Best Online Casinos in the United Kingdom
We have witnessed a massive rise in the online gambling industry over the last decade. The market is packed with an extensive array of distinct gaming platforms. The new online casinos emerge on a daily basis and players are spoilt for choice in the sea of possible options. Choosing the best one is by no means an easy task even though it may seem different with so many alternatives on the line.
A player needs to be fully aware of the advantages and disadvantages each casino has compared to the niche-leaders. Additionally, not all casinos will leave the same impact on all players as they have different preferences. British players, in particular, have extremely high standards on this matter. This is why we decided to underline all the factors you should take into consideration before choosing the right place to keep your main action at. Stay tuned and find out which UK casinos online earned the highest grade according to most parameters.
What to Look for in an Online Casino?
We’ll cover the criteria UK online casinos need to meet to earn their place on this page and become your main options. There are reasons why the titles on this list stood out from the others. Without further ado, let’s move on to the list of the most significant parameters used to distinguish the best online casinos in the UK from the others.
Security and Licensing
Safety comes at the top of the list of priorities in all fields, especially in the online gambling industry. Wherever there is money involved, safety and fairness are by far the two crucial elements. A casino may have the best games, bonuses, payment options and customer support, but it would all count for little if they fail to deliver on the security aspect. You have nothing from having an amazing win rate by playing the most popular games out there if you are unable to withdraw your deserved winnings.
Your initial task would thus be to check whether a certain casino is licensed by the official gambling authority. Luckily, it is a rather easy task for UK residents. The United Kingdom Gambling Commission is the only body controlling remote gambling licenses for the country. What does it mean? If a casino you are interested in obtains a UK Gambling Commission license, it is 100% legit, secure and fair and you do not have to do any additional checks to feel safe.
Since the introduction of the Gambling Act 2005, any casino operator with intentions of hosting real-money games in the United Kingdom is obliged to have a UK Gambling Commission licence. To secure a UKGC licence, an operator is obligated to fulfil rigorous standards. These go from the ones bound to matters of technical nature to those that protect players’ personal data and integrity.
You will often run into other licences issued by the Alderney Gambling Control Commission, the Malta Gaming Authority, the Gibraltar Gambling Authority and the Curacao Gambling Authority. The operators switch to the alternative bodies because of the more convenient gambling laws and taxation in these jurisdictions.
On top of the mentioned gambling licences, an operator needs to pass several a decent number of additional checks performed by casino testing agencies. The main purpose of these tests is securing fairness. How many times have you felt the games at an online casino were rigged? You will not have that unpleasant feeling playing at transparent sites that share their monthly payout reports. Furthermore, there are prestigious monthly/annual rewards given by adequate authorities. If the casino you are particularly looking for has won one such, it is a highly positive sign when we speak of safety and fairness. Historically looking, only the most remarkable casinos have been recognized for their success by receiving the IGA Awards, the EGR Awards and the Global Gaming Awards. If you notice a small symbol confirming an operator has won one of these awards, there is a high chance you are looking at one of the best UK online casinos.
Finally, we have to mention responsibility in gaming as another important factor. It’s all fun and games for some players, but others can easily jump into severe problems caused by potential addiction. This is why the best online casinos in UK will organize special teams of experts ready to offer their professional advice to prevent someone’s addiction and provide proper treatment.
Games Portfolio and Game Types
The overall layout and rewarding registration bonuses are important tools operators use to attract new customers, but the list of games a certain casino has to offer is a more significant factor to all serious casino-games admirers. After all, most operators will come up with similar promotions. In the sea of many alike casinos, those that have the largest library of games will always win and stand out from the crowd. The good news for players is that online operators have no restrictions whatsoever when it comes to the volume of games they provide. The array of games on the menu mainly depends on software developing houses they cooperate with. Obviously, the more games you have to choose from at a certain online casino, the higher is a chance you will keep your main playing action there.
Over the course of time, slots became synonyms for the online casino industry. You do not have to possess any kind of skill to play them and it is probably why the least experienced players will use slots as their keys to the online gambling world. There are thousands of different online slots at your disposal at the moment. The fun and entertainment are guaranteed for anyone who has been into trying his/her luck and it is no wonder the slots still occupy the primary position in every gambler’s heart.
Table games are usually favoured by the somewhat more experienced players. Blackjack and roulette dominate the field, while you can also find a decent portion of poker and baccarat tables at most UK online casinos. Being a game that usually offers the highest RTP, video poker keeps attracting new players across the globe every year.
The games library is where your playing style has a lot to do with making the right choice. Some online casinos in the UK have better slots and video poker games action, while others provide a much more extensive list of table games for example. If you are looking for a specific game to play, the first thing you will do is check if a certain casino has it. Let’s say you want to play Caribbean Stud Poker as it is the best table game featuring a progressive jackpot. Impressive bonuses, handy mobile apps and the easy-to-navigate interface will all count for little if a casino does not offer the Caribbean Stud Poker in their library. Apart from checking whether a site has a game you are interested in, we’d recommend you to learn about the minimum and maximum limits you can bet on a game to avoid unpleasant surprises when you had already gone through the sign-up process and made the first deposit.
Bonus Packages and Promotions
Once you’ve covered security and games library, you can move on to rate the online casinos UK according to their lucrative bonuses and the general payout on games. You can easily check the promotional sections as all casino operators always highlight their first deposit bonuses in the heart of their pages. These extras can come in all shapes and sizes. Some casinos mainly focus on the deposit bound to players’ initial bonus, while others prepare whole packages involving free spins and no deposit bonuses. Nowadays, most online casinos in the UK attract new customers by promising them returns on each of their four initial deposits on the site.
What you should pay special attention to is the section including the terms and conditions bound to these bonuses. Whereas all promotions can’t be more transparent, the wagering criteria players need to meet to be able to withdraw the bonus money are usually hidden. In reality, the wagering requirements are what make the difference among all these bonuses and promotional offers. You’ll have much more use of a deposit bonus up to $200 with 30x wagering requirements than of an incentive up to $2,000 with tougher criteria. If you need to roll over both the deposit and the bonus money as many as 50-60 times in a relatively short time frame, there is a high chance you will get nothing from what seemed to be a highly-rewarding promotion.
Most beginners are usually not familiar with the playthrough requirements and the entire system behind the attractive bonus offers. Not all games contribute to the wagering criteria in the same way. Slots always completely count towards the requirements, but games like video poker and roulette have a significantly lower weighting percentage.
As you can imagine, the search for the terms & conditions can be time-consuming. Luckily, we have done the hard job for you and listed the best UK online casinos in terms of the most beneficial bonus offers.
Games Payouts and RTP
In theory, most players should be mainly interested in games that promise higher payouts. Every single game you can find at an online operator has a return to player percentage (RTP). It shows the ratio between the money players bet and can expect to get in return long term. Looking from this perspective, video poker is by far the most profitable game for players.
Who performs the return to player percentage tests? We mentioned the independent testing agencies in the security and fairness section. These bodies, such as eCOGRA and GLI count the percentage of all money players have received as winnings for all games individually. If operators are transparent enough you can easily create your own list of the casinos with the highest payout percentage by checking the numbers on a monthly basis. We took this factor into consideration as well in making our own list of the best UK casinos online.
Casino Software Developers
Most casinos hire specialized software providers to power their sites. The choice they make when turning to these companies is of massive importance. The providers create the casino’s main page and they are highly responsible for the overall experience players get while playing their favourite games at an online casino. How many times have you heard of the phrase “I liked it at first glance!”? The software sitting behind the casino platform plays such an important role as it affects speed and intuitiveness.
You can have the richest selection of games out there, but you won’t enjoy players’ confidence if games crash every now and then. It is in the best interest of online operators to see their games running smoothly on both desktop and mobile devices. On top of the technical aspect, you’d be surprised to know the impact aesthetical look has on the general experience a player gets at an online casino. The categorization of games can sometimes make all the difference as you want to want to be just one click away from accessing your desired game in the sea of potential options. Nowadays, most online casinos in UK allow their players to categorize the slot games according to themes, hit rates, min/max stakes, providers, etc.
Much like casinos, the software developing companies must meet strict criteria to obtain respective licences. The most recognizable brands in this particular niche are Microgaming, Playtech and NetEnt. If you recognize a solid portion of games coming from one of these three developing houses at a certain casino, you will hardly find a better playing action elsewhere.
Even though most of them provide games of different types, we have to distinguish the software developing companies responsible for the slots and video poker games from these who are rather dedicated to the live dealer section games. It is crucial for an online operator to have a high-quality provider for the live dealer section. This kind of games should be streamed in high definition and there is no room for mistake. At the moment, Evolution Gaming is one of the biggest names responsible for the live dealer games at most online casinos in UK.
Finally, we have to mention the trend of playing on the go. Following the latest technology trends, most households in the UK have the latest mobile phones. The possibility of playing your favourite casino games without the need for hassling with your PCs or laptops has embraced the mobile gaming trend in the online casino industry. Most casino sites in the UK have thus created dedicated mobile apps allowing the players to get a unique experience.
Deposits, Cashouts and More
Before you can test any game at any casino out there, you need to make the first deposit. This is where the operators’ banking system plays a significant role. Once again, you can’t enjoy any benefit you’ve found at a certain casino if they do not support the payment option that best suits you. Luckily, all casinos accept major methods such as bank transfer and credit/debit cards. E-wallets and prepaid cards are the difference-makers in this instance.
If you are looking at two online casinos UK of similar characteristics, you are more likely to keep your money at one that accepts Skrill as a payment option if it is the most appropriate way for you to make deposits and withdrawals.
On top of the methods, all players should pay attention to the currencies available at a certain operator. All casinos obtaining the UK Gambling Commission licence support British pound. The non-UK residents should check whether the currency of their country is supported because most online casinos will in the UK will charge certain currency exchange taxes.
Customer Service Quality
Even though its significance has hardly be compared to the aforementioned parameters, the strong, knowledgeable and helpful customer service can improve the entire experience a player may get at an online casino. Everyone feels much safer knowing there are agents ready to help with a potential query. Most casinos have a 24/7 support and you can get in touch with their agents at any time of the day. However, you should always check the customer support working hours to avoid the unpleasant experience of being unable to get an immediate answer.
Best UK Online Casinos FAQ
- Is my money 100% safe at online casinos in the UK?
As long as the casino obtains an adequate license, you should not have any concerns regarding safety and fairness. If you are a UK citizen, you should always make sure to play at a casino with the UK Gambling Commission licence. Those who live outside the United Kingdom should make sure to check whether an operator is licensed by the respective regulative body from legal gambling jurisdiction.
- Which UK online casinos have the highest payout?
Casinos that have the highest return to player percentage have the highest payout. Independent testing agencies, like iTech Labs, GLI and eCOGRA analyse these payouts by performing several tests. They check the amount of money that has been returned to players in the form of winnings on a monthly basis and come up with an adequate report.
What makes an online casino the best?
There are many things to look at in an online casino. Most important aspects include casino safety and security, but you should also look for a site with:
- Many games
- Generous bonuses
- High quality of customer service.
- UKGC license
All of these things combined make the best online casinos what they are.