1. License in your country
The most important thing when deciding to give your hard earned money to a company is to check whether they’re legitimate. When it comes to online casinos, licenses are the core thing for this evaluation.
If you’re from the United Kingdom, you should check the official UKGC register to see whether the license they cite actually exists. Are you Sweden? You should check the list the Swedish Gambling Authority provides to the public here. If you’re from a different country check our detailed article about licenses in order to see which ones apply to where you’re from.
One important thing we’d like to mention is the Curaçao license. You might encounter different brands that use such a license. Our advice is to be careful about these sites, because the Curaçao license is one that is pretty easy to obtain which means the barrier to entry is pretty low. The company could be one with good intentions, but not a lot of funds, but it could also follow some less player friendly tactics, which wouldn’t be allowed on more reputable licenses.
Usually, every brand will feature this information in the footer of the homepage, or any page for that matter. In short, if the online casino brand you choose holds a valid license in your country, you have your first positive signal.
2. Outstanding Welcome Bonus offer
A trustworthy online casino is one that is confident in their brand and their product. They’re not afraid to give you an outstanding welcome offer because they’re sure you’re going to be so impressed by what they offer that you’ll inevitably come back. We wrote an extensive article over here about how a good welcome bonus looks like, so we do recommend giving that one a read.
In short, you should be looking for 100% or more on your first deposit with clear and non-abusable T&Cs that you can easily follow.
3. Excellent Loyalty Program
If you’re looking for a long term online casino to play at, not only your first deposit has to be well rewarded. They should value you as a long time player at their brand by providing interesting offers throughout your activity with them, as well as, better quality of life features. We went in more detail about it in another article here, but the main points are that you should look for regular good bonuses with reasonable requirements, events for opportunities to get no deposit free spins and proactive communication regarding anything that has to do with your funds.
4. Withdrawal times up to 24 hours
A trustworthy online casino is as forward to you when you deposit as it is when you withdraw. You should be looking for pending times up to 24 hours if there are no additional steps that need to be taken (like finishing KYC).
You also want to be sure that they have limits that you’re comfortable with on the maximum amount you can withdraw per month. Some of the brands will limit your monthly withdrawals at £7,000, some will do it at £10,000 and some of them won’t even have a limit. Of course, the higher the better here, since it signals that the brand has enough cash on hand to pay whatever you’re owed. In addition, it also shows that they don’t need to resort to petty tricks to get you to rollback your money so that they don’t lose out.
5. 24/7 Support via Live Chat and Email
Maybe this is a pet peeve of ours here at Ace of Slots, but we really developed a strong preference for around the clock support. For us the difference in experience was like night and day every time we compared our time at a brand with 18/7 (or worse 18/5) support with a serious 24/7 brand. Maybe it’s because we play at odd hours, but whenever we encountered issues they seemed to happen either at or around the end of the support schedule so that we had to wait at least until the next day to find a solution. Of course, our experience for the night had to be cut short... unless we went over “nextdoor” to another brand which was there to solve problems whenever we encountered them.
Moreover, we can’t stress enough about how important the presence of live chat (or telephone) is. If your £50 gets deducted from your bank account, but doesn’t appear in your wallet on the site, you'd rather solve the situation sooner rather than later and experience has shown that if we contact a company via email it’s going to receive a reply somewhere between 1 day and never.
With live chat, you’re right there, in their face, it’s harder to get ignored. In addition to that, truth be told, having the ability to go to live chat has also managed to save us sending some awkward angry emails; having the support agent kindly point out that we actually needed to finish the card game in Tower Quest to get our wins when we were shouting the game ate our money after a way too long of a day at work is not something that we're proud of.
6. English Support
We’ve had enough trying to make ourselves understood by people who spoke worse English than a bot. We think people have way too much on their plate to have to deal with that kind of situation so just save yourself some headache and go to live chat and ask some super basic question like “What’s the welcome bonus for me and does it have any minimum deposit?” or “How easy is it to set a daily limit on your site?”. See how the agent replies. If the company doesn’t care enough to hire support agents who can communicate properly with you, how do you think they’ll handle your withdrawal when you win?
We hope that after reading this you’re better equipped to make an informed decision about which new online casino you want to play at. And if you’re short on time, maybe click below and have a look. We go over all of these casinos to evaluate them, just so you don’t have to.