It doesn’t matter what it is, the first few hours in a new hobby can be anxious ones. Sure, you’ll always have the excitement of learning something new (and, in casino gaming, potentially winning some coins) but there’s usually a book of jargon to memorize along with all the rules of your new space.
For games like blackjack, the shadow of the basic strategy is always looming over newcomers, for example, while roulette is haunted by reams of material on ways to bet.
Casino bonuses – of any description – are designed to alleviate some of this hurdling by making games more approachable.
Offers with low or absent wagering requirements reduce the need for large deposits to get started with casino gaming. As you might expect, these tend to be quite rare. The average wagering requirements at modern operators tend to be in the region of 30x to 40x.
The question to ask is, does it actually matter what bonus you pick at the outset? It depends. If your heart is set on playing at a particular casino, then you’re unlikely to have much of a choice.
For those of you who like to shop around, you’ll find a list of different treats out there, ranging from a deposit match bonus to free turns on popular slot machines (usually Starburst or Book of Dead).
Remember that decisions are final when it comes to introductory bonuses. Once you’ve picked one, there’s no way to undo it.
Inevitably, this means that there are plenty of websites out there that seek to order casino offers by quality. The Swedish website Spelaspel picks LeoVegas as the most popular casino with no wagering requirements, for instance, while Faster and NanoCasino have the best overall deposit offers.
As for the type of bonuses that newcomers should pick up, Spelaspel recommends a match-up offer, otherwise known as a deposit bonus.
The obvious advantage of free cash on deposits is that it gives the player a larger bankroll to get used to the casino experience. However, as mentioned, it’s important to be wary of wagering requirements. These are usually outlined in the fine print.
Free spins on slots offer similar benefits to deposit bonuses but with some restrictions, namely, which games you can actually play. Put another way, if your interest is table games or scratchcards, you’re unlikely to get much use out of a free spins bonus.
It’s also worth keeping an eye out for gamified websites. These introduce things like leaderboards and “missions” with secondary rewards.
Finally, like most marketing campaigns, casino bonuses tend to be seasonal, that is, offers might be more frequent during holidays or events on the sporting calendar, such as the one TopEndSports keeps. This can make an unfriendly operator seem like a generous one, albeit only temporarily. Seeing through this disguise can be a difficult thing for any player to do.
Don’t be afraid to seek out expert advice on the topic of casino bonuses, as there’s plenty of it out there.