One of the most important considerations for any online casino is their selection of banking methods and how they go about processing payments. If banking isn’t up to scratch and word gets out to players networks such as forums and social media it can have serious financial repercussions – banking can literally make or break an online casino.
It’s for this reason that the whole process is a little more transparent than it once was. Most casinos will highlight exactly what methods you can use and how much you can transfer in or out within a particular timescale.
There are lots of different banking methods covering cards, eWallets, and pre-paid vouchers, and several things that you need to be aware of before making your first deposit at any casino. This guide will highlight pretty much everything you need to to know in order to bank as efficiently as possible, and also as safely as possible.
2019 identity check changes
When banking with an online casino, one of things that people are caught out and frustrated by is the fact that when taking your money out, all of a sudden, the caisno will ask for documents such as photo ID and proof of address.
Obviously, it can take time for people to get hold of these documents, and more time for the casino to then process them. This all adds up to a frustratingly long timeframe before you get hold of your money, and even causes some less experienced players to expect foul play. However, the casino legally have to do this before they can release money, they aren’t just being difficult.
This process is changing, though. The UK Gambling Commission have brought in a number of new rules for both casinos and sportsbooks to integrate, meaning they must ask for this information prior to being able to deposit.
So when you sign up for an account don’t be surprised if you are asked to provide proof of ID, banking information, and potentially proof of address as well, just to get access to the casino.
The idea is to stop people that shouldn’t be able to gaining access to casinos, even the live/demo play games. This is to protect vulnerable people, underage people, excluded players, and also potential money launders.
Although the process might be a little frustrating and very different to how casinos have worked in the past, this is going to be how they operate moving forward. It’s important to remember that this isn’t something that the casino is imposing, it’s being forced upon them by the UK Gambling Commission.
It’s worth just accepting this as the norm now and having these documents ready; this can actually work in the players’ favour as the casino will be mightily keen to get these documents cleared so you can start playing, whereas when it comes to withdrawing money, it might not have been as high a priority.
Make sure your casino is safe
We’ve spoken about the UK Gambling Commission already, and it’s these guys who regulate the industry and make it as safe an environment as possible for the players. Banking is a huge part of the application process that casinos need to go through to legally operate within the UK.
That means that if a casino is able to get the green light from the Gambling Commission, then they are going to be pretty safe to both play and bank with. Casinos that are successful in their application are able to showcase the Gambling Commission logo on their homepage. This will look something like this:
As you can see, it’s often listed among a number of available banking options as well as other licenses they have obtained, and sometimes even sports teams that they represent or other sponsorship indications.
The logo should include a direct link to their page on the Gambling Commission’s website which will give you the lowdown on their license; the above footer is taken from Royal Panda and clicking on the logo will take you to the following page:
As you can see, there is info about the brand, where they are based, and most importantly the status of their licence. As you can see, they have an active license with the UK Gambling Commission so they are going to be safe to bank with.
It’s worth noting that not all casinos link directly to their page from their footer – the footer can often be problematic with coding issues for some sites, especially on mobile. If this is the case, you can simply go and visit https://secure.gamblingcommission.gov.uk/PublicRegister/Search and then type in the name of the casino to check to see if they are licensed.
If you find that they don’t have a license or the license has expired then you should avoid the casino at all costs. If you’ve already deposited funds then try and get them out as soon as you can.
One of the great things about modern day casinos is the number of banking methods that you are able to choose from. The line-up for most is pretty comprehensive and it’s unusual not to find a method that works for you, whether that be a debit card, an e-wallet, or anything else.
Here is a list of some of the more common choices that you will have. Please note that they will range from casino to casino, as will the associated limits.
The majority of UK punters tend to use a debit card. A big reason for this is down to convenience in that we all have at least one or other; the other reason comes down to safety, in that your bank can help should something go wrong or your details get misplaced.
Your debit card is linked to your bank, so payments will be taken immediately. This is useful for people who keep a keen eye on their balances and want any changes to show up instantly rather than forgetting about it until they see the money come out a few days later.
Deposits with both options are likely going to be instant, with withdrawals typically taking anywhere between 1-5 working days at most online casinos. Fee’s charged by the casino for debit card deposit or withdrawals are pretty rare, although they can be applied in some situations, either by the casino or by the bank.
For many years PayPal was an outcast within the gambling industry and very few casinos accepted it as payment. But these days there are huge number of casinos willing to accept deposits and withdrawals from a PayPal account.
One of the best reasons to use a payment process like PayPal is the speed and ease of use. You’re likely going to get your money within 24 hours at most places, but this can be as quick as an hour if you get the right casino on the right day.
It also means that you don’t need to keep a debit card on file with the casino. So, if the worst were to happen then all you would need to do is change your PayPal password and you are good to go. PayPal also comes with buyer and seller protection, so you can open case files when transactions have gone wrong and they are really prompt with getting a resolution.
Neteller is probably the biggest and most well-known e-wallet banking method for online casino players in the UK. It was initially set up specifically for the gambling industry, and even though it’s now diversified and can be used for all sorts, it’s still heavily tied to online gambling and to casinos in particular.
Given that it’s an e-wallet this means that, like PayPal, you don’t need to keep a debit card on file. Banking times are super-fast and some casinos even process withdrawals instantly.
What’s great about Neteller is that you can keep one wallet for all your online casino play. So, if you use several casinos, you can use your Neteller wallet for each of those.
The downside is that you can’t claim a lot of deposit and welcome offers with Neteller. The reason is that it’s easy to create multiple accounts with this banking method, which means that the casinos aren’t able to track who’s already had a bonus and who is still eligible.
Skrill is a viable alternative to Neteller and with it being an e-wallet it works in the exact same way.
What you will notice with Skrill is that it’s not widely available as Neteller, so it might be harder to find a casino that works with it.
Skrill do have their own pre-paid card with their account as well, allowing you to get a Mastercard that is hooked up to your Skrill account. This means that you could literally have your casino winnings to spend in just a few hours, if not sooner in some examples.
Paysafecard is probably the most popular of the truly anonymous payment methods that are out there. It works like a voucher system that you can then preload at huge number of shops throughout the UK.
You pay for the number of vouchers that you need, and those vouchers have a unique code that identifies each one.
You enter the code and then your finds will be deposited. The wide range of stores that now stock these payment methods has been great for the UK casino player.
Bank Transfer (wire)
Bank transfer is another popular banking option. The problem with this one is that they often take time to be processed by your bank, and then more time to be accepted by the casinos bank. So, whereas debit card deposits can be issued straight away, the transferring of money manually takes longer.
However, bank transfers come into their own when depositing or withdrawing large sums of money. You will often find the cap on bank transfers (wire) to be much higher than pretty much any other banking method. Even though the process takes longer, the sums of money that can be moved about are much larger.
If you are ever lucky enough to scoop a jackpot, for example, chances are it will have to be sent to you via bank transfer.
One of the latest additions to the mix is Apply pay. This is where you are able to use the banking methods that are attached to your phone to fund your casino account. There are other pay by phone options but this is the best known.
Applepay is a great option if you are looking to bank with your debit card but you don’t want the fuss of adding cards to your casino account.
It’s worth noting that payments are often limited on this, with most capped at £30 per transaction, but some go up to £100, similarly to if you were using it in a shop.
The success of Bitcoin has been widely reported, and it has even started filtering into the gambling industry since there are some casinos that now allow you to bank with it.
It’s rare but it does exist.
Your coins will be converted to cash within the casino at the rate set by the casino, so you should be aware of the going exchange rate before you choose this as a payment method.
Neteller also have the capability to process Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, so if this is something you are interested in pursuing that could be another avenue.
You are going to find that the vast majority of online casinos have various limits as to what can and can’t be deposited, withdrawn, and won.
The most common limit is the amount that you are able to withdraw. Most casinos will cap this amount on a per transaction basis; for example, a casino may state that the most you can withdraw is £10,000 per transaction. If you were wanting to withdraw £50,000 then you would need to make 5 x £10,000 transactions to get hold of all of your money.
There aren’t really that many ways around this, but you can be shrewd as a player and choose casinos that have particularly high caps or even no caps (rare). You can also try getting in touch with the casino to negotiate an increase in the cap for your account. This is isn’t always successful long term, but they may raise it for one-off transactions.
You may also be limited in the number of withdrawals you can make within a particular period of time. This will usually tie into the amount you can withdraw at one time, but what you will find is that a lot of online casinos will only give you a certain number of free withdrawals each month.
If we take the example above and assume that the casino capped withdrawal amounts at £10,000 and the number of transactions at 1 per month, it would take you 5 months to withdraw that money unless you could work something out.
As a final point for this, you will find that these limits are often very high. For example, Royal Panda have their withdrawal limit as high as £100,000 for bank transfers and e-wallets, but it’s also worth noting that the limits can change based on the payment method.
When you first initiate a withdrawal, your transaction will likely head into what’s known as a pending period. Within this timeframe the casino allows the player to cancel their withdrawal, and if they do their cash is returned to their player balance.
The main reason that they do this, not that they would admit it, is to give the player time to change their mind and keep playing at the casino. You might think we are being cynical but the casino wants to make money, and if you are withdrawing at a profit they aren’t making anything.
A more reasonable explanation for the pending period is that it takes time to process these payments. Withdrawals are often processed manually or at the very least flagged up should anything look out of sorts. It gives the employee time to evaluate the withdrawal and also allows the system to flag any withdrawals that aren’t eligible.
The pending periods will differ with each casino. Some will be as short as just a couple of hours while others can keep your request pending for up to 7 days. Stay away from these places.
To remove the pending period on your account you need to contact the casino. This is called flushing, but manual flushing is not always an option.
When it is and you make a manual request for it, this removes any reverse withdrawal options that you might have had before and your payment will be processed by the method of your choice.
The best way to do this is to simply contact customer support. Given that some take just hours or a couple of days max, your best route is going to be through live chat or ringing and speaking to someone. If you email then it could take them longer than the pending period lasts to respond.