Are Slots No Deposit Bonuses Worth the Effort?

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Slots players enjoy access to more bonuses than any type of gambler. They can routinely look forward to deposit bonuses and free spins at nearly any casino.

The catch with these offers, though, is that one must deposit before they qualify. Of course, gaming sites are perfectly within their rights to request a deposit considering that they’re offering bonus money.

But what if you could earn free money without depositing? This is the basis behind a slots no deposit bonus.

These deals sound like a dream given that you can earn something for nothing. However, they also feature stringent terms and conditions that can make it difficult to cash out winnings. Below, you can read more about these offers along with if they’re ultimately worth pursuing.

What Are Slots No Deposit Bonuses?

A no deposit bonus lives up to its name by giving you a bonus without requiring a deposit. All you need to do is register for an account to qualify.

Real money online casinos require simple information from you during the registration process. You just need to enter your name, email, country/state, phone number, age, username, and password to get started.

The signup process calls on you to input a bonus code if you wish to take advantage of a certain offer. This is the point where you enter the relevant code to qualify (e.g. NODEPOSIT25).

For Example

El Royale Casino offers a 240% welcome bonus + 40 free spins on Bubble Bubble 2 when you use the promo code TRUEROYAL.

After filling out the registration form, you must submit your information to the casino. Provided everything checks out, you’ll receive instant approval and also get your no deposit bonus.
Speaking of which, these offers usually come in the form of cash or free spins. For example, you might receive either $10 in real-money funds or 50 free spins.

The cash offer is more flexible, because it can be used on a variety of games. Free spins, meanwhile, may relegate you to a specific slot.

In either case, though, you’re getting a free bonus that’s available for real money. With luck, you’ll turn this offer into funds that can be cashed out.

How Do You Earn a No Deposit Bonus?

As covered before, you merely need to register before receiving your no deposit bonus. However, you must meet terms and conditions before withdrawing any funds associated with the offer.

Terms and conditions cover the requirements that you must meet before cashing out bonus money. Here are common T&Cs regarding slots:

  • Playthrough (a.k.a. rollover) – A multiple of the bonus amount that must be wagered.
  • Winnings & leftovers only – You don’t withdraw an actual cash bonus (e.g. $10), but rather the winnings earned through it or anything left over (e.g. $10 down to $3).
  • Claim timeframe – Claim the bonus within an allotted amount of time.
  • Game restrictions – Some offers are restricted to one game.
  • Maximum winnings – Your potential winnings may be capped (e.g. $200).
  • Minimum deposit – You must place the minimum deposit before cashing out.

Playthrough is the most-important term that you should scrutinize. It determines how much money you’ll need to wager and, subsequently, how difficult a bonus will be to earn.

Here’s an example:

  • You get a $20 no deposit bonus.
  • Playthrough is 45x.
  • 45 x 20 = $900
  • You must wager $900 before withdrawing winnings.
  • You have $14.30 left after satisfying rollover.

Bonus Money

Anything from 30x to 60x rollover is fair for slots no deposit bonuses. However, some sites slap between 80x and 100x playthrough on these deals.

You’re better off not even trying for the latter bonuses unless you have lots of free time on your hands. After all, you’re very unlikely to have anything left from the bonus after wagering so much.

You also want to pay special attention to the allotted timeframe for both claiming and earning a bonus. Missing out on these timeframes will nullify your deal.

Casinos generally give you anywhere from a few days to a week to visit your account and claim an offer. The average casino also provides between 30 and 90 days to meet rollover.

Again, you want to enter the bonus code (if applicable) during the registration process. This code lets the casino know the specific offer that you’re going for.

Pros of Slots No Deposit Bonuses

Casinos aren’t typically known for their generosity. They offer games of chance that give them a slight edge and, eventually, profits.

However, gaming sites fully realize that they’ll draw more potential players through these bonuses. Some are even willing to give out free money to recruit gamblers.

A slots no deposit bonus represents one of the few times that a casino will give you something for free. They’re not exactly handing you cash upfront. What they are giving you, though, is a chance at winning free money.

More times than not, you’ll fail to satisfy terms and conditions before running out of bonus funds. But you’ll feel great the few times that you do meet T&Cs and withdraw winnings or what’s left over.

Besides giving you an opportunity to earn profits, slots no deposit bonuses also offer the chance to try fun games with real money.

Of course, almost every online casino allows you to play their games for free after you’re registered. But you’re using fake/play credits in these instances.

Trying out a casino through a no deposit bonus helps you accomplish two goals:

  • Determine if you like the casino and its slots.
  • Enjoy an outside chance at winning money on the side.

You’re essentially killing two birds with one stone through slots no deposit offers. You get to see if you like a casino and also potentially earn more funds for real money slot play.

Cons of Slots No Deposit Bonuses

You risk absolutely nothing from a monetary perspective by going for a no deposit deal. All you need to do is sign up, claim your reward, and try satisfying T&Cs.

However, you do have to sacrifice your time to go for these deals. You’ll usually spend a few minutes completing registration and anywhere from 5 to 15 minutes using the bonus funds.

If you love online slots, you certainly won’t mind gambling the funds/free spins. But you’ll find the signup process boring if you’re hopping around from site to site looking park for the perfect deal.

This is why I suggest skipping offers that have incredibly high playthrough. Unless you don’t care about having very little chance of cashing out, you’ll become frustrated with such deals.

High rollover seriously reduces the chances of you making anything off a bonus. You’re better off scouting out deals that feature between 30x and 60x playthrough.

Even in these cases, though, you might end up with very little or nothing at all from the offer. This aspect brings me to another disadvantage of slots no deposit bonuses in that they leave you feeling dejected.

You may be quite excited about playing slots when you first claim your bonus. However, you’ll feel deflated when failing to make any money off the deal–especially when this keeps happening.

I suggest that you only go for 1-2 deposit bonuses per day. After all, signing up over and over at different casinos and losing can be draining.

Finally, you need to deal with the many email offers you’ll receive after registering. The big reason why casinos offer bonuses in the first place is to get you on their mailing list.

Some casinos are pretty good about not spamming you on a daily basis. Others, however, have no tact and will bombard you with emails.

Of course, you can always unsubscribe to such casinos. But you’ll also find it tedious to keep unsubscribing to casino mailers when you’ve gone for lots of deals.

Alternative Bonus Opportunities

You can see that deposit bonuses have their advantages and drawbacks. They’re not the deals to end all deals. If you’re looking for alternative opportunities to make money at gaming sites, then you should consider the following.

Deposit Bonus

Unlike a slots no deposit bonus, these offers do require you to make a deposit. They match a percentage of your deposit amount with a bonus.

The benefit of deposit bonuses is that they give you an opportunity to earn far more money. Here’s an example:

  • A casino offers a 100% match bonus worth up to $500.
  • You deposit $300.
  • You can withdraw $300 upon meeting terms and conditions.


A deposit bonus also offers lower playthrough on average. The typical deposit deal features between 30x and 40x rollover.

The downside, though, is that you need to wager more overall before cashing out. If you deposit $100 on an offer with 40x rollover, for example, you’ll have to wager $4,000.

No deposit bonuses are typically much smaller and, as a result, require less in total bets. A $10 no deposit offer with 40x playthrough, for instance, only requires you to wager $400 total
Of course, you only get to cash out winnings, or what’s left, from no deposit bonuses. A deposit bonus, on the other hand, lets you withdraw a lumpsum.

Free Play

Free play is similar in nature to a no deposit bonus. However, it also has some notable differences as well.

These deals give you real money funds upfront along with a time limit. Most of these offers also provide a significant amount of money.

Here’s an example:

  • You receive $2,000 in free play.
  • You have one hour to gamble the funds.
  • You don’t necessarily need to gamble right up until the time limit.

You keep gambling these funds until you either run out of money or hit the time limit. You collect whatever profit, if any, you earn against the starting balance.

If you end with $2,100 in the example above, you’d get $100 in winnings. From here, you need to satisfy rollover and other T&Cs before withdrawing the money.

Free Bet

Some online casinos offer free bets to table game players. These promotions usually revolve around live dealer gaming.

For instance, you might receive a free $25 bet for use on live blackjack. This offer can go one of two ways:

  • You win the bet and simply collect your winnings.
  • You lose and have an opportunity to recoup the $25 loss.

Like all other bonuses covered here, you’ll need to meet playthrough before collecting the lost amount. But the key is that you at least get a chance to earn back your loss.


The offer itself determines whether a slots no deposit bonus is worth chasing. The size of the bonus and T&Cs behind it dictates whether you should go after a deal.

You want to pay special attention to playthrough. Rollover determines how hard or easy it’ll be to earn enough to withdraw your bonus.

Other criteria behind the quality of these offers include max winnings and game restrictions (if any). You should get better at identifying worthwhile no deposit deals as you purse more and more of these bonuses.

Michael Stevens

Michael Stevens has been researching and writing topics involving the gambling industry for well over a decade now and is considered an expert on all things casino and sports betting. Michael has been writing for since early 2016. ...

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