Introduction To Online Casinos
Once you decide that you want to play at an online casino, it’s a good idea to get an understanding of what you can expect. It can be a little daunting to step into an online casino for the first time because there’s sometimes a lot going on all over the screen, but there’s nothing to worry about, it can all be broken down into different sections that you can get a grip of quickly.
It’s mainly just important that you understand some of the terms broadly used by online casinos, so that you can get around more easily and more importantly just enjoy the experience rather than having to waste time with wondering if you’re doing the right thing or if you’re in the right place for the type of game you want to play.
1. What is an online casino and why play at one?
An online casino is a website or online platform that allows people to gamble online legally from their own devices. You don’t necessarily have to use real money in all online casinos and can just opt to play the games in a demo mode. You’ll get the same games you get at land based casinos at online casinos, slots, blackjack, roulette and many variations of poker.
2. Does the same legal age limit apply to online casinos?
As with land based casinos, gambling online if you are under age is illegal and casinos will make sure that you meet their identification requirements both by asking you to agree to their terms of service when you sign up, and then asking you for identification when you decide to withdraw winnings.
3. Are online casinos safe to use?
Not all online casinos are made equally and as such there are some casinos that like to work a little outside the lines of what is in the best interest for their customers. When we do our online casino reviews we make sure to only vouch for casinos that are fully registered and legally licenced to operate. If we come across any casinos that we feel are breaking the rules or conducting business nefariously, we will highlight that in our review about them and will encourage readers to not play there.
4. Can I play from any country?
Online casinos are subject to a lot of laws and they have to get licences from specific countries to operate and serve their players, depending on where they are. This means that not all casinos offer the same services to every location and if you are in one of their restricted locations, you won’t be able to sign up and in the case of some casinos, you may not even be able to visit the page.
For most of Europe, Canada and New Zealand this isn’t a problem, but for the US where online gambling is heavily restricted, players there will either have to find a casino that operates from a location that isn’t subject to US laws, or will outright not be allowed to gamble online. Most casinos also have VPN detection methods that mean you won’t be able to circumvent their restrictions.
5. Are the odds of an online casino the same as at a land based casino?
When running any type of casino, randomness is something that is a basic requirement. What this means is that the outcome of a single roll, spin or card being dealt, has to have been done in a way where neither the dealer or the player has been able to influence the outcome. In land based casinos, this is done by the dealers and the way that cards are shuffled and roulette wheels are spun. Every time any of these events happens, neither you nor the dealer can know exactly what the result will be.
At an online casino, everything is virtual, the cards, the roulette wheels, everything. This means that systems have to be used that simulate randomness. The algorithms that are used to accomplish this are called Random Number Generators or for short RNG. RNG systems are by their nature designed to produce random results with numbers and each individual running of the RNG produces results which are random and not based on any previous use. Online casinos are audited regularly by external third parties to have their Random Number Generators checked and make sure they haven’t been modified in any way.
Additionally to this, it would make no sense for casinos to rig their systems to benefit them more because aside from risking their licences and millions of dollars worth of fines, they would quickly lose all their player base. Players that play at online or offline casinos know that the casino always has the house edge, but they also want their preferred place of play to be fair and RNG ensures this for everyone involved.
6. What are the bonuses and promotions and where can I get them?
There is a lot of competition between online casinos and so they offer new players bonuses to join and deposit money with them. Some of these bonuses can be very generous and can really start off your online casino adventure with a plus. As well as this, casinos you are already signed up to and playing at will offer you better promotions and prizes for being a loyal, regular player. We research and find the best bonus sign up offers we can find and add them to each and every casino review. Alternatively to this you can just check our top ten casino list on the homepage and use the bonuses from there.
7. How do I deposit money?
You can deposit money at online casinos very easily nowadays using credit/debit cards and a selection of ewallets, including PayPal sometimes. Not all casinos will have the same deposit and withdrawal methods but all payment methods will be verified and have the same basic functions of allowing you to add money to your casino account on the fly.
8. Is my money safe after I deposit it?
Any bonus money you have in your account will not be able to be withdrawn, this is for the obvious reason that it would pretty much bankrupt a casino to allow it. Any money that is you have deposited and any other winnings from that money you will be able to withdraw at any time. At that point the casino will ask you to verify who you are through some form of identification. This is both for their safety because they are asked to comply by licensing agencies and for yours to prove you are the right age.
9. Why do online casinos ask for so much personal information, including my phone number?
These are standard requests that an online casino will make of their players. The first set of information to open your account is an email and usually a phone number. This is just standard to secure your account and if that makes you feel uncomfortable, then you shouldn’t continue any further because online that’s the basics of joining any website. When you decide to withdraw your winnings most verified online casinos will ask you for a valid form of identification to make sure they are paying out someone who is of the right legal age to gamble online.
10. Can online casinos be cheated?
In essence, no, online casinos cannot be cheated. Card counting as well as other counting or tracking methods do not work at online casinos because decks are shuffled after every hand rendering those methods useless. Additionally to this, the Random Number Generator algorithms used at online casinos are regularly checked by third parties to make sure they are always working fairly and without interference from players or the casino itself.
11. Are there limits for withdrawing my winnings?
Yes, some casinos will impose daily withdrawal limits, but we’re talking withdrawals that are in the hundreds of thousands and they limit the withdrawals due to banking issues. A lot of casinos will be limit free and that means you can withdraw as much as you like.