Joining an Online Casino
If you've never joined an online casino before, you might assume that getting started can be quite challenging, when in fact it's actually a very simple process. You can open your account and be ready to start playing in just a matter of minutes. There are a few steps that you have to go through, but each step is straightforward and easy to complete.
With that being said, however, we do understand why those new to online casinos are a little overwhelmed when joining one for the first time. That's why we've put together the step by step guide you can find below. We direct you through each step, and explain to you everything you need to do. We also provide you with useful tips and advice where appropriate.
Step 1 – Decide Where to Play
The very first step you must take in order to join an online casino is deciding which one to use. You might be thinking that this is an easy decision, but that's not necessarily the case.
There are hundreds of casinos on the internet, and choosing which one to play at is a very important decision in order to ensure you have the best possible online gaming experience. Before you join a casino, you must be certain that they are reputable and trustworthy. You can find comfort in knowing that most online casinos are, but a few casinos do have questionable reputations, and avoiding those is imperative.
This is one reason why you should always thoroughly research a variety of casinos before you start signing up anywhere. You don't want to just pick a casino at random and end up with a mediocre place that doesn't satisfy your needs. Preferably, you want to choose the best casino around that's suitable for any specific requirements or personal preferences you may have. You must be prepared to spend the necessary time checking out the various options available to you.
If you want more advice on making this decision, then please take a look at our article on choosing an online casino. You'll find additional information on the importance of using trusted casinos and several tips for finding the right casino for you. You can also check out our recommended casinos if you'd like some suggestions on where to play.
Step 2 – Open an Account
Once you've chosen which online casino you are going to play at, you must visit the casino's website to open an account. This is a relatively simply process at most casinos.
Most online casinos will have a "Join Now" button (or something similar) displayed prominently on their homepage and clicking on that will start the process of opening an account. This will typically redirect you to a sign up page, where you must enter a few personal details. The following information is usually required as a minimum.
- Full Name
- Date of Birth
- Telephone Number
- Email Address
You may be asked for some additional information too, such as your preferred language or the currency you want to use. You might also be asked to create a username and password, although some places generate these for you automatically. If you do have to choose your own, then please make sure they aren't easily attainable. An unusual username and a strong password will help protect your account from any unauthorized users.
As part of the sign up process, you will generally have to accept the casino's terms and conditions. These are typically pretty standard, but it would benefit you to spend a few minutes looking over them to ensure you fully understand everything.
Step 3 – Download Casino Software
At some online casinos you'll have to download software before you can start playing. This may be an optional step though, as many casinos now have games that you can play without any download required.
Downloading casino software is incredibly easy to do, and it doesn't require any technical knowledge. The exact process will vary from one casino to the next, but there will usually be very clear instructions about what you have to do. Typically you just have to click a button or two in order for the download to start. It may even start automatically once you have elected to open an account.
During the download process you might be prompted to answer some questions. These might include which games you want to install, which folder on your computer you want to install the software to, and whether or not you want to add a shortcut to your desktop.
If the casino you have chosen to play at offers instant games or no download games, then you won't have to download any software at all. These games are playable directly through your web browser, usually through the program: Adobe Flash.
Please note that many casinos also offer you the option to play the mobile version of their games. Some places have instant mobile games you can play through your mobile browser, while others require you to download an app, but again this is usually a very simple process.
Step 4 – Make a Deposit
If you want to play for real money at an online casino, you'll have to deposit funds into your account. This is usually very easy to do, and most casinos offer a variety of different banking options you can use to make deposits.
Depositing funds is very straightforward at most online casinos. When you are logged into your account, either on the website or in the software client, there will be a button you have to click. This button will usually be labeled as "Cashier", "Account", or "Make a Deposit," or a phrase similar to that.
Clicking on the relevant button will then bring up the various methods available for making a deposit. You will typically have several options, but these options vary from place to place. They may also vary based on where you live. Credit card, debit card, bank wire, money transfer, and checks are commonly available methods. E-wallets, such as Neteller and PayPal, are often available choices too.
Once you have selected which method you want to use, you can then enter the relevant information (your credit card details for instance) and how much you wish to deposit. With most methods, the funds will be added instantly to your account so you'll be able to start playing with them right away.
When choosing which deposit method to use, you should be aware that you may incur additional charges. Some casinos charge for the use of certain methods, and some credit card companies will apply a charge on a casino deposit, processing it as a cash advance.
You should also be on the lookout for any sign up bonuses which may be available to you when depositing for the first time at a casino. Most casinos offer some kind of bonus to new customers, and it's usually available on your initial deposit. You may have to enter a bonus code to be eligible though, or there may even be deposit amount requirements, so it's well worth checking out all the details before making that first deposit.
Step 5 – Start Playing
The fifth and final step is the most enjoyable one. You are now ready to test your luck and try to win some money.
Once you have followed the previous steps, the fun really begins. All you need to do now is choose which games to play, and start playing them. Most online casinos offer a wide range of different games, so you should be able to easily find one that appeals to you.
Players will generally head straight for the games that they are already familiar with, and this is probably the best approach. If you're completely new to casino games, though, you might not know where to start. In this case, you should read our article on choosing which games to play. This will help you to make that decision.
It's worth noting that many online casinos allow you to play their games for free. Obviously you can't win any money by doing this, but you can't lose any either. Take this opportunity as a great way to learn how to play the games while familiarizing yourself with all the rules, and without having to risk any of your own money.
We have just one final piece of advice for you. Although it is unlikely that you'll encounter any problems when joining an online casino, it's not inconceivable either. If you have any problems, or simply want an expert's advice, remember that you can always contact customer support for help. They will be able to assist you through the sign-up process and are available to answer any questions you may have.
Author: Brad Johnson
Updated: May 2015
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