When you sign up to a fully licensed online casino that’s controlled by a reputable operator to play their games for real money, you can often claim what is known as a matching deposit bonus, but what exactly is this promotional offer?
Here is a closer look at how the matching deposit bonus works at online casinos and whether it’s worth claiming.
What is a matching deposit bonus?
A matching deposit bonus is an online casino bonus that is handed to players who make a real money deposit into their account, and the most common match bonus is the 100% match bonus.
With a 100% match bonus, players effectively double their deposit. Whatever amount you deposit, the casino operator will match your deposit dollar for dollar/pound for pound, etc. You can also find 50% match bonuses, 150% match bonuses, and even 200% match bonuses.
The deposit amount is usually only ever worth a certain amount, so there’s no need to deposit more than the bonus is worth because you won’t receive any more bonus money.
Examples of how matching deposit bonuses work
A deposit bonus that’s part of the initial sign-up bonus (aks new player welcome bonus) can usually only be claimed on your first real money deposit. Let’s say that the casino you are about to sign up to is offering a 100% match bonus worth up to $/€/£50 (or equivalent currency value).
This means that the operator is willing to match your deposit up to $/€/£50.00. In other words, depositing the full $/€/£50 would mean that your new account will start with $/€/£100.00 ($/€/£50.00 deposit + $/€/£50.00 bonus money) to play with. There would be no point depositing $/€/£300 unless you wanted to deposit that much because you would still only receive $/€/£50.00 in free bonus money.
If you deposited $/€/£15.00, then you would receive $/€/£15.00 bonus money (so a total of $/€/£30.00 to play with) and so on.
Why do I have to complete the wagering requirements?
If online casino operators gave away free money without wagering requirements, they would quickly go out of business. Most players would simply withdraw the money and spend it on other things. This is why you must complete the wagering requirements. It’s the amount of money you must wager before you can withdraw any winnings you make from your bonus.
If, for example, you deposited $/€/£50.00 with the 100% match bonus, it comes with a 45x times wagering requirement. This means that you would need to wager $/€/£2,500 ($/€/£50 x 45 wagering requirement) before you could withdraw.
Matching deposit bonuses rarely come WITHOUT wagering requirements (which are also often referred to as rollover or playthrough requirements). They can be worth anywhere from 1x times the bonus amount up to usually no more than 70x times the bonus amount.
You may find that you also have to wager the deposit amount on top of the bonus amount before any restrictions on your winnings are lifted, which is fairly standard at most online casinos today. The good news is that matching deposit bonuses can be claimed whether you sign up to the casino from your smartphone, tablet, laptop, or desktop computer.
Are matching deposit bonuses worth claiming?
Yes. Online casino matching deposit bonuses are generally worth claiming, especially the ones with relatively low wagering requirements. You will often find that most match bonuses come with a 35x to 60x wagering requirement attached, which you cannot avoid when claiming a bonus.
You only need to remember that not all games will contribute towards completing your wagering requirements. The slots and other instant win games usually contribute 100% towards completing them for every $/€/£1.00 wagered, but roulettes, blackjacks, live dealer games and most other games will not contribute anything toward completing your wagering requirements.
Also, certain deposit methods, such as Skrill or NETELLER, may be excluded from the bonus, so always read through the bonus terms and conditions to avoid any disappointment.
Finally, players usually only have a certain amount of time to complete them, which could be 24 hours, one week, or usually no longer than one month. The amount of time you have to complete the wagering/playthrough requirements varies somewhat from online casino to the next.