What is a Casino Welcome Bonus?
A casino welcome bonus is an offer or incentive offered by an online casino attract new customers to join them. Consider it a gift once you register or make your first deposit at the casino. Known as first deposit or sign up bonuses, welcome bonuses are offered by the overwhelming majority of online casinos in the UK.
Types of Welcome Bonuses
When you consider a casino sign up bonus, there are many types offered by online casinos. All designed to get you to register and stick around, most of them require you to deposit. Some don’t need an initial deposit though so it’s important the know the differences.
The best casino welcome bonus depends on your personal preference so it’s imperative to understand the different types available. Here are the most popular welcome bonus types:
- First Deposit Bonuses: deposit welcome bonus offers require you to make a deposit in order to get a bonus. It normally consists of a 100% sign up bonus up to a certain amount (i.e. 100% bonus up to £100). In this example, depositing £100 would give you a £100 bonus. These types of offers have minimum and maximum deposit limits.
- No Deposit Bonuses: not that common, no deposit offers allow to play without having to make a deposit (i.e. registration is simply needed). These type of bonuses are usually small (i.e. £5 or £10) giving you the chance to sample the offerings at a casino.
- High Roller Bonuses: reserved for players with deeper pockets, high roller offers are big deposit offers up to £500 or higher. Less and less common due to regulations set out by the UK Gambling Commission, these type of offers are available to existing players once they’ve proved they deposit bigger amounts.
- Free Spins Bonuses: becoming increasingly popular lately, casinos reward new customers with free spins when you make their first deposit. These are valid on the most popular slot games such as Starburst (NetEnt) or Book of Dead (Play ‘n GO). Free spins offers allow players to try popular slots at the respective UK casino. This is deemed as a slots welcome bonus essentially.
- No Deposit Free Spins: like no deposit bonuses, some offers will reward you with free spins without having to deposit any funds. These are available on the most popular slot games and will tend to be 5-20 free spins. These offers also have high wagering requirements and max win limits.
- No Wager Free Spins: these are free spins that don’t have any wagering requirements. Sometimes requiring a deposit and sometimes not, the majority of no wager free spins bonuses need a deposit to claim them. You will find these kind of offers mainly at UK slot sites.
- Cashback Bonuses: these are bonuses offered when you lose at an online casino. Cashback offers are typically offered on losses. A 10% cashback bonus will see you get 10% back of all you losses. Although uncommon, cashback is normally offered as an ongoing offer for existing players.
How to choose the Best Welcome Bonus
As you have read above, finding the best welcome bonus in the UK can sometimes be tricky. Here at Online-Slot.co.uk, we’ve broken down all areas you need to consider to make an informed decision.
Forming part of welcome bonus Terms & Conditions, here is what you need to look at when considering a casino sign up bonus:
|Wagering Requirements||Deposit Limits|
|Cashout/Max Win Limits||Max Stake/Bet Limits|
|Eligible Games/Slots||Payment Methods|
|Expiry Dates||Bonus Codes|
Casino welcome bonus wagering requirements are multiplier conditions applied that represent the number of times you need to play through (wager) a bonus or deposit plus bonus before withdrawing any winnings and/or the bonus itself. With most wagering requirements specifying you play through a bonus between 30 and 50 times, a £100 bonus for example will need to be played through to the tune of between £3,000 and £5,000.
Some casino welcome bonuses require the wagering requirements to be completed on the deposit amount only or both the deposit and bonus amounts. If you take up a 100% bonus match, deposit + bonus wagering requirements are effectively double that of deposit only wagering requirements.
The best welcome bonuses are bonus only for wagering requirements and are under 40 times.
All casino sign up bonus offers come with deposit limits. This means the minimum and maximum deposit amounts allowed in order to claim the bonus. For a typical 100% welcome bonus up to £100, you would need to normally deposit between £10 and £100.
In our detailed casino reviews, we specify the minimum deposit amount required in order to be eligible for the casino welcome offer. If a bonus offer is 100% up to £100, depositing more than £100 would mean you get a matched bonus up to £100. Depositing under the minimum deposit means you won’t get the bonus offer.
Some welcome bonus casinos will demand a higher minimum deposit of £20 or higher in order to restrict bonus abuse. The minimum amount is stated clearly in each of our online casino reviews.
Cashout/Max Win Limits
Increasingly common these days, a UK casino welcome bonus will have some kind of cashout or max win limits. This means that there is a maximum amount you’re allowed to win or withdraw from the bonus. The max win limit essentially limits to liability and risk for a particular online casino.
If you take Casushi Casino for example, they offer new players a 100% welcome bonus up to £50 plus 50 spins. However, the max bonus cashout is £250. Anything you win over this from the bonus won’t be awarded.
Max Stake/Bet Limits
Although not mandatory with all UK welcome bonuses, casinos will specify a maximum bet/stake per spin when clearing the wagering requirements. This tends to vary between £2 and £5. If you were to be playing a slot game, the most you could bet per spin would be £5 for example. If you go over this per spin, it won’t count towards the wagering requirements. These restrictions are normally in place for a slots welcome bonus though.
Even with the best casino welcome bonus, it will be valid on certain casino games and slots. Most online slots contribute 100% to the wagering requirements. However, high RTP slots such as Book of 99 from Relax Gaming (99%) will be excluded.
The list of excluded slots can be found in any casino’s bonus Terms & Conditions text. Assume that slots with a high RTP rate or are extremely high volatility will generally be excluded. Other casino games such as blackjack won’t be allowed for the wagering requirements or contribute 5% or 10% in total. Progressive jackpot slots are normally excluded too for your information.
An important factor to consider is what casino payment methods are allowed for casino welcome offers. Debit cards are widely accepted as well as PayPal, Apple Pay and Google Pay. E-wallet solutions including Neteller and Skrill won’t be allowed generally.
It’s imperative that your first deposit has to be made using an eligible payment method. Specified in our detailed reviews and in the Terms & Conditions, the payment method used needs to offer fast cashouts with no fees. Apple Pay and Google Pay, where accepted, are great options as they are essentially funded by your bank account. To be absolute certain of claiming a sign up bonus, use your debit card.
Expiry dates or timeframes for a casino welcome bonus has become increasingly common these days. The expiry date specifies the timeframe in which you need to claim the bonus and complete the wagering requirements. UK casinos will set expiry dates within a few days or even a month generally.
Not as common these days, a casino welcome offer may require you to enter a bonus code upon registering or depositing. These are normally valid for exclusive welcome bonuses. However, most bonus codes are automatically pulled into the registration or deposit process.
Specified in our casino reviews, using a bonus code will ensure you get the best welcome bonus possible. Without the bonus code, you may not receive the sign up bonus or exclusive offer.
Cashable or Sticky Welcome Bonus?
It’s important to understand whether a casino welcome bonus is cashable or sticky (i.e. non-cashable). With most casino bonus offers being cashable, you will be able to keep and/or cashout the winnings once you fulfil the welcome bonus’ terms and conditions. However, you need to know the differences and how it affects your balance.
A cashable welcome bonus is a bonus where you can keep all the winnings as well as the bonus once you complete the wagering requirements and other conditions.
Example: 100% bonus up to £100 with 30 x wagering requirements. You will need to wager the bonus 30 times before cashing it out. Depositing £100 will give you a £100 bonus. This means you will need to wager £3,000 (£100 x 30 wagering requirements). Do this and you can withdraw the bonus and all winnings.
A sticky or non-cashable welcome bonus allows you to play with the bonus but not withdraw or keep the bonus. It helps you accumulate winnings which can be cashed out. If you got a 100% sticky bonus up to £100 and won £200 on top of the bonus, you would be able to withdraw the £200 but not the £100 bonus.
On the flip side, sticky welcome bonuses tend to be bigger than cashable offers so you have a higher chance of increasing your bankroll and winnings. They are not that common amongst UK casinos though.
Casino Account Verification
As per the regulations set in place by the UK Gambling Commission, online casinos need to verify the name, address and date of birth of a player before allowing them to gamble.
Prior to taking up a casino welcome bonus, you should be informed of the types of identity documentation that may be required to verify your account. It should also specify the circumstances in which documentation would be required and how you should provide the documentation to the operator. Here is what you’ll be asked for:
|Identity||Driving License, Passport, ID/National Card|
|Address||Bank Statement, Utility Bill (no older than 3 months old)|
|Payment Method||Proof of payment (i.e. photo of debit card, screenshot of PayPal account)|
Most UK casinos will automatically try to verify your identity when you complete the registration process. This can be done by the details you enter when signing up. If this is not successful, head to the ‘My Account’ section once you sign up. Here, you will find a dedicated section where you can upload documents securely. Verification of your account will be done in a matter of minutes in most cases but may take up to 24 hours.
Casino Welcome Bonus Terms and Conditions
We’ve touched on it above regarding the different parts of the T&Cs to consider when choosing casino welcome bonuses, but what are the specifics? Here’s a breakdown for you:
- Geographical restrictions – All bonuses listed here will be available to all players in England. But it’s worth checking if you’re based in Northern Ireland as some UK welcome offers can exclude this country.
- Bonus codes: Some promotions will list a bonus code that you will specifically need to enter to activate the bonus.
- Player limitations: Welcome bonuses will be limited to 1 player or account. Furthermore, it may also be 1 per household. This means, for example, that you will be able to use the offer but your brother wouldn’t if he lives in the same house.
- Expiry dates: You usually get a certain amount of time to use the bonus. Typically, it’ll other be within 24 hours, 7 days, or 30 days.
- Minimum deposit: This can differ per casino, so just check how much you need to deposit initially. It’s often £10 but it could be £20 or more.
- Payment restrictions: You may not be able to deposit with some payment options to claim certain casino welcome bonuses. For example, e-wallets are often excluded.
- Game restrictions: Some promotions only let you, for example, bet on a certain set of slots.
- Wagering: You might sign up at a UK casino with no wagering free spins, which is great. However, most operators will need you to turn over a certain amount of the bonus. That might be 20x, 25x, 40x or even 50x.
- Game contributions: Double check the game weighting in the T&Cs, as video slots may contribute 100% to the bonus wagering but jackpot slots may only contribute 10% for example. Not all games contribute 100%.
- Max win limit: The majority of welcome bonuses will have a maximum win limit, so just make sure you’re happy with it. It could be £20, it could be £100 or it might even be £500.
How to Claim Your Welcome Bonus
You should now understand everything to look out for when choosing the best casino welcome bonuses that suit your needs. But how do you claim one? If you don’t already know, follow this simple step-by-step guide and you won’t go wrong:
- Find a casino welcome bonus that you like from our list of the best ones on this page.
- Make sure you understand the T&Cs of the offer you want to get.
- Register for a new account by clicking through to the casino.
- Opt-in and enter and bonus code where needed.
- Deposit the minimum amount needed using an eligible payment option.
- Play through the bonus and adhere to anything needed to meet the requirements.
Hopefully this page has given you a better understanding of casino welcome bonuses, the different types available and how to choose the best offers. The list of the best offers will certainly help.
A slots welcome bonus tends to be different to regular casino offers so that is something to bear in mind. Wagering requirements allowed on your favourite game or slot provider’s game may be the deciding factor. It may be the payment method. Hopefully, we’ve broken down all the information so you can make an informed decision.
A casino welcome bonus or sign up bonus is a reward for new players when joining an online casino. It’s basically an incentive for registering an account and making a first deposit.
Online casinos offer incentives to get you to register and play there. With so many casinos to choose from, there are various types of offers available. These include deposit bonuses and free spins.
Yes, casino welcome offers are reserved for new players only. These are used to attract new customers. Once a customer, the casino will incentive you with a variety of promotions and offers.
This depends on what your preferences are as a player. You may prefer a deposit match bonus or a no deposit offer. If you’re a slots player, you will prefer free spins. Luckily, our list of the best welcome offers have a variety of different types.
Yes, before you withdraw the bonus or any winnings, you will need to complete the wagering requirements outlined in the Terms & Conditions. Once they have been met, the bonus and winnings will be withdrawable.
Online slots tend to contribute 100% to the wagering requirements whilst casino games like blackjack are often excluded or contribute up to 10%. High RTP or jackpot slots tend to be excluded too. Slots bonuses are valid on a particular slot game or slots by a certain provider.
Yes, there can be many. These include wagering requirements, expiry dates, payment methods, bonus codes, max cashout limits, max bet amounts, eligible games and deposit limits. Find out more in our How to choose the Best Welcome Bonus section.