Top tips before signing up with an online casino

There it is, on the side of your screen… the advert you’ve seen three times today already, and it’s just calling your name, whispering promises of bells, whistles and giant wins. It’s a brand-spanking-new online casino and it’s promising insane sign-up bonuses. It’s too good to miss! You click the link, you fill in the forms, you check the box that says you’ve read the Ts & Cs…

You did read the terms and conditions, right? I mean, everyone knows you absolutely, positively, without question, have to read the Ts & Cs for any new online casino. Right?

Peeps, this is how people get caught in phishing scams and lose their life savings! Any astute gambler knows that for every legitimate operator out there, there are uncounted illegal scams. And unfortunately the onus is on you to make sure you’re dealing with a legit online casino. But how do you go about that? Well, it takes a little effort, but we’re here to help – and we promise it’s worth it.

Here are our top tips for what to do before signing up to an online casino:

Tip one: Read the terms and conditions

Of course it’s our first tip – we weren’t kidding about this!

Terms and conditions for any website you make transactions through are critically important – that includes shopping websites, internet banking, online casinos and even your PS5. These are the legal boundaries within which you and the company are allowed to transact, and they have to abide by both local and international law.

But why do you need to read the Ts & Cs in every single online casino? Surely, if you’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all? That’s a big NO. First of all, an online casino might be registered in more than one jurisdiction. That means legislative terms have to account not only for your country’s law, but also for the country where the casino is registered, and anywhere else it operates.

Second, terms and conditions don’t just cover the legalities of playing in an online casino; they also include all the specific ways the casino treats playing, betting, winning, and banking. These can vary significantly. Most importantly, the Ts & Cs will include how the casino manages wagering and bonuses. Which brings us to…

Tip two: Scrutinise the bonuses and wagering requirements

Online casinos love them some welcome bonus action. It’s a fantastic way to attract new customers, and players relish the chance to cash in some ‘free’ money. Except that it isn’t quite that simple.

Welcome bonuses, weekly bonuses and extras of all kinds come with wagering requirements. This means you have to spend a certain amount of money playing specific games before you’re entitled to that bonus. Requirements can vary widely between casinos and can be complex. Even if you fully understand the wagering requirements of one casino, another might leave you asking, “what the hell did I just read?”.

If this whole section has you asking, huh?, we suggest checking out our guides to welcome bonuses and wagering to familiarise yourself with this critical online gambling feature.

Tip three: Licence and registration, please!

Whatever you do, do not sign up to an online casino if you are unable to verify their registration, jurisdiction, domicile or any other licensing they may have. Legitimate casinos will display the domain of their registration on their website, usually in the small print at the bottom of the page.

Tip four: Read more reviews

Yes, we have a fantastic review section that you can visit here to check out the best online casinos, and you should definitely use it. That doesn’t mean you should read just one review of a casino and be done with it; while our reviewers go to pretty great lengths to provide accurate, detailed and in-depth reviews of online casinos, it’s never a bad idea to read reviews from at least two or three sources to make sure you get a range of professional perspectives. If you want to know more about how we do reviews and what makes them trustworthy, we explain our process here.

Tip five: Let the games speak for themselves

Illegal operators can run pretty sophisticated operations, and their sites can look and feel like a legitimate online casino. But who is powering their games? It can pay to see who the online casino is using as a service provider, especially when it comes to things like live dealer games online. If it is a recognised provider (check out our provider reviews here), the chances are good that the operator is legit, while knock-off games by fly-by-night designers point to a riskier establishment.

You can also get an idea of whether signing up is worth your time and money by taking a look at their game selection. If they have just a few games or nothing that strikes your interest, it may be worth choosing a different casino to spend your time on.


Online casinos are terrific fun, and you stand a chance to win big every time you play. By taking the time to carefully vet an online casino before signing over your bank details, you can be assured of more enjoyable, profitable playtime and less worrying about scammers.

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