax will be introduced on deposit bonuses. This could well mean the end of the large deposit bonus as has been seen in the past. Could these changes mean the beginning of the end for the humble slot machine? It seems unlikely with them proving so popular; in fact it means that the casual casino player is likely to be in a better position through decreased wagering requirements. Which can only mean one positive outcome, online slots players will be able to withdraw their winnings far easier in the future.

What to look out for when choosing a new slots site

There are a number of key elements that online and mobile slots players should look out for. These are essentially basic fundamentals and a simple guide to spot whether a site is a good one or one to avoid.

  • The wagering requirements. One to often catch out new casino players. Now heavily advertised because of the strict gambling laws, gone are the days when these could be tucked away in the terms and conditions that no one ever read. Be sure to know the wagering requirements and also watch out for what games contribute towards that requirement. Not every game on a slots site will chip away at the requirement. Also watch out for split requirements – this is a crafty new tactic and should be carefully examined. But all bonuses are clearly explained so be sure to carefully read the requirements.
  • The minimum withdrawal and deposit amounts. It may seem simple, but is often over looked. There is no good having a minimum withdrawal amount of £30 if you first of all need to have deposited a minimum of £50. This is also an area of the terms and conditions that is not easy to find. Often tucked away and not as prominent as the wagering requirements, its just as important. You will need to have a look at the terms and conditions to find these numbers. All of our reviews will advise you of these conditions if you’re not sure.
  • Where does the casino hold its license? This is pretty important. To have a license with the UK Gambling Commission the gaming license will need to have been issued in a ‘whitelisted’ territory. This means the casino complies with all the necessary requirements as laid out by the gambling commission, which means the chance of being mislead on an offer or withdrawal limit is greatly reduced. The opposite to this are casinos that are ‘blacklisted’ and are definitely ones to be wary of. All of the reviews will advise if the casino is whitelisted or blacklisted if you are unsure.