I’ve never really been one for playing at the online casino. Without the clatter of chips, the rattle of the roulette ball, and the inevitable chatter with dealers and punters alike, it seemed a little, well, fake. That was until 2020 when the live casino was rudely and abruptly taken from me!
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With COVID-19 putting a stop to a good portion of many people’s year, the time felt right to get online and give the virtual casino a spin. Oh boy am I glad I did too!
Here’s a few of the pearls of wisdom I discovered on my first forays into the world of online gambling.
There’s No Dress Code
Some people love the casino precisely because there is a dress code. That’s fine if you go less than once a month. For us seasoned veterans, the pressure to iron a shirt and polish your shoes feels a bit unnecessary. I’ve been known to attend my local casino up to five times in a week before. Frankly, I don’t have that many dress shirts!
Online, the pressure is off. Using your phone or computer, you can load up a blackjack table and quickly fire off a few bets. It makes no difference to the casino what you’re wearing since they never see you.
Sure, it’s a less personal experience but, let’s face it, sometimes you just want to gamble. Not everyone in the casino is a great conversationalist either!
There’s No Opening Hours
Outside of Las Vegas, not many casinos are truly 24/7. Most will have pretty late closing times but that often means they’re not open during the morning.
Online casinos are always open. Since they don’t need many staff to operate, you can log in to your casino of choice at any time of the day or not and play whatever game takes your fancy.
There Are So Many Games!
Every online casino these days has hundreds, if not thousands, of different games on offer. The physical casino is very much limited by the size of the venue. Online, it’s often only limited by the number of relationships the operator has forged with different game providers.
You’ll often find everything under one virtual roof too. Whilst almost all online casinos feature slots and table games, others will offer poker, bingo, sports betting, scratch cards, and even live casino games broadcast using webcams. Put simply, even small online casinos often have game selection that all of but the biggest names in Las Vegas would be jealous of.
There’s Hardly Any Waiting
One thing that really gets on the nerves of action junkies like myself is waiting around to play. Since real-world casinos require physical equipment, sometimes there just isn’t room for you to sit down and play the stakes and game you want. You’ll have to wait for a seat…
Even when seated, if there’s more than yourself and the dealer, you’ll have to wait for other people to play before you can take your own turn. There’s nothing that grinds an experienced blackjack player’s gears like watching a newcomer deliberate over their 17 versus the dealer’s six!
Excluding their “Live Casino” sections, there is very little waiting around to be done at an online casino. Any number of different tables can be loaded up by the platform’s users at the same time. The action is fast without waiting for other people to play and you can often speed it up even more with Turbo and Auto Play features.
There Are Casino Bonuses
Some real-world casinos do offer bonuses. They’re commonly a free chip to use on one of the games or a VIP package. Most of them don’t bother with such promotions, however.
Online, almost every casino offers some form of bonus. They give you credit to play for making a deposit. Sometimes, you don’t even need to deposit either.
Bonuses are all about marketing to online casinos. They use them to promote their products to new players in a very competitive industry. Once a casino has a player’s email address (provided during registration), the player is much more likely to deposit with them again in the future.
Bonuses always have terms and conditions associated with them. They obviously don’t represent guaranteed profits or the industry would go bust very quickly. However, some bonuses are more lucrative than others. Unfortunately, I learned the hard way that not all casino bonuses are created equal. Then I found this guide that ranks bonuses. The secret is to find ones with low wagering requirements!
The Odds Are Great!
I also discovered that the odds at online casinos are typically much better than they are in real-world venues. Online casinos have significantly lower overheads than brick-and-mortar venues. They pay less for staff, for premises, and for equipment. Since the industry is so competitive, the operators will pass these savings on to the casino’s members to encourage more action.
Bonuses are one way the casino passes the savings on to players. Another is with great return-to-player ratings on slots. In the real-world, a slot with a 94% RTP is considered great. Online, they can get up to 99%!
There’s No Travel Time
Finally, there’s no travel time to get to the online casino. I didn’t really realise it until recently but I’ve spent a hell of a lot of time commuting between home and my local casino. I live about 15 to 20 minutes away by car. With traffic, that can be 25.
The week I visited the casino five times in seven days, I spent a total of three hours travelling! Now that I’ve discovered the online casino, that feels like a huge waste of time!
There you have it. Some insights into my three-month lockdown journey into online gambling. In know it will never total replace the real thing, but the virtual the virtual casino has suitably impressed me. Hey, it only took about 20 years too!