A casino wagering requirement tells you how many times you must turn over bonus funds in order to withdraw prizes from them. For instance, a 35x wagering requirement means you must play an amount worth 35 times the bonus before the funds become cash.
Each casino sets a different wagering requirement, and some dictate you must play through the bonus amount plus the deposit. You can find out the details in your favoured UK casino site’s terms and conditions. There are also some new casinos site that do not carry wagering requirements.
Typical requirements stand between 20x and 40x, although some sites ask for more or less. Any more than 40x is edging towards unfair, with anything less than 20x very generous indeed.
Read this article to find out why wagering requirements exist and where you will find them in force at casinos. Also, take a look at the casinos with the most generous wagering requirements on the market.
Why do Casino Wagering Requirements Exist?
Casinos use wagering requirements to ensure you don’t just claim a bonus and then withdraw the funds. With online casinos providing ever greater welcome bonuses, they would be extremely out of pocket if players didn’t have to commit to earning the cash.
A wagering requirement, or playthrough requirement, protects the casino whilst still helping the player win cash. Of course, not everyone will unlock the funds, but many people do. Even if you don’t meet the wagering requirement at a casino, you have still enjoyed more slots games spins than you would have with just your initial deposit.
How Do Wagering Requirements Work?
When you claim a casino bonus, whether it is a welcome package or another kind of promotion, you must accept the wagering requirements. The details of the playthrough are always displayed in the bonus terms.
The terms also tell you what is included in the wagering. You can find out whether you need to play through mulitples of the bonus only, or the bonus plus deposit. Obviously deals from sites like Casimba Casino, where only the bonus features in the wagering requirements, are preferable to those sites that need the combined total.
Using Casimba as an example, that UK casino site demands a 35x wagering requirement. This means that whatever your bonus, you must play through 35 times that amount. If your bonus is £100, you must play stakes to the value of £3,500 to be able to withdraw your prizes.
This is different at sites that dictate you must play through the deposit as well. If a site offers a 100% deposit match bonus and you deposit £100, your bonus is worth £100. This gives you £200 to play with. If the casino wagering requirement is 35x again, you would need to play through £7,000 to release the winnings.
Free Spins Wagering Requirement
The playthrough requirement on free spins works slightly differently. Many sites offer special bonus deals that provide you with a number of free spins on a certain game. In these cases, the wagering requirement is on the combined value of the prizes you win on those spins.
If you won £50 on 20 free spins and the wagering requirement was 35x, you would have to stake £1,750 to withdraw the prizes. However, sites such as BGO provide free spins with no wagering requirement at all. This is a deal well worth looking at and is unusual in the industry.
When it comes to playing through the required amount, not all games are valued equally. Each casino has its own rules, but usually 100% of stakes on slots games contribute to your wagering requirement. However, some sites have a list of selected slots, where either your less than 100% of the stake counts or, occasionally, where stakes don’t count at all towards the bonus playthrough.
For example, at Casumo, 100% of stakes on virtually all slots count towards the wagering requirement. But you can’t use games such as Thunderkick’s 1429 Uncharted Seas, and NetEnt’s Blood Suckers and Dead or Alive, amongst others. As with most other UK casino sites, less than 100% of stakes on other types of games count.
30% of Casumo video poker stakes and 10% on other poker variants help you clear the wagering. In addition, stakes on roulette and blackjack don’t count. The reasoning behind this is that the house edge is so low on these games that a player could spend their time playing them to chip away great chunks of the requirement. In the interests of protecting their profits, casinos prefer you to playthrough bonuses on slots.
How to Meet a Casino Wagering Requirement
Although £3,500 seems like a lot of money to stake to release a £100 bonus, it is easier to meet than you may think. If a slots game’s RTP (return to player) is around 96%, for every £100 wagered, you should receive £96 back on average. This means that once you have played 1x through, the average player is only £4 down. Of course, barely anyone has the ‘average’ game, and you might win less or, possibly, much more.
The nature of slots is that you win prizes regularly, so you can eat away at the wagering requirement by reinvesting your winnings until you hit the magic total. It works for some, but not for others. Whilst you are playing with bonus funds, you are not using your own cash so it is not a disaster if you don’t make the requirement. The idea is to make it a challenge, otherwise online casinos couldn’t offer the generous bonuses they do.
How to Check Your Wagering Requirement Status
It is difficult to keep track of how you are getting on with your wagering requirement when you are spinning the reels. With this in mind, each UK casino site keeps a note for you. Simply visit the account section or your withdrawal screen. Each site has a different way of working. If you are in doubt, call or live chat with customer services. Find details of the support teams at each new casino site in our reviews section.