Online gambling in the UK is a huge industry, with online casinos grossing at £3.2 billion between April 2018 and March 2019 and over an additional £2 billion revenue from both online betting and bingo, the gambling industry increases exponentially each year.
Whether you’re a distinguished gambler or a newcomer, there are always aspects of the industry that are unchartered territory, so here are five aspects of the gambling industry that may help you as you play.
The most popular game
Unsurprisingly to many, slots games take the prime place as the most popular game within the industry. Whether the appeal lies in the interesting visuals, the immersive gameplay, or the potential to win big – slots like these have always reigned as an undeniably staple on gambling apps or sites.
Since the first establishment of online casinos, the thrill of slots games have continually attracted gamblers due to the lack of skill and strategy required in order to win substantial jackpots and prizes. A game focused solely on luck and only requiring small initial bets, the fulfillment prompted by wins correlates with its popularity.
Often individuals sign up to gambling sites or apps due to the eye catching promise of ‘free spins’ or ‘£30 to bet’, however, a majority of casinos aren’t going to supply new customers with free money. So if you are ever enticed by these deals, it is essential to read through the terms and conditions of the app to gauge whether the deal is actually applicable with no initial spend.
If your intentions when playing were to be a beneficiary of these ‘deals’ your luck might be dwindling, unless you also intend to invest personal funds into the gameplay.
Gambling for free?
What many newcomers to the world of gambing might not realise, is that there is the option to play games that pique your interest for free. It is always advisable that prior to trying out a game that involves you betting your own money, you should trial a free alternative to the game.
This will provide you with a feel for the way in which the rules apply to the gameplay, thus allowing you to make a comprehensive decision on whether it is a game you feel could be profitable or enjoyable when gambling. Always ensure that diving straight into the deep end isn’t common practice when gambling your own money.
Many casinos offer free bets or deposit bonuses to entice new customers, these often come in the form of “bet x get x” offers or percentage bonuses. Percentage bonuses usually come in the form of 50%, 100% or 200% deposit bonuses, where if you deposited say $100, you would receive $50, $100 or $200 free depending on the bonus amount.
Free bets and deposit bonuses are great as long as you read the terms as some casinos insist on many terms and conditions, such as time limits, device specific bonuses or insist that bonuses are only used on particular games. Another way in which casinos control their promotions is by having specific deposit or withdrawal conditions, for example some will require that bonuses are not given on PayPal deposits.
Progressive jackpots are prizes that gradually increase as players bet and lose on a specific game. These jackpots can start from £100 and even reach staggering heights progressing to record numbers of over £17 million. These jackpots are perhaps some of the most exciting due to the alluring potential of playing continuously to win big.
However, unfortunately, the potential of winning such a vast amount of money is significantly low, but those who are lucky enough to win become instant millionaires and the jackpot resets once again to a default value.
When gambling, sometimes the appeal of big numbers and high stakes is enough to encourage players to join – yet many of these sites are actually untrustworthy. Untrustworthy gambling sites and apps often entice players, take their money and are rigged to an unfair bias.
This creates the need to intently research each gambling site or the developers to deduce if the service is reliable and verified with a casino license. However, if they are not, you might be setting yourself up to lose more money than you’ll ever gain.
Generally a good rule of thumb is to gamble with casinos that are licensed to provide services to customers in your region. Within the UK for example the licensing body is the UKGC whom hand out (and revoke) licenses to casinos who meet their strict set of terms and conditions. They control what bonuses can be offered, how these are advertised, whom they are targeted to and what rights players have, amongst other things.
The UKGC can hand out fines to companies that don’t have the correct procedures in place to protect problem gamblers, companies that don’t have the correct anti money laundering processes in place along with many other breaches of the UKGC terms.
Licensed casinos generally give the player and added layer of protection, the licensing bodies can be used to act as a mediator, should the player have any issues with a particular casino. Another way in which a player is protected arises should the casino go bankrupt or shut down, in which case the licensing body will generally reimburse the players for any funds that they had in their accounts.
There are many ways in which you can check if a casino is licensed, the most common and easiest is to check the footer (or bottom) of a casino’s website to see if their licensing information is mentioned there.
Gamstop is one of the biggest exclusion tools for gamblers who wish to block themselves from particular websites, it allows a player to signup with their details and then block themselves from multiple casinos, a number of which are added each day as this system becomes more widespread. Unfortunately similar to the unlicensed casinos mentioned above, some shady casinos choose not to register with gamstop, so these casinos remain a problem for problem gamblers.