For the uninitiated online casino player, picking a bonus can be an onerous task. There are so many parameters to factor in and so many bonuses to choose from. Reading through all the terms and conditions is sometimes as complicated as choosing a new business partner or signing a business contract.
Many players stay away from online casino bonuses, fearing that there is some kind of hidden trap in them. Nothing could be further from the truth. It is definitely worth taking advantage of bonuses, but with a clear understanding of what is involved.
Let’s look at 3 ways that you can best pick a good no deposit casino bonus.
Step 1 – Quantum of the Bonus
You are likely to encounter two types of no deposit offers when you sign up at an online casino.
- No deposit bonus, which is a lump sum amount of money
- No deposit free spins, which is a number of free spins on slot games
It is obvious that the larger the bonus amount or the more the number of free spins, the better is the bonus offer. However, the range across online casinos is vast. We have seen no deposit bonuses ranging from $5 to $50 and the number of free spins ranging from 10 to 100. You will occasionally find online casinos that offer even better bonuses than these. We would say that if one online casino offers a no deposit bonus of $5 and another of $50 then go for the bigger one. On the other hand, if the difference in the bonus amounts is marginal, then compare the other terms more carefully.
Pro-tip – According to NoDepositHero.com a bonus from a casino that has not passed due diligence for fairness and security is not worth claiming, no matter how attractive it appears to be.
No Deposit Bonus or No Deposit Free Spins
The more important issue is to understand the material difference between no deposit bonus and no deposit free spins. Often you will come across the same online casino putting forward both offers and asking you to pick one of them.
The no deposit bonus is a given, known and fixed amount of which there is no ambiguity or uncertainty. This is the amount on which the wagering requirement has to be met before you can claim a cashout.
In the no deposit free spins, the amount on which the wagering requirement has to be met is not initially determined. You play the given free spins and the amount you win from them is deemed to be the bonus amount that is subject to the wagering requirement.
Let us compare a $20 no deposit bonus with 20 no deposit free spins. If you are unlucky with the free spins you may win only $5, and that will become your bonus. On the other hand, a lucky streak on the free spins could see you winning $100, which will then be your bonus. The choice, therefore, depends to an extent on your temperament. If you are a conservative player of the “a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush” type then opt for the bonus. If you prefer the excitement of risks and like to grapple with uncertainty then the free spins should be your choice.
Step 2 – Wagering Requirement
Bonuses are free playing money and therefore online casinos make sure that you play a stipulated amount with the bonus through the wagering requirement. The requirement is specified as a multiplier of the bonus (or the winnings from the free spins). A 30x wagering requirement on a $20 bonus means that you have to wager $600 before you can cash out.
A lower wagering requirement is obviously better. We find that in most cases it will be bunched between 30x and 60x. Wagering requirements of less than 30x the bonus are a steal and you should not think twice. Wagering requirements of more than 60x can be hard to fulfill and you should avoid such bonuses unless the other components are compelling.
Many new players are not clear as to exactly how the wagering requirements operate, and unfortunately, online casinos also do not spell things out. Here are the steps involved.
- The bonus amount is credited to your bonus balance.
- The amount decreases with every bet you place.
- The amount increases with every win.
- You have to win enough to place bets that total to the wagering requirement before the bonus balance is completely depleted.
Wagering requirements come with some fine print conditions that you should be aware of.
Step 3 – Maximum Cashout Limit
No deposit bonuses allow you to generate your own bankroll from the free playing money given by the online casino. The amount left in your bonus balance can be transferred to your cash balance up to a specified limit. This transferred amount becomes your money to withdraw or bet, as you please.
It is only fair that no deposit casino bonuses come with a maximum cashout limit. Quite often, players will end up with thousands of dollars after the wagering of the bonus and if they are permitted to cash out all this money, then the online casinos will bust. Most maximum cashout limits will lie between $50 and $100. We have come across online casinos that have set measly limits like $10 and we recommend that you avoid those.
Am I Guaranteed a Cashout?
This is a fair question and the answer is that there is no guarantee that a no deposit bonus will lead to a cash-out. An unlucky streak of losses could see the bonus balance becoming zero before the wagering requirement has been met. The point to keep in mind is that you have not lost anything from your pocket, only you have not been able to convert free playing money to your own money. There will be other bonuses in the future and you will win some and will lose some.