Online casino guide for beginners – learn the art of playing smart
This online casino guide for beginners is a handy tool to have at your disposal. Here you'll find all the information you need for a good introduction to playing in online casinos. True to our values, we at Bojoko have compiled the information in a way that follows the path of the online casino experience for the player.
Although primarily intended for the novice, experienced players may also find this guide helpful to refresh their knowledge and familiarise themselves with Bojoko.
Use the tips provided here to choose the most suitable quality online casino for you. Reading the guide will also enable you to make smart use of the site and reap all the benefits that Bojoko has to offer.
Starting from opening a player account, this guide walks you through the whole process of setting yourself up for an enjoyable online casino experience. We explain the various bonuses offered by casinos in clear, simple terms and what the wagering requirements often tied to these bonuses actually mean.
You'll learn about the most popular money transfer methods and how they work in practice, as well as the things you should take into account when making money transfers.
Further on, we present the most popular online casino games on offer, including an explanation of what a live casino is and how to make the most of the convenience and pleasure of mobile gaming.
There's also a section about the game providers which make online casino games, and we'll have a look at different gaming and casino platforms in use today.
The basics about the licensing system and how it works are also covered. You can find out all about the different types of support available to players, including the variety of customer service channels provided by casinos.
Finally, we close the guide with some do's and don'ts to keep your decision-making wise and grounded when playing in UK online casinos. So, without further ado, let's jump in.
Opening a player account
Before you can start playing in any online casino, the first thing you have to do is to create a player account. Signing up is a simple, straightforward process.
You can go to any casino's homepage by clicking the image for that casino on Bojoko. The link for signing up is normally found on the homepage, towards the top or the centre of the page. You'll first be asked to provide an email address and create a password, and possibly confirm your country of residence.
The key is to enter all of this information accurately, so that you don't encounter any issues when you need to verify the new account. The next page might prompt you to enter your mobile number to receive a validation code. This step is important for identification purposes and to minimise the risk of fraudulent activity. When you receive the validation code as a text message on your mobile phone, enter the number in the box.
Online casinos always request your personal details, including name, surname, home address, date of birth, gender and nationality, amongst others. You might be apprehensive about sharing this personal information but keep in mind that casinos require this data to process your registration and prevent criminal exploitation, such as cybercrime and money laundering.
Casinos in possession of a valid UK gaming licence are bound by law to collect this information from their users and verify that they're over the legal playing age of 18. This is why, for example, you can't log in to an online casino using Facebook or any other third party, at least for real money games. With these security measures in places, minors are barred from playing any online casino games with real money.
There's no cause for concern when parting with your personal details – if the casino in question is a licensed and trustworthy one, it will make use of your data appropriately, in accordance with data protection laws. Any sensitive financial information (such as credit card details) you provide to the casino will also be used legitimately and runs no risk of being exploited.
Bear in mind that providing correct information is essential because this will enable you to withdraw your winnings without any problems. If you've entered false personal details, the online casino might not pay you your due winnings. For this reason, Bojoko strongly recommends you double check that every field contains the right information before you carry on creating your player account.
You should also read the casino's terms and conditions very carefully before completing the registration process. The fine print might be boring to read and you might think you know everything that's in there, but if you want to avoid nasty shocks down the line, do yourself a favour and go through it. Even if you're an experienced player, terms and conditions will vary from one casino to the other and keeping track of the rules and limitations when playing is imperative.
After you've successfully completed all the steps, the online casino will inform you that your player account is up and running – usually with a welcome bonus waiting to be claimed.
The order in which the registration form is presented will vary from one casino to the other, but the information required and the verification process remains consistent for all.
Congratulations! You can now officially begin playing in the online casino.
Welcome bonuses and packages
We mentioned that as soon as you've fully registered and your player account is open, the online casino will usually tempt you with one or a selection of welcome bonuses to choose from. So what exactly are they offering?
Welcome bonuses are the free bonuses casinos greet new players with, much like the complimentary 2-for-the-price-of-1 pizza coupon you get when you visit the new pizzeria in town.
Welcome bonuses are almost always no deposit bonuses, so the bonus can be redeemed without making a deposit. This means that you don't need any money to be able to use these bonuses, and online casinos can present you with some great deals due to the stiff competition amongst them for new players.
A welcome bonus normally takes the form of extra casino money or extra spins, but it can occasionally consist of lottery tickets or other promotions. Online casino bonuses are an easy and risk-free way to get acquainted with the new casino and its range of games without putting your own money on the line.
You'll benefit from the welcome bonuses described in the list when you open a new player account, which you'll receive without making any deposit at all. Bojoko regularly updates this UK online casino list with the best welcome bonuses currently available, and you'll always find the most up-to-date bonus information in our listings. These will help you discover the newest casinos and any enticing welcome bonuses that could jumpstart your casino experience, so keep your eyes peeled for any deals.
Claiming a welcome bonus is easily done too. A pop-up window with the bonus details and a "Claim bonus" button will frequently appear onscreen when registration is complete. You're almost certainly one click away from redeeming your welcome bonus, but fret not if no such window appears – simply look for the "Bonuses" section in your player account profile or find the link in the casino menu.
Welcome bonuses are a fantastic form of freebie but as with any offer, there is a caveat to look out for. Welcome bonuses go hand in hand with wagering requirements, and we'll explore their definition further down.
Sometimes, casinos can be extra giving and offer a welcome bonus package instead of a single deal. You'll be able to view this upon signing up in the same way as the standard welcome bonuses. In all cases, the welcome bonus is a combination of extra spins and extra casino money, each with their own special conditions and wagering requirements.
Let's take a closer look at what all of this means.
Extra spins are the most common form of welcome bonus, and the most widespread. There's a very good chance that you'll get a number of extra spins when you sign up for a player account at a new casino. The range in the number of extra spins can be vast, starting from little over 0 to 200 or more.
The number of extra spins you'll receive depends on how generous the casino is with its welcome handouts and whether the extra spins are accompanied by extra casino money as an additional component to the welcome bonus. Occasionally, you'll be awarded with extra spins if a casino is celebrating the launch of a new slot game. You might even get extra spins when you join a VIP program or as part of a promotion. Some casinos will split the total number of extra spins into individual sums awarded to you in equal instalments or increments every day.
Extra spins can present a more visually appealing experience for users playing slot machines in an online casino, which is why casinos might favour them as welcome bonuses. With its classic, instantly recognisable and usable interface, Starburst is currently one of the most popular extra spins casino game. Game of Thrones, Cleopatra, Gonzo's Quest and Mega Moolah are also favourites amongst UK players.
Once you've claimed your extra spins, you can play them at a limited selection of online casino games, which will probably be a couple of slots. This is because the value of the spin will generally be very low – commonly around the £0.10 mark – and not all casino games support this. However, it's possible to get higher value extra spins, and the higher the value of an extra spin, the more profitable the potential winnings will be.
Like all other kinds of bonuses, extra spins also have wagering requirements that need to be cleared before you can withdraw any winnings arising from them. These days, more and more casinos give out bonuses with no wagering requirements. This is more accommodating for the player since you can withdraw any winnings immediately. We'll take a look at wagering requirements and how they work further down.
Extra casino money with no deposit
Online casinos sometimes give out extra casino money with no deposit as a welcome bonus. The first allowance usually ranges from £2-£10, and will virtually always be tied to a wagering requirement. Naturally, you don't need to make any deposits to be able to use this cash offering.
Extra casino money with no deposit is, on the whole, more valuable of a welcome bonus than extra spins. Consider two different welcome bonuses: 40 extra spins at an average value of £0.10 per spin and £5 of free play money. The total value of the extra spins is £4 (£0.10 x 40), while the extra casino money amounts to £5. The extra casino money is the winner in this instance, and offers more value than the extra spins.
When you play an online casino game using extra casino money, you're free to choose any game you like apart from table games. Often, these cannot be played with extra casino money. Free cash giveaways are a common means of drawing in new players to the online casino experience, but they're also a way of giving new players the chance to try out games freely before depositing your own money.
Bojoko always features up-to-date listings of the online casinos with the best "extra casino money with no deposit" offers. Take advantage of the opportunity to win real money while simultaneously exploring the new online casino and its games.
Deposit bonuses are given on the condition that you deposit a certain amount of money into your online casino player account. They're usually granted as extra casino money that you can use, on top of your deposit money, to play casino games. Further to this, several online casinos offer players extra spins to turn up their deposit bonuses a notch and offer more value.
Deposit bonuses extend the excitement for players, who can immerse themselves in gameplay for longer with the added boost to their funds before they start playing. The format of deposit bonuses is presented as the percentage of the deposit awarded as a bonus, plus the maximum bonus amount that can be awarded. Here's an example:
A deposit bonus of 100% / £100 means that the bonus amount will be exactly equal to the deposit amount up to a maximum of £100. If you deposit £50, for instance, the deposit bonus will match that amount by 100%. The result is £50 in bonus casino money, so you'll get a total of £100 (£50 deposit + £50 bonus) in available funds in your account. The deposit bonus will only be valid for deposit amounts not exceeding £100, so if you deposit £250, for instance, the value of the bonus will still be £100, tallying up to the maximum threshold.
Let's take another example for good measure:
A deposit bonus of 200% / £50 translates into your deposit being tripled. If you deposit the maximum bonus amount of £50, you'll receive 200% of that figure as a deposit bonus. 200% of £50 is £100, which will be added to the original £50 deposit, leaving you with £150 in total available funds in your account. Depositing more than £50 will still accrue the same maximum bonus amount of £100.
The most common percentage of the deposit awarded as a bonus is 100%, but it's not hard to find online casinos offering first deposit bonuses of 200% to players. The percentage can also fall in between these two benchmarks. Online casinos are also in the habit of offering deposit bonuses redeemable after the first deposit is made and the related bonus claimed. Second, third, fourth and fifth deposit bonuses offer players the chance to keep receiving bonus money with every additional deposit that is made.
Here's Bojoko's list of the casinos offering the best deposit bonuses right now:
Remember that deposit bonuses will always have wagering requirements which need to be met before you can withdraw your winnings. We'll delve into a thorough explanation of what they entail at the end of this section.
Bonus codes are sometimes used by online casinos as a means of qualifying players for a certain deposit bonus. Although the use of bonus codes is still a fairly common practice, more and more casinos no longer require bonus codes to redeem deposit bonuses as time goes by.
If you're asked to provide a bonus code, simply enter it into the field requesting the code. Although it's possible to input the code when you open your player account for certain online casinos, you'll usually be prompted to enter it when making a deposit.
You can find up-to-date information about bonus codes from online casino reviews listed on bojoko. If you want to find out whether a separate bonus code is needed to avail yourself of a deposit bonus, or if you can redeem the deposit bonus without the need to provide any codes whatsoever, simply search for the casino listing and read the review to uncover all the information you need to proceed.
Wagering requirements (also called playthrough requirements) are a set of conditions attached to all kinds of bonuses and specific to each. In a nutshell, they indicate the number of times the bonus money and/or extra spins have to be wagered (or bet again) before you're permitted to make a withdrawal. In other words, the winnings made from using extra casino money or extra spins cannot be placed in your bank account before the wagering requirements for that bonus are met. This is why you should pay close attention to the wagering requirements of the bonuses you redeem and take stock of how easy or difficult it might be to withdraw any winnings gained.
In general, wagering requirements point out how many times the bonus amount must be wagered in the form of a number followed by an "x". Let's take an example and put this into perspective.
If a deposit bonus offering bonus money is given at 100% / £75, and the wagering requirement is 35x, you'll have to wager the amount you deposit 35 times before you can withdraw any winnings. So if you deposit the maximum bonus amount of £75, and you receive an additional £75 as the bonus (100% of £75), the wagering requirement will be £2625 (£75 x 35). You'll have to wager – or bet – the total amount of £2625, after which you'll be able to withdraw your winnings, if you've made any.
Some online casinos, in turn, adopt a method where wagering requirements are expressed as the sum of both the bonus amount and the deposit amount. This is shown as 25 x (D + B), where D stands for the deposit amount and B stands for the bonus amount. If we take the same deposit bonus of 100% / £75, and assume that we're depositing £75, the bonus amount must be wagered as follows: 25 x (£75 + £75) = £3750. In conclusion, you need to wager £3750 in total before withdrawing any winnings. This type of wagering requirement is tougher to clear and the bonus will be more difficult to use.
When it comes to extra spins, the wagering requirements involved are usually 25x to 50x. This means that if you win £12 from a set of extra spins, and the wagering requirement is 30x, you'll need to wager £360 (£12 x 30) in total to be able to withdraw the £12 won through the extra spins. However, there are plenty of casinos that do away with wagering requirements for extra spins completely, much to the delight of the player. If you're playing at such a casino, anything you win from the extra spins can be immediately withdrawn.
Wagering requirements exist on a spectrum, with 35x to 50x being the most common range you'll encounter. Lower wagering requirements are rather hard to come by these days, and 35x is considered favourable for the player. If the wagering requirement is more than 50x, you're faced with a challenging bonus that might not be worth the risk and effort of taking.
While bonuses are a good treat for players, you'll need to watch the wagering requirements and work out if you're in a position to clear them comfortably to avoid unpleasant surprises shortly after you sign up. Once you've grasped how they function, you can still make your way through them and collect your winnings. With experience, bonuses and their wagering requirements will become very familiar and easier to take full advantage of.
Sorting out your banking
Playing with real money
Online casinos deal in real money as well as casino money, of course, so you'll need to sort out your banking options early on. There are a number of ways in which you can make money transfers in online casinos, each with its own advantages.
E-wallets, online bank transfers and credit, debit and prepaid cards are the most popular money transfer methods. High-quality, reputable online casinos always feature their range of accepted money transfer methods as a string of icons towards the bottom of the homepage.
Let's see how each of them works so you can choose the best method for you.
E-wallets are extremely popular with online casino players due to their high processing speeds and relatively low fees. In practice, the casinos receive your money immediately, which allows you to start playing with real money almost as soon as you decide to deposit.
PayPal is by far the most common payment platform used for online casinos in the UK. PayPal is a very well-known and trusted e-wallet that carries out fully protected online transactions with your money. Millions of users use it for shopping safely on the web, and it can be used in the same way to play in online casinos.
PayPal deposits are processed instantly, so you don't need to wait at all to start playing with your money – an asset for e-wallets. This makes it a preferred money transfer method, since waiting multiple hours or days for your deposit to clear can be a frustrating experience for players. Reputable online casinos will also process PayPal withdrawals within 24 hours for UK players – another big plus.
Skrill and NETELLER are two other e-wallets commonly used by players in online casinos. These specialised payment systems streamline deposits and withdrawals, facilitating the money transfer process and reducing the fees that normally accompany these transactions.
Signing up for an account is easy and will only take a minute or so of your time. You'll be asked to provide the usual personal details, and you'll be able to deposit money for gameplay immediately. The money you deposit will be stored in your e-wallet account, which you can use to fund your gameplay or receive withdrawals to.
E-wallets remain the most convenient and foolproof money transfer methods for online casinos, especially for withdrawals. Their transaction fees are kept to a minimum and they're incredibly safe to use. Your sensitive financial information will be stored securely, encrypted appropriately and runs almost no risk of misuse.
In addition, you can also get lucky and benefit from a complimentary bonus on behalf of the e-wallet sites themselves. Sometimes, they will offer bonuses as high as 20% of the amount you deposited, which trickles back into your game funds. E-wallets can afford to do this due to the ease in processing transactions for online casino operators, allowing them to share some of the savings with the players.
Nevertheless, you should inform yourself about the pros and cons of each different e-wallet before you register for an account and start transferring money. Reading the terms and conditions of each e-wallet and comparing the benefits will stand you in good stead, so you always know what to expect.
Depending on where you're accessing Bojoko and its listed casinos from, some e-wallets might not be available. When in doubt, you can contact the casino through any of its support channels and verify that you're eligible to use that particular e-wallet freely from the UK.
Credit cards, debit cards and prepaid cards
Credit and debit cards top the list of popular money transfer methods worldwide, being also the most widespread. You can use your personal credit and debit cards to deposit funds directly into your online casino player account. Visa, Maestro and MasterCard are the three most commonly used cards in these transactions, but every casino will accept a range of different credit and debit cards.
Using cards to deposit and withdraw funds is easy. All you have to do is provide the online casino with your billing address, card number, expiration date and Card Verification Value (CVV) code to make a deposit.
While the process is simple, the charges incurred for every transaction can be significant. Check with your credit or debit card provider to get a hold of the fees in advance. Remember that once a transaction is processed, any extra fees and charges taken out of your account will be more difficult to reimburse. It's also worth noting that your card should be cleared for online payments and international transactions.
The catch with credit and debit cards is that they work smoothly and efficiently for deposits, but the same cannot be said for withdrawals. Cashing out via a credit or debit card is tricky, and sometimes – as is the case with some online casinos – downright impossible. We recommend that you limit your credit and debit card use to deposits only, as this will make your life easier.
There are other options too. Paysafecard, for instance, is an anonymous prepaid card that you can buy at select purchase points across the UK and Europe. Available in set denominations of £10, £25, £50, £75, £100 and more, you can then use the 16-digit PIN found on the card for online transactions.
Paysafecard is as simple and easy to use as cash but it can carry higher transaction fees than e-wallets. With a loyalty programme in place, however, you might be able to recoup the costs and win back some cash. You should also make sure that prepaid cards are cleared for online payments and international transactions because you might have problems depositing with a domestic-only card.
The upside to prepaid cards is that they allow you to fund your online casino account in a discreet manner – more so than traditional credit or debit cards. With Paysafecard, for example, you never have to share any of your bank account details, so this could be the ideal option for players who prioritise complete financial privacy.
Other commonly accepted prepaid cards include EntroPay (a virtual Visa card), giropay and PostePay. As with all money transfer methods, familiarising yourself with the terms and conditions of each different card is essential to be fully aware of what their use entails.
Instant banking is yet another popular option for online casino banking. There are a number of bank transfer intermediaries that help facilitate these transactions. The most popular, by far, is Trustly – a platform which allows you to transfer money securely and directly through your bank without leaving the online casino site.
You don't need to register or install any software to use this service, and there are no processing fees for deposits. Trustly guarantees the bank transfer instantly, so all you need to do is to enter your bank account details and let Trustly do the rest.
With the proliferation of mobile casinos and a growing number of on-the-go players comes an array of mobile banking options. If you're likely to access an online casino through your phone or other portable device such as a tablet, you're best off using a payment solution that's custom-made for mobile devices.
Zimpler is one such leading mobile money transfer method, and Apple Pay is gaining popularity as an all-in-one payment solution for iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch users. Boku is a payment platform that integrates itself with your online casino account and removes the need for inputting your financial information every time you need to make a deposit.
With Zimpler, any money you deposit to play in online casinos will either be debited from the card or invoiced to you as a separate bill. All you need to do is sign in with your phone and enter a verification code sent via SMS to activate your account. You can then choose your payment method and once the payment is confirmed, the deposit will appear in your player account.
No registration nor apps are involved, so everything is simplified for mobile use. The aim of mobile banking is to reduce the payment process to a tap or two on your phone.
Despite the ever-increasing number of alternative money transfer methods on the market, wire transfers (or "bank wires") remain a staple. The process is very straightforward: all you need to do is enter your bank account details in your to make a deposit or withdraw funds. While bank transfers are relatively simple to process, there are some drawbacks to take note of.
Most importantly, the transferring of money takes longer with this method than any other. It can take up to 5 days to process a deposit or withdrawal, making it an inconvenient and time-consuming affair compared to e-wallets and cards. Your bank may also impose fees for sending or receiving funds, and these fees can vary considerably
On top of that, some online casinos have extra conditions when using this method. bet365's online casino games, for example, don't charge you any fees for depositing or cashing out via bank wire but they will only permit one free withdrawal per month. As with all banking options for online casinos, reading the terms and conditions for each provider will pay back dividends in making wise choices according to your individual needs.
Depositing funds is instant or almost instant with nearly all of the most popular money transfer methods. If, for some reason, the money doesn't appear in the account within a reasonable timeframe, you should contact the online casino's customer service. The issue in question should definitely be resolvable and most problems have a simple, logical cause – such as the user entering the wrong credit card number.
Deposits don't require user authentication because the identification process is only necessary for withdrawals. However, it's also worthwhile to ensure that any personal information you enter is accurate, even at this stage. This will prevent any difficulties with withdrawing your winnings when you decide to.
Online casinos will normally set a minimum limit for deposits, which may vary between casinos and money transfer methods. This limit typically ranges from £10 to £20, depending on the casino. The maximum limit for deposits is also stipulated by certain casinos, and will generally be well into the thousands of pounds.
Handling costs are part and parcel of making deposits, and while some casinos cover these costs for the player, sometimes you'll be charged these fees when you make a deposit. The extent of the charges varies once again, but is rarely higher than a few pounds. Online casinos should always inform you clearly of the handling costs involved when you deposit money into your account.
Casumo is a great example of an online casino where money transfers are completely free for both deposits and withdrawals (with the sole exception of credit card deposits), and are processed very quickly. Trustly and Skrill are also free methods most of the time, while credit card deposits usually carry a 1% to 3% charge. Paysafecard charges low processing fees, while Zimpler can charge up to 10% for each transaction.
When you're entitled to a first deposit bonus or any other deposit bonus, make sure that the bonus has been activated when you make a deposit. If you need a bonus code to unlock the bonus, remember to enter the code into the appropriate field in the process of making your deposit. If a separate bonus code isn't required, tick any box that asks you if you want to receive the deposit bonus offered. This box can, at times, already be ticked for you. If you don't want to use the bonus in question due to the wagering requirements being too high, for instance, remember to untick it.
Withdrawing funds is usually done through the same money transfer method you used for your deposit. This makes everything much simpler and easier, although it's still possible to use different methods for deposits and withdrawals. There are several money transfer methods that can't be used for withdrawals, such as Zimpler, Paysafecard and often MasterCard too.
The speeds at which withdrawals are processed vary from one online casino to the other and also depend on your money transfer method. In most cases, withdrawals made via e-wallets and online bank transfers can take anywhere from a few hours to a couple of business days to process. The first withdrawal you make as a player may take a bit longer than the norm since the online casino needs to verify your identity and confirm that you've cleared all the wagering requirements for any bonuses you've used. You won't be able to withdraw any winnings resulting from bonuses if you haven't met the wagering requirements.
As we mentioned before, Trustly and Skrill are methods that are normally free for making withdrawals. Handling costs for withdrawals usually amount to no more than a few pounds for each transaction. You can find more detailed information about withdrawal charges in the online casino reviews, where you can compare different casinos, methods and the fees involved. Mobile withdrawals (like those done through Zimpler, for example) tend to be more costly.
Like deposits, withdrawals have lower and upper limits. The minimum limit is normally around £20, while the maximum limit for withdrawing funds can verge on several thousands of pounds.
"Know your customer" (KYC) procedures and required documents
Before you're allowed to make a withdrawal, an online casino has to verify the player's identity. This is done to ensure that the player is over the legal minimum age of 18 to be able to play legitimately, and also to adhere to UK gaming legislation about money laundering and cybercrime prevention. Online casinos call these "know your customer" (KYC) procedures and will request documents from players to complete this process.
So, to prove your identity, you need to supply documents showing evidence of your full name, age and residential address. Often, proof of the money transfer method used is also required. This process is normally carried out via email – you should compile a list of scanned or photographed original documents and send them to the casino staff on the contact email address provided.
The documents accepted generally include the following: a valid identity card, passport or driving licence. The identification document should have a clear, good-quality image of your face and the date of birth should be readily visible. You should scan or photograph the document in its entirety – also including the edges – with both sides in full view, especially if the ID card is machine readable with an MRZ code overleaf.
The document proving your home address can be either an electricity, water or phone bill. The bill must be dated within the last three months, and should have your full name, address and issue date all clearly stated.
The money transfer method you used can be proven by taking a screenshot of the transaction from the account as it happens. The screenshot should include all the information required to verify the account, including your full name, IBAN and the deposit reference number. In case you've used a credit or debit card, you can blur or cross out the last four digits of the card number as well as the CVC to protect your sensitive financial information.
All information you submit to reputable UK online casinos will be used in accordance with gambling laws and will never be disclosed to third parties without your consent. It's a good idea to have all these documents and information handy when you register for a player account, so when the time comes to make a withdrawal, the process moves quickly and smoothly.
Playing casino games
Types of casino games
Once the registration and banking processes have been ironed out, it's time to indulge in the fun part – playing the online casino games! With hundreds of casinos offering thousands of different casino games, you're definitely going to be spoiled for choice when playing. The huge selection of games available on the market can be split into these categories:
- slot games
- jackpot games
- table games
- video poker
- keno, bingo and others
- live casino or live dealer games
- sports betting
You'll find this variety of games in virtually every UK online casino, and most casinos will have these separate categories for their games. Sometimes, the lottery games including keno and bingo are placed under the "Other games" section.
There are also casinos with a selection of virtual casino games which differ greatly in nature and appearance from the game categories listed above.
Slots are the easiest game you can play in online casinos. Also called slot machines in traditional casinos, this type of casino game is so popular that it's the one manufactured in the largest quantities by game developers. Top online casinos will always have several hundred different slot games for you to try and enjoy.
The oldest and most basic type of slot is the classic three-reel. These generally have one single winning payline but they can have up to 9. Classic slots like these are very simple and don't usually have special bonus symbols that increase your chances of winning. To play, all you need to do is choose the coin value and spin the reels, just like a traditional slot machine. Bonus slots or multi-lined video slots can have between 5 to 9 reels and from 10 to 1000 paylines. On top of the standard paylines, special symbols found in certain slots can greatly boost your winning streak.
Slot games will also have different themes, some of which will appeal to you more than others. Some of the most popular slot games in UK online casinos are Starburst, Immortal Romance, Age of the Gods, Game of Thrones and Gladiator. All these slot games have cool graphics built around a memorable theme, which keeps players entertained.
It's important to keep in mind that slots are completely random with each spin of the reels. The outcomes generated while playing are determined by Random Number Generators (RNGs), the mechanism used in online gaming to ensure fair play. RNGs provide the assurance that spins are entirely independent of one another and there is no causality in gameplay. This is why you can play slots for a while and win nothing, and also spin the reels once and score a winning payline. RNGs are frequently tested to verify to safeguard casino games' randomness
Jackpot games feature a sum of money that either stays the same or increases – called fixed or progressive jackpots respectively – as the prize. Fixed jackpot games are actually a type of slot game with a jackpot set at a definite amount that doesn't change. This jackpot can range from a couple of hundred pounds to well into the millions, and once it's won, it will be replaced with a new jackpot of the same value.
Progressive jackpot games are identical, with one distinctive feature: a jackpot that continually increases until it's won. This means that progressive jackpot games are amongst the most lucrative casino games you can play and can lead to big wins that change your life.
While fixed jackpots retain the same-value prize no matter what, progressive jackpot games have a jackpot that rises as players put coins in the machine and spin the reels. A tiny percentage of each coin played "feeds" into the progressive jackpot, accumulating large sums of money over time.
Because the odds of winning the jackpot remain the same no matter how much the jackpot grows, progressive jackpots have a tendency to balloon into astronomical figures into the millions of pounds before they're won. Once the winner claims the jackpot money, the figure can start again from zero or from a base sum like £1,000,000 for Mega Fortune.
Mega Fortune is one example of a popular progressive jackpot game. It's produced by NetEnt, one of the most renowned online casino game providers. Others include Mega Moolah (made by Microgaming), Arabian Nights (NetEnt) and Hall of Gods (NetEnt)
Different types of progressive jackpot games
You can find progressive jackpot games in different formats, and it's important to take note of these variations to understand how the jackpot is concentrated across games and casinos. At the most basic level, progressive jackpot games are limited to one game and one casino. An example of this is Cosmic Fortune, which has a casino-specific progressive jackpot that accumulates only through the slots played in one specific casino.
Game-specific progressive jackpots such as Mega Fortune are found in several casinos and grow their jackpot through this single casino game featured in multiple casinos. The most distributed type of jackpot is one that is split between several games in several casinos, as is the case with Mega Moolah Isis and Batman the Dark Knight. The progressive jackpot games that accumulate money across several casinos will naturally have the biggest jackpots.
Table games are the best-known and most beloved traditional casino games, and – with few exceptions – can be found in every online casino. The most popular table games are blackjack, roulette, baccarat and Texas Hold'em. These are played on a table and operated by one or more live dealers, distinguishing them from games played on a mechanical device like a slot machine.
The rules for playing vary between each type of table game and you'll also find different versions of each type. Craps, Caribbean Stud Poker, Punto Banco and Yahtzee are other examples of table games. Roulette can either be American or European roulette – the latter having a lower house edge than the American version.
Table games require knowledge of gameplay and a basic level of skill that surpasses slots. While they're considered casino classics, players may feel that table games in online casinos are slightly dull compared to other types of games like slots, for example. There's less of a thrill in playing table games and they don't serve players with the enormous wins, fun surprises and elegant look present in other types of games.
Table games, however, have been adapted for the online casino world through the introduction of the live casino. We'll explain what live casinos are further down below.
Video poker games
Video poker games are a highly popular, traditional casino game which can be played in virtually any online casino. The game is based on five-card draw poker and unlike slots, you will have a small degree of control over the outcome of the hands you play. As always, video poker games will be diverse and varied but Joker Poker and Jacks or Better are pretty ubiquitous in casinos.
Different versions of video poker will produce a range of winnings, and there are tried-and-tested strategies for reducing the house edge considerably which you can learn. In fact, the payback percentage of video poker can reach a whopping 99% if you successfully eliminate the house edge to your advantage. Similar to "return to player" (RTP), payback percentage is a measure of the amount of money that a gambling machine or an online casino is programmed to pay back to the player, relative to their bets and the length of time they spend playing. (Take a peek at our FAQ if you're lost on terminology.)
Aces and Eights, Aces and Faces and Deuces Wild are all good video poker games to try which will help you become familiar with the video poker variation available on the market.
The UK is no stranger to a lottery and scratchcards reflect this keen interest in the online casino world. Scratchcards in online casinos are like an instant lottery, which can be both fun and financially rewarding. Scratchcards are very cheap and you don't need any strategy to play and win, making them a favourite amongst players who want to try their luck with minimal effort.
Different scratchcards offer different chances of winning, however, so the seasoned player will implement a strategy to benefit his odds. These odds are the reason why different scratchcards have different prices. Consequently, the jackpot offers the lowest opportunity for a win, while symbol combinations offering a win totalling a couple of quid will be a lot easier to achieve.
Luck is the biggest factor in winning scratchcard games, but you can increase your odds of winning by erring on the side of caution and using lower-priced scratchcards at first. The more cards you have, the higher your chances of winning, and you'll also be keeping your funds in check until you score big.
Some of the most popular scratchcard games in the UK are Instant Millionaire, Fruity Flurry and 777. Each of these offer a diverse mix of prizes and winning combinations which should get you sufficiently familiarised with how online scratchcards work.
Other games (keno, bingo etc.)
Apart from the major casino game types already mentioned, there's an assortment of other kinds of games that don't fall under any of these specific categories. These include keno and bingo, which you'll find in many an online casino.
Keno and bingo are similar, lottery-like games of numbers. Keno is one of the oldest casino games in history, and the object of the game is to pick several numbers on a ticket that match the numbers drawn from the ping-pong ball machine. In bingo, the player doesn't get to make this choice. Instead, the bingo tickets already have a number and the winning streak occurs when you mark off all the numbers on the game card or mark some of them off in a special pattern – depending on the rules of the game you're playing. Bingo can be played in a variety of ways and keno can also feature some variation between casinos.
Board games such as backgammon, solitaire, chess and Yahtzee are less commonly found but remain classics that need no introduction – and firm favourites amongst offline players. With some luck, you can find these games in some online casinos too. SPIGO is one such game provider that has developed games based on the traditional versions of backgammon and Yahtzee.
Chess poses challenges for fair gameplay when played online for real money. It's difficult to enforce the rules of this sophisticated game and you might find yourself competing against a computer program that has already solved the game from the outset.
These alternative games promise heaps of fun with the added excitement of playing with real money. Social casino games are the boon of the future and we're paying witness to a meteoric rise in their uptake and popularity amongst players.
Live casino or live dealer games
Respectable online casinos will, more often than not, feature live casino or live dealer games as part of their game selection. These games serve up a realistic atmosphere with impeccable graphics, perfectly capturing the experience of being physically present in a casino with a real-life dealer to manage the game.
Live dealer games differ from regular casino games in several ways. First of all, live dealer games are brought to you via a live broadcast which allows you to see the game progress in front of your very eyes as you make your moves. You can chat with the game managers while playing and also communicate interactively with other players in certain online casinos.
Live dealer games generally feature table games exclusively. Roulette, blackjack, baccarat and Texas Hold'em are the ones most typically available, although you'll find casinos that include a variety of dice games too.
NetEnt and Evolution Gaming are two of the major game manufacturers specialising in the production of live casino games, so you know you're in for a high-quality experience if you play one of their live dealer games. Live casinos don't normally give out bonuses, or else they'll feature their own special deals. In addition, any deposit bonuses you receive and use from regular online casino games aren't usually transferable to live casino games.
Poker is widespread in online casinos and while there are several types, Texas No-Limit Hold'em is the most common and popular poker game. This poker game is the easiest one to play but the hardest to master.
In this version, the player receives only two cards and uses both – or just one in certain situations – in combination with a shared community group of cards to make out the best five-card poker hand according to basic poker rankings. Played in this manner, poker merges a basis of luck with a degree of skill.
In addition to Texas No-Limit Hold'em, Omaha is a variation of poker that you'll typically find in online casinos. In Omaha, you're dealt four cards instead of two, which means that making big hands is far easier.
Sports betting is yet another highly popular branch of the UK online casino experience. Players can bet on a wide range of different sports, the most common being football, horse racing, fighting (boxing and UFC), cricket, rugby, golf, tennis, Formula 1 and greyhound racing. You can navigate different odds and place bets on sporting outcomes, which can lead to substantial wins if you're an avid sports fan with your finger on the pulse of sporting events, news and updates.
Mobile casino games
Playing in online casinos on mobile devices is a phenomenon that keeps growing year after year, with more players accessing their favourite games on their smartphone or tablet more than ever before.
New online casinos emerging on the web, in particular, are investing in mobile optimisation to provide a smooth and enjoyable player experience for this expanding subset of online casino enthusiasts. Game manufacturers and established online casinos are also focusing on making their offerings as mobile-friendly as possible to cater for a new generation of mobile-first players.
Mobile casino games are those specifically designed for use on a mobile device, although they run smoothly on practically every browser and generally offer the same money transfer methods as traditional desktop casino games. Mr Green, for instance, furnishes mobile players with an app you can download separately to further simplify the use of the mobile casino. LeoVegas, Rizk and Casumo are other casinos that offer a first-class mobile casino experience, constantly raising the bar for usability, speed and overall enjoyment. Slot games usually comprise the majority of the selection, but you'll also find plenty of scratchcard games and even live mobile casino games in the top-tier casinos.
Mobile banking options such as Boku and Zimpler facilitate the transfer of funds for gameplay through a few simple steps carried out using just your phone and nothing else. This level of convenience is a major pull for players and a reason why these money transfer methods keep gaining traction. You can learn more about these casino banking methods if you want to brush up on your online casino banking knowledge.
The quality and quantity of mobile casinos and mobile casino games is on the rise, so there's a lot to be gained from giving them a try.
Online casinos don't actually produce or manufacture the games they have on their sites. The games you find in online casinos are delivered by game providers – the ones responsible for producing the gaming products.
An awesome combination of technical expertise, good infrastructure and creativity is essential to becoming a game provider of note and continue providing exhilarating gaming experiences for players. This is especially true as time progresses and games undergo innovation. In recent years, the number of game providers specialising in mobile casino games and live casino games has increased parallel to the interest in these game categories.
There are dozens of game providers and many other new ones breaking into the scene every year. These companies are some of the most prominent and well-regarded game providers in operation today:
- Evolution Gaming
- Play'n Go
- NYX Interactive
- Williams Interactive (WMS)
Four out of these ten game providers were all founded in Sweden, with others based in Malta, Bulgaria and Las Vegas in the US. Sweden remains a top player in the online casino game manufacturing field and a solid guarantee of quality production. This means that whenever you're playing a NetEnt, Play'n Go, NYX Interactive or Quickspin casino game, you can rest assured that you're getting served with impressive graphics, strong usability and great bonuses. The bulk of what these game providers produce revolves around slot games.
Evolution Gaming and Micrograming are also highly esteemed, with a legacy of groundbreaking work behind them. Evolution Gaming is currently leading the way in live casino games for mobile, and Microgaming is famed for its claim to creating the world's first true online casino software in 1994. Microgaming has the largest online casino game portfolio in the industry, clocking up a staggering 850 games and counting. Some of the biggest online jackpot games, such as Mega Moolah, are Microgaming's creation. The company also has a knack for partnering up with celebrated franchises, as evidenced by the Tomb Raider and Game of Thrones games.
Other well-known names in the industry include Playtech, ELK Studios, Realtime Gaming, Novomatic, IGT, WMS, Aristocrat, Thunderkick, EGT, NextGen Gaming, Betsoft Gaming and Cryptologic. Often, the entrepreneurs running newcomer companies are former employees of the big game providers like NetEnt, meaning they bring a wealth of experience and know-how to the table.
Find out more about the biggest game software providers in the UK online casino landscape so you can learn which ones make the games you love the most.
Licensing in the UK
Licensing plays a fundamental role in the online casino industry. The UK has a sound licensing system that prioritises player protection and social responsibility, while also adhering to strict jurisdiction on technical standards and implementation guidelines. This framework ensures that you, as the player, enjoy an experience based in safety and quality when playing in online casinos.
The Gambling Commission is the authority responsible for regulating online casinos and the gambling industry in the UK, as dictated by the Gambling Act 2005. This regulatory body enforces a specific code of conduct for operating an online casino to prevent exploitation and unfair activity. These regulatory devices are instrumental given the remote nature of the online casino business.
How licensing works
All reputable online casinos in the UK must have a valid licence issued by the Gambling Commission or another regulatory body with a similarly high-calibre reputation. This documentation certifies that the online casino has been appropriately vetted and has the right to run its business in accordance with a set of criteria enforced by the authority in question. If you're accessing our site from the UK, all the casinos you see listed on Bojoko have a full, valid UK licence.
Currently, there are about a dozen different countries and regions around the world which can issue gambling licences. Europe's main licensing locations are Malta, Gibraltar and the UK, which cover most of the European Economic Area (EEA). Due to this, all the winnings resulting from online casino gameplay are tax-free. You'll never have to pay any tax on any sum of money you win in a licensed online casino, whether it's £100 or £1 million.
t's also safe to say that online casinos with a valid gambling licence from within the EEA are respectable entities to entrust your money to. These casinos are closely monitored by the relevant authorities and the precise terms of the legislation applicable to their operations. Online casinos licensed in the Isle of Man and Alderney generally don't tax players on their winnings, although there might be exceptions to this rule.
Casinos featured on Bojoko can be relied on to be fully licensed in the UK. However, when it comes to non-European territories, licences issued from other regions should be treated with caution. Other locations might have little to no regulation in place to deter and penalise unfair or fraudulent business practices on behalf of the online casinos, so it's best to make a pass or exercise your best judgement.
In order to apply for a licence, online casino applicants must undergo several background and security checks. The Gambling Commission imposes a string of procedural and operational requirements that casinos have to comply with in order to acquire and keep their licence.
The regulatory measures don't stop when the licence is issued. After the Gambling Commission grants the online casino a working licence, it will submit it to regular financial and tax auditing as well as technical tests to ensure compliance on all fronts of its operations. The Commission also has the power to suspend and revoke gambling licenses if it finds evidence of malpractice, such as unfair treatment of players, money laundering, etc.
It's useful to note that the Gambling Commission doesn't deal with player complaints. You should always direct these to the relevant online casino's help and support channels.
Types of licences issued by the Gambling Commission
There are multiple types of licences issued by the Gambling Commission, grouped according to the gaming category they fall under. The whole list can be viewed here.
Every type of licence has its special set of conditions that need to be met by the gaming operator. Gambling licences cost a fixed application fee that is determined by the annual gross gambling yield of the gaming operator. There's also an annual fee payable to the Commission based on the same criteria.
How to weed out the good licences from the bad
All the online casinos listed and featured on Bojoko have a valid UK gambling licence issued by the Gambling Commission. Reputable online casinos will feature these quality benchmarks at the bottom of their site's homepage. Look out for this logo when you're sizing up a new online casino:
Apart from looking out for this entity's stamp of approval, you can also objective assess an online casino's legitimacy by scrutinising elements such as the quality of its design, usability, support functions, game selection and more. Compare and contrast these features of the casino to the ones you know have a high standard - this exercise will reveal a lot about the casino. The good ones will score highly on all these features, and the bad ones tend to display poor quality in one or more of the elements mentioned above.
Player reviews on Bojoko might also have a wealth of information about a particular online casino's licence, so take the time to scan review for other players' two cents on the matter. If you're ever in doubt about whether an online casino is licensed, drop the casino a line to investigate. The easiest way to do this is via email or live chat on the casino's website, and you can then share your findings on Bojoko. Your contribution will help us keep rogue casinos at bay and enrich our community with the information players really value.
Casino platforms, game platforms and "white labels"
When it comes to the production of online casino games, casino platforms, game platforms and "white labels" are essential components. Let's take a look at what each of these terms means.
To understand what a game platform is, we can take the example of small game providers. These companies use a variety of game platforms through which to publish their games, although the game platform itself is not the publisher.
This is how it works in practice: the game platform signs a contract with 10 different online casinos, based on an agreement between the game provider and the game platform. The game provider's selection of games will then appear in all these 10 online casinos.
A game platform is, therefore, the platform that enables this single contract to be made and the game provider to distribute their game across a number of online casinos at once. This practice is a cost-effective means of game distribution, which is why small game providers with low budgets resort to using game platforms to get their products out there. Conversely, game platforms benefit from this arrangement as they gain access to a range of the game provider's products through a single, fairly priced contract.
Currently, the most popular game platforms in use are Microgaming Quickfire, NYX Gaming and Relax Gaming. Microgaming Quickfire's trump card is that it offers Microgaming's own dazzling selection of online casino games. Other less established game providers can utilise Quickfire to publish their games through this platform.
In turn, game platforms like Quickfire receive a single contract to distribute the provider's range of games, as well as access to other game providers' selection of games. While Quickfire doesn't feature all existing Microgaming online casino games and not all games may be produced by the same game provider, the choice of games tops more than 500 – offering ample benefits for all parties involved.
Casino platforms refer to companies that provide a comprehensive package for establishing a new online casino. By means of an agreement struck between the two parties, the individual founding the online casino is given access to all the games on the casino platform, the money transfer methods in place and in some cases, the customer support function too.
The casino platform is supported by the adequate software and infrastructure that permits casinos to work smoothly in the first place. The primary goal of casino platforms is to eliminate technological bottlenecks and keep costs to a minimum for both operators and "white labels" – which we're going to cover below.
The Gaming Innovation Group has its flagship casino platform iGaming Cloud, and EveryMatrix is another example of such a casino platform. The iGaming Cloud platform is one of the most respected in the industry and hosts, for instance, the popular online casinos Rizk, Cashmio and Casino Calzone. These platforms offer the full spectrum of services for iGaming operators.
A "white label" solution refers to a product or service developed by a company for the purpose of selling or leasing it to another entity which can brand it under its own name or label. Through "white labels", a fledgling iGaming operator can put aside technical and infrastructural concerns in the initial phase of operations and focus exclusively on marketing the business.
"White label" solutions reduce expenses from the launch process and also provide the necessary framework for establishing a new gaming operator. "White labels" have caught on successfully due to this advantageous setting they offer, sparing the operator the hassle of creating and developing the business from the ground up with limited resources.
Sometimes, large and successful online casinos offer their casino platform newcomers an attractive remuneration package. A good example is Bethard Group, which has traded its base for a casino platform available to new entrants in the iGaming operations sector. Online casinos in the making can use the Bethard platform to launch their enterprise, which makes Bethard the "white label" solution. The online casino ScandiBet operates in this manner and can be called Bethard's "white label".
Support for players
How online casinos detect dishonest activity
Finally, no good online casino would be complete without comprehensive support for its players. Issues are bound to crop up every once in a while and you'll also want to get the help you need if you're stuck with something at any point during the experience.
There are myriad ways in which online casinos provide support to their players. Every established online casino will have its own investigative unit for cases involving fraud and other serious criminal offences. The role of this unit is to ensure that players follow the rules and abide by the terms and conditions specified by the casino. Most importantly, this applies for player identity and financial information – two areas that the investigative unit safeguards by monitoring money transfers and the opening of accounts on a daily basis.
Some typical conditions you have to be mindful of are that the player is eligible for the welcome bonus only once and you should be over the legal age of 18 to open an account and play. Opening several accounts under a different identity to take advantage of the welcome bonus is illegal and online casinos invariably crack down on this practice. If such a violation is detected and proven, the casino will penalise you by closing your player account and freezing any funds you have stored there.
While this is the most common infraction of casino rules, the other consists of players providing false identity information. In most cases, this happens when underage users misreport their age to open a player account. As we pointed out earlier on in this guide, this is a legal offense and will result in punitive action when the online casino's investigative unit detects this dishonest activity.
Bojoko is a firm supporter of fair play and we encourage users to respect the rules and other players when joining our community.
Types of customer support available
Online casinos should all offer support to their players one way or another, but top-tier casinos will provide excellent customer service through the most popular channels, which are the following:
- live chat
- social media
You'll find details on how to reach customer service through each of these channels on the Help or Support page of the online casino's website.
While the phone and live chat functions promise to resolve your queries in a matter of minutes, enquiries sent via email or social media will require a longer waiting time for a response. This varies from a couple of hours to several days, depending on the casino's customer support policy. You can contact the casino via email or social media at any time on any day of the week.
However, you might need to adhere to specific service times to reach phone or live chat support. This information will normally be provided on the casino's website.
All online casinos listed on Bojoko offer customer support primarily in English, but they might also provide the service in other languages. You can find out more about the availability of multi-lingual customer support in our casino reviews.
Do's and don'ts
To close off our UK online casino guide for beginners, here are some do's and don'ts that illustrate some critical points to follow when playing in online casinos. Sticking to these pointers will have you starting your online casino experience on the right foot.
And that's us wrapping up our beginner's guide to online casinos. We hope you've learnt a great deal of cool new stuff about playing in online casinos and feel ready to start exploring Bojoko and all it has to offer.
And that's all, folks! We at Bojoko wish you a fun ride and all the luck in the world in your online casino journey.
1. Read the terms and conditions for the online casino you're playing in.
2. Check that the casino is a licensed one.
One of the first things you should do before you settle on a casino and create a player account is verify that it's a licensed one. At Bojoko, this peace of mind is guaranteed because we only feature fully licensed online casinos on our site. Keep your eyes open for the relevant logos towards the bottom of the casino homepage.
3. Know the rules of the game you're playing.
Every online casino game has its own specific set of rules which you can access from the game interface. Read the rules of the game carefully and make sure you've understood how it works before you start wagering large sums of money. This way, you're fully equipped with the knowledge it takes to give it your best shot and gradually improve before you place high stakes on the game – and risk losing it all.
4. Know how much money you can wager and lose.
Smart online casino players treat the money they wager as lost money right off the bat. This mental strategy is a good mechanism for staying aware of how much money you can wager, keeping track of your funds and setting healthy limits for losses. Determining a budget for a session is a wise idea, and you should never play with money you can't afford to lose – chances are that this money will be lost if luck isn't on your side on that particular day.
5. Shop around for the casinos best matching your requirements and preferences.
Before you sign up for a player account with an online casino, do your homework. If you're after the best experience tailored to your requirements and preferences, take these into consideration and research what's available. Bojoko's listings are grouped according to the most common criteria players look out for, such as the newest casinos, the ones with the best welcome bonuses, casinos accepting a certain money transfer method, casinos with games produced by a specific game provider, and more. You can also take advantage of our casino reviews to glean as much information as possible before committing to the chosen one.
6. Know when to stop playing.
While it's a fun and thrilling experience for most players, playing in online casinos can also become addictive. When you're immersed in gameplay, it's easy to lose track of time and speed through one betting round after another. You can also be fooled into thinking that you're "due" a win after a string of losses. This couldn't be further from the truth and is actually called gambler's fallacy. This mindset can lead you to mistakenly assume that you're going to recoup your losses if you keep wagering more money. Knowing when to walk away from the games is part and parcel of sensible gameplay.
7. Experiment with different games and game providers.
Don't limit yourself to one game in one online casino if you'd like to expand your casino games knowledge and potentially increase your chances of winning. Experimenting with different games and tactics in a variety of casinos will open up more opportunities for you and give you a good overview of what kind of games are available. This way, you can explore what's out there and discover your personal preferences for certain game providers and their major styles.
8. Keep up to date with rewards, promotions and bonuses, as well as gaming trends.
Online casino rewards, promotions and bonuses are rife nowadays and you'll always be presented with many offers for the taking. Keeping up to date with what casinos are offering will help you get the best deal when you come across the one made for your needs. Generally, an online casino's newsletter will contain information about the latest bonuses and promotions so we recommend signing up for it at your favourite casino. These newsletters will also often contain information about new games, special-release themes, banking options and other news that will go down a treat for avid gamers. Staying tuned to current trends means you'll be one of the first to know about all the best new updates and won't miss out on gaming developments that make a splash.
9. Stay calm and focused when playing.
While online casino playing is meant to be an amusing experience, bear in mind that you should also approach it with the same level-headedness as you would with any other competitive pursuit. Remaining calm and focused – whatever the outcome of the betting round may be – is always the way to go. Avoid playing online casino games when you're tired, stressed, anxious, intoxicated or otherwise, as this will prevent you from performing at your best and might lead to some poor decision-making.
10. Trust the odds and the data.
"Return to player" (RTP) and payout percentages are there for a reason. Don't make the mistake of ignoring the odds and data attached to a particular online casino game, as you'll be setting yourself up for failure. These figures will give you some welcome foresight into your odds of winning and losing so you can decide whether it's worth it to play before you wager your money. While so-called "betting systems" don't work, RTP and payout percentages are accurate statements of how much you stand to win from a certain game or casino in the long run.
1. Don't be afraid to ask for help.
If you experience any issues, don't hesitate to contact the online casino's customer service. The customer support function is there to solve your problems and give you all the assistance you need. Getting in touch with the casino will also give you a good indication of its level of quality and trustworthiness based on the response you receive and how your issues and complaints are handled. If your requests for help go unheeded or handled poorly, Bojoko is where you can air your views and share your insights with other players.
2. Don't have unrealistic expectations of winning.
This goes especially for beginners to online casinos: remember that the house (or online casino) always has the biggest edge (or advantage for winning). This ties in with considering wagered money as "lost" money, and will help you keep a realistic perspective on your chances of winning and how your finances are going to be affected. Although winning in online casino games is always possible, it's better to assume you will lose and be pleasantly surprised than risk irresponsible betting due to unrealistic expectations of winning.
3. Don't wager more money than you can afford.
This might seem obvious but it's still a common issue for players. Never resort to borrowing money, maxing out on your credit or debit cards, or otherwise placing your personal finances in jeopardy to keep fuelling your gameplay or chase your losses. In other words, if you want to play sensibly, never wager any money you can't afford to lose. Some online casinos offer a facility that allows players to set money limits which can keep their betting under control – don't think twice about using this if you feel it keeps you grounded.
4. Don't try to commit fraud.
Attempting to trick or cheat the online casino in any way is a surefire way to get your player account closed, your funds frozen, and yourself banned from ever playing in the casino again. Defrauding the online casino can happen under several forms, the most common of which are opening multiple player accounts and supplying false information about your identity, particularly your age. These offences are enough to elicit disciplinary action but other, more complex types of fraud will also be investigated and prosecuted accordingly. Keep your player activity and conscience clean and abide by the casino's rules and terms and conditions.
5. Don't bet blindly.
Clever, experienced players do all they can to gain a leg up from the very start, whether it's understanding the rules of the online casino game, knowing the "return to player" (RTP) and payout percentage of the casino, and learning tried-and-tested strategies for increasing their chances of winning – and so should you. Avoid betting blindly, with no knowledge, limits or control on your gameplay, as this will only produce undesirable results.
6. Don't play while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
Your mental and psychological state is a factor to be taken account of when playing in online casinos. We highly encourage you to avoid excessive consumption of alcohol and drugs as this hampers your ability to make smart decisions during gameplay. Playing online casino games while under the influence means you won't be at your sharpest and brightest to manoeuvre the experience to your benefit.
7. Don't play games of skill with real money and no prior experience.
Games of skill such as poker and sports betting require just that – a skilled player fully cognisant of the game's rules, plus the experience to use them to his or her advantage. Don't attempt to play games of skill with real money and no prior experience, because it's a guaranteed way of squandering your funds uselessly. Instead, take the time to learn the game inside out and play it for free until you get the hang of it. When you feel confident enough to wager your hard-earned cash, go for it.
8. Don't play for hours on end without any breaks.
It's very easy to get sucked into the online casino experience and spend hours on end playing non-stop. You should set some sort of a time limit for your sessions lest they get the better of you and your gameplay suffers. Time yourself and always remember to take regular breaks from the screen – it's healthy and a refresh will help you play better.
9. Don't use bonuses without acquainting yourself with the wagering requirements and other conditions.
We can't stress it enough – whatever the type of bonus you're taking, get to know whether it has wagering requirements and what these are. Too many players accept bonuses without understanding what their wagering requirements entail, and end up getting the short end of the stick. While there are bonuses that don't have any wagering requirements, this is the exception to the rule. Remember that you won't be able to withdraw any winnings gained from any bonuses until you clear the wagering requirements.
10. Don't fall for fads like "betting systems".
"Betting systems" are strategies that are sold on the basis of their extraordinary promises of profit when applied to your online casino gameplay. This is, at best, a far-fetched guarantee and, at worst, a scam. Keep in mind that the house edge is always present, and that skill sharpened through knowledge and experience is far more effective than reliance on any "betting system" – no matter how sophisticated or auspicious it may seem. Don't count on "betting systems" to alter your prospects of winning as you're likely to experience disappointment down the line.