No deposit bonuses are extremely popular in the online gambling world. It’s not hard to see why when considering that these bonuses provide a chance to win free money.
With that said, many online gamblers pursue no deposit deals on a regular basis. However, most of them don’t make anything from these offers due to harsh terms and conditions. With that being said, is it worth pursuing no deposit bonuses?
I’m going to answer this question later in the post. First, though, I’ll cover more on no deposit bonuses and why it’s so difficult to benefit from them.
How Does a No Deposit Bonus Work?
If you’ve never gone after one, then you may be puzzled about how a no deposit bonus works. After all, you don’t actually get to keep the bonus itself.
Instead, you use the provided funds to accumulate winnings. If you’re able to meet the terms and conditions, you’ll get to cash out the winnings.
For example, you might receive a $10 no deposit bonus. Anything that’s left over after meeting terms and conditions is yours to cash out (provided you meet the casino’s minimum withdrawal).
Most of the best real money online casinos require you to have a bonus code to qualify. Therefore, you should find the relevant bonus code (if available) before signing up.
Terms and Conditions Must Be Met
Online casinos don’t like giving anything away for free. Not surprisingly, you need to satisfy terms and conditions before withdrawing anything from a no deposit bonus. I’ll discuss the most common terms behind these deals below.
Playthrough (also referred to as “rollover”) refers to how much you must wager before withdrawing bonus money. It’s listed as a multiple of the bonus amount.
Here’s an example on how rollover works:
- You receive a $10 no deposit bonus
- Rollover is 60x
- 60 x 10 = 600
- You must wager $600
- You win $15 after meeting playthrough
- You can withdraw the $15 so long as it meets the casino’s minimum cashout
You definitely want to find lower playthrough when pursuing these bonuses. This way, you don’t have to wager as much and stand a better chance at making money.
Game Restrictions and Higher Playthrough
As with many bonuses, no deposit deals often come with certain game restrictions. For example, online blackjack may require more playthrough, or even be completely exempt, from a deal.
Here’s an example of when blackjack features higher rollover than other games:
- An online casino attaches 40x playthrough to slots, scratchcards, and keno
- Meanwhile, blackjack comes with 200x rollover attached because it offers high RTP
- 200 / 40 = 5
- You must wager 5x as much with blackjack when compared to slots, scratchcards, and keno
No online casino will let you get rich through a no deposit offer. Instead, they limit how much you can win through these deals.
Of course, you’re unlikely to win anything close to $200 through these deals—at least not for a while. For the times when you do get lucky, though, the win potential is limited.
You might like the idea of placing one huge bet, or at least a series of big wagers, to quickly satisfy playthrough.
This way, you can immediately find out if you’re going to earn money from a no deposit bonus. Afterward, you could simply move on to the next online casino and do it again.
In order to prevent this, mobile casinos impose betting restrictions during active bonuses. For example, you may only be able to bet up to $100 with an active bonus. Failure to follow this term will nullify the no deposit deal.
Some online casinos don’t even let you cash out no deposit funds after meeting terms and conditions. Instead, they want you to place a deposit before withdrawing anything.
Gaming sites seek to make you comfortable depositing with them. Furthermore, they want to increase the chances of you playing for real money.
Of course, you can simply fund your account and withdraw everything right away. However, this extra step can still be annoying.
How Often Do These Bonuses Pay Off?
I don’t have statistics on how often no deposit bonuses bear fruit. In my experiences, though, they usually don’t provide anything other than entertainment.
They want to ensure that you truly earn any free money. They’ll instate higher playthrough, more game restrictions, and/or lower maximum bets to make it happen.
Of course, you may still overcome these obstacles when trying to earn a bonus. The goal, though, should be seeking the path of least resistance. Only then will you truly have a realistic shot at benefiting from a no deposit deal.
Much Depends Upon the Playthrough in Question
Again, the playthrough is the biggest term that you need to consider. Higher or lower rollover has a big impact on how likely you are to earn money from a no deposit bonus.
The most generous no deposit deals usually feature playthrough in the range of 20x to 50x. I’ve even seen no deposit offers with just 1x rollover in newly-regulated markets, where online casinos battle fiercely to acquire new customers.
The least-generous deals carry playthrough in the range of 60x to 200x. Anything towards the latter end of this range provides almost no chance of making money.
Here are comparisons to show how low and high rollover impact your odds of meeting terms and conditions:
- You qualify for a $20 no deposit bonus
- Rollover is 100x
- 100 x 20 = 2,000
- You must wager $2,000 before cashing out
- You qualify for a $20 no deposit bonus
- Rollover is 40x
- 40 x 20 = 800
- You only need to wager $800 before cashing out in this instance
Should You Ultimately Spend Time on No Deposit Bonuses?
The answer to this question relies on multiple factors. You should consider the following before pursuing a no deposit bonus:
- The amount of free time you have
- Your bankroll size
- The given casino’s terms and conditions
- If you’re looking to try new online casinos
- How comfortable you are with signing up at multiple mobile casinos
Regarding the first point, no deposit bonuses don’t take hours to qualify for. They do, however, require some time on your part.
You must look for a bonus code in many cases and complete registration. You’ll also need to play with the bonus in an effort to meet terms and conditions. All of this effort can feel wasted when a no deposit bonus doesn’t deliver anything.
Assuming you do have plenty of free time, though, then no deposit bonuses are worthwhile. If nothing else, they provide the thrill of real money gambling at no cost.
A casino’s terms and conditions have a large impact on your ability to win anything. You may need to search for a while before finding a gambling site with fair terms and conditions.
If you’re looking to try new online casinos anyways, then you might as well do it with a no deposit bonus. This way, you have the potential to win money while also checking out real money gambling sites.
Finally, you must decide if you’re comfortable in handing out personal details to casino after casino. Provided you are, then you’ll have no problem going after multiple no deposit bonuses.
Our Conclusion About No Deposit Bonuses
As for whether no deposit bonuses are worth the effort or not, everything depends upon your situation.
If you’re a well-funded player who doesn’t need the spare change, then you might be better off avoiding these deals. Instead, your time may be better served with large deposit bonuses.
Assuming you’re somebody who doesn’t have much/anything to gamble with online, you should definitely look into no deposit deals.
In summary, no deposit bonuses are worthwhile under the right circumstances. You just need to consider your personal situation before deciding to pursue them.