Guide to Depositing at Online Gambling Sites
There are two things you need to do in order to gamble online for real money.
- Open an account with a gambling site.
- Add funds to your online gambling account.
The first step is an easy one, although we should remind you how important it is to choose the right site. The second step is easy too, but it's one that players often ask us for advice on. That's why we've put this article together. It covers everything players could possibly want to know about depositing at online gambling sites.
We start the article by looking at the various methods you can use to deposit, and go on to explain the process for making a deposit. We then provide some information on withdrawing too. We finish by answering a number of frequently asked questions about making gambling deposits.
Deposit Options at Gambling Sites
Most gambling sites give you several different options for depositing funds. The exact options available will vary from site to site, and some options may not be available depending on where you live. For example, PayPal isn't an option for anyone living in the United States and Canada.
We've written another article where we list all the options that can be used for online gambling deposits and explain more about each one. For the purposes of this article, here's a short list of the most popular and widely available options.
Credit cards and debit cards are probably the easiest options to use. Visa and MasterCard are accepted at the vast majority of sites, and American Express and Diner's Club are sometimes available as well. It's worth noting that some credit card companies won't allow you to use your card for online gambling transactions. This is more of an issue for Americans than anyone else, but even for them it's not a particularly common problem.
For those unfamiliar with the term E-wallets, they are basically prepaid online accounts. You can fund them using various methods, and then easily send those funds to other individuals or companies. PayPal is the biggest and best known e-wallet; Neteller and Skrill are very popular too.
Using e-wallets is a great way to deposit at gambling sites. It's very simple and it's also one of the quickest ways to receive funds when cashing out any winnings. Unfortunately for Americans (again!), many e-wallets do not allow US residents to use them for gambling transactions.
Money transfer services, also known as cash transfer services or money orders, are a popular way to deposit among gamblers from the United States. MoneyGram and Western Union are the two most widely used services. This is a slightly more complicated way to deposit, as it involves more steps than most other methods, but it's reliable and it's often the best option for Americans.
Using prepaid cards is essentially the same process as using a credit card or debit card, and it's an option available at most gambling sites. They are popular primarily because they allow gamblers to fund their online accounts without their banks or credit card companies knowing what they're doing. This is relevant because gambling transactions can affect credit ratings.
A bank wire, or bank transfer, is another relatively simple option. The problem with this method, however, is that players won't usually be able to gamble with the funds instantly. It can be as many as three or four days for the funds to be available in fact, depending on how long the transfer itself takes and how long the site takes to process the transaction.
How to Deposit at Gambling Sites
As we've already mentioned, depositing funds at an online gambling site is not a particularly difficult or complicated process. If we were to be cynical about it, we could point out that it is actually in the best interests of a site to make it as easy as possible for players to send them their money…
Regardless, it's entirely your decision as to whether you want to deposit or not. If you do, and you're new to gambling online, then you might find the following step by step guide useful. Please bear in mind that the process isn't exactly the same at every site, but it's usually very similar at most places.
When you're logged in at a gambling site, there will usually be an option to visit the cashier. This is sometimes a simple text link, as shown in the example below, or it's sometimes a more prominent button. Alternatively, there may be a link or button that says "deposit now" or "my account." Whichever option is available, you'll need to click it in order to proceed to the next step.
Once you reach the cashier area of the site, you'll typically be presented with a list of available options. In the following screenshot, we have provided an example of this. Let's assume you want to use your credit card. In order to proceed to the next step, you'll need to click on that option.
You'll now be taken to a screen where you can enter the relevant payment information for your chosen option. When using a credit card, for example, you'll need to provide the card number, the expiration date, and the security code. You'll also have to enter the amount you wish to deposit. Please note that at many sites, there will be an option to enter a bonus code or promotional code at this point. If you are eligible for a bonus or special offer, you must remember to enter the necessary code.
Withdrawing From Gambling Sites
You can see from the above step by step guide just how easy it is to deposit at online gambling sites. It's just as easy to withdraw too, and the process is very similar. Again you have to visit the cashier, but this time you need to select "Withdraw" or "Cash Out." Then choose your preferred method of withdrawal, and the amount you want to withdraw. Assuming you have the requested amount in your account, your withdrawal will be sent for processing.
Please be aware that, unlike the majority of deposits, withdrawals aren't typically processed instantly. Most sites, and certainly the reputable ones, will usually process them within 24 hours, but it can take longer. Depending on the withdrawal method chosen, it can then take a few more days before the funds actually reach you. E-wallet withdrawals tend to be the quickest, followed by withdrawals by debit or credit card.
Check withdrawals generally take the longest, and unfortunately that's often the only option for US gamblers. The top US facing sites will send checks out to you as fast as they can though.
It's important to note that many sites have withdrawal limits in place. If you win big, you may have to spread those winnings over several withdrawals and over a few weeks.
Frequently Asked Questions
To conclude this article, we have answered some of the most frequently asked questions relating to depositing funds at online gambling sites.
Is it safe to deposit money online?
Yes, providing you only use reputable and trustworthy gambling sites. Most sites can be trusted, thankfully, but there are some that you're better off avoiding. You should check out our rankings of recommended gambling sites if you're unsure about where the best places are for betting and gaming.
What's the minimum I can deposit?
This will depend on the site you're using, and the deposit option, but the minimum amount is usually quite small: $10, or currency equivalent, is typical.
What's the maximum I can deposit?
This will again vary at different sites, and there will often be different maximums for the different deposit options too. The maximum amount is typically high enough for most gamblers, and those that want to deposit more can always contact customer support and ask for a limit increase. Most sites will agree to such a request.
Can I set my own limits?
Yes, at most sites there's an option to limit the amount you can deposit by day, week, or month. This is something you should definitely do if you're not very good at sticking to a budget. It can help prevent you from gambling more money than you can afford.
What currency can I deposit in?
Once again, this will depend on the site and the deposit option being used. A lot of sites accept deposits in a wide range of different currencies, while others will only accept deposits in a single specified currency. Most gambling sites publish this information somewhere in their terms and conditions, but it's always an option to contact their customer support and ask.
Are there any fees for depositing?
Fees for depositing are rare, but a few sites charge them. Credit card companies will often treat an online gambling transaction the same as withdrawing cash from an ATM though, so you may get charged a couple of percent by them. Some e-wallets also charge fees for transactions.
It's also worth noting that a lot of sites do charge for withdrawals, particularly sites that accept US customers. This is the sort of information that we cover in our gambling site reviews.
Author: Brad Johnson
Updated: November 2015