Understanding the Workings of Wagering Requirements: An Easy-to-Follow Guide

Online gambling is a lot of fun when you play with real money; juicy bonuses help you boost your bankroll and win rich rewards. Recently in many jurisdictions, the gambling authorities are tightening up the way that casinos can advertise their bonuses and what types of terms it can offer players. This is making it harder for casinos to promote (sometimes) unattainable bonuses. 

So how does an online casino ensure that it doesn’t incur losses because of the bonuses it offers? The answer is a simple: it has in place the required security net to prevent freefalling into the abyss of loss-making. There are different mechanisms casinos deploy to ensure they stay profitable, and one of the most common and most effective are wagering requirements. So what is this magic bullet that guarantees safety for all casinos? How does it work? Let’s delve into it…


What are Wagering Requirements? 

Wagering requirements are conditions that casinos attach to the bonuses that it offers to ensure that it remains on the winning side of the equation always, over a period of time. Another common term used to refer to it is ‘playthrough requirements’. 

These requirements ensure that you wager the bonus amount – in some cases it’s the bonus as well as deposit amount – or the winnings you score with the bonus a pre-specified number of times before you are able to withdraw them to your personal account. 

The kind of bonus that you use determines which of the above 2 possibilities you’ll need to work with when it comes to fulfilling the wagering requirements for the bonus you’re planning to use. This value is always, therefore, expressed as a multiplier. For instance, 40x the bonus received, or 40x the bonus winnings.

The Need for Wagering Requirements 

Wagering requirements are an important component of the terms and conditions that govern the usage of the bonuses that an online casino offers. They guarantee that the casino doesn’t incur losses because of the bonuses and promotions that it offers. 

For instance, a player could use a bonus of 20 free spins and rack up wins totaling over $500. Now imagine 1,000 players winning that kind of money and all of them walking away with their wins without fulfilling wagering requirements. That’s the kind of loss that can shove you towards bankruptcy.

More importantly, wagering requirements help the casino to prevent any instance of fraud or bonus abuse. A player is now unable to claim a juicy bonus – say a bonus of $200 – and just walk away. 

Daunting and tedious as they may seem, wagering requirements are a necessary evil players need to follow when trying to maximize a bonus and ensure they’re no deposit bonus will materialize. However, they don’t have to be the enemy, and we’ll be explaining why.

How Do Wagering Requirements Work? 

As we mentioned earlier, the wagering requirement makes you deposit the bonus amount that you received – or the winnings you earned with it – multiple number of times before you can withdraw your winnings and eventually move it into your bank account.

The Wagering Requirement for a Deposit Bonus 

If you’re using a deposit bonus, like a welcome bonus or a reload bonus, you’ll usually need to wager the bonus amount the given number of times. Let’s look at a couple of examples to understand this concept better.

XYZ casino offers a welcome bonus of 100% up to $100, with a wagering requirement of 40x the bonus amount. You deposit $100 into your new casino account and the casino matches it with one of its own – since it’s a 100% bonus you get another $100 free, giving you $200 to play with.

You use the bonus and win $125. Now to withdraw the amount you won you’ll need to wager the bonus amount you received, i.e. $100, a total of 40 times. This means that to withdraw the $125 you win you would need to wager a total of $4000. That’s the padding we were mentioning earlier; each time the casino has to make a payout of $125 it doesn’t have to worry because it has racked up $4,0000 in all.

Let’s take another example. A casino offers a reload bonus of 200% up to $5,000 with a wagering requirement of 40x the bonus and deposit amount. You deposit $1,000 and the casino matches it 100% with a $1,000 of its own, giving you a total of $2,000 to use. You use the bonus and win $1,500.

To be able to withdraw the $1,500 you win, the wagering requirement rule will need to you to wager the bonus as well as wager amounts, i.e. $1,000+$1,000 or $2,000 in all 40 times. So to withdraw the $1,500 you won you would probably need to wager a total of $80,000.

Wagering Requirements for a Free Spins Bonus 

When it comes to fulfilling the wagering requirements for a free spins bonus, you’re required to wager the winnings you earn with it a given number of times. Only when you’ve done so are you able to redeem or withdraw your winnings. The following example will help us understand this better.

A casino offers a bonus of 50 free spins on a minimum deposit of $20, with a wagering requirement of 40x the winnings you earn with it. You use this bonus and win a cool $100. To be able to withdraw this winning amount you’ll have to wager it 40 times. This means you’ll have to wager a total of $4,000 ($100 X 40) to be able to cash out. 

Types of Wagering Requirements

There have been primarily 2 types of wagering requirements, with a third, much sought-after type making an appearance in recent times.

Modest or Regular Wagering Requirements 

The standard wagering requirements that you’ll find is a modest 30x to 40x the bonus amount/bonus + deposit amount/bonus winnings. This is the wagering requirement for most deposit bonuses and free spins offers at online casinos in the industry.

The standard wagering requirements are easy to fulfill for the player – the amount is still manageable – compared to the other version of high wagering requirements.

High Wagering Requirements 

Most deposit bonuses and free spins offers have modest or standard wagering requirements. No-deposit bonuses – and a few deposit bonuses too – usually come with a high wagering requirement. This bonus is usually anywhere from 50x to 99x the bonus/deposit + bonus/bonus winnings.

Online review portals and watchdog sites usually ask players to stay away from casinos that offer bonuses with high wagering requirements. The reason is simple – the amount you’d have to spend justifying your decision to withdraw your winnings is just not worth the hassle.

Low or Zero Wagering Requirements 

Wagering requirements have been a bane for many players over the years, mainly because they’ve restricted them to wager an amount of money they might not necessarily be happy to part ways with before withdrawing their winnings. Imagine having to wager $2,000 to withdraw a winning amount of $50 because the bonus had a 40x wagering requirement.

Casinos have now found a way around this issue and the result is a deposit bonus with low or zero wagering requirements. A zero wagering bonus is one that doesn’t require you to spend any amount to be eligible to redeem withdrawals; you use a bonus, win some and withdraw your wins; that’s it.

There are some casinos that offer bonuses with low wagering requirements of anywhere from 3x to 20x the bonus amount/bonus and deposit amount/ bonus winnings. But, tread cautiously with low to zero wagering requirements – these seemingly less deterring conditions come with their own restrictions too!

You may also like...