How do no deposit bonuses work?
Fundamentally, no deposit bonuses are a simple concept. You sign up for the site, and you get something right away, without needing to make a deposit. There are a few different forms they can take, but they’re all pretty similar.
Instant signup bonus
Instant cash is what most people have in mind when they think of no deposit bonuses. Very rarely is this truly strings-free cash. After all, operators want you to stick around and play, not to withdraw your bonus immediately and disappear.
Usually, before you can withdraw your bonus, you’ll have to clear it in some way. This can be as simple as betting it once, or require the bonus amount to be wagered many times over. Typically, there will be a deadline to do this. Some operators will let you play with your bonus money on a trial basis, but require a real money deposit before you can convert your bonus and winnings to real cash.
Online casinos that emphasize their slots products might give you free spins instead of cash. In a sense, this isn’t all that different from receiving bonus money with a single playthrough requirement. The main difference is that you may be limited in terms of which games you can use the free spins for. Usually operators do this when they have specific slots titles they want to promote, such as progressive jackpot slots which benefit from having a high volume of play.
Many online casinos have a built-in sportsbook with a shared account. Operators taking this approach might have bonuses specific to one vertical or the other. So, while you may want to play casino games, an operator might have a better bonus on offer for its sportsbook. It’s worth taking advantage of these even if you’re not a sports fan. Free bets still work out to free money even if you’re just picking teams at random.
Free Sweeps coins
Sweepstakes casinos (see above) often give you some free Sweeps coins just for signing up. Since Sweeps coins are redeemable for cash prizes, this kind of offer is functionally equivalent to an instant signup bonus at a real money casino.
Risk free play
Technically, risk free play offers don’t require a deposit. Unless they’re paired with an instant signup bonus, however, you’ll need to add some cash to your account to take advantage of them. The idea here is that the casino guarantees that you won’t suffer any early losses.
The risk free period might be a single day, a few days, or perhaps a full week. There will be a dollar maximum applied to the promotion as well. For instance, if you get 24 hours risk free up to $100, the site will compare your balance after 24 hours to the total amount you’ve deposited. If you’ve lost money, you’ll be reimbursed for the amount you’ve lost or $100, whichever is less.