In the 1990s, as the Internet started spreading its wings and becoming a huge influence on our lives, Internet casinos also started becoming a thing. If there’s a website whose sole function is to have one button which plays a 5-second audio clip of dramatic music (always the same piece), why wouldn’t online gambling exist?
In the beginning, online casinos operated only with classic casino games, such as roulette, blackjack, and poker. However, as was the case with their land-based counterparts, they soon realized that most people would be interested in playing online slot machines. At first, they were replicas of physical slot games, but as time passed, the complexity of the games grew. Now, slot players can enjoy games with unorthodox layouts (for example, not all reels show a symbol in each row) and multiple different machines, with five, six, and even seven reels available.
But is there a possibility to play online slots for real money without putting any of your own in? The answer is yes.
Winning Free Money
First off, this is not some special way to cheat the system. It’s the system itself that offers you this possibility. You see, when you look up online casinos, you’ll find thousands of such websites. So why would you pick one over the other? Well, to try and attract players to create an account at their website (rather than somewhere else), they’ve put casino bonuses on offer. They utilize promotions which basically allow you to play real-money slots for free. And who doesn’t like to win real money at no risk whatsoever?
With these bonuses, there’s no need for you to put any amount of money into your account. As you already know, casinos are not a charitable foundation which gives out money to poor little gamblers down on their luck. The idea behind a no-deposit bonus is that, after you’ve claimed one and played with that credit, chances are, most of the players will continue on and make a deposit. Additionally, it can also make old members become active again.
However, no-deposit bonuses usually come with high wagering requirements. So always check out which casinos offer which bonuses, but also make sure you find out which conditions these bonuses come with. Some of them have rollover requirements which are way too steep, and this renders such bonuses useless.
You should also learn which players are eligible for no-deposit promotions. For example, some casinos give these bonuses out to those who are yet to play a single online casino game on their website. You can go on a frenzy to complete the wagering requirements only to find out you’ve not selected the ‘opt in’ option in time and that the bonus is no longer available. Lastly, most bonuses which offer free spins are tied to a specific game and only playing that game will count towards fulfilling the wagering requirements.
Which Games to Play?
All online slot games come with a Return to Player, or RTP for short. RTP is a payout percentage of a game, and we’ll later discuss how it actually works more in-depth. For now, you should only be aware of the fact that the higher the RTP, the better your chances of winning are.
With this in mind, you should be on a lookout for the highest RTP possible. Since you’re playing online, there’s an advantage. Brick-and-mortar casinos offer games with lower RTPs, whereas when playing online, most RTP rates range from 92–97 percent. And if you’re lucky enough (and thorough in your search), you’ll even be able to stumble upon games with an RTP of as much as 98%.
If you select a high RTP game, you’re more likely to land on a winning combination, and with wagering requirements in mind, you’ll need to do this frequently. On a side note, to those unfamiliar with this term, a wagering (or rollover) requirement represents how much money you must wager before you’re able to make a withdrawal request. For example, if you receive $100 bonus money and the WR is set at 30x the bonus, you must bet a total of $3000 to be able to withdraw any money.
As you have WRs to fulfill, you’d be wise to play a high jackpot game. Yes, it’s not easy to hit a jackpot. But if it does happen to you, you don’t have to worry about WRs anymore — you just need to sit them out. This wouldn’t be a problem, as, presumably, you wouldn’t be playing slots if you didn’t enjoy them. For instance, one thing to consider is games with progressive jackpots. The more rounds you play, the higher the jackpot is. Furthermore, there are casinos which even offer a networked system of progressive jackpots. This means that all players contribute to the same pot, often making it rise to great heights ($1 million and more).
While this doesn’t completely fall under the free money option, since you need to make a deposit to claim it, it’s still a way to add more not-your money to your balance.
As you’d expect, you’ll find some generous offers when looking to claim a match deposit bonus. It’s common to find a promotion which will double or even triple your balance. Moreover, these also come with more acceptable playthrough terms, as you won’t have to wager as much money before withdrawing as you would have to with no-deposit bonuses. Again, all that we’ve stated for no-deposit bonuses still counts. You should look around for the best deals, as different casinos offer different possibilities, and you need to check out all the conditions these promotions entail.
How Online Slots Work
Since the introduction of video slots, machines moved on from mechanical levers and strings to Random Number Generators (RNG). The RNG is a computer mechanism which makes sure every outcome of the game is genuinely random.
It’s constantly cycling through numbers, and when you press the spin button, it stops on a number. This number determines which positions the reels will take up, and that’s how you find out whether you’ve won or not. However, what makes the RNG successful in achieving its purpose is the fact that it’s completely independent of any outside factors. It doesn’t care about how much money you’ve placed on a bet nor whether you’ve been having a winning or a losing session so far. Every outcome is a single event which isn’t influenced by anything else.
Return to Player
As we’ve mentioned before, Return to Player, or RTP, is a payout percentage of a slot. This represents how often a game will come up with a winning outcome. However, you shouldn’t misinterpret it. A high RTP of, say 97%, doesn’t represent your odds of winning (you don’t have 97% chances to hit a winning combination). It also doesn’t mean you’ll win 97 out of 100 rounds you play.
You see, RTP is measured over an extended period of time — millions and billions of rounds. As such, although it’s a guarantee that a machine will pay out, it doesn’t need to happen during a single several-hour session. With this in mind, RTP is more of an indicator, not a metric you should live and die by. As you already know by now, you’re better off playing slots online, with their RTP rates being in the 92%–97% range. On the other hand, physical machines operate with an RTP ranging from 85–90 percent.
No Deposit, No Stress
All in all, claiming free money bonuses can be a great way to earn something out of nothing. Since it’s not your money you’re playing with, there’s no risk involved, and you have nothing to worry about. If you select your favorite game, you can have a win-win situation. And if you win something, hey, that’s great! But in the event that you don’t, you’ve still played your favorite game for free.
So be on a lookout for high RTP rates and consider playing games which offer high jackpots, as this can get you to go through the wagering requirements easily. Just don’t stress about winning — slots are supposed to be a fun, pastime activity; especially when you’ve got nothing to lose.