Online casinos offer a number of bonuses in hopes of drawing you. These bonuses are exciting, because they give you a chance to win extra money on top your play. You’ll find plenty of bonuses throughout the internet gaming world. And no deposit offers are definitely out among the most popular of these deals.
Many sites offer no deposit bonuses, which is great from the perspective that you have lots of variety to choose from. The downside to this variety, though, is that you may have difficulty picking the most valuable offer. This is why I’m going to discuss how you can compare no deposit deals to get the most value. But first, I’ll cover the basics of these bonuses in case you’re new to them.
What Is a No Deposit Bonus?
Many online casino bonuses require you to make a deposit in order to qualify. No deposit bonuses differ, though, because you can qualify for them without depositing. This gives you an opportunity to make money at an online casino without spending anything. If you’re dealing with a small bankroll, no deposit bonuses offer a perfect chance to increase your gaming funds.
Some no deposit deals also require you to enter a bonus code during the registration process. For example, you might have to use code “NODEPOSIT10” to qualify. Online casinos require these codes to differentiate which bonus you’re going for. You can find these codes either at the casinos themselves for affiliate sites.
Terms and Conditions behind No Deposit Bonuses
The biggest misconception about no deposit offers is that they equate to free money. This isn’t true, however, because you must earn no deposit bonus money by meeting terms and conditions. T&Cs differ based on the casino you’re dealing with. But the terms featured below are the most common.
Wagering requirements (a.k.a. playthrough) refer to the amount of money that you must bet before no deposit money is officially yours. You get to keep anything that’s left over from a no deposit bonus after meeting playthrough. Oftentimes, you only receive a fraction of the original starting bonus – if anything.
Here’s an example:
- You qualify for a $10 no deposit bonus.
- Wagering requirements are 25x the offer.
- 25 x 10 = $250 must be wagered
- You bet $250 total and have $5 left.
- This $5 is yours to keep or cash out.
Minimum withdrawals affect whether you can withdraw limited earnings from a no deposit bonus, which I’ll discussed later. But the general idea is that you keep whatever is left from these offers. You may even get hot and win more than the original no deposit bonus is worth. In the example above, you could turn your $10 deal into $30 in winnings.
Lower wagering requirements give you a better chance to collect money from no deposit deals. You’ll normally be dealing with anywhere from 15x to 60x playthrough on these offers. You definitely want to focus on deals that have playthrough in the lower range. Anything close to 60x wager requirements severely reduce the chances that you’ll walk away from a bonus deal with anything.
Game Restrictions & Reduced Playthrough Contributions
In a perfect world, you could simply choose games with the best payback in order to meet playthrough. Baccarat, blackjack, craps, French roulette, and video poker offer some of the highest return to player (RTP). These gameslower the odds of you losing money while meeting wagering requirements.
Of course, casinos are fully aware that you can simply choose games with the best RTP. Therefore, they commonly attach bonus stipulations to their highest-paying games. Some games will be completely restricted from meeting playthrough for no deposit bonuses. Others still qualify, but offer reduced contributions towards wagering requirements.
Here’s an example of the latter:
- You’re eligible for a $20 no deposit bonus.
- Playthrough is 20x.
- 20 x 20 = $400
- You play blackjack.
- Blackjack only counts 10% towards wagering requirements.
- 400 / 0.1 = $4,000 must be wagered
You can still expect high payback when playing blackjack and many other table games. But you’ll often find that slots are better for unlocking no deposit winnings.
Here’s a comparison to explain:
- You’re eligible for a $10 no deposit offer.
- Playthrough is 25x.
- 20 x 20 = $400 must be wagered
- You play a slots game with 95% RTP (5% house edge).
- 400 x 0.05 = $20 in theoretical slots losses
- You play baccarat (1.06% house edge)
- Baccarat only counts 10% towards wagering requirements.
- 400 / 0.1 = $4,000 must be wagered
- 4,000 x 0.0106 = $42.40 in theoretical baccarat losses
Both the slot and baccarat will see you lose your bonus before meeting playthrough more times than not. This is common with any no deposit offer. But the slot with 95% RTP at least gives you a better chance to reach wagering requirements and still have money left over.
Placing huge bets is a common strategy used to meet wagering requirements as quickly as possible. The idea here is to reduce your exposure to the house edge by making the biggest wagers when meeting playthrough. If you must wager $300 to meet no deposit bonus wagering requirements, for example, you could simply choose a slots that allows you to risk this much.
This is why gaming sites commonly attach max bet requirements to no deposit offers. For instance, you may not be allowed to place bets higher than $10 when a no deposit bonus is active.
Claim & Playthrough Deadlines
Casinos require you to claim your no deposit deal after completing account registration. This process involves visiting your account area and selecting the claim option. Failure to do so within the allotted time means that you’ll lose the offer. You typically have between 3-7 days to claim a bonus.
Gaming sites also force you to meet wagering requirements within a reasonable timeframe. You might have anywhere from 30-90 days to meet playthrough depending upon the casino.
Every internet casino has a minimum withdrawal amount that they require. These limits help reduce the number of withdrawal requests that casinos have to deal with. A byproduct of minimum cashouts is that you won’t be able to withdraw tiny no deposit bonus winnings.
Here’s an example:
- You’re eligible for a $15 no deposit bonus.
- You win $3 after meeting playthrough.
- The minimum cashout is $20.
- You must turn $3 into $20 before having the chance to cash out.
The fact that you have to meet the minimum cashout makes it even harder to win anything from your no deposit bonus. Chances are that if you do have small winnings after reaching playthrough, you’ll lose them while trying to reach the withdrawal limit.
I mentioned earlier that you can go on a hot streak and win much more than your original no deposit offer is worth. It’s exciting to think about earning a huge sum without even having to deposit. But casinos cover themselves by capping the amount of money you can win from these offers. Max winnings for no deposit bonuses often range from $50 to $150. Anything that you earn above these amounts will disappear upon withdrawing.
Here’s an example:
- A casino caps no deposit winnings at $100.
- You win $200 from your deal.
- You deposit and only receive $100 of this amount.
You might think it’s unfair that casinos cap your winnings. But it’s also important to consider that gaming sites offer these deals for free, and they don’t want to get burned by somebody who may have no intention of depositing.
Internet casinos always have a goal with every bonus they offer. And their mission with no deposit bonuses is to recruit potential real money players. This is why some sites include a deposit requirement in order to claim your winnings. If you earn $10 from your no deposit offer, for instance, you’ll need to deposit the minimum before you can withdraw money.
Of course, you can make this deposit and then cash everything out, including the winnings. But casinos still stand a better chance of getting real money players by requiring a deposit.
Voided Welcome Deposit Bonus
Chasing a no deposit offer isn’t a no-brainer decision. As a new player, you’re often forced to choose between going for a no deposit bonus or the standard welcome deposit offer. The latter refers to match percentage bonuses that require a deposit in order to qualify.
Here’s an example:
- A casino is offering a 100% match bonus up to $200.
- You deposit $150, making you eligible for a $150 bonus.
- You meeting wagering requirements.
- You can now withdraw your $150 bonus.
The advantage to standard deposit bonuses is that you have an opportunity to win more. Moreover, you’re guaranteed to earn your bonus upon meeting playthrough and other T&Cs. Contrast this to no deposit deals, where you’re more likely to lose everything from a bonus and end up with nothing.
Whether you go for a no deposit offer and void the welcome deposit bonus may depend upon your bankroll situation. If you have a large bankroll, then you might just want to opt for the deposit offer.
Important Comparison Factors between No Deposit Bonuses
The gaming industry is filled with plenty of no deposit deals. Therefore, you don’t have to look hard to find a casino offering one of these bonuses. But the skill is in sorting out the good from the bad offers. Here’s a look at how you can use the terms and conditions to find quality deals.
Low Wagering Requirements
Playthrough is the first thing you should look at when comparing deposit offers. I mentioned earlier that low wagering requirements give you a stronger chance of releasing no deposit winnings. But what exactly constitutes low playthrough? You should focus on deals that offer wagering requirements ranging from 10x to 25x. Anything above this range makes it very hard to earn cash from a no deposit bonus.
Here’s a look at the difference between a bonus with low and high wagering requirements:
- Casino A is offering a no deposit bonus worth $25.
- This deal carries 50x wagering requirements.
- 25 x 50 = $1,250 must be wagered
- Casino B is also offering a no deposit deal worth $25.
- This deal carries 25x wagering requirements.
- 25 x 25 = $625 must be wagered
You obviously want to choose the second casino in this instance, because you’ll only have to wager half as much before potentially winning something from your no deposit bonus.
Size of Bonus
The size of a no deposit bonus can be overrated. After all, what good is a $75 offer when you have to meet 60x wagering requirements? Nevertheless, you should at least take the bonus size into account before choosing a deal. No deposit offers can be worth just $5 or as much as $100. You should shop around until finding a deal that suits your tastes.
Which Games Have Reduced Playthrough Contributions?
It’s important to look at games that are restricted or have reduced playthrough requirements before chasing a no deposit bonus. Some casinos allow certain table games and slots with 98% RTP to count 100% towards wagering requirements. Other sites may reduce playthrough contributions on slots with 97% RTP and every table game.
I discussed earlier how the payback of your chosen games has a direct impact on meeting playthrough. Higher RTP gives you a stronger chance at collecting bonus money.
Comparing Minimum Withdrawals
Minimum cashouts also play a large role in your chances of withdrawing no deposit winnings. Online casinos differ on the minimum cashout amount they require. Some casinos are generous and allow you to cash out as little as $10, while others feature a minimum withdrawal of $25.
You may care less about being able to withdraw $10. But you should definitely pay attention to the minimum cashouts if you’re satisfied with any kind of winnings.
Max Amount You can Win
You never know when your next gambling hot streak is coming. In fact, it could happen while you’re playing to meet wagering requirements on ano deposit deal. In this instance, you want the ability to withdraw the most amount of money possible. This is when it pays to choose no deposit bonuses that let you cash out more winnings. Great deals let you withdraw anywhere from $150 to $200. In contrast, you should avoid an offer that only lets you cash out $50 or less.
Reputation of the Casino
One last factor you want to look at before choosing a specific no deposit deal is the reputation of the casino offering it. Sure, this has nothing to do with meeting wagering requirements or how much money can win. But it’s still good to look into a casino’s reputation to ensure that you’ll get potential winnings with no problem.
Some gaming sites have ambiguous terms and conditions and/or are shady when it comes to paying bonuses. A quick Google search will reveal what kind of casino you’re dealing with before you go through the hassle of registering and meeting playthrough. Luckily, most online casinos care about their reputation and honor legitimate bonus winnings. Just in case, though, you should spend 5-10 minutes researching a casino before going through the registration process.
This is why it’s good to compare gaming sites before you choose an offer. The most important factors to consider include wagering requirements, max winnings, the minimum withdrawal, reduced playthrough contributions, and max bets. This sounds like a lot to look at just for a no deposit bonus. But over time, you’ll become faster at spotting key points in terms and conditions and ultimately choosing the best deals possible.
You especially want to research the casino involved if you’re also thinking about making a deposit afterward. Picking a good casino from the start ensures that your no deposit bonus winnings will be honored, and you’ll have a quality place to gamble for real money.