Best Australian Online Casino Welcome Bonus in 2020
In the online casino industry, it has become somewhat of an unwritten rule that when a new player registers with an Australian online casino, that player is then offered a casino welcome bonus or a package which includes a variety of casino welcome bonuses. These welcome bonus packages are a combination of popular offers that Australian online casinos use to reward players to build value and trust between the player and the casino.
New players may find it difficult finding where to start with welcome bonuses when signing up with a new online casino. Seasoned players can also be caught out by the multitude of slight differences in the terms and conditions with welcome bonuses. This is where 5 Star Pokies becomes a player’s best companion for online casino gaming – as we review and compare bonuses and online casinos, as our experts provide players with the best casino welcome bonuses for Australian players. On this page, players can find our complete guide to online casino welcome bonuses including what these bonuses are and how to use them, as well as key points to check in the terms and conditions and our top tips to getting the most out of your casino welcome bonus.
What is a welcome bonus?
A casino welcome bonus will likely be the first offer that players see prior to, or straight after registering a player account at an online casino. These casino welcome bonuses can come in many shapes and sizes, but importantly they will always maintain two key components. These components of casino welcome bonuses are: one, they can only be claimed by new players; and two, they can only be claimed once.
Now, as mentioned, there are a variety of types of online casino welcome bonuses and we will explain each of these types in detail shortly. The most common type of casino welcome bonus players will be offered are ‘first deposit bonuses’ – which we will explain in detail in the next section.
What players need to know about welcome bonuses is that these casino welcome bonus amounts will always become bonus cash into a player’s wallet, however, online casinos do not like to throw away money, so they always have themselves covered by undermining these casino welcome bonuses with rules that are outlined in the terms and conditions. This means that it is crucial for players to always check the terms and conditions before claiming any casino welcome bonus, as one wrong step can lead to a player forfeiting the bonus and any winnings that came from that casino welcome bonus.
Rules for online casino welcome bonuses
In the terms and conditions, players will commonly find rules that relate to:
- One account per: home address, email address, IP address
Players like to try and score some free cash by claiming multiple welcome bonuses with multiple accounts. However, online casinos have this covered in the terms and conditions, and specifically indicate that players can only claim one player account with a welcome bonus per home address, email address, or IP address.
If you do try and be shifty with an online casino and open multiple accounts, you will always get caught out. Once you have been busted you will likely lose your bonus and any winnings that you have already earned with it. In most instances, you will also have your player account closed and be banned from creating a player account with that online casino and their affiliates. This also means that you will surrender any cash that is in your player account!
- Eligible games
Online casino welcome bonuses are a great addition to getting you started on your casino gaming journey, but not all games are treated equal when it comes to using your bonus cash. With many casinos’ welcome bonus promotions, the differentiation between what games are eligible and what casino games are not, usually comes down to pushing eligible games as those with lower player odds – like the pokies.
You should not commence playing with your casino welcome bonus until you are sure what the eligible games are for wagering with your casino welcome bonus real money. This information can be found in the terms and conditions for the promotion. Ensure that you always play on games that are eligible for your online casino welcome bonus, as you can risk losing your bonus and the winnings you have earned if you continue to play ineligible games or play against any specific terms and conditions.
- Time limits
Don’t overlook this component of your casino welcome bonus, as many online casinos will determine a specific period for a player to play and meet the wagering requirements of their welcome bonus. So, if the time limit expires and you have not met any wagering requirements, you will lose your winnings, including the bonus amount itself.
- Maximum payout withdrawals
As we said, Australian online casinos do not like to pay out real money to players. This means they will always have this covered or limited when it comes to players cashing out – just like how car insurance companies always try and find any insignificant loophole they can find, just to get out of paying out on a crash for their customer.
Online casinos follow a similar path to reduce the chance they have of giving many players big cash outs. Every online casino sets a maximum cash out amount clause in the terms and conditions of their casino welcome bonus. The reason behind this is obvious, online casinos place a limit on the total amount of real money that can be cashed out from the winnings earned when using an online casino welcome bonus. They do this to ensure that the bonus cash stays in the player account and is eventually lost through losing wagers with the casino.
In some circumstances, if players are lucky enough to turn a small casino welcome bonus into thousands of dollars, and provided they meet the wagering requirements – the maximum withdrawal amount is capped as per the terms and conditions, and the player’s excess winnings will be removed from the player’s account. Therefore, it is important to always check the terms and conditions first!
Remember, the key step when claiming online casino welcome bonuses is to review the terms and conditions properly first to ensure that you can take maximum advantage of any welcome bonus.
- Wagering requirements
The wagering requirements around casino welcome bonuses is very important, as this is the specific part of the terms and conditions that will always have the most change from bonus to bonus.
All Australian online casino welcome bonuses in 2020 will come with wagering requirements, which are the rules that outline the minimum times that players must bet with their welcome bonus before the player is eligible to cash out winnings from their welcome bonus – the wagering requirements can easily make or break the true value of a bonus.
Wagering requirements for online casino welcome bonuses consist of two parts:
- The minimum amount that the player needs to have bet with the bonus
- Any specific games that need to be played to meet the wagering requirement
The minimum amount for wagering requirements is generally a times factor for the value of the welcome bonus cash. What this means is that if the wagering requirement is 10 times and the welcome bonus was $50, the player would need to have made bets totaling $500 (10 times $50), before any winnings from this welcome bonus can be cashed out.
In many circumstances, online casinos will place game weightings or percentages requirements to welcome bonuses so that players do not use the bonus on lucrative games where players can win lots like blackjack or baccarat. It is common practice for online casinos to tie in bonuses to a requirement that say 80% – 100% of the bonus must be used on casino games with higher house edge (like the pokies), to reduce the player’s chance of big winnings.
Types of casino welcome bonus
The online casino industry is very competitive and so these casinos are finding more and more ways to encourage players to sign up to play. As online casinos continue to get creative with the value in these casino welcome bonuses, there becomes a variety for players to choose from or to receive in packages. We have detailed some of the popular bonuses players can receive in 2020 below:
Online casinos are setting triggerable welcome bonuses onto players accounts that reward them with bonus cash when the player makes a deposit that is over a certain threshold. These welcome bonuses have an almost psychological component for setting players up to making larger deposits, because they were rewarded when making their first deposit that was higher than the standard amount made by players.
We are also seeing Australian online casinos begin to ‘link’ these deposit bonuses together by telling players that if they make the same deposit again within the next 30 days, the player will again earn a deposit bonus. The interesting part to this linked bonus amount is that players are not aware of how much the bonus is, but, in our experience, we find that players who make this second deposit faster are rewarded with more bonus cash than if the player made the deposit closer to the 30 day time limit.
Players love no deposit casino welcome bonuses because they do not require any effort or deposit by the player. If it has been a while since you have last visited or played at an online casino, you could certainly expect one of these offers hitting your email soon. These no deposit casino bonuses come in the form of a small ‘donation,’ usually in an amount of say $20 to $35, to entice the player to get back into the swing of online casino gaming.
Free spins casino welcome bonuses have become the go-to bonus that players are quick to claim. In Australia, online casinos use the free spins welcome bonuses to promote their casino games because this welcome bonus gets players online and making bets right away. Players love to claim free spins welcome bonuses because they always appear to have a high value. This is because online casinos can afford to be generous when creating these offers, as free spins can only be used on the pokies. Having players spending their bonus on the pokies is positive for the casino as the pokies have a very high house edge.
Common free spins welcome bonuses offer players between 30 and 50 free spins for certain online pokies, or a collection of pokies that the casino is pushing at the time.
Match bonuses are very popular in the Australian online casino scene. They are a type of welcome bonus, however, they are also offered to players who are returning or showing continued loyalty to the casino. Many Australian online casinos on our experts list of recommended casinos offer ‘no max’ match bonuses between 200% and 400%, with no maximum deposit limit. Therefore, if players have the cash flow available, it would be very possible for a player to deposit a large amount like $500 and receive a complementary $2000 bonus thanks to a rewarding 400% ‘no max’ match bonus.
VIP and loyalty programs
Just like any customer focused industry, VIP’s or customers that show loyalty are always rewarded with better offers than those offered to the standard player base. Same is true for Australian online casinos, although typical loyalty or VIP bonuses can’t really be considered as true welcome bonuses because they are not available for every player.
Many casinos are now showing loyalty to players by offering them head starts towards their VIP and loyalty programs. These kind of casino welcome bonuses come in the form of loyalty points that ‘mature’ or become active after playing a certain amount of spins or after a predefined period. This loyalty from the casino works to keep players at the online casino for longer.
The VIP and loyalty programs provide players with bonus cash or free spins as rewards on top of the standard promotions other players are offered. For example, these offers come with higher amounts like being offered 50 free spins this month while the standard players are offered 30 free spins.
Realistically, becoming a VIP requires real commitment from players as it does take a large volume of deposits to be included, however, an added benefit to becoming a VIP or building up loyalty points is that the bonuses you are offered, have much easier wagering requirements, qualifying terms, and overall conditions to cashing out winnings. As they say, treat those (your new online casino) like you would like to be treated – and you might just find yourself part of an exclusive club.
Welcome bonuses are not only linked to playing casino games. In order to compile extra information about their players or to promote referral programs online, casinos are now offering players with welcome bonus rewards for completing alternative account-based tasks, such as:
- Verifying their contact details or email address
- Adding marketing information like preferred casino games
- Referring a friend that creates a player account
- Meeting account milestones, like player achievements
These casino welcome bonuses are another way in which casinos can reward players that show loyalty and complete their account details.
Reward wheel spins
Some Australian online casinos are beginning to offer their own rewards programs that come in the shape of a spin for reward wheel. These reward wheels are simply a game of chance with varying rewards on the wheel; the player spins the wheel and receives the reward depending on the outcome of the wheel. Many of the rewards you will likely see on these ‘newer style’ reward wheels are bonus cash.
How to use your welcome bonus
Casino no deposit welcome bonuses are a great way to give a boost and can kickstart your casino gaming, but how do you use your welcome bonus? As we’ve mentioned already – there are some rules that need to be considered before players use their no deposit casino welcome bonus – which are made readily available in the terms and conditions for the bonus.
So, read on and remember to keep these points in mind when you are claiming your next online casino welcome bonus:
Every online casino welcome bonus will be covered by strict time limits. These time limits are set by online casinos on a case-to-case basis and can range from as little as 24 hours to several weeks. Players can find all the necessary information relating to time limits around the casino welcome bonus in the terms and conditions section.
It is important to check these terms and conditions before going ahead and claiming, as you may deposit a heap of money now that you will play with using the bonus later in the week, only to find out that the bonus amount only lasts for 24 hours before it is gone! Time limits can also be applied to certain parameters – like meeting the wagering requirements for a bonus.
Game weightings, exclusions and bet limits
When it comes to the best casino welcome bonuses and real money games, not every game is considered equal when using the bonus for winnings. Online casinos determine the game weightings for eligible games, generally by attributing higher percentage game weightings to those casino games with the lowest player odds, such as the pokies or keno. Many games that players have a better chance to win with, are games like blackjack and roulette – which are often given much lower percentages and at times, excluded from the bonus altogether. Do not be alarmed if you find some online pokies that have lower percentage game weightings too.
If you are unsure whether the game you are intending on playing has a worthwhile weighting for betting with your welcome bonus, check out the weightings that are listed in the terms and conditions. This way, you can ensure that you are always playing casino games that are eligible for your welcome bonus. You may risk losing your welcome bonus cash and the winnings if you play excluding games or don’t meet the necessary wagering requirements.
Restrictions on free spins
Online casino welcome bonuses that include free spins are almost always limited to specific games, and at the least are limited to certain pokies brands. The free spins welcome bonus is an online casinos greatest marketing tool for new pokies. As well as the limiting of games for free spins, these welcome bonuses also have limits set on how much can be withdrawn and how long the bonus can be used before timing out.
One bonus at a time
It is very rare for an Australian online casino to allow players to benefit from multiple bonuses at once. Online casinos will generally only allow players to activate and benefit from one welcome bonus, or one bonus altogether at one time. Activating multiple bonuses simultaneously may result in your initial bonus being surrendered, and in severe instances your player account can be terminated.
Most welcome bonuses are through bonus codes. These bonus codes are entered through the voucher or coupon section of the cart when making a deposit to your player account. Most bonus codes can also be claimed instantly for those that our provided it by the casino in an email – or through the customer support and affiliate sites. In this case, these bonus codes will be provided through a link which redirects a player to their account and automatically adds the bonus to their wallet.
If you are trying to make a deposit into your player account and make a mistake of forgetting to add your bonus code – don’t stress. The Australian online casinos are supportive when it comes to players using the welcome bonus and other promotions. If you contact the player support by telephone, or if available, the online chat supports – this issue can easily be solved, and the bonus code can be manually entered to your deposit by the website support team.
Key tips to a welcome bonus
Unfortunately, there is no definitive strategy to finding the very best in Australian online casino welcome bonuses. However, there is a way that players can go about improving their casino gaming with a welcome bonus – this is by finding the best online casino welcome bonus for you. Every player is different, and each player has a different style of play, which means what works for one will almost never work for another. For this reason, we always suggest that players understand what types of welcome bonuses work well for them, and keep the following tips in mind when trying to decide which online casino welcome bonus to claim.
Payment method exclusions
Although many online casinos in Australia are very supportive by offering a variety of deposit methods, some online casinos choose to exclude deposits made via certain payment methods as ineligible for welcome bonuses. We have found that out of these casinos excluding deposits, they seem to mostly be linked to Neteller and Skrill payments. This means that any payments made by these excluded methods do not reward players with the bonus.
Take this information with a grain of salt as both Neteller and Skrill are reputable payment methods for depositing funds into the wallet of your online casino.
Does the bonus suit my play?
This is very important. That 100 free spins welcome bonus may look shiny on the outside but when you break it down, the value disappears quickly for some players. If you are a player who only plays the table games like blackjack and baccarat, then wasting your welcome bonus on a free spins offer would be useless, because those 100 free spins can only be used on the pokies.
When it comes to claiming your online casino welcome bonus, consider what it is that you enjoy playing and how the welcome bonus would improve or affect your gaming.
Bonuses may include many moving parts
There may be more than meets the eye when it comes to a casino welcome bonus. Many casinos are offering players multi-faceted welcome bonuses that not only provide players a bonus initially, but also reward players who continue to show loyalty or make their second or third deposits too. Make sure to check whether these long-winded bonuses are included in your welcome bonus, as the true value of the bonus may not be attainable without meeting the other aspects too.
Always read the terms and conditions
The terms and conditions will hold the answer to just about every question that you have about online casino welcome deposits. You will find every piece of information needed to help you decide about whether to claim your casino welcome bonus, and how to maximise your winning potential by sticking to the wagering requirements.
Bonuses are not mandatory
Players score big wins every day playing at online casinos without using welcome bonuses, or any bonuses for that matter. For the players that are new to the industry – do not feel pressured into claiming a welcome bonus, as there are no casinos that are able to force players to use bonuses, and you are still able to win just as much without using a bonus.
If you are not interested in claiming a bonus then just ignore it. There is no need to think that the bonus stays there until you claim it, because this is not always the case. Either opt out of the bonus or simply leave it be!