For many people who want to get into the world of online casinos, one of the more daunting prospects is depositing money into their Internet casino accounts. New players often wonder what options are available to them, whether it is safe to share their financial information, or if there are any common issues with gambling deposits that they need to watch out for.
The good news is that depositing money at an online casino isn’t much different than buying something from a website or any other online transaction you might be familiar with. While your options will vary depending on what is available to you and where you live, there are always ways for most people to get money into their casino accounts safely and securely without too much hassle.
When making purchases online, credit and debit cards are probably the most popular payment option in the world today. It’s only natural, then, that they are also widely used at online casino sites as a deposit method.
When it comes to brand names, both Visa and MasterCard are widely used throughout the online gambling industry as deposit options. You will also see some sites that accept deposits through American Express or other cards, though they are less common.
The main issue when depositing using a credit or debit card is whether the transaction will be accepted. Visa and MasterCard-branded cards are issued by thousands of banks worldwide, and those banks vary in their policies on how they handle gambling transactions. That means that one card may not be accepted at a certain website, but another one will, or the first card may be accepted at other casinos.
This is an issue throughout the world, but particularly in the United States, where acceptance rates can be quite low even at regulated sites in states like New Jersey, as banks (and the online gambling industry) have struggled to figure out an effective system for categorizing gambling transactions. That doesn’t mean you can’t use a credit or debit card, but it does mean that it sometimes takes a bit of experimentation before finding a card/site combination that works.
Another popular way to move money around the Internet is the use of e-wallet sites, places where you can store money in an account that can then be spent online or transferred to your bank account. These sites offer a convenient way to spend money on the Internet without constantly making withdrawals from your bank account, making them popular in e-commerce as well as in the online gambling industry.
Perhaps the best known e-wallet in the world is PayPal, which is used for payment processing by countless websites around the globe. You might be surprised to find that PayPal isn’t the leader when it comes to processing gambling deposits, however: PayPal will only allow its services to be used by licensed websites in jurisdictions where they are regulated, meaning that many sites cannot take advantage of their services.
However, there are other e-wallets out there that offer similar options for a much wider variety of gaming sites. Neteller and Skrill (formerly known as Moneybookers) are two of the most famous ones: Neteller was once basically the only name in gambling-related e-wallets, while Skrill has popularity both inside and outside the online casino world.
It is also possible to use your existing bank account to fund an online gambling account. A number of different ways exist to do this: in many cases you can initiate a wire transfer from your bank, or use an “e-check” to deposit funds in your casino account.
Another possibility is the use of an online banking system to make the deposit. These quick and convenient deposit methods use services designed to facilitate transfers directly from the website of an online casino or another merchant, pulling the funds directly from your authorized bank account. These services are often regional in scope: for instance, POLi Payments (also known as PoliPay) is one such online banking product used in Australia and New Zealand.
For those who wish to avoid sharing their financial information, exposing their credit cards online or involving their bank accounts in their casino play, prepaid cards and vouchers can be an intriguing alternative. These products allow you to purchase a card or voucher with a certain value from a local vendor, then use that stored value to make a deposit at an Internet casino. You can even make these purchases in cash, eliminating the need to even have a bank account or credit card.
Perhaps the best known example in this category is Ukash, a voucher system. Based in the UK, Ukash allows individuals to buy vouchers from ATMs, kiosks or local retailers that come with a 19-digit code. That code can then be used to make purchases online at stores, casinos, or other sites.
These and many more options are available at casino sites throughout the world, with the exact offerings varying between countries and sites. No matter what deposit option is best for you, there are bound to be a number of trustworthy online casinos available in your country that will allow you to make deposits using the method of your choice.