Optimise your winnings & playtime with Casino Bonuses
To help you make the most of your online casino experience, we’ve prepared this detailed guide to the latest casino bonuses in the UK, which includes the most rewarding offers by numerous casino brands.
Check it out to discover different kinds of bonuses that you can claim both as a new and existing UK player, and to learn how to identify the best casino deposit bonuses and other types of bonuses that are on offer at the moment.
What is a Casino Bonus?
Casino bonuses come in all different shapes and sizes.
Despite their terms and conditions, they are all designed with one purpose in mind – to give you risk-free bonus money that you can use on online casino games.
Who dislikes the offer of free money, right?
Online casinos typically use bonuses as their most tangible marketing tactic to attract new customers and reward loyal, existing customers too.
But are online casino bonuses all they are cracked up to be?
Or do they simply encourage you to part with your own hard-earned money?
Below, we’ll explain how to separate the wheat from the chaff and identify the top casino bonus offers.
Are casino bonuses worth it?
The truth is that some casino bonuses aren’t all they are cracked up to be.
There are some unreputable online casinos that will dangle the carrot of bonus money in your direction.
They’ll try and baffle you with confusing and complex terms and conditions.
You might like the idea of £100 in bonus funds — much like the bonus offered to first time players at PlayFrank with an additional 50 Bonus Spins — to try the latest online slots or state-of-the-art table games.
But, if the small print is such that unrealistic wagering requirements make it virtually impossible to turn that bonus money into real cash, you may just wonder what’s the point?
That’s where we come in.
At CasinoHawks, we keep our beady eye firmly on the UK online casino industry to pinpoint the best online casino bonuses.
Our job is to make casino welcome bonuses clear and easy to understand, while listing the biggest and most realistic bonuses too, of course.
Casino Bonuses: Did you know?
Online slots can contribute 100% towards the wagering requirements of a casino welcome bonus, nine times out of ten. Some table games are often excluded from contributing towards clearing your wagering requirements.
Bringing you the best selection of bonuses
It’s our mission to hand-pick the top casino bonuses by looking out for the fairest and most potentially lucrative online casino bonuses available to players residing in the UK.
There is a method to everything we do.
All the casino bonus offers listed at the top of this page are chosen because they meet our exacting criteria set out below.
However, it is also up to you to decide on the best deposit bonus casino for you, depending on your gaming preferences.
We only select bonuses from licensed casinos in the UK
The casino bonuses listed at CasinoHawks are fully compliant with UK laws and regulations, as defined by the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC).
The UKGC promotes the need for “fair and transparent” casino bonus offers.
It also works in close collaboration with the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) to ensure operators abide by the principles set out for online promotions.
By selecting the best casino bonus promotions from UKGC-licensed casinos, you can be sure that each bonus complies with the following:
- All terms and conditions linked to a casino welcome bonus are fully accessible before you hit that all-important ‘Sign Up’ button.
- All players are informed when they are playing with bonus funds and reminded of any restrictions associated with these funds.
- Restrictions of promotional play are “do not reserve sole discretion” of the casino.
- All terms and conditions of a casino bonus cannot be amended once you have opted into the promotion.
What you should look for when choosing a bonus
There are a number of things you should look out for in a casino bonus, that determine whether it’s worth claiming or not.
Looking out for the below factors in the bonus terms and conditions will save you from disappointment later on, and will also help you make the best of each bonus.
Always read the Terms and Conditions!
Double and triple-check the T’s and C’s.
It’s the number-one rule of thumb before claiming any casino welcome bonus.
What are wagering requirements?
Wagering requirements are attached even to some of the best free casino bonuses.
They are displayed as a multiplier, denoting how many times you must play through your bonus funds before it can be withdrawn as real money to your bank account.
For example, a £50 casino bonus with a 30x multiplier must be wagered 30 times (i.e. you must wager a total of £1,500) before any winnings can be withdrawn as cash.
But there is some fantastic news for us as well! Some of the latest casino bonuses involve wager-free bonuses, which are awarded with the intention to beat the competition.
If you’re looking for more wager-free or low wagering offers, we also recommend having a look at our guide to Online Casinos with Low Wagering Requirements here.
What are game restrictions?
The reality of a free casino bonus is that some operators choose to limit the number of games available to play with bonus funds.
That’s because they carry the smallest house edge and make it easier for players to clear their wagering requirements.
The best first deposit bonus casino offers will be usable on a broad spectrum of slots and table games.
If you are happy to choose a deposit match bonus, it’s important to know the minimum real-money deposit to be eligible for the matched bonus.
Most online casinos pushing this kind of promotion will also put a ceiling on the maximum matched deposit.
For example, the minimum matched deposit may be £10, and the maximum matched deposit might be £250.
Maximum win limits
Some bonuses come with a cap on the amount that you can win from them. This is very common in the case of certain free spins bonuses, and means that no matter how much you win, you can only really withdraw up to a certain amount.
What is the Bonus Validity?
Make sure you know how long your casino bonus is valid for.
As a rule of thumb, most UK online casinos will keep bonuses active for at least seven days after sign-up.
Free spins bonuses may have a shorter validity – as little as 24 hours.
You’ll also have a time limit for clearing the wagering requirements of your bonus too.
Deposit Method Restrictions
Some online casinos will restrict the offer of casino bonuses based on your deposit method of choice.
However, their exclusion is often specified in the small print, making it hard for users to know the rules.
We’ll always present the restrictions of any casino bonus to you clearly on our site.
Some welcome bonus casino offers will be limited to users from certain countries.
At CasinoHawks, we only list casino bonuses that are fully accessible to players across the UK.
How do turnover requirements work?
Casino game categories tend to have different ‘weightings’ towards bonus wagering requirements.
Most online slots will carry a 100% weighting towards turnover requirements, with every penny you stake counting towards your bonus clearance.
However, some casinos will limit the weighting of table games and live casino games to just 10%, with just 10p of every £1 staked contributing towards clearing your bonus.
This means that it will take much longer to wager your bonus on table games than it would on slot games.
What types of bonuses are out there and which one is the best for you?
And now, let’s take a look at the different casino bonus types that are usually available at online casinos in the UK.
Welcome Bonus (sign-up bonus)
The most common form of casino promotion, welcome bonuses are offers made available exclusively upon sign-up.
It’s usually in the form of a matched deposit bonus offer.
The matched bonus typically ranges between 50% and 100%, but the best casino deposit bonus offers may go up to a whopping 500% of your first real-money deposit.
The most popular across casinos is the 100% matched deposit sign-up bonus. However, it is also common to get free spins alongside your matched bonus.
In our opinion, the best casino signup bonus is one which includes both deposit match bonus and free spins, at low wagering requirements.
No Deposit Casino Bonus
If you would rather receive a casino bonus just for signing up, no deposit bonuses will work best for you.
This free no deposit casino bonus carries absolutely no risk; you don’t need to deposit a penny of your own money, and your account will usually be credited with bonus funds upon sign-up.
On occasion, you may be asked to enter a bonus code in the sign-up form.
This is supplied to you by your chosen casino.
Free Spins Bonus
Casino bonuses can also come in the form of free spins bonuses.
They may sometimes be attached to a matched casino bonus or they may be a bonus in their own right.
Either way, free spins bonuses give you a chance to play selected slot titles without having to wager any of your own cash.
Note: The UKGC has changed the recommended terminology for referring to free spins bonuses of late.
Today, a bonus can only be called a free spins bonus if it does not attach wagering requirements to any winnings from these spins.
Spins carrying a wagering requirement are instead called ‘bonus spins’, or simply ‘spins’.
Although at the top of this page, we only list the best welcome bonus casino offers, we need to point out that rewards don’t have to stop with the casino sign up bonus!
Reload casino bonuses are usually reserved for existing loyal customers, as well as lapsed customers that haven’t played at an online casino for some time.
A reload bonus is like a matched deposit bonus.
You can get anything from 25% to 100% of your next real-money deposit in bonus funds to incentivise your casino gaming.
You may even get free spins for existing players on a regular basis.
Although the matched amount is usually less than that of a sign up bonus casino offer, you will typically get the chance to claim a reload bonus frequently. Some casinos may offer reload bonuses on a weekly or even basis, issuing them on specific days of the week.
Reload bonuses might also be on offer as part of special seasonal promotions like Christmas or Halloween.
In most cases, all offers can be claimed after a minimum deposit has been placed by the player to satisfy part of the terms and conditions.
No Wagering Bonus
Although ‘no wagering’ bonuses are less common than other types of bonuses, they are certainly some of the best casino bonuses you can find.
Any no wagering bonus funds credited to your account will not have wagering requirements attached.
This means that any winnings you earn from this bonus – however big or small – can be withdrawn immediately as cash.
The top online casino bonus, in our opinion, is one which comes with no wagering requirements, or with very low wagering. This type of bonus gives you the best chance of keeping the winnings you generate!
Instead of offering bonus funds upfront, cashback bonuses commit to refunding you a percentage of your losses over a specific period.
This is usually your first seven days as a new customer at an online casino.
On average, cashback percentages range from 5% to 25%.
Let’s say you lost £100 in your first week. You would be credited between £5 and £25 in bonus funds.
Live Casino Bonuses
Real-time live casinos are becoming a popular way to play casino games online.
These HD-quality streams of table games, managed by trained dealers, give you the most authentic land-based casino experience on desktop or mobile.
Many online casinos now run two bonuses simultaneously – one for their conventional video casino games and one for their live casino games.
The live casino bonus is usually credited in the form of a deposit match bonus, allowing you to play some hands of Live Blackjack or spin the Live Roulette wheel using the bonus funds.
Mobile casino bonuses
Many of the leading online casinos now entice players to enjoy casino gaming within browsers or native apps on smartphones.
Specific mobile casino bonuses to encourage mobile play are relatively common.
These promotions are reserved exclusively for use on the mobile version of online casinos and cannot be redeemed via their conventional desktop sites.
However, these days, all of the best casino bonus UK offers are typically available via both desktop and mobile.
Casino Bonuses: Did you know?
The advent of HTML5 technology revolutionised mobile casino gaming in recent years. Its cross-platform support has made it possible for mobile casinos to be played within web browsers of any screen size, not just within downloadable native apps.
How to activate a casino bonus
It all starts with completing the sign-up form.
Look out for the ‘Bonus Code’ field in the registration form.
In some cases you’ll need to cut and paste the bonus code yourself, so make sure the field isn’t blank when you complete your registration.
Most online casinos will have an intuitive ‘Cashier’ section, making it easy to register payment methods and make deposits or withdrawals.
Make sure the deposit method you choose is eligible for your casino bonus. The best deposit bonus offers typically accept a good range of payment methods.
3. First game
Make sure your online casino uses your bonus funds or free spins to play with first.
This is the case with most operators, but it’s worth checking.
It’s also important to play a game that is eligible for the bonus, otherwise the casino will use your deposited cash funds.
You can withdraw any subsequent winnings from your casino bonus, providing you have cleared the wagering requirements attached to your bonus funds.
The best bonus casino will allow you to withdraw your bonus winnings using your preferred payment method and will process your withdrawal fast!
Casino Bonuses: Did you know?
The main reason online casinos exclude e-wallets like Skrill and Neteller from a casino online bonus is largely due to fraud and money laundering prevention. It’s harder for casinos to secure valid identification of users via e-wallets, so they simply remove them from bonus promotions.
Solutions to common issues when using a casino bonus
- My bonus was not activated
Get in touch with your online casino’s customer support ASAP.
If you can prove that the bonus was not activated in error, it may be possible for the casino to reallocate it for you.
- My bonus is missing
The chances are you either forgot to enter the required casino bonus code on sign-up, you have deposited an amount that is lower than that required to activate the bonus, or you made a real-money deposit using an ineligible payment method.
Be sure to check the terms and conditions of every casino welcome bonus you want.
- I am unable to find my bonus wagering requirements
It’s a legal requirement of the UKGC that the wagering requirements of all UK online casino bonuses are displayed in the terms and conditions.
If you still can’t find them in the T&Cs, get in touch with the site’s customer support ASAP.
- I want to remove a bonus (I changed my mind)
You will only be able to remove a casino bonus if you haven’t yet wagered your bonus funds or free spins.
To remove existing casino bonuses, contact your online casino’s customer support department immediately.
Casino Bonuses: Did you know?
In 2018, the Gambling Commission imposed strict regulations related to all bonus terms and conditions, which should be visible to players before they sign up and “within a single click from any other advertising on any medium for that Promotion”. Source.
Closing tips for taking advantage of casino bonuses
1. Keep an eye on our casino bonus guide
Be sure to visit this page regularly.
We continually update the casino bonus offer table at the top of the screen with the latest bonuses.
We aim to help you take advantage of the most lucrative sign-up promotions from brands new and old.
2. Make sure to opt-in for any available casino welcome bonus
Always check the terms and conditions of any casino bonus that takes your fancy.
You may have to physically enter a bonus code into your registration form to activate a matched or casino no deposit bonus.
Note: You can only claim a welcome bonus once per account (and you’re legally forbidden to open more than one account per person), but you can create a different account with a different casino and claim another bonus!
3. Watch out for new casino bonuses
We have our fingers firmly on the pulse of the latest online casino operators to the market.
Our bonus table at the top of the screen will only display reputable and licensed casino newcomers.
Since they need to compete against established big brand casinos, a new casino no deposit bonus may be more rewarding and attractive than the usual deposit bonus!
4. Free spins bonuses are a nice way to sample new slot games
Don’t shrug away from free spins casino bonuses.
Although they might not give you cold hard bonus cash to play with, there is always the chance to land a big jackpot from your free spins.
And you might just find a new slot game which you’ll fall in love with!
5. Only bet with what you can afford to lose
It’s important to play responsibly at any of the online casinos we recommend.
Keep your playing habits in check and only make real-money deposits for matched deposit bonuses you can afford to lose.
The moment it stops being fun, quit while you’re ahead.
6. Make sure you are clear on bonus wagering requirements
To clear your casino bonus funds as quickly as possible, read the terms and conditions carefully.
Some games will clear your bonus faster than others, with most sites favour slots over table games with a lower house edge.