Jun 10, 2019
Casino strategy

Explanation of Wagering Requirements on Casino Bonuses

Get thousands of euros upon your first deposit. Sounds great, doesn't it? You can find a similar offer in all online casinos. It is the most common promotion, which casinos show on websites or in email campaigns. As you can probably guess, these bonuses are not free. How much does it really cost you to get on them?

The greatest time to get casino bonuses was sometime between 2005 or 2010. It was extremely convenient to take such a bonus, and the bonus hunters of that time could rise to the occasion. New casinos, however, have become quite strict with terms of conditions, and today you can hardly find a bonus that would not benefit the casino.

You can get many bonuses in the casino. The most famous include:

  • Welcome bonus
  • No deposit bonus
  • Deposit bonus
  • Free spins
  • Cash Back

You may also encounter other promotions in some casinos, but these bonuses are most often used. However, all these bonuses work the same way - you get cash from the casino for an action (deposit, registration, referral to a friend, etc.). Certain casino conditions then apply to this money. Because all bonuses are pretty much the same, we will focus mainly on Welcome Bonus. All calculations will apply to all types of bonuses.

What Are the Wagering Requirements?

As we mentioned in the previous paragraph, all bonuses are subject to certain conditions. If we omit the conditions for obtaining bonuses, which are different for each type and irrelevant for this article, we will be left with the withdrawal requirements—known as wagering requirements.

Suppose you have already claimed the bonus at least once, you know what is going on. For the bonus and winnings to be withdrawable, the player must first wager a certain amount of money. It is usually a multiple of the bonus or the sum of the bonus and deposit.

For example, if you deposit € 500 with a 100% bonus and wagering requirements 35x bonus + deposit, you will need to wager € 35,000 before the withdrawal. ((500 + 500) * 35). Each placed allowed bet is counted. That is, even the one that is the result of winning.

Wagering Requirements Under the Microscope

We deliberately state the allowed, because not all bets are allowed. For example, you often can't use the gamble feature on slots to double your winnings. Also, bets that exceed a certain amount or roulette bets that cover a certain part of the betting area will not count towards the requirements.

Casinos defend themselves against the bonus abuse in this way. However, these conditions inside the conditions are the wall between the player and the withdrawal of his money from the account. You will always find all information about bonuses in the general terms, which you should study carefully before accepting the bonus.

However, what you will not find in the bonus conditions is how much you have to deposit into your account, on average, to achieve the desired wagering requirements. Respectively, how much does it actually cost you to accept bonuses, if anything?

How Much You Can Wager from € 1 Deposit

In principle, it would certainly not be out of the question to calculate how much you actually accumulate on average from one unit of the deposit. It will, of course, depend on the house edge of the game. Fortunately, there is a very simple formula for this: 1 / house edge.

Take, for example, the Starburst slot, which is quite popular among online casinos. The software provider estimates the theoretical return on 96.1%, so the house edge for Starburst will be 3.9%.

1 / 0.039 = € 25.641

An average of € 25.641 of bets placed on the Starburst come from the € 1 of deposit. Now we can easily calculate how much must be deposited to meet specific wagering requirements.

So let's say you deposit € 2,500 into the casino and get another € 2,500 as a bonus. Betting requirements will be 40 times the amount of the bonus, i.e. 40x2500 = € 100,000. We will simply divide this € 100,000 by 1 / house edge.

100,000 / (1 / 0.0039) = € 3,900

and we will get € 3,900. (we have to bet € 3900 x 1). However, the whole formula can be simplified to house edge x wagering requirements.

100,000 * 0.039 = € 3900

At this point, it is necessary to estimate how much you actually have to invest with your own money to meet the wagering requirements. These requirements only apply to bonus money. Respectively, the moment you start betting with them. In our case, out of € 2,500 bonus, you will not cover the entire volume of requirements, and it is necessary to wager another € 1,400 from your pocket.

How About Table Games?

To make matters worse, table casinos only count a portion of the bet to the wagering requirements. For example, it might look like this:

  • Slots - 100%
  • Blackjack, roulette, baccarat - 25%
  • Video Poker - 10%
  • Other games - 0

Take roulette, for example. According to the table, it is counted only from 25%. Quite simply, for example, for every € 100 wagered on the roulette table, your wagering requirements will be reduced by only € 25. So the total amount of bets you have to make and the total amount of money you lose on average will increase rapidly. The calculation is very simple.

We will take the same bonus as in the previous case. For a € 2,500 deposit, we will receive another € 2,500 bonus. Wagering requirements are 40x bonus, i.e. € 100,000. This time we will bet on roulette. The house edge for roulette is set, at 2.7% for European roulette and 5.26% for American roulette. Let's say we play European roulette.

There are several ways to calculate how much we will have to invest in total to meet the betting requirements. As a result, however, all you have to do is edit the formula we've already encountered:

Wagering requirements x house edge x 1 /% contribution

100,000 x 0.027 x 1 / 0.25 = € 10,800

This means that to receive a bonus of € 2,500, players on roulette will play through, on average, € 10,800.

At this point, we need to say that all calculations represent averages in the long run. It does not mean that you must be at a loss every time you accept the bonus. However, these calculations should show you how the wagering requirements work and how important it is to play games which contribute 100% toward the conditions.

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