It doesn’t seem like a week passes without a new casino site being launched. The number of new casino sites opening their virtual doors is getting beyond ridiculous. If you look at an average month, the number of sites opening is around 15. This means that there are around 180 new casinos launching every year! With that kind of number its like looking for a needle in a haystack to find the best of the bunch. So we’ve put a guide together to help those on the hunt for somewhere fresh to play slots and table games.
The Advantages of New Casino Sites
The big advantage of joining any new site is the bonuses on offer. The new site is trying to woo new customers in through the door by offering big bonuses. It is not uncommon to see a site offering a no deposit bonus, deposit bonuses plus free spins and a free pet monkey. We made the pet monkey bit up. Plus there are all the side promotions of cashback on certain slots, extra bonus boosts during the week, a truly dazzling array of offers…or something like that.
As there are so many new casino sites launching on a regular basis it’ll need to do something to get the players running through the door. Running might be a bit much, but you get the idea. A common offer is a £5 no deposit bonus. Then spend £10 and you’ll get a £10 bonus plus 50 free spins on Starburst. Who wouldn’t be tempted by such an offer with freebies like that?
But it is unlikely to last forever. The ‘free’ money comes at a cost to the casino because they are taxed on it. So by giving these ‘freebies’ away they’re eating into their profits, and who has ever heard of a poor casino operator? Therefore these deals do not last long. However, in truth they’re not actually a great way to win any money. They’ll be huge wagering requirements attached and are really a way to test out the casino to see if you like the games on offer. You won’t get rich and be able to run off the Seychelles from free bonuses alone.
The Disadvantages of Joining New Casinos
So there you are, very pleased with all this money in your new account. You’ve got your free bonus from simply creating a new account. You’ve then deposited £10 and got another £10 free plus a load of free spins on Starburst. Life is good! Lets spin, win and head off to the beach. Sadly this is far from the reality due to the wagering requirements attached to most bonuses.
Lets start with the free no deposit bonus. That free £5 you received has not been designed to help you get off to a nice winning start. This is because the wagering requirement will have been set at some ridiculous amount meaning you’d have about as much chance as flying to the moon than winning any money from a no deposit bonus. More often than not the wagering requirement is 99x. A number designed to ensure you never win. Its been designed to give you a free test drive rather than allow you to actually win.
Then you have the deposit bonus and free spins attached to that. The deposit bonus will also have a wagering requirement attached to it, usually around 40x. So if you deposit £10 and get a £10 bonus you’d need to wager £800 before being able to withdraw that sweet free cash. That trip to the Seychelles is starting to look a little less unlikely. Lets not forget that not all games contribute to the wagering requirement either. And as for those free spins you’re getting…well we think you get the picture by now.
It is common knowledge that a high number of new casinos close within the first six months of opening. So joining up to the latest casino does come with its risks, and no free monkeys.
Whitelisted, Blacklisted – Choosing a Licensed Casino
Looking at the licensing of new slot sites is actually really important. It is worth checking to see if it is classed as being whitelisted. While this sounds like a secret MI5 document that might self destruct its actually a little more sensible than that. For a mobile or online casino to be whitelisted it needs to be licensed with a country that is regulated by the UK Gambling Commission. The UK Gambling Commission oversees all advertising of old and new casinos and has very strict rules in place about the advertising and ultimately the fairness of the casino in question. These rules have been put in place to protect customers to ensure they get a fair deal.
So how do you spot a whitelisted casino? Well for it to be regulated it needs to have its license from one of a handful of countries. The most common are Isle of Man, Alderney, Gibraltar and Malta – all of which are tax havens…hardly a surprise! When visiting the new casino your thinking of joining scroll to the bottom of the home page where it will show who it is licensed with it. Anything but a whitelisted jurisdiction then care needs to be exercised.
So the opposite too whitelisted is blacklisted. No, this is not an MI5 agent who has defected to the enemy, well not quite… Blacklisted casinos do not really have many rules and regulations to adhere to. So here you might find the owner smoking a cigar on a beach in Costa Rica while you are complaining about not being able to withdraw your winnings. There are certain countries that are blacklisted and these include Curaco, Costa Rica, Kahnawake plus others. Essentially anywhere that sounds dodgy is likely to be dodgy. If you see any of these countries shown on the home page then serious caution should be advised. Do your research and see what others have been saying about the site on the forums, have they had issues withdrawing their winnings? At the end of the day you don’t want to see our cigar smoking fiend lying on a Costa Rican beach with a nice bottle of scotch in his hands that has come from you not being able to withdraw your winnings.
Depositing, Withdrawals – What to Look Out For
Seeing as so many new sites shut up shop what can you do to spot the wheat from the chaff? Well one way is to actually look at the different payment methods available to customers. Not only is it good for the customer to have a number of different methods to deposit, but it’s also a sign of the casinos commitment to staying around for a long time to come.
Here’s why. Lets say you use boku pay by phone bill as a way to make a deposit. The owner of the casino will have to pay boku 12% of the amount you deposit. This is quite a chunk taken directly from the pocket of the owner. The same applies to PayPal, Neteller in fact every payment method has a cost for the casino operator. So the more options you see, the more it’s a sign of the commitment of the casino being prepared to look after its customers… if such a thing is possible of course!
That’s it, you’re number has come in on the roulette table and you want to pack your bags and head off to that beach in Thailand. Well, first of all you need to know that you can actually withdraw your winnings and there are a few things to look out for. We’ve already mentioned our cigar-smoking fiend in Costa Rica to look out for but what else?
One of the things to spot is the processing time it takes for withdrawals. A typical time frame is 48 – 72 hours for your request to be processed. This little nugget of information is usually tucked away in the terms and conditions. If you come across a particular site that is anything above 72 hours processing time, the chances are it’s a tad dodgy and this new site may well be one to avoid. Also check out the time frames for each of the withdrawal methods. This very much depends on whether its PayPal, debit card or whatever. In the FAQ section of any site you’ll be able to see time frames. If these time frames stretch into weeks then you’ll probably want to avoid joining that site in the first place.
Another point to look out for is the minimum withdrawal requirements. To meet these requirements you need to initially meet the minimum deposit requirements. Typically you can expect to have to deposit £30 before being able to request a withdrawal. There will then be a minimum withdrawal amount. If you were thinking of joining a new casino site that requires a minimum of deposit of £100 before requesting a withdrawal, it would be wise to quickly move along and find somewhere else.
So now we have the scenario when you’ve spun those reels, the slot machine has flashed crazy like a disco and you’ve won it big. You’re now head is on that beach in the Seychelles drinking cocktails. However, each new casino will have daily, weekly and monthly withdrawal limits. If the withdrawal limit is £3,000 and you’ve won £10,000 just be aware that those cocktails are likely to turn into mocktails unless you’re prepared to wait for all of your winnings to be paid. The same applies to progressive jackpots. If you happen to become a millionaire from a progressive slots jackpot, then you’ll be paid your winnings in instalments. So it’s probably best not to rush out and buy that Bentley or Ferrari just yet.
Software and Games
For the majority of mobile or online casino players, finding the latest site with the best selection of software providers is key. Whether there are games from Netent, Microgaming or NextGen these are things that are important to a lot of people. There is also another little tip for those less experienced with picking out a new site to join.
There are two advantages for joining a new casino site that has a lot of games on offer from multiple software companies. The first is obviously the sheer choice of games. If you decide to sign up with a new site that has over 400 different slots and table games then it is going to keep your interest for far longer. But in terms of the new site staying open for a long time it also another little sign of what to look our for. For the owner of the casino to have such a range of games comes at a cost. Netent, microgaming etc all have license fees. For example you spend £10 playing starburst. Netent charge a 10% license fee so earn £1 from the £10 you’ve deposited. It may sound silly but the casino owner is planning on being around a long time as it is investing its own money in keeping its customers happy.
Ultimately all of the above is just a bit of guide to the minefield that is new casino sites. It is not always a case that new is best, so just be sure to double check all the hidden terms and conditions and ensure you don’t fill the pockets of our cigar smoking fiend!