Bingo Bonus Hunter? Look out for the small print
Are Bingo Play Through Requirements Really Fair? When you look for a new bingo site, one of the first things you check out is the bonuses on offer. The most popular sites are those with free no deposit bonus cash and those which offer supersized bonuses on your first deposit. It’s natural to look for the biggest bonus you can find but often you’ll realise that biggest doesn’t always mean the best.
The majority of leading sites on the market want to offer players a bonus, an incentive for sticking around if you like and this applies especially to new players, to get them in through the door. However, they also want to retain these customers who come along for the new player bonus and not see them hop onto the next site with a decent bonus and this is where play through or wagering requirements come in.
What are wagering requirements?
The majority of bonuses have wagering requirements attached. A wagering requirement is usually a multiplied number which shows the number of times you have to play through a bonus before you are eligible for real cash winning that you can withdraw.
If you begin to build up winnings most sites will store these for you in a pending balance state until you meet the wagering requirement for the site. Whilst it’s pending you are unable to withdraw any cash from this balance but you can spend those funds on more bingo games. Whether or not wagering requirements are fair is a contentious issue, as many sites have been stung by players cashing in on the bonus deals and then making away with the cash to another site.
A Working Example
It can be quite hard to understand exactly what a bingo site means by their specific play through requirements so here’s an example of how a site may work.
You sign up to a site with a 100% match bonus up to a maximum of £100 on your first deposit. The site states they have a 2x play through requirement. You choose to deposit £10 and when you make this deposit the site will show your 100% bonus immediately, meaning you have £20 to play with. With a 2x play through requirement attached, you need to actually play through £30 before you can cash out your bonus. £30 ix 2x the £10 bonus added to your £10 starting deposit. Sometimes you might get lucky and win a lot meaning you can play through £30 without making another deposit but sometimes you may reach zero before this happens. In this instance your playthrough will be cancelled in most instances. It doesn’t sound very fair when you’ve made a deposit on the proviso of earning some bonus cash and then hopefully winning big but it really is the luck of the draw.
Big Bonus Equals Big Play Through
As the example shows, play through requirements are based on the size of the bonus you get so therefore you get a big bonus you’ll have a big play through to deal with. Some bonuses may have double, triple or even higher play through requirements. In comparison to other games out there though, bingo wagering requirements are pretty low so perhaps we should count our lucky stars.
You need to think about the budget you set yourself for your gaming to ascertain whether it is possible to actually reach the wagering requirements set. Obviously when you claim a bonus you want to get the most from it but it’s not worth frittering away all your cash if the return you receive isn’t significantly more.
Rather than joining sites for their super size bonuses, pick one for its entertainment value. If you enjoy the style, theme and atmosphere of a site, it’s much more likely you’ll meet the play through requirements they set because you’re enjoying the experience much more. Even if you don’t meet the requirements you will still have had a better gaming experience because you’re playing in a community which you enjoy and keeps you entertained. There are also a number of sites out there including Paddy Power Bingo and Ladbrokes Bingo that actually have no wagering requirements so you can withdraw what you like when you like.
It’d be unfair of players to expect online bingo sites to just let them have cash for free and the fact that there are play through requirements attached should be considered a necessary evil. The bingo community is lucky that most sites keep their requirements quite low in comparison to other gaming sites such as regular online casinos.