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Bonuses not all they are cracked up to be!

Discussion in 'Online Casinos' started by WAYLANDER, May 25, 2006.

Tags:
    May 25, 2006
  1. WAYLANDER

    WAYLANDER Full Member webmeister

    Occupation:
    Garden buildings installer S/E / Poker
    Location:
    uk
    Ok im pretty new to the online casino thing..so any thoughts would be good.
    I have signed up at a couple of casinos and claimed the welcome bonuses.
    In my search for a good bonus i have come accross some truly awfull ones!
    Alot of them look good when you see them, but when you get down to the T&Cs some are just plain rediculous!
    The way i see it is that each game has a H/A % , so if the smallest H/A game the terms allow you to play is 2.5% ( 3 card/ war i believe are roughly this ) any bonus where you have to wager more than 40 times the bonus ( 40x2.5=100 ) is a expected loss!
    So what i have found is that what alot of these bonuses do is ( if you accept them ) to make you play a game that you might not usually play and once you have wagered a rediculous amount ( 180x i have seen ) you are still expected to lose!
    Unless you were going to play that game anyway..WHY BOTHER!!
    I understand the need to restrict the low risk ( black/red roulette etc ) games, and to insist on certain W/Rs, but some are well out of order!
    And on top of this if you get lucky there are some places that would label you a bonus abuser.. what a joke!
    In my opinion to attract new customers they should offer a reasonable bonus which you dont need a degree to understand the conditions , where you can play most games that you enjoy and where you are expected to make some profit out of the bonus!
    Otherwise dont offer one.
    And to just accept that they will get some bonus chasers!
    Alot of the bigger names offer an acceptable bonus, and im sure this is why they are big names!
    Im not saying that they should just give money away, but the way some sites advertise their " AMAZING " bonus you would think they are..but when it comes down to the nitty gritty the T&Cs are just one big trap for the uneducated punter, and even then the W/Rs mean you are expected to lose the bonus plus deposit anyway!
    Well i have gone on enough for my 1st post....was wondering if others felt the same.
     
  2. May 25, 2006
  3. Slotster!

    Slotster! I predict a riot. CAG

    Occupation:
    al Hazard
    Location:
    Location, Location!
    Firstly - welcome aboard!

    Secondly - They should do away with 'welcome' bonuses altogether, and consistently reward loyal regular players on an ongoing basis. If the whole industry suddenly agreed to drop them one day, the whole industry would become a much better place... Someone should make it happen at one of the big events.

    Of course the games/wr etc put it back in the casino's favour... it's a casino after all.. they're in the business of making money. I see all bonuses as a bit more 'fun' time, where I might hit the big one - never an opportunity to make a bit of money grinding out the wagering requirements!..
     
    3 people like this.
  4. May 25, 2006
  5. vinylweatherman

    vinylweatherman You type well loads CAG MM

    Occupation:
    STILL At Leisure
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    Forget it

    Any newcomer expecting to make money out of welcome bonuses needs to think again. Even in 2004 when I began to play, bonuses were not what they were in the early days. Professional bonus chasers tend to hit any slackness hard, and it is hard for anyone to make money out of bonuses.
    I tend to look for long term value, and pay little attention to whether the welcome bonus is a mere 50 or an enormous 200+. I have seen much heated debate about the various traps, and how they are sprung, and often it is the new player who tries to harvest their first bonus (having been told how "easy" it is), that gets hit. The real professionals will turn down a bonus they see as unbeatable, and will take those they believe they have a chance on. Often, this involves dedicating hours of study and play to harvest under $50.
    My favourites now sre those that offer decent events long term, give decent bonuses to long term players, don't treat you badly if you get a bit lucky, and are tolerant of the occasional mistake.

    If you are looking for bonuses with clear and easy terms I would suggest looking at the MG casinos that offer the new "EZbonus system". This allows play on all games, has a bubble that shows how much bonus money is still to be earned through wagering, and allows a cash-in at any point with any remaining bonus money voided. Cryptologic also have a wagering system that is easy to cope with. While there are excluded games, they will only take the bonus away from players who abuse the system that allows your own money to be taken out at any time. The Cryptologic cashier allows you to find out exactly how much needs to be wagered to clear the bonus.

    Some casino groups have a reputation of using "bonus abuse" as an excuse to confiscate winnings even where players have not broken any of the terms. There are also a number of casinos that will confiscate any winnings where terms have been breached on a bonus, while there are others that will simply refuse the withdrawal till enough has been wagered, or will just confiscate the bonus amount.

    Many allow players to refuse the welcome bonus if they just want to play without any restrictions, and normally long term bonuses are less restrictive.

    Good Luck, but don't believe all those tales about it being easy to make money by hitting bonuses.
     
  6. May 25, 2006
  7. Macgyver

    Macgyver Dormant account PABnononaccred

    Occupation:
    Student
    Location:
    North Carolina
    All I'm going to say is that if you're very disciplined, you can make steady money playing with bonuses. This is from first-hand experience for almost 3 years now. I'm not the only one who does this, I know KasinoKing does it too.

    I'm not surprised so few people talk about playing with bonuses here, much less winning, as it seems the vocal majority are so against them.
     
  8. May 25, 2006
  9. vinylweatherman

    vinylweatherman You type well loads CAG MM

    Occupation:
    STILL At Leisure
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    Granted.

    I did mean hard for the newbie.:D Experienced players have an advantage as they know what is all hype and what represents a good deal. Many good bonus players do not play like ones either, and can keep out of the audit process. Much of the problem for newbies are the various sites and eBooks that give out the "standard methods", the ones that casinos notice because hundreds see them, sign up, and the casino spots something is up and audits the accounts. The problem is not in getting the method right, but in having the fruits confiscated and deposit returned.
    KasinoKing has a good method, although the absolute amounts gained are not large, they are consistent. The value of individual bonuses, even when played well, are not all that good.
    Personally, I believe the best method is to play long term at a good casino that provides regular players with bonuses of equal or greater value than the sign-up. Winnings from these bonuses are less likely to be subject to accusations of abuse because you are a long term player. The worst that seems to happen is that the offers dry up if you have a prolonged good spell.
     
  10. May 25, 2006
  11. bpb

    bpb Banned User - repeated violations of rule 1.14 (tr PABnorogue PABnonaccred

    Location:
    Haverhill
    With all the restrictions on games now, you probably only have an expectation of about $10,000 across all of the reputable sign on bonuses. Various reloads and monthlys might net you another few thousand a month.

    Doesn't really seem worth it for all the hassle.
     
  12. May 25, 2006
  13. soflat

    soflat Senior Member

    Occupation:
    Scientist
    Location:
    Florida
    What are you saying? That they should just give away money?

    In the casinos' view, the bonuses are intended to stretch your gambling dollar and extend your playing time.

    I don't think that a -EV bonus is a trap necessarily, because if they played without a bonus they would lose too. So what is the difference?

    And I wouldn't assume they are uneducated. Maybe they just like to play slots and other games. In fact they could be highly educated and have money to spend.
     
  14. May 25, 2006
  15. KasinoKing

    KasinoKing WebMeister & Slotaholic.. CAG MM PABnonaccred webmeister

    Occupation:
    House-Husband and Casino Advisor
    Location:
    Bexhill on sea, England
    You know it makes sense! :thumbsup:
     
  16. May 25, 2006
  17. Vesuvio

    Vesuvio Dormant account

    Location:
    UK
    KK, I want to weep when I look at your site and see all the money you've thrown away by not playing the best games :p
    That's the li(n)e in the terms and conditions. The real appeal is that the lure of "free money" attracts players while the terms tied to the bonus mean the average player hasn't got a hope in hell of ever withdrawing even if they get a decent win while playing. It's almost a perfect deal for the casinos, though bonus hunters cream off some of the profits, bless their little socks ;)
     
  18. May 25, 2006
  19. nielsenj

    nielsenj Dormant account webmeister

    Occupation:
    Student
    Location:
    Scandinavia
    Bunus Hunting is surely not as profitable as it used to be. It is no longer "easy money". In 2000-2001 when I started playing at online casino there were easy money to be made. The welcome bonuses had the same size in percentage as now but the wagering requirements were much lower (8, 4 and even 2x was not uncommon) and the amount of excluded games were also lower.

    Online casinos have adapted their bonus offers to the behaviour of players and the result is that welcome bonuses have become less attractive. In the future I think more online casinos will focus more on offering attractive bonuses on player's subsequent deposits instead of offering generous welcome bonuses. I think we will see more casinos that adapt the to a bonus policy like the one at Bodog where you are offered a 10% bonus on all deposits.
     
  20. May 25, 2006
  21. -z-

    -z- Dormant account

    Occupation:
    retired
    Location:
    usa
    Admiral Ackbar, "It's a trap!"

    I would argue this but for the conflict of interest...


    Sooo... bonuses are umm- a trap and they're BAD.
    Yah, they're bad. No wait, they're EVIL!

    And you should uhh- stay away from these evil bonuses. There is no money to be won with bonuses, only losing money.

    And especially don't read that website with the bonus info by that king guy.

    Stay away from bonuses. Just say no.
    I mentioned bonuses were bad? Ok.

    -z-

    p.s. And don't read any books or articles about probablity or game odds... that wizard page is to be avoided at all costs.
     
  22. May 25, 2006
  23. dabruin2

    dabruin2 Dormant account

    Occupation:
    Financing and Real Estate Investment
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    In my former gambling incarnation, I was a bonus hunter. I pursued this because it was a means to an end for me. My normal job wasn't paying me much at the time, so I thought that if I played disciplined on blackjack, I could come out ahead. I even bought one of those clicker counter thingys. So there I was with the clicker in the left hand and my mouse in my right. I would go from casino to casino and partake in the bonuses they were offering. At the end of my career, I probably made like 10K, which helped supplement my then low income. Towards the end, the bonuses were getting more stringent and 20x playthroughs became 30x--and some casinos were just being very slow in pay or I'd just lose my money during the grind. Because when you think about it, there's only three results when you bonus hunt--you either fulfill wagering requirements and come up a couple hundred (I've never won more than $500 during a playthrough), you lose your bonus plus deposit, or you break even. As the bonus restrictions (playthroughs) increased, it soon became unsavory to participate because when I broke it down and if I came out ahead only a couple hundred playing through wagering requirements, it's like a job that only paid about $8-10/per hour or less--and that is IF you fulfilled the wagering requirement. Because if you didn't, you just effectively sat there for an inordinate amount of time having accomplished nothing if you didn't win. And it sure as heck wasn't entertaining.

    The point is I realized it wasn't worth it to me anymore. I would rather gamble for real and make the money that way--especially if you're playing at a reputable casino, it's easier to win at say Blackjack or on a spin of roulette than to commit yourself to hours upon hours of clicking and grinding.

    That's just my story. I hope you enjoyed the read.
     
    1 person likes this.
  24. May 25, 2006
  25. Simmo!

    Simmo! Moderator Staff Member

    Occupation:
    Web Dev.
    Location:
    England
    Its well documented I'm not a signup bonus fan and believe loyalty bonuses are the future. BUT...IMO any casino that makes such a big thing about their signup bonus must expect the flak that goes with it.

    The industry will never even start to get the image it needs while signup bonuses are around. But there seems to be a lack of suitable alternatives and unless all the casinos agree to ditch them, or better still, regulations preclude them from offering them, we'll never have a level playing field sans bonus.

    Some loyalty schemes are good, but they are not clearly promoted and most players dont even know which are/aren't good, so it's difficult to weigh up the advantages. KK and Macgyver may disagree with me, but I think it's probably equally as possible, if not easier, to profit from careful play on loyalty bonuses and cashback offers than from signup bonuses. And because it will encourage loyalty, it will prevent more players from ending up at shady joints IMO.

    If you took signup bonuses out of the industry, you'd probably have about 80% less threads in the "Complaints" forum too :D
     
  26. May 25, 2006
  27. GrandMaster

    GrandMaster Ueber Meister CAG

    Occupation:
    Mathematician by day, online gambler by night.
    Location:
    UK
    You might also remove 80% of new signups.
     
  28. May 25, 2006
  29. spearmaster

    spearmaster RIP Ted

    Occupation:
    Devil's Advocate
    Location:
    Heaven
    If 80% of these new signups were only in it for the bonus, it might be worth it :)

    I would really like to know how many people convert from bonus hunting to real play without bonuses - I think this would be the key to the whole proposition.
     
  30. May 25, 2006
  31. Simmo!

    Simmo! Moderator Staff Member

    Occupation:
    Web Dev.
    Location:
    England
    LOL. You never know :) But if the loyalty scheme and the service are good, you may keep 80% of the players there for a lot longer ;)
     
  32. May 25, 2006
  33. WAYLANDER

    WAYLANDER Full Member webmeister

    Occupation:
    Garden buildings installer S/E / Poker
    Location:
    uk
    Firstly thanks for all the replys..a great forum with plenty of traffic!
    Just to expand on a few points, i think my main gripe is in the way some sites initial advertising leads you to think that the bonus is the best thing since sliced bread! but when you get down to it it is pretty crap.. with the odd trap or two.
    I know 1 or 2 of you may not agree with the word " trap " but i like a good discussion so here is my argument:-
    To have " excluded " games in the T&Cs are nothing short of a carefully concealed pit full of sharpened stakes for the " uneducated punter " to fall into!
    When i say uneducated i mean in the ways of online gambling, not there schooling.
    To think that a newcomer to gambling might sign up at a site and play allowed games and win a good sum of money, then play an excluded game ( even if he loses at this game )and have all his winnings taken away is nothing short of stealing in my book!
    I can not see any reason to include this rule but to cheat the customer..sure dont count it to the w/r but to take their winnings ROBBERY!
    I even believe the casinos know this as usually this clause is burried in the T&Cs and not even on the same page as the list of " excluded " games.

    Also what is wrong with a bonus that you are expected to win some of it?
    Lets compare this to some real life situations:-
    A new gym opens and offers people free membership for a month.
    A new restaurant opens and has 2 for 1 the first weekend it is open.
    free samples on beauty products
    buy 1 get 1 free
    Free insurance/tax with this car
    The list is nearly endless and i am sure we have all taken advantage of this sort of offer.
    My point being all these promotions are being given to get you to buy or use the products/services in future, the casinos deal in money so that is what they offer.
    We have to remember that the online casino business is worth BILLIONS with only a small percentage of the overheads land based casinos have ( and i still get free drinks and a sandwich there! )
    I keep reading that casinos are not in the business of giving money away..why not?..just about every other major business will give you some form of special offers on there products.. a casinos product is money, and not theirs by the way, we lose it to them on their biased games.
    All i am saying is that the bonuses should be clear and easy to understand with a little profit expected.
    Remember this if you are ever in a shop and just before you were about to spray the newest perfume/aftershave tester bottle a store assistant comes running out with a T&Cs book you have to read and sign first:) :)

    WAYLANDER
     
    1 person likes this.
  34. May 25, 2006
  35. Simmo!

    Simmo! Moderator Staff Member

    Occupation:
    Web Dev.
    Location:
    England

    Your analogies though have a finite upper limit on the cost, whereas "cash to win" doesn't. Additionally, bonuses were originally intended for players to try out the games. It would be a bit like saying here's an extra $100 of bets, but you can't win off them, it's just there for entertainment purposes.

    Try this on the restuarant analogy: go to a "2 for 1" offer at a carvery, load your plates up then invite a few friends in to share :D Not sure the restaurant would go for that ;)
     
  36. May 25, 2006
  37. WAYLANDER

    WAYLANDER Full Member webmeister

    Occupation:
    Garden buildings installer S/E / Poker
    Location:
    uk
    I disagree simmo the bonuses i am talkig about advertise as " FREE " money
    " BIGGEST AND BEST ON WEB "
    " WE WILL DOUBLE YOUR MONEY"
    Most sites let you play the games for free to try the games

    WAYLANDER
     
  38. May 25, 2006
  39. Simmo!

    Simmo! Moderator Staff Member

    Occupation:
    Web Dev.
    Location:
    England
    Yup - hence my use of the phrase "originally intended" :) Things have moved on.
     

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