It was in the year 1994 that the first fully functional online casinos first started to go live online, however over the last two decades the technology utilized by such sites has changed, as have the laws surrounding online gambling in general.
Those early years of online casinos were often described as the Wild West, for as long as you had a debit or credit card you could sign up to any of them, make a deposit and then play any of the available games, and would then be left at the mercy of Lady Luck as to whether you ended up winning or losing!
These days however, most developed countries of the world have taken one of two different routes regarding the way they look at online casinos. Some of them have warmly embraced them and have put together infrastructures that allows them to regulate and license such sites and of course earn tax revenue from them too.
However, some countries have decided that online gambling and therefore online casinos are illegal and have done everything in their power to stop their citizens from being able to access such sites, and that is certainly the case in places such as the USA! This guide will help you make sense of online casinos so please do read on if you do ever fancy giving one of them a try!
Bonuses You Can Claim
There will be bonuses on offer to you at all online casinos, but you need to weigh up the odds on them giving you more winning opportunities, for whilst claiming things such as high valued deposit match bonus will give you more play time, the play through requirements will reduce your chance of winning!
Therefore, spend time reading through the bonus play rules, for that way you can work out whether claiming a bonus and the rules attached to them will give you a chance of improving your winning chances or will simply tie up your deposits and reduce your winning chances!
Free play bonuses are also available, and when you claim such a bonus the casino site will give you a huge no deposit type of bonus and will give you an hour or so to try and win, if you do win over and above your starting balance you can claim some of the winnings as a bonus, but a deposit will be required to claim those winnings as bonus credits.
No deposit bonuses are one much sought after casino bonus, be to be truthful the terms and conditions attached to them are so tight you will rarely if ever be able to cash out any winnings due to those terms and conditions and the number of times you must play through the no deposit bonus credits!
Depositing and Withdrawal Options
One aspect of choosing to gamble for real money at an online casino is that you will not want to have to lose out to things such as currency conversation costs and fee and you will also not want to pay to have the privilege of depositing into your casino accounts either!
Therefore, you should always first try to make deposits using a debit card, for if you have one you can use then not only will your payments be made instantly at all casino sites, but there will be nothing to pay on top of the amount you deposit.
But that will only be the case if you are playing at a casino site in your own home currency, so avoid playing at sites that force you to sign up and use a different currency other than the one you use at home, for forex fees will then come into force.
Web and e-wallets may be another option you could prefer using, but those do impose fees on you dependent on the method you use to top up such an account, however payments made from casino sites when you cash in your winnings are often much quicker when paid back to a web or e-wallet.
If you have none of the above options available to you then fear not you could choose to use a prepaid voucher, and to do so you will simply need to visit a nearby shop or retail outlet that sells Pay Safe Card vouchers, and you buy them with cash, and use the code printed on them to fund your casino accounts.
Games Available at Online Casinos
It does often surprise first time online casino players just how wide and varied the games on offer at such sites are, but if you have never played at such a site then you will of course need to have some ideas of what is going to be in store for you regarding the game son offer.
As such let me give you an overview of some of the most played online casino games. The most popular games, without a shadow of a doubt are the slot machines. You will find older styled classic and three-reel slots, fruit machines, video slots and of course plenty pf progressive games available to you.
Regarding just how diverse the range of video poker game variants are, it is not unusual to find dozens of different variants, plus you will find single hand games, multi-hand variants as well as a small number of progressive video poker games. Some casinos also offer level up poker games too that have in-built multipliers that boost the value of consecutive winning hand pay-outs.
All the usual table games are also on offer including games such as Sicbo, Roulette and Craps, and when it comes to card games include 3 card poker games, Blackjack games and Baccarat you really are going to be spoilt for choice!
Tips for Playing at Online Casinos
If trying your luck at any of our featured online casinos is something you are prepared to do, I would encourage you to first compare all bonuses that will become available to you at such sites, as by picking out the high valued one you will then get more play time and more winning opportunities.
Also, as each game will have a built-in house edge, or its own unique long term expected pay-out percentage, then do make sure the games you select do either have the lowest possible house edge or the highest available pay-out percentage.
When playing games such as Blackjack and Video Poker that have an element of skill built into them, try and turn on the auto hold option on the video poker games as that will ensure the best cards are held for you after the initial deal, or use auto play on Blackjack games as that will then see that option setting using the optimal strategy for the variant you have chosen to play!
It is important though that you play at a casino site that does offer certified fair and random games, and also sites that hare famed for their rapid winning pay-outs, so when you do next set about selecting such a site to play at make sure the final ones you select do pay you quickly when you win and have had every single one of their games certified as being completely random too.