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Here we offer fantastic advice for online casino players that will allow you to make more money on online gambling and to avoid some pitfalls which await an uninformed player that didn’t read this website.
There is no shortage of advice on OnlineCasinoBuzz (OCBUZZ) as we try to make every information available that can help you, the player, make the best choices and always play at casinos of highest possible quality.
We offer game guides that will help you learn to play a new game that you haven’t played before yet are interested in doing so, casino reviews that separate wheat from chaff and tell you what’s the best place to gamble online, and we have other advice for making money on gambling. We explain deposit and withdrawal options, welcome bonuses, probabilities of winning each game, and with all this information you can confidently gamble online.
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History of Online Casinos
Gambling has always been a favorite pastime, and with the invention of internet in 1990s a whole new industry emerged - online gambling. It is now worth around 50 billion US dollars per year, with a steady rapid growth and a tendency to double every ten years. Let’s have a look at how it all went down.
First online gambling companies
Clever entrepreneurs were quick to notice and seize the opportunity when internet became available, and the first online gambling licenses and companies emerged much before the dot-com bubble in late 1990s. Already in 1994, Antigua and Barbuda passed the act that allowed licenses to be granted to online casinos. Even before that, Microgaming developed first gambling software. This well-known developer of online slot games claims to have been the first to launch a fully functional real money online casino, The Gaming Club. InterCasino by CryptoLogic is also one of the first, and is still in existance today.
Steady growth enabled by payment processing
In 1996 there were only a dozen or so internet gambling websites, and next year that rose to a hundred, and in 1998 online gambling revenues already neared the first billion US dollars and poker rooms started opening as well. Innovations in the field of online payment processing went hand in hand with the growth of online gambling, as it allowed players to securely send and receive payments to gambling operators. This was the key in a world which was afraid of giving credit card information online at the time.
Newcomers and existing casinos go online
In late 1990s and early 2000s many new companies joined the online gambling industry, while some made a natural step forward from their land-based businesses (casinos and sportsbooks) and established an online presence. Earlier experience in gambling wasn’t a necessary requirement, and many companies started from scratch and joined the boom of online gambling.
The online gambling offer was rudimentary at first, and nothing like what we experience today. But with time, as the market became very competitive, new features and new games were added, all designed to attract more players. One of the most important aspects of online gambling was the introduction of a possibility to win a huge jackpot while playing online at home.
Progressive jackpot slots have been invented in 1986 by International Gaming Technology (IGT) and the first such slot game was Megabucks. In 2000s, online progressive jackpot slots temerged onto the scene, with King Cashalot (2004), Arabian Nights (2005), Mega Moolah (2009), Aztec’s Millions (2009) as some of the best-known representatives of the genre. Mega Moolah in particular served as the engine behind the growth of online slots gambling, with its jackpots worth millions that made the news every time.
Online Gambling Regulation
Not all has been going well for Internet gambling though, and many markets have either banned or heavily regulated the online gambling space, and the struggle continues today. Some of the best known examples of full bans are USA and Australia, with many more territories not allowing online gambling, but no ban so far managed to prevent the worldwide progress of online casino gambling.
Today we have hundreds if not thousands different online slot games to choose from, many of them with progressive jackpots, as well as fully immersive table games experiences with video streamed directly to desktop computer or mobile device. The industry continues to innovate and push the boundaries, and shows no signs of slowing down either in terms of revenue or providing new features.
Online Casino Review Guidelines
With so many online casinos that emerge on a monthly basis, it’s important to establish some guidelines that rank casinos against each other so we can decide which casino is the best place to gamble online.
While it’s not necessary for a casino to hold a strong license as that matters little, it’s necessary for a casino to be reputable and to adhere to good business practices. Most importantly, a casino has to pay winnings without causing any problems or delays, and this is the single most important trait of an online casino. Games must be provably fair, which is most often the case.
Casino Games offered
Casinos will differ greatly according to the number and quality of games they offer to their players. Some will focus on one game provider only, while others may offer games by more than one provider, sometimes even dozens. Some casinos have a live dealer casino while the others do not so that’s one option taken away from the player. Player tastes and demands vary, but in general it’s better to have a casino offer more products.
One of the most important aspects of every online casino is how is it treating the customers. Customer service must always be available and there shouldn’t be too many hoops to jump through before reaching a customer service representative, and queries and issues must be resolved quickly and fairly. It is usually obvious quite quickly if the casino is treating the player well or not. Game rules and dispute rules can also vary from casino to casino. Some casinos use an external dispute resolution service, while others keep everything in-house.
Deposits and withdrawals.
While not always the case, deposits and withdrawals must be free. At the very least, withdrawals must be free once per month. Withdrawals should be processed as fast as possible with a simple verification process, and there should be a number of payment methods available. At least the one which you usually use to fund your online gambling activities, as if it’s absent you need to switch to another one. It is better to have more choices.
Casino Bonuses and promotions
Most casinos offer some kind of welcome bonus, but what matters in the long run are the retention offers the existing players can claim. These can be deposit bonuses that can be used every month or every week, various tournaments, free spins, cash back, and a loyalty scheme that can earn you bonuses and other perks. All these combine to make the experience enjoyable and profitable.
Is Online Gambling Legal?
Many territories impose various restrictions on online gambling, with more or less success, and the same is true in USA where Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 (UIGEA) prohibied businesses from accepting payments related to gambling. But what does that mean for the player and is it still legal to send a payment to a gambling entity?
UIGEA applies to gambling operators
Operators are not allowed to accept payments knowingly related to gambling. However, there is nothing in UIGEA that says the player isn’t allowed to send payments related to gambling, and this part isn’t enforced. Players aren’t held liable for attempting to gamble online.
The Interstate Wire Act of 1961 prohibited remote transactions related to gambling, but the new 2011 interpretation of the Act said that transactions that don’t relate to a sporting event fall outside the reach of the Wire Act. So, all other types of online gambling, such as casino games for example, are not prohibited by this Act.
Situation differs in every state
Gambling and online gambling are generally legal across the US. The legal status differs in each state, but it is not illegal for players to gamble online and to send online payments knowingly related to gambling. It is the operators that have to navigate through legislation, as it is illegal for them to offer gambling services to Americans unless they are licensed to do so in the region.
The player doesn’t really need to worry about regulation in the US, as it’s the operators and the other interested parties who do all the heavy lifting and who fight the battle for better regulation. Many operators decided either to not enter the market at all, or to leave at some point, but there are many more that continue to offer their services to American players without any issues.
New Jersey passed online gambling legislation in 2013, and Delaware and Nevada also made advancements towards legislation, with Pennsylvania being the latest state to legalize online gambling. Players from other states may resort to numerous off-shore providers.
Payment processing remains an issue
As UIGEA prevents US banks from processing gambling-related payments, players and operators must find other ways to process deposits and withdrawals. There are options available in every online casino, and while none are as practical as a card transaction would be, there are always options to get things done.
To conclude, US players are free to play online casino games wherever they are accepted as customers, and everything beyond that is the responsibility of the operator. Payment processing isn’t easy, but legislation doesn’t allow anything better at the moment.
USA Online Casinos
There are many USA online casinos where Americans can gamble online, though there are some specific things that need to be considered. Casinos that operate in the US must be offshore casinos and are usually licensed in Kahnawake or Curacao, but it is perfectly safe and legal for American citizens to gamble online.
Selection of U.S. casinos
All the world’s major brands that operate under strict licenses such as Malta Gaming Authority or United Kingdom Gambling Commission are absent from the US market as they can’t offer their services there and still adhere to strict standards. An even bigger problem is that the majority of most popular slot game developers can’t offer their games in the US, such as NetEnt or Microgaming. Realtime Gaming is the most popular provider of slot games to Americans, and fortunately their portfolio is excellent. What all this means is that in the US there are less games and casinos to choose from, but at the same time quality games and quality casinos are still available. Operators and game developers that offer their services in the US must jump through some hoops in order to be able to do so, and it’s important for the player to check if the casino is reputable before playing there.
USA Deposit and withdrawal options
Situation with making deposits and withdrawals to online casinos when in the US can be a bit complicated, as banks are not allowed to process payments to a known online casino entity. The operators therefore make it their business to make the process easier for the players, but this still means the deposit may be declined or put on hold from time to time. That’s why many players just choose Western Union or even opt for bitcoin, which offers fast anonymous transactions and can’t be tracked. In all US-facing casinos it’s important to check withdrawal times for various methods as well as withdrawal fees, as most casinos will offer one free withdrawal per month while subsequent deposits incur a fee.
United States Casino Conclusion
Despite the unfavorable legislation, there are still plenty of quality US-facing online casinos that offer good customer service, reputable business practices, and a wide selection of games to choose from. Deposits and withdrawals are sometimes complicated and a bit slow, but there are always ways to make a secure deposit, and, much more importantly, withdrawal.
Canada Online Casinos
Canadian players have no shortage of online casinos to choose from as the majority of offshore casinos can offer their services to Canadian residents. Companies are not allowed to operate any online casinos or online poker rooms in Canada, but offshore operators aren’t under any restrictions so some of the best-known casinos with a Malta Gaming Authority or United Kingdom Gambling Commission license are free to offer their services to Canadians. One exception is the Kahnawake native reserve, which is in Canada, but is allowed to operate Canadian online casinos.
Selection of Canadian online casinos
Canadians can enjoy playing at the majority of world’s most popular casinos, as the most reputable brands that operate under strict licenses can offer their services to Canadians. There are at least 400 online casinos where players can play in Canadian Dollars, too, and there’s no shortage of welcome bonuses to choose from either. Bitcoin casinos are also available, of course.
Crucially, this means that Canadians can enjoy slot games from all the most popular slot game developers such as NetEnt, Microgaming, Realtime Gaming, Quickspin, Thunderkick, Novomatic, Bally, Betsoft, Playtech and almost all others. While in the U.S. the selection of slots is limited, Canadian players can play all the best slot games freely.
Canada deposit and withdrawal options
Other than credit cards, there are some money transfer options that are very popular in Canada. Citadel is one of the legally permitted payment methods for making deposits to online casinos, and the biggest advantage of Citadel is that the players aren’t required to enter any personal information and that no credit card, bank account or personal details are shared with third parties. It’s enough to just have a valid bank account and a player can use Citadel for fast and safe deposits. Most transactions are processed within 72 hours. ClickAndBuy is also a popular choice, with transactions processed within 3-5 business days, and InstaDebit is probably the most popular payment method as it allows instant deposits and withdrawals. FundSend and Paysafecard are also widely used.
Canada Casino Conclusion
It is relatively easy to gamble online in Canada as there are a lot of casinos available and deposits are easy and fast, so the only challenge a player is facing is actually choosing a casino to play in as they are so many available. Going for one of the best-known brands is usually a good choice, although there are many quality casinos that haven’t made a name for themselves yet but offer exceptional service.
How to Make a Casino Deposit
When making a deposit to an online casino, it’s important to choose a method that will make sure the transaction is processed fast and with minimal or no fees. Various casinos have different deposit and withdrawal methods available, but it’s these four that are most popular:
Credit cards (Visa / MasterCard / Amex)
Credit cards are the fastest and simplest way to deposit money to an online casino, although the transaction may fail from time to time. Operators frequently change payment processors in order to ensure that the deposit will not be blocked by the card issuer, so it’s best to try this method first. If it repeatedly fails, there are other options worth considering.
An alternative to a credit card linked to a bank account is a prepaid card. In this case the transaction won’t be blocked for depositing to a known online casino, and it still has the benefit of an instant transaction. Prepaid cards may be purchased with numerous retailers. It’s important to check with the online casino if they accept prepaid cards, and which, as majority will accept Visa branded cards but it’s best to ask first.
This would be the most popular - and fail proof - deposit method. Some casinos may have it listed as Western Union while others will call it Money Transfer, but it means the same thing. It’s a safe, easy and fast way to process payments. There are many online casinos that accept Western Union deposits.
Bitcoin is an anonymous way to process payments, and a bitcoin wallet can also be used to accept a withdrawal from a casino. This transaction is guaranteed to go through, as the authorities can’t decline the transaction or hold funds. Online casino will provide you with a bitcoin address to send to, and all you need to do is to buy some bitcoin, put it in your wallet, and send to the casino address.
When to Cash Out Winnings
As every player will know, the key to winning money at an online casino is knowing when to cash out winnings. There are two elements to this, quitting while you’re ahead and making sure the withdrawal is free.
It is simple - if you withdraw your winnings when you’re ahead, you’ll make money. The difficult part is to judge when exactly you should stop playing and should instead say it’s enough and withdraw yourself and your money from the game. This is actually the only advantage the player has over the casino in general. Waiting until the balance is positive and then leaving the game.
If after a longer losing streak you manage to find yourself in positive, it would be a good idea to withdraw the money and not to wait for another losing streak to bring you back to negative. Also, after any huge win it is mathematically very unlikely that you’ll win again soon or that you will keep winning, so it’s best to just withdraw the money. Perhaps withdraw the amount you’re happy with, and leave some funds in the casino so you can continue playing for fun.
Casino withdrawal rules
Many casinos don’t want to deal with small withdrawals on a daily basis as it costs money, so they generally tend to offer things like one free withdrawal per month, though there are casinos where withdrawals are free. It’s important to check the withdrawal rules of your casino and to plan your withdrawals ahead, as rules differ for various withdrawals methods. Otherwise, you might find yourself paying a significant withdrawal fee.
Most players won’t need to withdraw the money more than once per month anyway, as the purpose of depositing money into a casino is to have money you can actually play with. Withdrawing money as it’s needed to pay for something is a poor strategy, not only because it will often incur hefty fees, but because it means the player is gambling with the money he needs for other things.
To conclude, it’s better to withdraw larger chunks of money once per month than to make numerous small withdrawals, and it’s crucial to recognize the moment when you’re ahead of the casino and should cash out, avoiding the losing streak which is almost sure to follow.
Playing Free Casino Games
Playing free casino games is a fun way to try out many different casino games and find the one you like before depositing money and playing for real. Majority of players play free casino games before committing to one with their own funds.
Types of free online casino games
Most commonly, players play free versions of online slots which are always identical to the real one which is played for real money. Some players will decide to try table games such as roulette and blackjack, or play some video poker.
Free online slots
Most casinos will let you play for fun before you commit to playing for real money, and this is a great way to try out a slot game and see how you like it. The questions that need answering are usually if the slot game is paying often enough, how does the bonus round look like and is it rewarding, and is the game fun to play. Generally, players play free online slots to see if they’ll end up with a positive balance, and if they do, they might just switch over to the real thing and invest some money into that slot game that proved to be rewarding during free play.
Crucially, by playing free slots a player may test out many different slots without risking any money in doing so, and then decide which slots are worth playing and which are probably not. There is also no planning involved regarding money transfers, as the game doesn’t need to be funded, and often a registration isn’t necessary either.
Free slots can be found either on online casino websites or websites that offer free slots, and the great thing about this is that the slot game will be the same regardless of the casino. If you like a certain slot, you can go ahead and play it at any casino that has the game.