Casinos Online – A Guide for 1st-Time Players

These days, signing up with a decent online casino couldn’t be easier.  You can conduct your own research, where you can check independent portals like the Casino guru website for the full lowdown on what’s on offer.

But if you are just getting into online casino gaming for the first time, a few tips and pointers can go a long way. Several of which we will be covering in this guide, aimed at those looking to get the most out of their first online casino experience.

Overcoming Prohibitions – A Good Idea?

First things first, overcoming online casino restrictions by way of a VPN is pretty easy. You can use a VPN to make it look like you are located anywhere in the world, thus bypassing any geographic restrictions the casino imposes.

As for whether or not this is a good idea, the short answer is no – it isn’t. Firstly, bypassing restrictions with a VPN means sacrificing any and all bonus offers available.  Secondly, the casino in question would be well within its rights to retain your winnings, freeze your account and give you your marching orders.

In short, if a casino does not allow players from your region, don’t attempt to find a backdoor. It’s not technically illegal to bypass their prohibitions, but you could end up out of pocket in a big way.

Stick with domestic casinos, or a reputable international casino that accepts players from your region.

How to Find the Best Online Casino

Taking the manual approach to finding an excellent online casino isn’t particularly difficult. For the most part, it simply means prioritising five important factors, as follows:

1. Sign-Up Bonuses 

Finding a decent introductory bonus makes sense, in order to make your money go as far as possible. All online casino bonuses without exception are subject to various terms and conditions. Most notably, wagering requirements – how many times you have to play the amount through, before you can withdraw any winnings.

You therefore need to check these terms and conditions in full, before deciding which bonuses to take advantage of. Some bonus offers are inherently better than others where genuine value for money is concerned.

If the wagering requirement is too high or the terms of the bonus are too strict, take your business elsewhere.

2. User-Friendliness

This basically refers to the overall look, feel and performance of the website.  Always remember that with an online casino it is about far more than appearances alone. You need a site that is responsive, free of errors and runs smoothly at even the busiest times.

User-friendliness is something you will get to grips with as you play.  Plus, it’s also true to say that some people prefer one type of layout over another. 

Let your personal preferences be your guide and choose a site that is a joy to navigate. 

3. Withdrawing Cash

Extracting your money from an online casino can take anything from a few minutes to several days. Or in the case of some lower-grade casinos, anything up to a fortnight.

In this day and age, there really is no excuse whatsoever for making players wait an eternity to withdraw winnings. It should be quick, easy and free to withdraw from an online casino – no fees or commissions applicable.

You also need to check the minimum withdrawal amount accepted by the casino, which can be anything from £10 to £200. 

4. Game Variety

When consulting the collection of games available at an online casino, try to focus on quality over quantity. Some casinos offer literally thousands of games, simply for the sake of it. 

Elsewhere, you’ll find much more compact gaming libraries, which are nonetheless stocked with only the highest-quality games on the market.

Of course, it’s entirely up to you to decide what type of games you want to play and where. But when shopping around for a decent online casino, quality should always be your priority.

5.  Reputation and Feedback

Lastly, under no circumstances is it advisable to do business with a casino with a questionable reputation. A quick Google search is all it takes these days to establish the credibility of any online provider. At a glance, you’ll see all you need to see to make your decision. 

Of course, you’ll seldom come across a casino with 100% glowing feedback. There will always be a few disgruntled customers in the mix, intent on making their voices heard.

But when an online casino has a disproportionate number of negative reviews, common sense advises caution. Or more specifically, a casino that is best avoided at all costs.

VIP Schemes and Loyalty Programs 

There are two very different schools of thought when it comes to VIP schemes and loyalty programs. One of which advises taking full advantage of them, the other suggests steering clear at all costs.

In truth, the sensible approach lies somewhere in the middle. VIP schemes and loyalty programs have the potential to be beneficial, but not for all players. It depends entirely on your preferred gaming style, and (more importantly) how much you plan on spending. 

For example, casual gamers who play on occasion and place modest wagers aren’t going to be lavished with rewards. You might get the occasional 5% cashback incentive or match deposit bonus, but that’s about it. Better than nothing, but not the most inspiring incentives.

Elsewhere, high-rollers who burn through massive sums of cash get all sorts of perks thrown at them. Huge bonuses on deposits, surprise gifts throughout the year, entry to VIP tournaments, sometimes even free holidays. The more you spend, the more effort the casino will make to keep you spending. 

The moral of the story – VIP schemes are great, but you only ever get out what you put in.

Having Realistic Expectations

Getting into the whole casino gaming thing for the first time is exciting, but you need to be realistic. One of the biggest mistakes newcomers make is having completely unrealistic expectations.

Online casino gaming in all its forms is about entertainment and enjoyment. You cannot count on gambling of any kind to generate meaningful or regular profits.

This is due to the fact that a ‘house edge’ always applies, giving the house a statistical advantage over the player.

It works very simply. If the house has a 20% edge, it has a 20% higher chance of winning than the player. This therefore means that statistically speaking, the house always wins eventually. If you were to continue playing indefinitely, the likelihood is that you would come out 20% out of pocket, in this instance.

Irrespective of what you may have read, there is no such thing as a fool-proof strategy for any casino game. Or to put it another way, there is absolutely nothing you can do to tip the odds in your favour.

Even with all the knowledge, skill and intuition in the world, casino games are still games of chance. And while there’s a house edge in place, you are always more likely to lose than win.

How to Become a Better Player

Becoming a better player is essentially about two things:

  1. Getting to know as much as possible about your preferred casino games.
  2. Practicing and ensuring you have realistic expectations.

There will always be games like blackjack and poker where practice really can make all the difference. Depending on what has taken place in the game so far, you make informed and educated decisions with your wagers. 

But when it comes to games like roulette, baccarat, craps and so on, there is absolutely nothing you can do to influence the outcome. In which case, it’s all about sitting back, enjoying the ride and hoping lady luck is on your side! 

Above All Else – Always Gamble Responsibly

Last up, nothing matters more than looking after your best interests and staying safe. Make no mistake about it – online casino gaming is immersive in the extreme.

One minute, you’re planning on spending no more than 20 minutes hitting the blackjack table. The next, you realise you’ve been staring at your screen for four straight hours. 

Gambling responsibly means being mindful of everything you do when playing at online casinos. Primarily, it means setting a budget and sticking to it – irrespective of the outcome. 

It also means allocating a specific amount of time to your online casino gaming hobby. After which, you log off and take a break – essential for keeping a cool head.

Getting occasionally carried away as an enthusiastic newcomer is one thing.  However, it is essential to nip all issues with compulsion to gamble in the bud at the earliest possible stage.

Limit your time sensibly, set a finite budget and when the fun stops, it’s time to stop!

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