If you’ve been reviewing bonuses offered by online casinos, you might have noticed smaller print that reads something like “*wagering requirements apply”.

Online casinos use wagering requirements, also known as ‘play through’ requirements, to allow players to enjoy longer sessions, while at the same time protecting the bonuses they give away.

How Wagering Requirements Work

A wagering requirement can be attached to a deposit amount, bonus amount, winnings, or a combination of all the above. The requirements must be met before you can withdraw your winnings.

You might find the wagering requirements are on the bonus description page or in the terms and conditions laid out by the casino.

It will usually be displayed with a number and an ‘x’. Typically, wagering requirements are between 20x and 50x; with the average being 30x. Each online casino is different, and different games contribute varying amounts towards the play through requirements.

Tiered Wagering Requirements

Some online casinos will feature tiered wagering requirements. These are staggered payments, or instalments, that require you to meet a play through within a certain time period in order to access the full bonus amount.

Usually the first-time limit will be set within seven days, followed by 30 days and then 60 days.

Example of Wagering Requirements

At first glance, wagering requirements can be very confusing.

If you are given a $50 bonus with a 30x wagering requirement, you will need to wager a total of $1,500 (30 x $50) before the casino lets you withdraw you winnings.

It’s important to note that this example does not mean you must deposit $1,500, but rather that you need to make $1,500 worth of wagers.

Applicable Games

Not every game will count equally towards the wagering requirement.

In general, slots and parlour games will count as 100%, while table poker and casino war typically count as 20%. The remaining games will likely count as 10% or not at all.

These percentages are only the average and will vary from one casino site to another, so it’s always best to do your homework before you deposit. No one likes to be caught out!

What to Avoid

Before you agree to a bonus, there are a few things you should avoid.

First and foremost, don’t try using a low risk betting strategy to clear the play through. Casinos look for this and will take away your bonus and any winnings.

Make sure you read the fine print. The terms and conditions might be lengthy, but it will be worth your time and could save you a lot of confusion and disappointment later down the line.

Remember, if you don’t understand something, you can always take advantage of the customer support to get confirmation or a clearer answer.

Finally, if a bonus seems too good to be true, the terms and conditions are vague or they don’t make sense, or there is a complete lack of terms on the site, play somewhere else.