There are so many online casinos out there now, that it can be really hard to know which are best. The market is a little saturated, yet for players, this is a good thing. New sites appear all the time and have to remain in competition, which means that they need the best offers and bonuses to stand out. This gives you more and better offers to choose from. With a little savvy and understanding of the industry, it’s no problem to find the top online casinos.
Our website only lists casinos which have been reviewed and rated by people with experience, so only respectable and entertaining casinos make it through. From the everyday things like game selection, to the special attractions like welcome bonuses, each casino varies and can offer different benefits.
Choosing the Best Online Casino
There are several factors to look for when choosing your next casino site. These are simple things that you can look for yourself when browsing around, from what kind of games are on offer to what credentials the site has. Casinos tend to stick to a certain group of slot providers, or even just one. For example, NetEnt is the provider behind Starburst, and so many players choose only to join a site if it has their favourite games, while others are constantly looking for something new to try.
The follow factors are worth considering when checking out any new site. These are the elements of a site that professional reviewers look at, concerning not just the entertainment value of a casino, but also the level of safety, trustworthiness and practical usability. These are vital in the top online casinos.
Software comes into play with casino sites in three ways; how games are presented, downloading vs instant play, and mobile access. The first is a simple case of what happens when you launch a game, something that may be just aesthetic, but does affect enjoyment.
Some casinos will open your slot game up in a tiny pop-up window, whereas others might have a full overlay with extra controls, useful links and a matching background. The difference is quite significant in terms of usability.
Download casinos require players to install software through which players interact, rather than an internet browser. These casinos are largely being phased out, due to the advancement of website technology and the need for seamless mobile and tablet compatibility. You'll often see these termed "instant play" casinos.
When it comes to mobile play, the latest sites will either have bespoke apps, or most commonly, mobile version of the main site which can be accessed on your phone or tablet internet browser.
Game selection and variety
This is a major factor, as games are ultimately the reason we play at online casinos. The first thing to look for is how many providers a site uses. Some only use one, limiting variety, but if you like the look of what’s on offer then it’s no big deal. The best will use several, like NetEnt, Play 'N Go and IGT. This ensures a mixture of game types and animation styles.
Fans of table games such as Roulette and Blackjack should check the casino has a decent selection of appropriate games. Some casinos have hundreds of slots, but only 5-10 actual card or roulette games. The best online casinos will generally have live dealers, with real dealers in real studios that broadcast live to you through your screen. Live casino games have exploded in popularity in recent years, so if you haven't tried them out yet then we thoroughly recommend it.
Bonuses and wagering requirements
This is a significant attraction to many players when deciding on joining a site. Most casino sites offer some kind of bonus, which is usually granted as part of a deposit. For example, if you're offered a 100% bonus, it usually means that you'll receive a £20 bonus on top of your £20 deposit. These offers are great for getting started.
However, be vigilant and check the wagering requirements and/or terms of the bonus. Most sites specify that you must wager this bonus money 30 or 40 times over before being able to withdraw it or any winnings won from it. The higher the wagering requirements, the less favourable they are to us, and so the lower score they'll receive by our reviewers.
All sites listed here are established and trusted brands. The main thing to look for is a license - never play unlicensed casinos (we don't list these on our website, and never will). This information is usually in the site footer with a link pointing to their certificate.
Where possible, also look for sites with the eCOGRA seal or similar credits from independent groups. This means that a site and its games has been checked out and approved by a third party for fairness and security.
This may seem frivolous but a boring site can get annoying very quickly! The best online casinos have a sharp, original design. This not only makes it more interesting to visit, but also shows the level of commitment from the operators. A standard template with stock images is not encouraging.
A casino should also be easy to navigate, with usability in mind for menus, finding information, games, and getting help. A site with a maze-like setup can be a real pain. Though it may seem that the games matter more than how you access them, a smooth site is far more fun to use than a clunky one.
Payment options are vital if you have any restrictions or preferences on how you deposit funds. Most sites accept credit and debit cards, however not all casinos accept all e-wallets. Join a site that accepts your preferred deposit method. Skrill casinos and Neteller casinos are popular, as of course are PayPal casinos.
Having access to more methods can vastly speed up the registration process and result in much faster withdrawals. At the same time, it’s worth checking for minimum withdrawal amounts and the existence of any sneaky fees.
If something goes wrong, or you just need some help or information, customer support is vital. The best sites can be let down by unhelpful support teams or a lack of contact methods. Ideally, a site should have phone, email and live chat support.
Live chat is the most useful, as it allows players get instant help. The best sites also support multiple languages and have clear FAQs, so that players can solve their own issues if desired.