One of the great things about the United Kingdom online casino market is the huge selection of properties to play at. However, new players do sometimes find that selection overwhelming.
Adding to the anxiety is the fact that you only get one shot at a "welcome bonus" at each casino. If it turns out that you don't want to play enough at that casino at that particular time to cash out the bonus, that opportunity is gone forever.
If you're a new player and you aren't quite sure what you want from an online casino or which one to go to, today's post is for you. We'll help you to get oriented and make sense of it all.
Finding Your Games
Online casinos offer a "tried and true" selection of classic brick-and-mortar casino games, as well as some options that you'll only see in the digital world.
If you're an established offline casino gamer, you might already know what you want to play. It's worth taking a look at some of the variations you can only find online, however. Some of them are more favourable and more fun!
The core selection of "classic" games you can expect any UK online casino to have includes:
- Video and reel slots
- Video poker
- Pai Gow
- Carribean Stud
- Casino War
- Wheel of Fortune / Big Six / Dream Catcher
There are also some great online-only options to check out. There are a handful of unique categories such as virtual sports, scratchers and various skill-based games. Most of the games unique to online casinos are hybrids of classic games, or a classic game with some experimental new twist.
So where do you start with all of this? Ideally, a new player would like to browse all of these games and give them some substantial play without having to spend much money.
There are a few ways to do that. Some online casinos will let you try out games for free, but you may or may not have to create an account first to do so (which means starting the clock on a welcome bonus). The ones that do are usually those that focus on in-browser ("no download") games that don't require you to install apps or software.
"Social casinos" are an option for trying out games at no risk. These provide you with play money for their games, but in some cases offer real prizes. At the very least, you can try the games at no risk, and a number of them are now using games from the same software developers that real money casinos use. Some of the biggest social casinos include DoubleDown, MyVEGAS, Zynga and Slotomania.
Low Limits or VIP?
Your choice of a first casino also revolves around your budget.
Most players will probably not want to be forced into high table limits right away. So once you've figured out what games you'll be playing, it's time to scan the available casinos to find minimum bets that work within your expected budget.
What if you're a high roller who wants to go big right away? In that case, the first place to look is at the casino's VIP program. They may have a formal program that you apply to, or they may simply extend invitations based on your deposit amount and play. Whatever the case, the casino's VIP Host is the person to get in touch with to see what they can do for you.
How Do You Want To Play?
You also definitely want to give some thought as to where and when you'll be playing.
Online casinos can require that you download software or apps, or they can simply run all of their games through a web browser. Each method has its own pros and cons.
- Web browser casinos are the most convenient and most compatible with all sorts of different devices, but also usually have the smallest amount of games and features
- Casino software for a desktop or laptop computer usually gives you the best range of games and features, but will not work on your mobile devices
- App casinos are the middle ground; most of the functionality and options of a software casino, but you'll need a recent version of one of the big mobile operating systems (Apple or Android) to run them
Can You Use The Welcome Bonus?
Some online casinos will have a "welcome bonus" for new players that you don't really care for. If that's the case, and you otherwise like what the casino has to offer, it's safe to create an account and decline the bonus as it's unlikely that offer will ever change much.
If the casino has a welcome bonus that looks good for you but that you just don't have the funds for at the moment, you can always put it off for a while.
To Sum It All Up ...
To recap, a new player will want to consider:
- The casino's selection of their preferred games
- If they are comfortable with the betting limits
- If the casino works well on the devices they plan to be using most often
- If they like the welcome bonus, are they prepared to commit the needed funds to it?
There isn't one perfect online casino to steer all new players to; that's why we review so many of them! Hopefully the information we provide will help to make the decision much easier for you, however. If you'd like to learn more about what online casinos have to offer and how to evaluate them (and their games) check out our giant guide to the best online casinos in the UK market.
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