How to Gamble Online
Wondering how to gamble online? You’ve come to the right source! We’ll give you beginners the step-by-step instructions and advice you need to choose an online casino, set up a new account on your chosen site, play your favorite casino or table games, and make your withdrawal.
Best Online Casinos
If you already know how to get started casino gambling online, don’t hesitate to jump straight to our Casino Reviews page to choose your online casino or our Deposit page to guide you through all of your options. You’ll also want to check out our comprehensive guide to online casino Bonuses to make sure you’re getting the most bang for your buck.
1. How to gamble online: choosing a casino
There are a lot of sites offering reputable and safe gambling online, but there are also many less reputable ones that you’ll want to avoid. We’ve reviewed over 100 online gambling sites and casinos and we’ve narrowed the list down to the best sites based on country/region, type of gambling, and their payment options.
First things first: Due to the differences in gambling laws and regulations around the world, we recommend that you first try selecting online casinos based on your jurisdiction. We’ve created regional guides for some of the most internet-savvy countries in the world:
- United States (see state specific pages like New Jersey as well)
- South Africa
- New Zealand
How to Find the Best Online Gambling Sites
Thanks to the internet, there are now plenty of safe and legitimate ways to gamble with and win real money. You can play casino games, online slots, bet on sports, daily fantasy sports, play online poker against other players, and even enjoy a game of bingo from the comfort of your home. The experience is like hitting the casino lottery!
But unlike your typical Las Vegas land-based casino that has games, poker rooms, and a legal sportsbook under one roof, most online gambling sites tend to specialize in one form of gambling or another. This makes the sites eligible for play in more jurisdictions worldwide.
You might want to choose an online casino that specializes in your favorite time of online gaming. You can view our guides to each different type of online gambling below:
How to Choose an Online Casino
Now that you’ve explored the different types of online gambling available, you can choose the casino where you’ll set up an account and make your first deposit.
Here are the considerations you’ll want to make when choosing your online casino:
- Choose an online casino, poker site, or sportsbook with a good reputation and plenty of positive reviews, such as Bovada. Always read the reviews before you sign up for an online casino, and pay attention to any red flags (like forum comments or reviews that mention slow payments).
- Make sure the site accepts players from your country. The casino will list the countries where it allows players, so don’t waste your time trying to sign up for a site that isn’t available in your jurisdiction. And make sure you read our country-by-country guides to online gambling legislation to learn where its legalized.
- Before you sign up, spend money, or accept a free bonus, read the site’s terms and conditions. You don’t want to sign up for an online casino account or bonus expecting one and receiving another. Make sure you understand how the bonuses work, what the playthrough requirements are, and what payment and withdrawal options are available.
- Look for trust signals such as licensing information, third-party software audit reports (which ensure fairness), and SSL data encryption. Never use an online casino that isn’t fully secure, and every online casino you use should publish information about its third-party audits, RNGs (random number generators), and data security.
- Make sure the site is not on our list of gambling sites to avoid. Some online casinos still manage to operate despite bad reviews and poor user experiences—or outright scams. That’s why we publish a list of sites to avoid, and why it’s important to make sure the site you’re about to sign up for isn’t on our list.
2. How to Set up an Online Casino Account
All reputable gambling sites allow you to register for a free account before you spend any money, allowing you to try the site and test out games and features.
Before you start gambling for real money, you’ll need to set up a free account. All reputable gambling sites allow you to register for a free account before you spend any money, allowing you to try the site and test out games and features.
Use this feature to your benefit and make sure you thoroughly review the site before you make a payment. You should have a good feeling about the site and where you’re sending your money, and you should have a full understanding of what games are available, how bonuses work, and what their withdrawal options are.
Here are a few handy tips for signing up for a new account:
- Use a new email address to sign up at gambling sites. Since you’ll probably be signing up for a few free accounts as you explore your options, you don’t want to get overwhelmed with marketing emails on your primary email address. But of course you’ll want to make sure it’s an email you have access to and check regularly, in case the casino needs to contact you about your account.
- Even if you’re using a new email address, if you’re considering online gambling for money, make sure to use your actual information when you sign up. When you go to send the casino money, the personal information you provided needs to match your credit card or other payment method. It can be a hassle trying to re-enter all your information when you want to send the casino money, so it’s easier to sign up with your actual information the first time.
- Some gambling news sites, especially online casinos, require verification forms like scans of a driver’s license, credit card, and/or a utility bill. These are for your safety, so it’s a good idea to have them on file. There’s nothing worse than being ready and excited to play and then realize you have to stop and find your documents before you can sign up. Have them at the ready before you start the process.
3. How to Make a Deposit at an Online Casino
Bitcoin is quickly becoming one of the most popular ways to send money and withdraw funds on online casinos.
Once you’ve found your preferred online gambling site and tested it out by signing up for a free account, you’re probably ready to gamble online for money. The next step in the process is sending the casino money that you can gamble with by making your first deposit.
Here is a breakdown of the most popular methods. For a complete list with more information see our Online Gambling guide.
Bitcoin is quickly becoming one of the most popular ways to send money and withdraw funds on online casinos. Along with being more reliable and usually faster than other methods, many online casinos offer additional bonuses and incentives for using bitcoin.
Debit or Credit Card
Debit and credit cards are another very common method for online gambling. Making a credit or debit card transaction is typically quite simple, just like making a purchase online. However, you probably won’t be able to cash out this way—realistically, you’ll likely have to request a check or a bank wire account transfer—so keep that in mind before using debit or credit cards.
E-Wallets are popular ways to send and receive money over the internet. The most common e-wallets are PayPal, Neteller, and Skrill. There are some restrictions around e-wallets (they’re typically not an option for online gamblers in the U.S.), so you’ll want to read our full guides to each e-wallet.
Pre-Paid Credit Cards
Pre-paid cards can be loaded ahead of time and then used on an online gambling site. They usually work just like regular debit or credit cards. You’ll want to keep in mind that not all cards are cleared for online payments and international transactions, and you should confirm that the online casino of your choice accepts prepaid cards before acquiring one.
Cash and Bank Transfers
Many online casinos can provide you with the information necessary to send them payment via money order or bank transfer. You’ll either need an online account at a company like Western Union or MoneyGram, or you’ll need to head to one of their brick and mortar locations to fund your account.
4. How to Gamble Online: Time to play!
And that’s it! You’re now know how to gamble online and are ready to find your online casino. If you’d like more details about how to deposit and withdraw, how to choose a bonus, or the rules around different types of casino games, check out our handy links below: