How to Read Terms and Conditions
Whenever you sign up to the welcome bonus of a new online casino site, you will have ticked a box. You may be so inured to that “box,” that you may not have noticed. However, you will have ticked it, and you will have accepted the terms and conditions, but before you do this you should know how to read casino terms to ensure you’re happy with them.
Perhaps in life, you choose not to get bogged down in the small print, the finer points, the minutiae of life etc. However, we must stress that online casino terms and conditions are some of the most important to get your head around.
How to Read Casino Terms & Conditions: Background
Some casinos have moved away from convoluted welcome bonus terms by scrapping welcome bonuses altogether. Play OJO casino famously launched in 2017 with no other welcome bonus than wager-free spins. Bgo Casino have followed, with what they call a “fair spins” model. Every £1 that a player deposits means that the player receives a bonus, wager-free spin in return. However, these are exceptions to the rule – and even then it’s still important to know how to read the terms and conditions.
With traditional online casino deposit bonuses and welcome offers, the terms and conditions will impact your playing experience. Understanding the T&Cs will inform your decision making processes, as well as empower you as a customer. By reading them before you sign up, you know your rights and know what to expect from a casino. In addition, by comparing and contrasting varying casino terms and conditions, you can be sure that you’re making a good decision. There is no shame in rejecting a casino because of unfavorable terms. In fact, we encourage it.
In this article, we’ll highlight some of the most important features to look out for. This, in the future, should equip you to read through casino terms and conditions thoroughly and efficiently. In order to facilitate this, we have split the features into categories. Firstly, the easiest things to look out for which will make or break your decision to sign up. Secondly, terms that are more subjective, but crucial to know. Thirdly, terms which pertain to table games and online slots.
Finally, it is important to mention that this is supposed to be a guide to help players with reading terms and conditions. For the full T&Cs for each individual casino, players should visit the respective websites. Every casino varies in their terms, so this should not be considered a substitute for a casino’s T&Cs.
Casino Terms & Conditions: First Steps
Some of the most important terms may seem obvious, but could be the most crucial to your protection as a consumer.
Casino Age Restriction
The terms and conditions will state that a player must be at least 18 years old to sign up to casino. If a casino does not state this, then it is not a regulated online casino and ought to be avoided at all costs.
Geographical & Jurisdictional Restrictions
The T&Cs will state from which countries players are eligible to sign up and play at an online casino. Often, the website will automatically detect if a player is based in a restricted country via their IP address. Thus, it would be impossible for those players to sign up in the first place.
In addition, bonuses can sometimes only be available to players of a certain country, or the bonus terms change depending on where you’re from. This can be found in the casino terms and conditions, as well as the bonus terms when relating to a specific bonus.
New Customers Only
Again, this may sound obvious, but a welcome package is just that. You must be a new depositing player to reap the rewards of a welcome offer. However, there will be promotions for regular bonus opportunities available to new and long term loyal players. Just be sure to check if you are eligible for a specific bonus by checking the bonus terms and conditions.
Casino Bonus Terms & Conditions: Crucial Questions
The following apply especially to how to read the terms and conditions of a casino welcome deposit bonus.
In a nutshell, wagering requirements are how much players have to wager in order to make their bonus winnings withdrawable. These are usually stated as a certain multiple of your bonus amount, or the sum of your bonus and deposit amount. (eg. 30x bonus) To learn more about wagering requirements, visit our full guide to them.
The casino bonus terms and conditions will explicitly state the wagering requirement for a bonus, as well as the timeline within which you need to complete it.
Contributions to Wagering Requirements
The majority of video slots will count 100% to wagering requirements. However, in the bonus terms and conditions, the casino may stipulate a selection slots which are excluded. That means that if you wager money on these slots, then it will not count to towards the wagering requirements of your welcome bonus.
In addition, many table games will not contribute 100% to the wagering requirement. For example, blackjack tends to contribute between 10-25%. This means you’ll have to play through 4 or 5 times as much before you can withdraw winnings, compared to a video slot. Sometimes, roulette doesn’t even count to wagering requirements at all. You can find all this information in the specific casino’s bonus terms and conditions.
Whether you are looking for the start and end date of a promotion, or the time-frame within which you are allowed to play through your wagering requirements, the terms and conditions will contain all the information you need. If the casino has no firm timescale, it will say as such. A casino may also note that the bonus or promotion can be terminated at any time, at the casino’s discretion.
Deposits & Withdrawals
A casino will have all sorts of minimum and maximum limits for depositing and withdrawing, as well certain thresholds to be eligible for a bonus. What you look for depends on the sort of player you are. If you are a high roller, then you will look for non-restrictive maximums on deposits and withdrawals. The more you can withdraw, and the more frequently, the better.
Other players may look for low minimum deposits, maybe under $10. These players don’t want to bet a lot, but, rather, enjoy an online casino without a huge wallet.
When players sign up to a welcome bonus, there will always be a minimum deposit in order to trigger it. You will find these limits in the specific terms and conditions.
Max Bets & Winnings Caps
When signing up to a new welcome offer, the casino may place a restriction on how much you can bet from your bonus funds at any one time. This will most likely be expressed as a static number (£5, for example).
A casino may also impose a winnings cap on funds derived from a welcome bonus. This may be expressed as a percentage of your deposit or bonus, or as an arbitrary figure. Look out for this max win figure, as it may seriously influence your decision of which welcome bonus to choose
Choice of Casino Welcome Bonus
Some casinos give you a choice of welcome offer with varying deposit bonuses and spins offers. When making your decision, we recommend you go through each set of T&Cs and compare all of the above data. If one seems more favorable than the other, or more suited to your budget, then that is the one to go for.
Game & Slot Terms & Conditions
Games and slots will have their own terms and conditions that players will want to look out for. For example, a slot machine’s RTP, or Return to Player, will be found in the T&Cs. The RTP is how much a player can expect to get in return over a theoretically infinite period of time. The RTPs for video slots tend to vary between 93%-98%, often nestling somewhere in the middle. Players who are keen to maximize their chances of winning will want to look for slots that have the most favorable RTPs.
Another caveat that you’ll find in the terms and conditions is that if a slot or game malfunctions or crashes half way through, then a player’s bet is considered null and void. Therefore, if it appears that the reels have lined up for a win, and then the game crashes, you will not be entitled to any of those potential winnings. This may seem unfair, and you would have to be unlucky. There are ways to mitigate the risk of such of an occurrence. These include making sure that you are using a healthy laptop or mobile device and that you are connected to a strong and stable internet connection.
Casinos want their customers to know that they will not accept players who are pathologically using minimal risk wagering tactics to play through their requirements. Casinos consider this bonus abuse and they reserve the right to revoke a player’s membership and their winnings. This, again, may seem harsh, but it has always been enshrined in casino bonus terms and conditions. For more specific information on what a casino does and does not allow, see the individual full terms and conditions.
If you have any further questions on how to read a casino’s terms and conditions, don’t hesitate to contact us via our social media channels.