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Deposit Bonus – Bonusapedia

by Natalie Wills – 14 March 2017

Deposit bonusOnline casinos attract new players with fancy no deposit bonus offers, but how a casino treats its paying customers is often a much more important sign of whether you have found a keeper or not. For that reason, we think the deposit bonus is really a much more important factor to consider when it comes to deciding where you want to splash your cash. Here is our go-to guide for deciding which deposit bonus is the one for you:

Deposit bonus matches – how high can you go?

The classic element of any deposit bonus is the match – the amount of bonus funds a casino is willing to give a player in exchange for their first deposit. If you compare a deposit bonus to a meal, the free spins are like the desert – the match is the meat and potatoes.

High percentage matching bonus
200% matching bonus up to £200 + 200 free spins
High percentage matching bonus
300% matching bonus up to £300 + 100 free spins
High deposit bonus limit
Up to £5,000 matching bonus

There are two numbers important for determining how good a matching deposit bonus is: the percentage match, and the upper limit of bonus funds on offer. For example, some casinos will offer a relatively high matching deposit bonus (say 200%) but set a limit of £20 in bonus funds. That’s still perhaps a good deal, but if you are looking for a nice wedge of bonus funds to spread about it is unlikely to satisfy you.

As a good rule of thumb, we would recommend any deposit bonus with a 100% match or more with a limit that goes as high as you normally like to deposit. We have left that last figure open because the limit is only a factor if it is low enough to cut down on your bonus windfall. Some people like small £10 deposits, some like do deposit hundreds or even thousands at a time. If the upper limit is above your normal deposit amount, go for it.

Watch the wagering requirement and time limits!

A matching deposit bonus almost always comes with a wagering requirement. This stipulates as a condition of your bonus you promise to place wagers up to a certain amount before you cash out (expressed as a number followed by ‘x,’ as in 30x or 45x). We have written another Bonusapedia article about wagering requirements you might want to look at, but in brief, the lower the requirement the better.

As a rule of thumb, 30x or below is a good wagering requirement. This means you are required to wager 30 times the bonus amount before cashing out (just be aware some casinos apply the wagering requirement to the bonus AND the deposit, making a 30x requirement the equivalent of a 60x or 90x bonus-only target).

mFortune Casino is a very rare example of a casino with a deposit bonus without a wagering requirement. The only rule is you play through your bonus one time (1x), which anyone would do anyway (with a 100% match up to £100, the mFortune welcome bonus is strongly recommended by Bonus Bulldog – see here).

Another factor that you should always be aware of is the time limit for meeting the wagering requirement. The standard time is usually about a month, but some casinos slip in a 14 day or even 7 day time limit to meet a fairly high wagering requirement. Don’t accidentally forfeit your deposit bonus by running out of time to play through it all!

Did anyone say free spins?

Okay, okay, we kind of dissed free spins at the start of this post but they are still a fantastic part of most first deposit bonus offers. There is a HUGE amount of variety out there, and there are no two alike. Here are some key factors to have a look out for:

  1. How many free spins? Try and get at least 20 with your first deposit.
  2. Which games? Some casinos specify which games, some let you choose.
  3. Do you get them all at once, or a few spins every once in a while? Some free spins offers give you dozens of free spins in one go, some eke them out a few at a time over a period of weeks.
  4. Wagering requirements? Most casinos apply a wagering requirement to any winnings from free spins, but some (Instacasino, ComeOn!, mFortune, and Queen Vegas) do not.
  5. Time limits? Free spins do not normally last forever. Some last only for 24 hours. Do not lose your spins by missing the deadline!

There are so many possible variations for free spins offers out there it is difficult to say what type is best, but we have included links to some of our favourites on this post.

The deposit bonus: time to get serious!

When it comes to starting a new casino relationship, a no deposit bonus is like flirting – it is a bit of harmless fun, but you are not likely to get anywhere with flirting alone.

A first deposit bonus is like a first date, however. Your chances of a big score are much better, and if you get lucky you might end up with the perfect partner.

So, stop messing around with no deposit bonus offers only. It is time to get serious! Welcome Bonus