No Deposit Bonuses
How Do No Deposit Bonuses Work?
Understanding how an online casino no deposit bonus works is super important for gamblers.
Why? Because it’s a value given to players by online casinos to make gambling on their site or app more appealing.
However, this bonus comes with conditions, and that can mean you need to pay your own money in order to get it.
From answering the question of how an online casino no deposit bonus works to explaining wagering requirements, this guide explains all the important facts about these gambling bonuses.
What exactly are online casino no deposit gambling bonuses?
One of the most appealing offers used by online casinos is the no deposit bonus.
Although a small bonus, it serves to attract a large number of new players by guaranteeing them a free sum of money or an offer with value (e.g. free spins), subject to completing the terms and conditions set by the individual casino.
This money is available to gamblers who don’t need to deposit any of their own cash first.
How is this bonus used by online casinos? In two ways:
It can either be used as a way of welcoming new players to an online casino
It can be used as a way to reward loyal gamblers for continuing to use the site
These bonuses are also known as ‘free cash bonuses’ or ‘free bonuses.’
How does an online casino no deposit bonus work?
An online casino no deposit bonus works in a very simple way – players sign up to the offer and are then eligible to collect free money once they have satisfied the terms of the offer.
Casinos offer a range of different amounts to players, but the most common amounts are £5 to £10.
One of the most important things to understand about how these casino bonuses work is that they are not completely free.
Why is this? Because in order to get access to the free money, you often need to spend some of your own cash, once you’ve signed up.
As we’ve established, you don’t pay any of your own money up front to get access to a bonus.
Instead, players accrue credit with the casino by playing eligible games and wagering money on them. How this works is that casinos will ask you to wager a certain value of the no deposit bonus in order to get it. For example, if a bonus is £10 and the wagering requirement is 10x, then you need to wager £100.
Do wagering requirements mean I need to deposit money to get my bonus?
A popular example of how the no deposit bonus wagering requirement works is that gamblers build up credits to their profile while they play the casino’s games. This doesn’t necessarily mean that they spend their own money.
For instance, if the offer is aimed at existing players, they can use their bankroll — and if every step they make towards getting to the necessary credit comes without losing, then they won’t need to add their bankroll.
There are two clear examples where these online casino bonus isn’t free:
If you have no existing bankroll
If your existing bankroll doesn’t count towards the wagering requirement
In both of these examples, and before you can claim your bonus, you will need to invest some of your own money in order to meet the wagering requirements.
What are the different types of no deposit bonus & how do they work?
Online casinos offer several varieties of bonuses that you can get without making a deposit.
The two key questions gamblers have about these incentives are:
What types of online casino bonus can I get without making a deposit?
How do these different online casino no deposit bonuses work for me?
Below, we give you a brief overview of the most popular ones that are available to gamblers – answering those two questions, so you can decide which bonus works best for you.
Do I get a cash bonus with a no deposit offer? Yes
This is a small welcome gift of cash given away to players who have just signed up. Online casinos usually give away small cash bonuses of £5 or £10 to newly registered players. And you may even be able to get this benefit if you're an existing player. This is because some online casinos offer loyalty rewards to their returning gamblers.
Do I get free spins with a no deposit offer? Yes
Some casinos give away free spins on featured slots to newly registered players – certain gambling sites even offer these rewards to existing players, as part of a loyalty bonus.
For example, Casumo, one of the best UK casinos we’ve reviewed, gives away 30 free spins to new gamblers as part of its sign up offer – the number of spins is subject to change and may not be the same amount when you visit the Casumo website.
Do I get free plays with a no deposit offer? Yes
This is a relatively new variety of no deposit bonus, which players can grab as soon as they sign up. It is larger than a no deposit cash bonus. Players are then challenged to use their free play bonus for a set amount of time (for example, one hour or 90 minutes) and win as many real money prizes as they can.
How to claim an online casino bonus
Getting access to the money you are eligible for as part of the no deposit feature is not as simple as signing up and cashing out – online casinos place conditions (often wagering requirements) on gamblers to make sure they get something in return for the ‘free’ money they give to players.
Here are the various steps involved in claiming a no deposit bonus.
Create a new account at an online casino.
In some casinos, players will have to contact customer care and express their interest to receive the bonus.
Sometimes, players have to input an alphanumeric bonus code available at the online casino.
Players who are signing up through an affiliate site will have to input the alphanumeric bonus code provided by that site.
You meet the conditions (such as wagering requirements) needed to access the bonus(es).
The online casino will credit the bonus(es).
When claiming a no deposit bonus, players must understand that it is associated with a number of terms and conditions. You cannot withdraw a no-deposit bonus. You can only withdraw the winnings, but after satisfying the wagering conditions.
Do mobile casinos offer bonuses that don’t need me to make a deposit?
Bonuses that require no deposit to be made aren’t only available to gamblers who use the website version of an online casino – mobile casinos also offer these bonuses.
Mobile casino gambling is increasingly popular among players and most online casinos seek to appeal to players by creating an app to go alongside their website.
Part of the attraction of mobile casino apps is that many offer bonuses that don’t require gamblers to make a deposit, in the same way that the websites for online casinos do.
Can I keep the winnings I make from a no deposit bonus?
The question every gambler asks with no deposit bonus is whether they can keep them. The answer is that you can keep the winnings from these bonuses but you need to work for them.
Online casinos are obliged to pay gamblers the promised no deposit bonus once they’ve met the terms and conditions for their payment, meaning that you keep the winnings.
However, the bigger question is whether you make any real winnings from these online casino bonuses.
This is because the wagering requirements mean that you may end up paying significantly higher than the value of your no deposit bonus in order to get it – can it really be said that £10 amounts to winnings if you’ve had to wager £100 to get it?
How does a no deposit bonus work for existing players?
No deposit bonuses are primarily for people who create a new account with an online casino. But that doesn’t mean there’s no such thing as an existing player no deposit bonus.
Existing players can earn a no deposit bonus. Unlike the rewards that new gamblers get, these come as part of a loyalty bonus and are offered credited as free chips.
Check the promotions page of the casino you’re thinking about using to see if it offers an existing player no deposit bonus.
What’s no deposit bonus abuse?
Online casinos hardly offer no-deposit bonuses directly in order to save themselves from bonus abuse – when players sign up at online casinos only to claim the bonus offer, it is known as bonus abuse.
No deposit bonuses are usually offered through affiliate links, which is why experts urge new players never to sign up directly at an online casino. Always sign up through approved affiliate links to get the best deals.
What’s a wagering requirement?
A wagering requirement is a value you need to achieve in order for your no deposit bonus to be credited to you. This value can either be in cash amount or in-game currency.
You receive a cash bonus. You need to wager a specific amount of your no deposit bonus to get it. For instance, if a no deposit bonus of £10 has a wagering requirement of x10, you need to wager a total of £100.
You receive a bonus in-game currency, such as free spins. You must wager the required amount of the no deposit bonus to get your bonus. For example, if a no deposit bonus of 10 free spins has a wagering requirement of x10, you need to wager 100 spins to get your bonus.
Is an online casino deposit bonus free money for me to gamble with?
Whether a no deposit bonus amount to free money depends on your definition of free. Yes, online casinos will give you money (or game currency), but there is a charge for this. The result is that you could pay a lot of your own money before you are able to access your free no deposit bonus.
As we’ve established, you don’t pay any of your own money up front to get access to a no deposit bonus. Instead, players accrue credit with the casino by playing eligible games and wagering money on them. How this works is that casinos will ask you to wager a certain value of the no deposit bonus in order to get it. For example, if a no deposit bonus is £10 and the wagering requirement is 10x, then you need to wager £100.
Do online casinos offer a Christmas bonus?
Many online casinos offer seasonal bonuses, such as free spins, cash rewards, or bet boosts.
A no deposit Christmas bonus is often used by gambling sites to attract new players and reward existing ones, with the type of offer used depending on the individual site.
We recommend you keep an eye out during Christmas to see what bonuses are on offer from your favourite online casinos.