How to Deposit at Online Casinos
There are a lot more payment methods for online casinos than there used to be. Which ones you choose will depend on your location, your preferences and the amount of money you wish to deposit. Methods range from credit cards, through electronic wallets and virtual payment gateways to old fashioned wire transfers. There is no ‘best’ way for every casino player, though once you see the different ways of depositing, you should be able to decide on a method which best suits your needs.
You will find articles on all of the top rated deposit options here. This page will give you and overview of the different types available. First of all below, depositing from the US is covered. Legal restrictions mean that many payment methods are not available here, though there are often ways of getting your money on board. After that some of the worldwide methods are covered, including electronic wallets, pre-paid cards and other types of deposit option.
US Casino Deposit Options
The UIGEA laws, passed in 2006 by the US Senate, make certain financial transactions between US banks and gambling sites illegal. This has led to the banks blocking all casino transactions. Over the years, the offshore casino sites which welcome US players have developed skills in the field of payment processing. Today, as long as you know which methods are working, you can usually find a way to get your money on board.
Credit Card deposits using either Visa or MasterCard are the single easiest method for US players. These use international purchase codes to get around the domestic US blocks and will often work first time. American Express (Amex) is also accepted by some casinos. If your own cards will not work, you could always opt for a pre-paid Visa card. These can be bought from convenience stores and usually have the Visa logo. You’ll need one which works for international payments – so check with your casino first.
The other US deposit method which can work well is to use money transfer services. These include Western Union and MoneyGram. You’ll need to take cash to your local branch office and wire it through to your casino – who will supply you a name and reference number. Bank Wire deposits will often be blocked, though you may find these working for US deposits and withdrawals in some situations.
Withdrawing for US players has more limited options. Cards are not usually used for this, with a paper check being the main viable option. US banks will normally process these after a period while they clear into your bank account.
Worldwide Deposit Options
If you are based outside the US then you have the pick of the best casino software, and very few restrictions on how you deposit and withdraw from online casinos sites. Both debit and credit cards will generally go through first time, and there are even local options for players to use which are unique to one country of region.
The most popular genre of deposit options is electronic wallet systems. These are like virtual bank accounts, and sometimes come with their own card which you can use in ATMs. The idea is that this account sits between your bank and the casinos. Instead of sharing your bank account information with a lot of different casinos, you can pay via the electronic wallet. This is not only peace of mind, it can limit any liabilities to what you have in the virtual account.
Another advantage of electronic wallet systems which often gets overlooked is that no gambling transactions need to appear on your bank statement. Popular services in this group range from the well-known PayPal, Moneybookers and Neteller – through to smaller more gambling focused operations including Click2Pay and EcoPayz.
In addition the full electronic wallets, there are services which act more like virtual credit cards. The main advantage to using these services is that you are not tied to merchants who have a relationship with the specific brand. Instead you can use them at anywhere which accepts Visa or MasterCard payments. These cards can be pre-loaded, providing the security of having your liability limited if your card details did ever get stolen. Brands here include Eco Card and EntroPay.
If your bank does block gambling transactions and you live outside of the US, then a payment gateway solution could be right for you. This simply provides a secure doorway type application which sits between the casino and your bank. iDebit is the first of a new generation of payment options which work this way. While it is an international service, there has been take-up in Canada, where banks sometimes restrict gambling deposits due to laws south of the border.
If you are transferring larger amounts, then the small percentage fees which many of these casino deposit options charge can grow into larger amounts. High-rollers should consider going back to the old-fashioned bank wire method. This does take a couple of days to go through, though for a fixed fee you will be able to transfer some big sums.