Casino Bonus Terms and Conditions Basics
When it comes to no deposit bonuses you will find that the bonus advertisement itself is usually pretty basic. It sounds like using it will be very straightforward. However, the terms and conditions documents for the bonuses will specify a lot of restrictions for players to abide by in order to enjoy the bonus.
The terms and conditions list associated with a bonus is a legal document, hence how confusing it may be to read. The terms make it more difficult to take money from a bonus. Remember, the casino is a business. The casino operator wants to lure new players to their platform with the thought of a risk-free big win. However, if they were to make the bonus so lucrative that every player walked away a winner, they would soon go out of business!
Along with the bonus-specific terms and conditions, it’s a good idea to read over the casino’s general terms and conditions too. Some terms relating to the bonus you want to claim might be referenced in the casino’s wider rule set.
Abiding by all terms and conditions is vital. If you violate them, the least you can expect is to forfeit the bonus. In extreme cases, you may be banned from future promotions or have your account shut down entirely.
Key No Deposit Bonus Terms and Conditions
There are a number of rules for each bonus in the terms and conditions section of an online casino. This remains true for no deposit bonuses as well.
We discuss the key terms governing the no deposit bonus in the following sections:
Every bonus comes with a wagering requirement. This means you have to bet the bonus amount (and/or any winnings associated with it) a specific number of times to be able to withdraw winnings. An example is a bonus of $100 with a 35x wagering requirement. This means you have to bet a total of $3500 – $100 x 35 – before the bonus funds will revert to cash that the player can withdraw.
Because the wagering requirements for no deposit bonuses apply only to the bonus (and possibly the winnings from it) – you are not making a deposit to use the bonus – you will be able to access your winnings quicker than if you were using a standard deposit bonus. These often require players to wager both the deposit amount and bonus the specified number of times. Once you meet the wagering requirements the casino will credit to your account as real money. You can then decide if you want to play some more (with no terms and conditions associated with bets) or you can begin the withdrawal process.
Maximum Withdrawal Limits
Many no deposit bonuses have a maximum withdrawal limit, sometimes referred to as the maximum cap on withdrawals. The rule puts a cap on the amount you can withdraw from the winnings generated with a bonus. Any winnings over the maximum capped amount cannot be used or withdrawn.
If you won $300 and the casino has a $100 cap as the maximum withdrawal limit, you will be able to withdraw only the $100 and forfeit the remaining $200.
Casinos added this rule to their terms and conditions to protect against losing huge amounts to players not even depositing with the company. It was also introduced to limit the efficacy of bonus hunters who like to exploit no deposit bonuses at many different casinos.
Game Restrictions / Eligibility
Different games contribute differently to the fulfilment of wagering requirements. For instance, slots and scratch cards usually contribute 100% towards wagering requirements, while blackjack contributes just 25% or less. Games like craps, bingo, and roulette do not contribute towards wagering requirements at many casinos.
The casino usually lists the wagering contributions for each game in its terms and conditions. Knowing this information is critical because it allows you to plan your play. You can restrict your play to the eligible games and more importantly, stay away from the excluded games, i.e. those games that do not contribute to the overall wagering.
The contribution percentage of a game towards the wagering requirements is usually determined by the return-to-player percentage possible when playing the game in question. Blackjack, when played perfectly, offers very close to break even for the player. This is why casinos effectively increase the wagering requirements for those wanting to play through a bonus at the blackjack tables. If the game contributes 25% towards wagering, the total wagering requirement has effectively been increased by a factor of four.
Casino Bonus Codes
Some of the top US online casinos require you to enter a bonus code to be able to claim the no deposit bonus on offer. The bonus code usually consists of a string of letters or a mixture of letters and numbers. The codes are often connected to the bonus in some way. For instance, a match bonus available on Mondays could have the bonus code MATCHMON, while a 50% match bonus could have the bonus code MATCH50C.
The bonus code allows casinos to track the bonuses being used by a player and also to keep track of where the player found the bonus. When a casino provides a bonus code, it is compulsory for the player to enter it in the relevant field. Failure to do so will forfeit the bonus.
The bonus code is usually provided by the casino on its landing page or on the promotions page. Sometimes you must look in the terms and conditions to find it. Make sure you enter any relevant bonus codes when prompted during the registration process at a new casino.
Bonus Validity Period
All no deposit bonuses come with a validity period. The validity period is mentioned in the terms and conditions of the bonus. You will be required to use the bonus within the period stated. The most obvious use of a validity period is seen when using a “free play” bonus. There, the casino landing page will detail the time limit associated with the promotion on many occasions.
However, that’s not the only bonus type which will have a validity period. Even the no deposit cash bonus and no deposit free spins bonus have a period of time within which player must use the bonus. The standard validity period for these bonuses is around 30 days; but the time period depends on the casino operator. If your use of the bonus extends beyond the validity period you will forfeit any winnings as well as the remaining bonus automatically.