A Guide to Choosing the Best Casinos on the Internet
Every online casino is the best in something. Some excel in customer support services, some with their rich game selection, bonuses, while some are simply performing great overall. For many players, being offered a wide array of games holds the key to their heart, while others simply want to get the most out of their first deposit or are even on a hunt for free bonuses. But all players alike understand the fact that these are only factors when dealing with a safe and licensed operator, that pays attention to its players’ needs. In the end a bit of everything is needed in order for you to make the most of your online gambling experience.
Here you’ll find the top casinos to play at and what makes them so special. You can read more about them in the reviews or see which performs excellently in certain categories further down the page and you’ll learn something way more valuable – how to set apart a trustworthy site from a rogue one. Here you’ll read about:
- 1 Best Virtual Casino Payouts in the UK
- 2 Rich Game Selections and Popular Games
- 3 The Online Casino Sites with the Most Appealing Offers
- 4 Excellent Software Platforms and Renowned Developers
- 5 Top-Rated Live-Dealer Operators
- 6 Mobile Gambling Apps and Games
- 7 Loyalty Programmes and VIP Schemes
- 8 Accepted Deposit and Withdrawal Methods
- 9 Customer Support – A Factor Not to Be Underestimated
- 10 The Overall Best Site to Play at
- 11 Why to Play Only on Licensed and Regulated Sites?
- 12 Tips – Dos and Don’ts When Gambling Online
Top-rated Internet Casinos for UK Users
Here we’ll take a look at the top Internet gambling operators in different categories. Some players prefer great game selection over a huge bonus, others want to use a certain payment method to deposit and withdraw, yet others are only interested in the payout percentage of the casino overall or of the type of game that they want to play. While certain casinos may offer their players the very best when it comes to blackjack variations, others may excel in number of slots, with great bonus rounds and huge jackpots to be won. So, sometimes the right choice to make may depend solely on what you prefer to play.
With that in mind, we will present you with the casinos with the highest payout percentages, richest game selection, generous bonuses and loyalty programmes, best live dealer, mobile or overall software platforms, widely accepted payment methods, kind and attentive customer support, etc. Such information is very important in order to determine the perfect Internet casino and will definitely play a crucial part in your gambling experience. Always when you come in contact with a casino for the first time, there are more than a few factors to keep in mind and that is no easy task for the untrained eye. So, after a strict selection process, we have chosen the ones that stand out in every category. So, you pretty much have you work cut out for you.
Best Virtual Casino Payouts in the UK
The technical term for casino payouts is Return-to-Player (RTP). This is described as the percentage of your money wagered that you can expect to return to you in winnings on a longer term. If a game has a 97% RTP, you might expect to get back about £97 in winnings if you have wagered hundred £1 bets. Of course, this is if you don’t strike a big win. In such a case you have eliminated the RTP and beaten the casino. The RTP is important because that way you can choose a website where you can expect more of your money back. The RTP is tested by third party auditors, for which the operators receive certificates. All operators must have such certificate, but not all publish the results of their audits on their website. Here is how the best British websites compare and which are at the top in this category:
|Casino||Return to Player (RTP)||Testing Agency Report|
|Ladbrokes||97.39%||95.16%||97.30%||98.53%||98.71%||GLI||read the report|
|Bet365||96.84%||94.91%||97.48%||97.93%||97.95%||GLI||read the report|
|William Hill||96.52%||94.85%||96.59%||97.56%||98.14%||GLI||read the report|
|Roxy Palace||96.33%||96.10%||97.16%||n/a||99.04%||eCOGRA||read the report|
|888 Casino||96.17%||94.47%||96.98%||97.75%||97.71%||eCOGRA||read the report|
|Eurogrand||96.13%||95.13%||97.41%||97.30%||97.40%||GLI||read the report|
|Casino.com||95.66%||94.61%||97.37%||97.49%||98.16%||GLI||read the report|
|Betway||95.53%||95.97%||97.45%||n/a||96.76%||eCOGRA||read the report|
|Betway||95.53%||95.97%||97.45%||n/a||96.76%||eCOGRA||read the report|
|Winner||95.37%||93.55%||96.84%||96.94%||96.77%||GLI||read the report|
|Betvictor||n/a||95.95%||98.34%||98.06%||89.20%||GLI||read the report|
|Current as of April, 2015|
As you can see from the table there’s quite a difference between the calculated payouts among different operators. Some casinos post their RTP’s for their entire selection of games, some post the RTP’s for an entire category, for example, slots, table games etc., while others post RTP’s for each game individually. Depending on the games you’d like to play, you can choose the casino with the highest payout percentage for that particular category of games or just go for the one with the highest overall payout percentage across all games. The choice is yours.
Rich Game Selections and Popular Games
Every player has a different game preference, which is why every casino should offer a wide selection of games. If they want to attract a big clientele number, they need to have everything from slots to table games like blackjack, roulette, baccarat, poker, craps, but also video poker, live-dealer games and even lottery games like scratch cards. All the casinos we recommend and review offer exciting variations of the most popular games, mostly slots, which usually comprise half of the games library. Here is a quick overview of the most popular games:
Slots – Popularly known as fruit machines, today’s slots are far from anything that we have seen in the past. They are hardly what they used to be, simple 3-reel slots with fruit symbols on them. Now they feature incredible graphics, exciting options and fun and innovative bonuses. We offer casinos where you can find all kinds of slots: classic 3-reel fruit machines, 5-reel video slots, and 3D animated slots. with the biggest jackpots to be won.
Roulette – The online roulette games presented here are very stylish variants that can either be downloaded or played in your web browser. The rules and the objectives are the same like the land-based game. Today’s roulette games feature 3D playing environment, which means you will see a 3D roulette wheel and table. Depending on the software provider, you will find American, French and European Roulette, with plenty other like multi-wheel roulettes, sports, etc.
Blackjack – As one of the most popular games, blackjack can be found at all online casinos presented here. There is simply no operator that doesn’t offer at least one popular blackjack game, just as there is no website that doesn’t offer at least a dozen slots. Depending on the software, you can play low and high-limit tables, 1 to 8 deck blackjack, etc. You can find the popular Blackjack Switch, Gold series blackjack games from Microgaming, Double Exposure, etc.
Video Poker – The great thing about video poker is that it has the lowest house edge. Some variations even have a positive house edge, provided that the player plays with a perfect strategy. Some of the best-known video poker games are Deuces Wild, Jacks or Better, Tens or Better, All American Poker, and Aces and Faces. All of them can be played at any casino no matter what software it uses. You just need to choose where to play it.
Other Popular Games – Casinos can offer up to 800+ different games. With such a rich selection you won’t find just slots, blackjack, roulette or video poker games, but also baccarat, craps, table poker, Sic Bo, Red Dog, War, scratch cards, arcade games, progressive jackpot games known for their jackpots that can get up to several millions, Keno and other lottery games such as Bingo. The game selection on some websites can be really wide and rich.
The Online Casino Sites with the Most Appealing Offers
There are many fantastic offers out there, but sometimes it’s hard to find them so players tend to go with the first one they see and think is a good one. So where can you find out about the most generous and numerous promotions? At gambling websites like this one. We have collected here in one place the casinos that have the most generous offers with the best conditions. We do that continuously as soon as we detect an operator with a good bonus offer. Below you will find the hottest offers active at the moment.
|Casino||Bonus||Validity||MDep 1||Playthrough||Free Bonus||RFB 2||Active Promotions 3|
|888 Casino||100% up to £100||90 days||£5||30x bonus||£88||25+|
|Coral Casino||500% up to £50||28 days||£10||24x bonus||£10||7|
|William Hill||100% up to £150||30 days||£10||20x B+D 4||-||3|
|Winner||200% up to £300||30 days||£25||35x B+D||£30 5||2|
|Ladbrokes||100% up to £500||30 days||£30||20x B+D||£10 6||1|
|Eurogrand||Up to £1000||30 days||£10||35x B+D||25 spins||3|
|Mr Green||Up to £350||30 days||£20||35x bonus||100 spins||4|
|Betway||Up to £1000||7 days||£20||50x bonus||£10||2|
|Gala||100% up to £400||14 days||£10||20x B+D||-||8|
|Roxy Palace||Up to £350||7 days||£10||25x B+D||£25||3|
|Super Casino||100% up to £200||30 days||£10||25x B+D||£10||7|
|Casino.com||Up to £3200||30 days||£10||40x bonus||£20||4|
|Sky Vegas||200% up to £1000||30 days||£5||40x B+D||£10||4|
|EU Casino||Up to £5250||30 days||£20||30x B+D||-||20+|
|Bet365||100% up to £100||30 days||£10||20x B+D||-||2|
|1 Minimum deposit||2 Refer-a-friend bonus||3 The information is accurate as of May 2015|
|4 Bonus and deposit amount||5 With our link and bonus code ALLWIN||6 With our link and bonus code BESTBONUS|
In order to choose a suitable offer, you need to know what you prefer in a bonus: a big bonus amount, a low wagering requirement, a cashable bonus, less restrictions on the bonus, a bonus for slots or table games, a low minimum deposit limit, long validity of the offer, etc. Depending on your preferences, you can choose a bonus which is the most suitable for you. Overall in terms of bonuses, we recommend 888 which obviously offers better conditions than the other websites. To get the bonus you only need to deposit £5 plus you get £88 free.
Excellent Software Platforms and Renowned Developers
In order for you to be able to play the games that the operators offer, you can either download them or play them in instant-play mode. Some operators offer both options, while some may offer just the instant-play option. These are advertised as Flash casinos, because you need to have Flash installed in order to play the games in instant-play. Depending on your preferences, you can choose to download and install the software or you can simply access the site in your browser and play the games without any downloading and installation. Depending on the software platform of the casino, you may have both choices at hand.
Very few casinos develop their own software, although there are such examples. Those that do have their own software platform either develop it in-house or use specialized companies. Anyway, the majority use the software available from some of the biggest iGaming software companies, and some operators offer games from more than one software company. Such casinos have a lot more to give to their users than those that offer games from a single company. The difference can be a couple of hundred games. Here is an overview of the most popular software developers:
Playtech is probably the most popular software provider offering hundreds of games while supplying hundreds of Internet casinos. It is the only software company that develops Marvel-based games which are usually slots, but also a Roulette game with a slot bonus round. Their most popular Marvel slots are Iron Man, Incredible Hulk, Spiderman, the Avengers, Elektra and the Fantastic Four. Playtech is also the only company that has exclusive rights on one of the most popular blackjack variations, Blackjack Switch, where you get to switch the top cards of your two hands and thus make two stronger hands than what you’ve initially been dealt. With great exclusive games and numerous awards for the offered services, it comes as no surprise that so many casino platforms are offered by Playtech.
Microgaming is the first software house that began developing games for online gambling. The company was established in the 1990s, while in 1994 it helped in the launching of the first online casino ever. This company is known to develop and release games on a continual basis and each month players are able to enjoy new games. Some of their newest games truly stand out in quality, such as: Game of Thrones, Jurassic Park, Ariana, Forsaken Kingdom, Dragon Myth, Spinata Grande, Avalon II – The Quest for the Grail, The Finer Reels of Life and others. Microgaming has so far developed over 800 games, and twice as much variations. They also offer fantastic Live Dealer products for over 7 years, some of which have a special Playboy touch.
The main advantage of NetEnt is that it offers entirely instant-play games. It provides separate games, not as a whole platform. This company has managed to grow from a small and innovative company into one of the biggest software companies in just a small period of time. Their games are usually of the highest quality and can be very entertaining, especially when it comes to the mobile versions. The animations that NetEnt slots feature are in 3D and fun to watch. Every one of their slots begins with an animated cut-scene and a small story behind it. Some of their most popular slots are played all over the world, like: Dracula, the Invisible Man, Blood Suckers, South Park, Gonzo’s Quest and the Mega Fortune progressive jackpot slot.
The instant-play option is probably the most convenient. You just need to open the website in your favourite browser, log in using your username and password and you can start playing. The games load in your browser in separate pop-up windows or directly in the same window, so make sure to turn off any pop-up blockers. The biggest advantage of Instant-play casinos is that they don’t take hard disk space. However, they might consume more of your computer RAM memory, so if you have an older computer, use the download option.
If you choose the download option, then you will have the games available on your desktop. You won’t need to use your browser in such a case, just double click on the shortcut on your desktop and the casino will open as an independent program. Those operators that offer both instant-play and download software usually offer a bigger game selection in their download version. The installation procedure is very quick and simple. If you have experience in installing software programs, you won’t have any trouble. If you don’t, just follow the instructions and you’re done.
Top-Rated Live-Dealer Operators
Live-dealer games combine the excitement of playing against a real dealer and the comfort of playing from your home. This is achieved by setting up professional studio premises filled with blackjack, roulette and baccarat tables, just like in a real-life casino. Real dealers are used and all is broadcast in HD quality directly on your computer. The interface that you use to make wagers is the same as in the virtual games only here you play alongside other players also playing from their own homes. All reputable online operators offer live-dealer games, and most of them even offer a mobile version of their live-dealer platform. Usually the games offered at the live-dealer sections are roulette, blackjack and baccarat, but some sites even offer live Casino Hold’em, Sic Bo, Three Card Poker or Craps. In most cases these live games are developed either by Playtech or by Evolution Gaming.
Mobile Gambling Apps and Games
A couple of years ago only a handful of online operators had mobile platforms that their players could use to play the games on their mobile devices. And those that did have only supported Android or iOS and could be accessed only by installing a mobile app. Today, almost every online casino has a mobile version of its games, some still require downloading and installing an app, but the majority have responsive websites that you can use on any mobile operating system. This way players can choose to play their favourite games wherever they go.
Android Casinos – Androids are probably the most widely used devices. They are affordable and many manufacturers like HTC, LG, Samsung, Alcatel and Sony have accepted Android as the default operating system for their smartphones and tablets. As a result all renowned operators have an Android-friendly version of their platform. Usually for Android there is only a web app since Google Play doesn’t allow real money apps on their platform. Web-apps don’t require downloading and work perfectly in mobile browsers,as they are programmed in HTML5.
iOS Casinos are also widely used because Apple is one of the biggest brands when it comes to mobile devices. The first mobile gambling app was developed for iPhone back in 2007. The apps for most of the casinos can be downloaded from the Store, but lately the downloadable apps have become scarce. This is because casinos usually have a web-based version for iOS and these web-based apps work like a mobile site also programmed in HTML5. The technology allows the web developers to create responsive websites that can be used on mobiles too.
Windows Phone Casinos – Although mobile devices powered by Windows OS are on the rise, not many gambling platforms support Windows Phone through dedicated apps. Some of the web-based games run on this operating system, but it’s a rarity. Most importantly the biggest brands that have responsive websites do enable Windows Phone users to play their games on their Windows-powered smartphones and tablets. Fortunately, this operating system is being accepted by the big technology manufacturers, such as HTC, so the situation is rapidly improving.
Loyalty Programmes and VIP Schemes
One of the most important factors that you can consider to decide whether you want to join a casino is how rich the VIP programme is. This is an important factor if you intend to be a regular or high rolling player because if the loyalty programme or the VIP scheme is rewarding enough, you will get many benefits for your wagering and depositing activity. If you’re a high roller you will want to make sure that you get many rewards, extra bonuses and VIP treatment for your loyalty. Make sure to find out how to get admitted into the VIP scheme.
When it comes to loyalty programmes, the operators that stand out are 888 and William Hill. 888 has recently received the ‘Best Casino Operator’ for 2015 award by Gaming Intelligence, and holds two other awards such as the Best Digital Operator for 2014 received at the Global Gaming Awards and Best Online Casino for 2013 at the EGR Awards. 888 has a VIP Club where members get everything from bonuses to techno gadgets. William Hill on the other hand is a premium UK operator and one of the oldest gambling and betting companies in the world.
Accepted Deposit and Withdrawal Methods
Different operators support different payment methods so it is up to you to choose the site that supports your preferred method. If you can’t find the method that suits you, there wouldn’t be a point in signing up. Most importantly, the sites you sign up at should offer the most popular ones so that you can have safe and reliable payment methods at disposal. The list of accepted deposit and withdrawal methods usually revolves around credit/debit cards and e-wallets such as Skrill, Neteller, and PayPal, but many times you will find options for bank transfers, prepaid cards and other.
PayPal is one of the most widely used payment methods among both casino players and regular people. It is also one of the more recommended payment methods because it offers easy, safe and anonymous payments. Unfortunately, it’s not supported by all gambling sites, but more and more begin to offer PayPal.
Credit/debit cards are the most popular and widely accepted methods, because they are accessible to any person in any country across the world. The most widely accepted credit/debit cards by virtual casinos are Visa, Mastercard, Maestro, and sometimes American Express as well as other.
Skrill has become an omnipresent payment method across the online gambling industry. There is virtually no Internet casino that doesn’t offer this payment method. The company itself has become very much engaged into the gambling industry by offering various promotions for deposits and withdrawals made with Skrill at gambling sites.
Neteller is another very strongly present payment method from the e-wallet category. It is practically offered by all operators alongside Skrill, Visa and Mastercard. Transactions with Neteller have many benefits. Most of all them are instant, safe and anonymous, just like with any e-wallet.
Paysafecard – Of all the prepaid cards available on the market, Paysafecard is one of the few that is offered by gambling operators. It’s especially suitable to UK players and to those that seek absolute security. All you need is to find the nearest sales outlet that sells Paysafecard and you can deposit anonymously.
Ukash is a secure UK-based electronic money system that allows players to exchange their money for a secure code, which then can be used to make online purchases of various goods, including making deposits in casino accounts. You can even use Ukash to load your e-wallet account.
Other – There are many other popular and widely used payment methods, some of them are available to players across the world, some are more localised. Such payment methods are Entropay, Instadebit, UseMyFunds, ClickandBuy, POLi, WebMoney, iDEAL, Abaqos, Euteller, Trystly, Trustpay, Astropay, Qiwi, etc.
A great thing is that some operators offer special bonuses for making deposits using certain payment methods. These bonuses are something like deposit match bonuses up to 15%, which means for any deposit made with that specific payment method you will receive a bonus amount that is equivalent to 15% of your deposit amount. Our recommendations for top-rated casinos when it comes to payment methods are Eurogrand and Winner. Both have 10% or 15% bonuses for almost all of the payment methods offered, so whichever you choose, you will end up with more money.
Customer Support – A Factor Not to Be Underestimated
Many players underestimate the customer support factor. As soon as they see a big bonus offered they immediately register and neglect the fact that the casino has a reputation for bad customer support service. Only until they come in need of help they realize that they’ve made the wrong choice. Besides having a professional and attentive customer support agents, a casino has to offer different ways of contacting the operators. Every casino offers email support, which is the slowest contact method, but you’ll need to see if there is live chat or telephone option.
- Live Chat is a highly recommended method of contact. It’s fast, easy, and free to use. It works just like any instant messaging software (Skype, Facebook Messenger or MSN for example). You get to communicate your issue with a customer support representative in real time and you don’t have to wait hours for a response.
- E-mail is the slowest contact method that you can use, therefore it is recommended if your query is not urgent. If you have time to wait for a response then use this contact method. Depending on the website, an e-mail response can take between 2 and 24 hours.
- Freephone – Not all casinos have freephone numbers, but many of the bigger brands offer freephone mainly for UK players. Moreover, also for players from major European and Asian countries like Germany, Japan, Italy, and even South American or North American countries like Canada, as well as other English speaking countries like Australia.
Recommended casinos for the quality of their customer service – 888 Casino, Mr Green, William Hill
The Overall Best Site to Play at
After reviewing all legal UK operators and carefully weighing what they offer by measuring them up according to our standards and the standards by which the industry functions, we have come with the conclusion that the overall top-rated casino is 888. This operator has left a very positive imprint in this industry with its many bonus opportunities, great software platform, great customer support, unique game selection, the VIP club and their mobile platforms. On top of that, 888 is a multiple award-winning operator for its services and achievements in the industry. It is a fully certified casino, with strictly regulated fair games as well as safe monetary deposit and withdrawal options. Moreover, with over 20 million registered users and being launched in 1997, this is one of the longest standing gambling websites.
How to Set Apart a Trustworthy Casino from a Rogue One
For beginners it is usually hard to distinguish a good casino from a bad one. How can a rookie tell if an operator is trustworthy? They all look alike with their flashy websites, rich and entertaining game libraries, and especially with their big and generous bonuses. In such cases, review websites like this one can be of great help. We offer you a selection of virtual casinos that have a high reputation in the gaming community, and your job is only to choose at which one of those you want to start your adventure. As you gain experience you need no more than one look to tell if an operator is trustworthy or if you should avoid it. Until then, you can learn about a few ways you can use to make sure that a website is safe to play at:
- Check the Licence – Only the United Kingdom Gambling Commission can issue licences for the UK market. A licence guarantees that the casino is legal and safe to deposit your money. Operators that own a licence from reputable licensing bodies like the Gambling Commission are strictly monitored and regulated.
- Check What Certificates the Operator Has – There are different certificates that indicate whether an Internet gambling site is regularly audited and whether their games are fair. Such are the certificates issued by eCOGRA, TST and iTech Labs. All of these mainly pertain to the fairness of the games.
- Which is the Software Provider – Big companies like Playtech and Microgaming won’t ruin their reputation by working with a rogue casino. These companies work closely with the operators they supply so when you see a website powered by Playtech, Microgaming and even NetEnt, rest assured that it is a safe one.
- How Transparent is the Casino? – Can you easily find the rules of the games and the expected RTP percentages? Is the customer support responsive and does it reacts professionally to your questions? A good casino has nothing to hide and will maintain its positive reputation with good service.
- Read Trustworthy Reviews – There are many reviews on the Internet found at websites similar to ours, but not all of them are honest. Trust only sites that cover not only the positive, but also the negative sides of an online operator by pointing them out in the reviews.
- Has the Casino Won Any Awards? – This is not so much a decisive factor, but it can be a good sign when the operator is recognized by their peers as an operator that excels in a certain category like 888 is with its rewards for being the best casino operator.
Why to Play Only on Licensed and Regulated Sites?
UK players are all about the excitement of gambling over the Internet but rarely think of their security. Security is one of the most important factors when considering which operator to choose. You don’t want your gambling experience ruined because you have deposited your money at a rogue or scam website without any hopes of getting them back. Or even more frustrating, imagine you have won a big jackpot amount, but the casino has made all kinds of excuses not to pay you off. This is why security is a big issue.
For British Players is easy to tell if a casino is legit. If it is licensed by the UK Gambling Commission, you are good to go. Usually the secure virtual casinos own gambling licences issued not only by the UK Gambling Commission, but by other reputable licensing jurisdictions as well such as the Malta Gaming Authority or the Government of Gibraltar which means they are subjected to different standards. On our site we recommend and review only casinos that are legal in the UK. By choosing one of these sites presented here you’re guaranteed to receive:
Tips – Dos and Don’ts When Gambling Online
It is really useful to set up some standards and to stick to them when choosing where to play. Make a check list of all the things that you need to consider and when you stumble upon a gambling site go step by step through the list in order to find out if it is suitable and safe for your money. There are some simple rules of thumb that can help you avoid some unpleasant situations while playing online, and to make it easier for you we will give you some of the key dos and don’ts when gambling online.
|Researching the casino before signing up||Not checking if the operator is legal in the UK|
|Reading the terms and conditions||Signing up without knowing much about the casino|
|Testing the support||Claiming bonuses without reading the terms|
|Checking the available game selection||Registering at a casino without checking the game selection|
|Reading trustworthy casino reviews||Registering with a fake name|
|Making sure the casino is licensed||Not checking the available payment methods|
What Have We Learned from this Article?
Playing casino games online can be both fun and safe if you know how to pick the best website to play at. Make some efforts to find out which casino is the best overall. It will pay-off on short and long term as well, especially if you have selected the casino that has it all: professional customer support, rich game selection, great bonuses and loyalty programme in order to get a rewarding experience, as well as suitable, safe and reliable payment methods. If you lack the time to do the needed research, then take advantage of our wide experience in the matter and try your luck at 888 Casino – an award-winning operator with over 20 million registered players.