This section is all about online casinos – covering everything from what you can play and where you should do it. Plus a few hints and tips thrown in for good measure.
To kick things off, we’ve compiled a list of recommended casino sites which you can find below. Some of these are better known as bookmakers but that also offer casino games, whilst others are dedicated stand alone casinos.
And, just like the bookies we list in our sports section, all of the following casinos are licensed and regulated in the UK. Remember you must be 18+ to gamble and other terms and eligibility criteria will apply.
Looking For Casino Bonuses?
Just like bookies, most online casinos offer bonuses to new players. These range in value from a handful of free spins to a cheeky tenner or even several hundred pounds. You can find a full list of these promotions on the pages below.
Coral is something of a one-stop-shop for those who enjoy a variety of games. From well-known slots to playing against live dealers, there is something to suit every taste. Coral Casino has some of the lowest deposit and wagering limits, highest payout and withdraw limits, and a choice of almost 1,000 games run by well-known software names, such as Playtech.
The British high street bookmaking brand may not be your first thought when it comes to playing games but in reality these guys are more resourced than typical online only casinos. This means you tend to get far better value, especially when it comes to loyalty and retention offers for existing customers, an area where Coral cannot be beaten.
BetFred are one of the last truly independent casino sites, they have not merged or sold out to anyone and this means you get a unique experience that you won't get elsewhere. A professional casino site with games from IGT, Playtech and others, there is no shortage of great existing customer promotions and features. This is a fantastic option in particular if you want a UK focused world leading sportsbook alongside too.
Perhaps not the most modern of sites but if what matters to you is the range of games and quality of promotions then you couldn't be happier than with Betfred.
Ladbrokes operate one of the biggest gaming and betting products in the world. What you won't get here is a niche, minimalist casino site, but what you will get is a colossus of an online casino that is able to out some serious resources behind itself. This starts with a massive welcome bonus, superb value regular promotions and some of the fastest and most diverse banking and customer support options around. Limits are also extremely high.
Don't be put off by the idea that Ladbrokes are a high street bookie, in actuality they provide one of the biggest online casinos available and given the size of the company there are few areas they don't have a presence in.
Mr Green have one of the best, if not the best casinos in the world. The site and apps are available on all platforms but this is truly optimised for mobile, tablet and small screen devices. The multiple award winning casino provides hundreds of gaming from leading software companies, Microgaming and NetEnt plus many others. There is a great loyalty system with genuinely useful regular promotions on a simple but superbly functional interface.
Mr Green himself is a fictional character but is designed to show you the ethos of the brand, as a professional and sophisticated entity. Playing here truly does have a classier feel about it than with most other sites. If you are sick of the same old sites and are looking for something new this one should be first on your list.
To customers in the UK, 10Bet are probably better known for their sportsbook which has been around since 2003. The casino was a relatively new addition, launching in the UK in 2015. The casino offers games from Netent, Microgaming, Quickspin, iSoftBet and Evolution which can all be played without download. 10Bet offer regular reload bonuses and cashback, as well as season themed promotions and giveaways.
No the prettiest site you might play with but in terms of what is under the bonnet very few betting companies can beat them. If you like to bet on sports too, especially football, then with 10Bet you can do it all in house with bigger depth than anywhere else.
If you are looking for an old hand who knows what they're doing you cannot go wrong with 888 Casino. The casino began all the way back in 1997 (that is really old for a casino site) as casino-on-net. 888 were in fact created so early on that there were no software providers around so they went and set up their own, Dragonfish, and to this day most games they provide are unique to them.
This is a top casino for any serious player, those that want lots of games from a suite of major software providers, coupled with high value offers and a host of features. If you think that bigger is better in the world of casino then this is a good place to call home.
Royal Panda is a fantastic all round instant play casino website powered by several software's including giants Net Entertainment and Microgaming. The fairly new and independent site doesn't take itself too seriously and this lends itself to creating a fun and exciting site. There is also a professionalism about the brand that gives players confidence. The company are also no nonsense with a clear, honest welcome bonuses and regular promos.
The site is a fabulously modern online only casino but they also have a sportsbook. The best thing here is this isn't a sportsbook trying to be a casino, like say Betfred, this is a casino with a sportbook attached if you want to place the odd bet.
32Red boast a more loyal customer base than pretty much any other casino in the world. They have achieved this by staying true to what their users want, good games, a simple usable interface and a first class loyalty scheme where you earn Red Ruby Points that can be converted to free spins and cash at a very good rate. The casino is a Microgaming specialist with over 500 games through either instant play or download.
One of the oldest online casinos around they have kept touch with their roots and retained a classical functional casino site that is ultimately useful for the user. If it aint broke don't fix it.
The BetVictor casino is probably the most stylish and professional online casino that you will ever see. This is not a site with flashy features and quirky offers, rather this is a casino for serious players who want to play good games on a great interface. The casino runs games from 9 different software providers with solid good value offers each week that give ordinary players real extra value.
BetVictor can also boast one of the best all round packages with an exceptional sportsbook alongside. For professional players, or those that simply want a refined casino site, this is a fantastic option.
SuperLenny are not your usual breed of online casino site. Their motto is 'Deer to be Different' with a logo of man with a deer head! Bedsides the quirkiness this is a thoroughly professional casino with games at its heart. The site has all the major software providers and over 500 games and works seamlessly on all devices. Earn BUX for playing, these can be converted to cash extra spins with no wagering requirement, great for regular customers.
This Scandinavian brand is entirely unique offering a much more interesting way to play casino compared with some of the older stuffier sites.
Betfair are one of the biggest online gaming providers in the world, if you value choice of games coupled with very regular promotions and a huge range of features then this is a great option for you.
The brand as a whole is massive and this makes them a little faceless compared to more bijoux online casinos but for most of us that won't matter. The game play is fantastic with titles from leading providers such as Playtech and NetEnt.
Betway have very much made a name for themselves as a very modern and stylish brand. They stay ahead of other casino sites when it comes to new design and innovation but still retain the simple features that make game play fun. A Microgaming specialist with a suite of NetEnt games to complement, this is a site that is all about doing things properly and this shines through whatever titles you play, excellent sportsbook and top loyalty scheme too.
This casino would certainly suit anyone that wants something more modern and sleek compared to many large online casino sites but also want to have access to all the other products and sections you expect form a big betting company.
ComeOn may have a relatively small welcome bonus but they are worth a go for many other reasons. The brand has a fantastic reputation for rewarding loyal customers with a hugely generous rewards points scheme and shop coupled with the clearest and most honest terms you will see from an online casino. Take a look around their site, you will see they have nothing hiding away and are upfront about everything including exact numbers of games by software.
In a world that is often seen as full of profit making faceless companies the attitude of ComeOn towards honestly and fairless is rather refreshing.
Whatever Virgin turn their hands to they just always look better than their competitors. The Virgin Games casino is a licensed brand but none the less there is a relaxed and classy feel about this site like many other Virgin brands. Virgin is owned by the leading software provider Gamesys and I think this makes a perfect combination of both style and substance. Lots of titles and providers are available with some very valuable existing customer deals.
In terms of rewards there are few that can match Virgin too, as a whole the brand seem to understand what drives customer loyalty and the online casino is no different.
William Hill need no introduction, they are the biggest and most visible gambling brand in Great Britain to the point where they have a presence in every town in the land. Not necessarily the first place you think of to play games but these guys have been running online casino products for longer than almost all other sites, they have both experience and depth.
The online casino site from William Hill has huge resources available and for customers this translates into hundreds of top title games from all the leading software providers including Playtech, NetEnt, Microgaming, IGT and many more.
Videoslots are the superstore of online casino sites offering over 2200 games from over forty different software companies including of the big names and top titles. This online casino site is a must for anyone who likes to play the very latest games and progressive jackpots or for anyone who wants to try new software companies. Video slots have some great regular reward deals and a very generous welcome package too.
Modern and massive is the Video slots model. Not a site for those that like classical design, but if you want a casino-only with a cool interface give them a try.
If you want to get away from the usual looking stuffy and overcrowded casino sites then Casumo are a good option. Casumo is a thoroughly modern and independent casino only site and you will know from the instant you land if this type of casino is for you. They have games from the likes of NetEnt, Microgaming and others but manage to present them in a way I've never really seen before.
For some Casumo will seem childish but for others it is a vibrant and personal site, one thing you can say is there is no other online casino quite like it.
There is an obvious nautical theme at Casino Cruise but this also comes with the elegance and style you would expect from cruising. The NetEnt, Microgaming, Evolution and NYX powered casino provides around 600 games in a very pleasing interface on both desktop and mobile. The welcome bonus is good but the sailing themed regular promotions are even better offering lots of value for loyal players.
Maritime puns aside this is a great casino for anyone who just wants to play games without all those other sections like sports. The brand clearly doesn't take itself too serious and this can feel refreshing if you've played with a lot of high street names.
Spin and Win are part of the Daub Alderney group and so you know there is a lot of experience and good resources backing this casino. The multi-software (NetEnt, Daub, Micro, Play'N Go, etc) site offers over 300 instant play games on desktop and mobile and comes with a hugely rewarding and valuable welcome package.
If you are fed up of the same old faces when it comes to casino brands then perhaps give Spin and Win a go. If you just want to play games and don't need a sportsbook, bingo, lotteries, etc., then you may find this a good option.
Guts is an instant play independent casino site great for anyone who just wants a good looking casino with top games without all the other products you get from big betting companies. Guts offer over a few hundred carefully picked games from leading providers such as NetEnt, Scientific, Microgaming and Play N'go.
The brand is certainly unique and different to bog standard online casinos. There is a vibrancy about this site yet it maintains a very stylish look and functional interface. Very good for anyone looking for something different to the norm.
How Do Casinos Get Licences To Operate in the UK?
We’ve already had a look elsewhere at bookmakers, but it’s only right that we explore the way that online casinos work, too. They’re a tad different from bookies, you see, so it’s important to know how they are licensed and the ways in which your money is protected when you join them and have a flutter on their games. In principle an online casino can operate from anywhere in the world, after all, so it’s vital that you know as much as possible about they operate in order to look after yourself. That’s why in practice companies can only work in certain parts of the world if they want to gain a licence to have a UK customer base.
In many ways there aren’t a huge amount of differences between the laws that apply to bookmakers and those that are in place for online casinos. They still have to be licensed by the UK Gambling Commission and they need to abide by the rules set out by both the 2005 Gambling Act and the 2014 Gambling (Licensing & Advertising) Act. The criteria laid out before companies hoping to open an online casino for punters in the UK are stringent and those applying for a licence have to offer huge amounts of information. That info is looked at by independent bodies in order to ensure transparency and fairness throughout the proceedings.
How Do Online Casinos Make Money?
There’s a slight difference between the way that bookmakers make a profit and the way casinos do the same. Bookies normally balance the odds to ensure that there is a margin built in to things and to give themselves the greatest possibility of making money. Even so, there are multiple outcomes possible and bookmakers don’t have any control over what is going to happen, so on occasion it’s out of their hands and even the bookie can lose. This is not the case with casinos, mainly because of the fact that the games you’ll play in a casino, either physical or online, have fixed odds that guarantee them a margin.
The key to a casino’s ability to make money is the fact that they think long-term. If you flipped a coin one hundred times it might land on heads 59 times and tails 41. The next time it might land on heads 48 times and tails 52, meaning that heads will still be ‘in the lead’. Keep flipping it, though, and eventually things will even themselves out to ensure that the coin has landed heads and tails an even number of times. That’s what casinos do, they know that over time the odds of a specific event happening will even out so as long as they’ve got their edge built in to whatever it is that you’re betting on they’ll always come out on top. One player might win every single hand they play, but another player will lose all of theirs. That’s why they say ‘the house always wins’.
On a bet by bet basis casino games are better value for money than sports bet, some versions of roulette for example can have over a 98% payout. The difference is we tend to place many more casino bets in one session than we do with sports, so over time the odds even out and on average the house always wins. There are occasions where the odds are in the favour of the player, this can happen with games of skill and progressive jackpots.
Random Number Generators: Are They Fair?
Sometimes referred to as RNG, Random Number Generators are the computer systems used by online casinos to ‘ensure’ that games are as fair as possible. The only thing is, they’re not really random. That’s not because casinos are cheating – they’d be shut down if they did – it’s just that nothing is truly random when it comes to mathematics. 2+2 will always equal 4, so there’s only a certain extent to which the randomness of RNGs can be guaranteed.
You might be wondering why this matters, after all you don’t play a game called RNG so it’s not your problem. Except it is if you’ve ever played a game online without a human dealer. Whether you’re talking about online bingo, blackjack or slot machines, Random Number Generators are used to ensure that the outcome is as random as it can be. When it comes to ensuring that, it’s all down to the external companies that test the software involved in RNGs to make sure that it’s working as it’s supposed to. Licensed casinos have their software checked on a regular basis and there might be an edge built in, but it’s always as far as it can be.
How Can Casinos Afford To Give Generous Bonuses?
Join an online casino for the first time and you’ll doubtless be offered what seems like a ludicrous welcome package. “Deposit £100, Get £200 in Bonus Money!”, as an example. How on earth do casinos manage it? Well, as mentioned before, the fact that they have that built in edge means that they make a pretty healthy profit every year. Online casinos also have far fewer overheads than their land based cousins allowing them to use more of their profits directly on the customer.
Giving away some free money to people as an enticement to get them to place their wages with that specific casino will work out in the casino’s favour in the long term. There’s also the fact that casinos normally apply terms and conditions to the welcome offers that means only some people end up walking away with cash from a introductory bonus.
For example, there are often also turnover requirements, ensuring that you have to bet your free money, say, thirty times before you can withdraw it. The more times you need to roll your money over the more likely it is that you’ll lose it. As we said before, casinos play the long game and are happy to take a short-term loss in order to generate a long-term gain.
These bonuses are still worth taking, eventually you will win cash if you take advantage of several sign up bonuses. Only do this if you are going to play casino games online anyway though, don’t spend money you wouldn’t have otherwise spend just to get offers, this is a sure way to lose.
How Do Casinos Reward Loyal Customers?
Casinos have two major ways of rewarding punters that stay loyal to them. The first is by offering Loyalty Points for playing games and doing things online. If you deposit money into your account, for example, you’ll earn some Loyalty Points.
These points can be accumulated before being swapped for things such as free spins, computers or even tickets to gigs or holidays. Lots of casinos also offer VIP tiers that will see their most loyal customers rewarded with invitations to events or the like. In short, if you bet big with a specific casino then they’ll find lots of ways to say thank you.
Most good loyalty programs give you at least 1% of your stakes back, and higher percentages the more you play. Again only take advantage of these schemes if you are going to play casino games any way, playing games just to get points is a false economy.
Why Trust Our Casino Reviews?
Much the same as with bookmakers, we don’t recommend a casino that we haven’t been using ourself for some time. We wouldn’t tell you to do something that we haven’t already been doing ourselves, so you know we’ve inspected the casinos to make sure they’re reputable.
One of the key ways we do that is by refusing to recommend an online casino that isn’t licensed and regulated by the UK Gambling Commission. If your money isn’t safe then we’re not going to be recommending you deposit, no matter how good the welcome offer might be.
The best way to find a good casino is by trying a few different types. We try to list a varied range of casinos so that you can find the right one for you. Remember you don’t need to claim the full bonus to try a site out, most deposit match offers start with deposits as low as £10.
Gambling in Online Casinos Responsibly
It really doesn’t matter who you are, the temptation will sometimes be in front of you to have one more bet. Perhaps you’ve just lost and you’re hoping to recover those losses. Maybe you’ve been told about a system that will ‘guarantee’ you a profit and you want to put it to the test. It’s important to ensure that you never gamble with money that you can’t afford to lose and you always do your best to gamble responsibly.
Casinos will do their bit to help, and this is a condition of their licence, offering limits on how much you can deposit into your account and also allowing you to exclude yourself from the site if things are getting too much. If you feel like you need help then make sure you take it. There are many independent sources of advice available, Be Gamble Aware.
If you believe that an online casino has done something wrong or you want to make a complaint about something then start by contacting the casino directly. By gaining a UK Gambling Commission licence they have made a promise to sort out any differences with customers as well as they can. If you feel they aren’t listening or things have come to a deadlock then you might want to contact the UK Gambling Commission directly and you’re allowed to do that.
Alternatively you might choose to turn to the Independent Betting Adjudication Service, who will look at your case and assess your claim if it is relation to a bet or series or bets. If you feel that you’ve been sold something under false pretences then you can also speak to the Advertising Standards Agency.
Do You Need To Pay Tax On Casino Winnings?
If playing in the UK the short answer is ‘no’.
The tax laws of the United Kingdom as they currently stand mean that you do not need to pay tax on money you’re staking on, or profits you’ve won from, gambling.
Online casinos will need to pay tax at the point of consumption. Many casinos used to get around betting taxes by basing their headquarters in tax havens, however a point of consumption tax is now paid by all companies on profits made in the UK if they want to operate in this market (legally).
The fact that casinos are taxed directly on UK profits means at some level they are still simply passing the tax money onto their customers via increased margins or smaller free bets etc. The most important thing to note is that if you win big on an online casino then the money you get paid out is yours, all yours.
If you do have a large win it is worth declaring this to HMRC anyway as gambling winnings, you won’t be penalises for this and it means you can explain where the money came from if you are questioned later down the line.