If you are looking to start playing casino games online as a brand-new hobby at home or even the early-morning commute to work, it’s important that you choose the right casino for your gaming needs.
After all, the iGaming industry is one of the fastest-growing online sectors with a huge range of online casino brands vying for your custom. With such an abundance of places to play, it’s important that you know what to look for when starting out on your iGaming journey. We’ve put together six key elements that will help you choose the right online home for you.
First things first – licensing and regulations
Let’s not mess about – any online casino that is unlicensed or unregulated should ring immediate alarm bells for any online casino newbie. In general, any real money casino that is regulated by either the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) or the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) should meet industry standards for casino players. Online casinos that are licensed by the MGA will provide the fairest possible gaming. That’s because one of the primary conditions of meeting MGA standards is proving that their games are fair and random to independent third parties such as eCogra and TST. Any iGaming brand that is licensed by the UKGC or MGA will also be required to undertake periodic audits of its operations to ensure that standards remain high.
Welcome bonuses and VIP programs
Your next port of call should be to pinpoint an online casino that offers an attractive welcome bonus for new customers. Any iGaming brand worth their salt should offer free bonus money upon sign-up as a means of giving new customers a bigger bankroll to sample the range of casino games on offer. The best welcome bonuses are no-deposit bonuses that do not require you to deposit any of your own money to trigger the bonus money in your account. The industry standard welcome bonuses tend to be deposit bonuses, requiring you to deposit some of your own money to receive bonus money – the amount of which will be based on the size of your initial deposit.
Most online casinos also operate VIP loyalty programs, which can also offer lucrative bonuses and perks for their most active players. It’s always good to play at an online casino that allows you to rack up loyalty points for every cent you spend at the tables or on the video slots. Those who build up enough points within a tiered VIP scheme to move to the top tiers will receive regular reload bonuses, where you can receive additional bonus funds to play with on the house when you make another real money deposit of your own.
In terms of deposits and withdrawals, you’ll no doubt want an online casino that offers a range of flexible payment methods. For instance, you might not want your debit or credit card statement to demonstrate your iGaming activities in your spare time. E-wallets are an increasingly suitable payment alternative, allowing you to fund your e-wallet from your bank account and deposit into your online casino account direct from your e-wallet. Online casinos that offer the latest e-wallets are certainly a good choice, providing faster processing times for withdrawals too.
Breadth of casino games available
Of course, another vital element of selecting the right casino for your needs is a site’s choice of games. There are quite literally dozens of iGaming software developers these days, each working on stunning new video slots that offer high-definition visuals and audio that wouldn’t look out of place in a video game. If you prefer table games to slots, make sure your chosen site offers a good range of traditional action such as craps, blackjack, roulette and poker. The industry-leading platforms are also offering live streamed dealer action these days, which sees a human dealer manage your online table games for increased player engagement.
In order to enjoy your favorite casino games, you’ll need an online casino that offers an easy-to-use game interface that’s consistent on all devices. Whether you’re playing at home on your desktop, sitting on a train with your smartphone or on your lunch break with a tablet, you’ll want appealing visuals and a slick screen layout that allows you to pick up and play to your heart’s content. The introduction of HTML5 technology has certainly helped iGaming brands deliver better cross-platform experiences.
Finally, if the worst happens and you have an issue with your online casino, you’ll want to know that there’s a team of people on hand to support you. Choose an iGaming brand that has multiple communication channels available 24/7. Live chat should be a given, as should a toll-free phone line. An online casino with sketchy customer communications is a sure-fire sign that something’s not all it seems.
Hopefully, the suggestions above are not too overwhelming. We hope they will help you in your quest for finding an online casino that fits your gaming requirements. By using these six guidelines as a relative checklist, you can be sure of a safe and enjoyable time from the moment you hit that ‘Sign Up’ button.