Beginner’s Guide

Introduction

Casino games are designed to give the house a small advantage, so a typical player loses money over time. Through strategies like card counting, a player can gain a small advantage at a brick & mortar casino. Many online casinos offer sign-up bonuses and other promotions that give the player a much larger edge. Bonuses can be used to shift the house edge in your favor and win over time or to simply reduce your losses without having to change your game choices or style of play.

Types of bonuses

There are many types of casino bonuses. The simplest is a cashable bonus with a wagering requirement. For example, a casino might offer a $200 sign-up bonus with a 25x bonus wagering requirement. The total wagering requirement is $200×25 = $5000. This $5000 wagering requirement can be done in 5000 $1 bets, 500 $10 bets, 50 $100 bets, or any other combination. A player is expected to lose an average of ~0.5% of their wager playing blackjack, so expected loss over the $5000 wagering is $5000×0.5% = $25. This leaves $175 of the $200 bonus as cashable profit. The Blackjack page goes into more detail about game strategy.

Before registering

Before taking a bonus, I recommend reading the full Terms & Conditions (T&C) associated with that bonus. If you cannot find a link to the terms on the casino’s webpage, ask a support rep for assistance. While reading the T&C, confirm the terms of the bonus; confirm that your country is not banned from playing at the casino and does not have increased wagering requirements from the default; and if you are under 21, confirm that the casino allows players who are 18-20.

About money

There are many money transfer options including credit cards, direct transfers to your bank account, and eWallets. I recommend getting a 3rd party eWallet to simplify transactions and reduce withdrawal delays. For non-US residents, the three main options are Neteller,Click2Pay, and MoneyBookers. They all have their own strengths and weaknesses. Neteller seems to be the most common choice.

Fair Play

The clear majority of casinos listed on this site are fair and reputable. Game outcomes are selected through a random number generator, and the casinos will pay winnings within a reasonable time frame. Do not worry, casinos do not have an interest in cheating, as the rules themselves are standing on their side.

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