Online Casinos UK
Listed below are a number of recommended UK Online Casinos that are safe, trusted and licensed by the UK.
How do I choose an Online Casino?
The culture of gambling has undergone a radical shift in the 21st century. No longer do you need to find the nearest bricks and mortar casino to enjoy a hand of poker or a flutter on roulette and the explosion in online slots means there’s a game for everyone.
However, playing online isn’t without its pitfalls and it can cost you dearly if you sign up for an unlicensed casino or one with wagering requirements you can never hope to meet.
If you want to have a great online experience, it pays to be able to evaluate an online casino before you sign up for an account. Here’s how to enjoy a high quality, good value and above all safe online experience.
What do other Online Casino players have to say?
One of your best weapons when evaluating online casinos are the opinions of other punters. They won’t mince their words if a site doesn’t live up to expectations and you’ll get a proper sense of the features, bonuses and games on offer.
Player reviews will give you a good insight into what’s on offer, how easy or difficult it is to make a deposit and the ease of withdrawing your winnings.
If the same issue comes up time and again through different reviews, then treat it as a red flag and steer clear. Reputable online casinos create positive feedback from players looking for the best sites on offer.
Always be selective about evaluating player reviews as some players can leave bad reviews simply because they lost their bankroll. Read carefully and compare reviews with each other to get the bigger picture.
Mobile Casino or Instant Play Casino?
Virtually all modern online casinos are now instant play, with no need for a long winded download to get you up and running. Simply bookmark your favourite sites for instant access and start playing as soon as you make your first deposit.
If you like the option of gaming on the move, find a casino with a mobile app to download from the App Store or the Play Store depending on whether you’re using an iPhone or Android smartphone.
Many online casinos also use HTML5 technology for mobile optimisation, so you can open the website in a mobile browser and access full content optimised for the size of screen you’re using.
There’s no doubt that mobile is the future of online gaming, allowing you to play whenever and wherever you are, subject to access to WiFi or your data plan.
Look for an online casino that’s committed to the embracing the latest technological developments to bring you the very best experience whether you’re at your desktop or on the move.
Shopping around for the best welcome bonus can be time-consuming so let trusted review sites be your friend.
There’s a myriad of bonus action available from no deposit bonuses where you play for free with the casino’s cash, to match deposit bonuses where your initial deposit is met by the casino so your bankroll doubles.
But it doesn’t - and shouldn’t - stop there. You’ll often find that casino’s offer dedicated free spins on certain games, or free bets if they offer a sportsbook.
Some casinos have regular tournaments or seasonal specials to look out for. Get invited to join the VIP lounge and you’ll start accumulating points and prizes.
Most online casinos offer some kind of membership and/or reward scheme that lets you convert your time spent online into all kinds of prizes including free bets and cashback.
Research what’s available at the casinos of your choice and evaluate its usefulness to you.
For example, free spins on a designated slot or some free bets might sound useful, but not if they’re bonus items you’re unlikely to cash in.
On the other hand, a rankings-based loyalty reward programme will offer tangible cash rewards such as bigger bonuses or access to an exclusive game and these are well worth having.
Research your Online Casinos
Great bonuses are only part of the player experience. Before you open an account with an online casino, you need to know that it’s safe, legitimate and trustworthy.
There are several ways in which you can evaluate the trustworthiness and legitimacy of your chosen sites.
If you’re looking to weed out the legitimate casinos from the fakes then you’re looking for a series of red flags. First, you’re looking for any licensing agreements and casino ownership information - if all you can find is a ‘contact us’ web form, then think twice about signing up.
A quick online check should flag whether a casino has a reputation for closing accounts without warning or changing the terms & conditions at short notice.
There are various Seals of Approval from the likes of eCogra and iGaming Labs that are worth looking for.
These mean that the casino has submitted to rigorous testing to ensure that all spins and deals are fair and random and that published information on the payout ratio or RTP is accurate.
A casino that isn’t licensed should be avoided. But that doesn’t mean that all licenses are equal. For example, the strictest licensing jurisdictions are Alderney, the UK, Gibraltar, Malta and the Isle of Man.
If a casino is registered with these commissions, then you can deposit with confidence. The information should be easy to find on the casino website - if not then move on.
Before you submit any personal or financial details to the website of your choice, check the security. Reputable sites will use the latest SSL encryption technology to safeguard your personal and financial data.
That means that whenever you make a deposit or withdrawal, your money is not at risk.
If you want the best gaming experience then there are a handful of names you need to look for.
These are the developers who have created the best platforms in the online casino gaming world that combine security, reliability and an outstanding gaming experience to create a site you’ll want to come back to time and again.
Look for developers who are pushing the boundaries with 3D video slots and HTML5 optimisation so that their casino games load effortlessly across all devices.
Names such as NetEnt, Novomatic, Evolution Gaming and Playtech are consistently recognised as among the best in the world at creating a great online casino experience and that matters when you don’t want to waste time and money on a substandard site.
The content of most online casinos is divided into the following categories:
Live Dealer Casinos
if you want the full live casino experience, look for a casino with a strong live dealer offering. This means accessing a live stream of a dealer direct from a studio that looks like the dealer’s pit.
They’ll be able to see your name and there can be quite a high level of interaction if the live dealer games include a chat function for two way communication.
If you like your poker and blackjack with the extra adrenalin of a live game, this is a good feature to look for.
These are the standard casino fare of blackjack, poker and roulette with occasionally other options including baccarat. The exciting thing about playing online is that you’ll be offered a much wider range of games than in a conventional land-based casino.
Roulette, for example, has French, European and American variations all with their own rules and even roulette wheels - the American variation has a double 0.
You’ll also find several variations of Texas Hold ‘Em and other popular poker variants.
Online slots have become a huge part of any casino's offering since the explosion in online slots in the 00s. Many well-known titles are ported from bricks and mortar casinos with all their bonus features intact - including the ability to win a progressive jackpot well into 7 figures.
Slots feature plenty of exciting gameplay including free spins, wilds and bonus games and are becoming more ambitious by the minute.
Obviously, it makes sense to evaluate your chosen casinos on the games they offer and how closely they match your interests.
There’s no point signing up to a casino with hundreds of slots when you’re looking for a good poker game.
On the other hand, casinos that offer a wide range of games generally have the confidence and reputation to cater to a wider clientele.
Online Casino House Edge
With slots, you’ll always know the house edge by looking at what’s known as the RTP or return to player.
This is a figure averaged out over the return on thousands of spins and represents the theoretical return on staking £100. The house edge on a slot with an RTP of 96.25% is therefore 3.75%.
All casino games are slanted in the house’s favour to some extent or another.
For example, the odds in European and French roulette favour the house by 2.7% while those odds double in the American variant with its double 0’s.
It’s worth taking some time to look through the terms & conditions and FAQs to find out more information on the house edge which should be clearly displayed.
While welcome bonuses, odds of winning and types of games on offer are crucially important, how it’s all put together shouldn’t be ignored.
After all, if you intend to spend at least some of your leisure time at a particular site, it needs to offer a really strong user experience. That can be a blend of several factors but we recommend you look out for the following:
Never underestimate the aesthetics of a website. It should be instinctive to use and well laid out with games that are easy to access and to wager on.
That bold colour scheme can become headache-inducing after a while and too many animations can get in the way of the site’s core business.
Design is a matter of taste but often less is more and the cleaner and crisper the design, the more satisfying it is to use.
Deposit and withdrawal options
One way to assess whether a site is trustworthy is the deposit options they offer and the amount of time it takes to withdraw your money.
Always look for sites that work with PayPal as they’re very particular about who they partner with.
At a minimum, you should be able to deposit through all major high street banks, PayPal and e-wallets such as Skrill and Neteller.
Withdrawal times should be clearly stated in the terms & conditions or FAQs and there shouldn’t be any red flags from other players regarding winning being paid out in a timely fashion.
If there are any withdrawal limits or wagering requirements before you can get at your winnings, they should also be clearly listed in the terms & conditions.
A reputable site will offer a wide range of customer support options, from extensive help pages to online chat. You should be able to contact the site through email and a phone number as well as email or an online contact form.
Again, if you have difficulty accessing customer support, think twice about depositing your hard earned cash at that particular site.
The big name casinos all offer help, support and advice to players as to how to play safely and enjoy a pleasant experience.
You may be able to access time outs or even be able to temporarily close your account if you do have an issue.
You may also encounter betting limits in various games that are designed to protect you from making a bet that’s beyond your bankroll. Such limits also protect the casino against high rollers with deep pockets.
Additional Products - Sportsbooks and more
A good online casino is no longer just a place to play a few hands at poker or spin a few slots.
The big casinos now also offer a fully fledged sportsbook with hundreds of sports and a wide range of betting options from straights to accas.
These can make a very welcome change from the live dealer room or the roulette table, so if you also enjoy a flutter on the horses or a cheeky football acca then look for a full-featured sportsbook alongside your preferred casino games.
Many sites also offer a full range of additional action - from slots tournaments to high roller tables.
Look for a casino that delivers a good VIP programme that offers incentives and bonuses to enrich your playing experience.