by Marcus Lawrence on 09.11.2022

Gambling Site Bonuses

One of the best things about betting sites is the range of bonuses available to new and existing customers. Whether you’re a keen sports bettor or you can’t get enough of the slot reels, there are bonuses to suit all tastes and playing styles.

On this page, we’ll take a deep dive into everything you need to know about sportsbook and casino bonuses. We’ll cover the types of offers that are up for grabs, as well as the most common terms and conditions you’re likely to come across.

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Once you’ve got a feel for what’s on offer, use our comparison list to browse different betting sites and bonuses and find one that’s right for you. When you’re ready, click through to sign up, claim your welcome bonus, and get started at your new betting site.

Sportsbook Bonuses

Betting site bonuses come in all shapes and sizes. They’re well worth your time, as they can give you the chance to win money without risking any of your own cash, or they can enhance one of your own real money bets.

The first time you’ll be offered a bonus is when you first sign up with a site — this is known as the welcome offer, and can include a range of potential rewards. Naturally, a welcome offer is designed to encourage new punters to sign up by offering them an enticing deal.

There are also lots of bonuses available for customers who have been betting with a site for a while. Sportsbooks may offer existing customers bonuses to encourage them to place a bet on a particular market, or to bring them back to the site if they haven’t visited in a while.

Sportsbook Bonus Types

Let’s take a look at some of the best betting site bonuses available to UK customers.

  • Free Bets 

Free bets may be dished out as part of a welcome offer or as one-off deals for seasoned punters. Essentially, you’ll be given a free bet token of a particular value to place on an eligible market. The free stake won’t be withdrawable, but any winnings you pick up will be yours to keep. Some free bets are aimed at specific big games, like the Champions League final, while others can be used on a variety of markets.

  • Bet Refunds

Bet refunds work in a few different ways, but essentially it’s where you receive your stake back. As part of a welcome offer, you could have your bet refunded if your first bet on the site loses. An example for existing punters, meanwhile, is Bet365’s Bore Draw offer, where bettors get their stake back if they bet on a football match that finishes 0–0.

  • Matched Deposits

Matched deposits are one of the most common types of welcome offers. When you make your first deposit at a betting site, the operator will match your deposit to a particular percentage — for example, a 100% match on a £20 deposit would give you an extra £20 to play with for £40 in total. Larger offers in the region of 200% do exist but are rarer, while many operators offer 50% matches and lower for a customer’s second and third deposits on the site.

  • Acca Insurance

Accumulators are one of the most popular betting types available to punters. They involve putting multiple selections together to create a larger potential payout. For the bet to be successful, all of the selections have to come up trumps, so it’s easy for just one leg to let the bet down. With acca insurance, however, if just one leg of your acca loses and the rest are successful, you’ll get your stake back as cash or a free bet.

Sportsbook Bonus Terms and Conditions

Every sportsbook bonus will come with terms and conditions attached. It’s helpful to familiarise yourself with them before getting started, so you can spend less time poring over the fine print and more time enjoying your bonus.

  • Minimum Deposit

For bonuses that are unlocked by making a qualifying deposit, there’ll be a minimum amount that you’re required to add to your account. This is usually in the region of £10 or £20, but varies between different offers.

  • Wagering Requirements

In order to convert your bonus winnings into withdrawable cash, you’ll often need to wager the bonus a certain number of times. A 20x requirement on a £20 bonus will require you to wager an additional £400 (20 x £20) of your own cash before you can withdraw.

  • Minimum Odds 

To qualify for a free bet, you’ll often need to place one with your own cash first. There’ll usually be minimum odds applied to this qualifying bet to prevent bettors from placing bets with super short odds. Minimum odds vary, but are often set at evens, also known as 1/1 or 2.00.

  • Market Restrictions 

While some of the best betting site bonuses allow you to place a free bet on any sporting event you like, many of them are only eligible for specific markets. The free bet could be for one particular match, or for any game in the upcoming round of Premier League fixtures.

  • Time Limits 

There’ll generally be a limited amount of time available for you to claim your sportsbook bonus, to use it, and then to satisfy any outstanding wagering requirements.

Casino Bonuses

Like sportsbook bonuses, casino offers come in many different forms and are available to both new and existing customers. Generally speaking, they’ll give you the chance to play casino games for free and still be in with a shout of winning real money.

If you’re a new player at a casino site, making the most of the welcome offer is generally a wise move. Even if you don’t end up with any returns, you’ll be able to try out the site and some new games without risking your own cash.

Bonuses for existing customers keep them coming back and provide some extra excitement when exploring the games library. Like the welcome offers, they’re completely optional, so don’t feel like you have to use them — however, they’re often great value and well worth checking out.

Casino Bonus Types

Check out some of the main types of casino bonuses below.

  • Matched Deposits 

Matched deposits for casino bonuses work in the same way they do for sports bonuses, but you’ll use the bonus credit to play casino games instead. A 100% deposit match up to £200 would allow you to claim a maximum bonus of £200 if you deposited the full amount — leaving you with £400 to play with on eligible slots and table games.

  • Free Spins 

Free spins for slot games pop up just about everywhere, whether it’s a welcome bonus, a daily promotion for current players, or as special rewards for the most loyal players. Free spins will be set to a particular value — usually the minimum bet on a particular slot game, which is around £0.10 — and you can use them at no cost to yourself. You’ll have the chance to win payouts on the slot machines in the same way you would with a regular spin.

  • No Deposit Bonus 

Most betting site bonuses are dished out in exchange for players loading their account with funds, but with a no deposit bonus you can jump into the action with some free spins or bonus credit as soon as you sign up.

  • No Wagering Bonus 

No wagering bonuses remove the pesky stipulation of wagering requirements. This means that if you win anything from a betting site bonus, you can withdraw it straight away without any fuss.

  • Cashback and Loyalty Schemes 

Cashback deals often work on a daily or weekly basis and allow players to claim a percentage of their net losses back as withdrawable cash. The percentage of cashback you get may also increase as you advance up a casino’s VIP tiers. Other loyalty scheme rewards include personal account managers, exclusive trips, and free spins for slot games.

Casino Bonus Terms and Conditions

Next, we’ll go through some of the most pertinent terms and conditions that apply to online casino bonuses, so you’ll have a better idea of what to expect when you claim your first offer.

  • Wagering Requirements 

These apply to most bonuses, and require players to wager a certain amount before any winnings they’ve gained from a bonus can be converted into withdrawable cash. They’re often higher for casino bonuses than sports offers, and come with the added issue of game weightings. When you’re placing real cash wagers to fulfil the requirements, bets placed on slot games will usually count in full. However, be wary that table games like roulette and blackjack will often only contribute around 10% towards the requirements.

  • Payment Exclusions 

When placing a qualifying deposit to unlock some free spins or a matched deposit offer, there may be some payment methods that are excluded. Often, e-wallets like PayPal and Skrill aren’t eligible for bonuses due to vendor fees and reduced Know Your Customer (KYC) capabilities. 

  • Eligible Games 

Many casino bonuses are aimed at just one or two selected games. Slots are the most commonly featured games, particularly popular titles like NetEnt’s Starburst. 

  • Time Limits 

How long you have to use your bonus will depend on the offer in question. For free spins, you may only have around seven days to claim and use them once you’ve signed up with a new casino. For match bonuses, you’ll often have nearer 30 days to use your bonus and satisfy any wagering requirements — if you run out of time, you’ll lose any winnings from the bonus.

  • Winnings Caps 

There’ll generally be a maximum amount you can win from a set of free spins or a helping of bonus credit. This could be tens or hundreds of pounds, depending on the value of the bonus and how steep the wagering requirements are.

Combined Sportsbook and Casino Betting Site Bonuses

If you’re someone with an eclectic taste that likes the idea of a comprehensive sportsbook and casino experience, there are plenty of sites that fit the bill. Many of the best betting sites separate their homepage into a sports betting section and a casino games section. This allows you to stick to one betting site that you enjoy using, rather than having to create separate accounts for these different interests.

If you’re a mobile user, you’ll find that many combined sportsbook and casino betting sites offer separate apps — one for sports betting and one for casino games. Paddy Power and Bet365 are two of the most prominent companies to do this. While it may seem unnecessary at first, it allows each app to be more streamlined, and gives players the choice of whether to download both the apps or just one.

At many of these combined sites, the welcome offers available to new customers will reflect their comprehensive nature. For example, STS Bet gives players the choice of a 50 free spins casino welcome offer, and a £10 free bet sports welcome bonus. Paddy Power, meanwhile, has a 50 free spins welcome bonus up for grabs for slots fans, in addition to a £10 risk-free first bet on any sportsbook market.

Finding a Player-Friendly Bonus

It’s important to note that bonuses, like gambling in general, shouldn’t be viewed as a way to make a profit. Instead, they offer an opportunity to have fun and get to grips with a new site, its games, and its markets.

However, some offers do have more favourable T&Cs than others, making a potential return more likely. Here at GamblingDeals, it’s our job to help you find player-friendly deals that give punters a fair opportunity to win some cash. Check out our list of top tips below on how to choose the right bonus and use it wisely.

  • Be aware of the wagering requirements – it’s important to always check the wagering requirements attached to an offer before you get started. They can vary considerably, and even the difference between a 20x and 30x requirement can make a huge difference to how much you’ll have to wager. On the higher end of the scale, requirements of around 50x make it virtually impossible to turn your bonus into withdrawable cash, so it’s best to treat these offers as a chance to try out some games for free and not worry about the returns.
  • Look out for no wagering and low wagering deals – to combat those pesky wagering requirements, many players purely stick to low or no wagering deals. Low wagering of around 5x on a £20 bonus would require you to bet £100 in order to withdraw, which is manageable for some players. Wagering requirements tend to be lower on sportsbook bonuses than online casinos, but some games sites like PlayOJO don’t have any wagering requirements at all, meaning anything you win is yours to keep.
  • Watch out for slots RTP and volatility – free spins bonuses tend to be limited to one or two selected games. When browsing different offers, it’s worth checking out these slots to see what the RTP (Return to Player) and volatility are. While the RTP is calculated over millions of theoretical spins and therefore unlikely to be noticeable during the use of a bonus, the volatility can have a significant impact. A high volatility game may pay out bigger returns but will often have long winless runs — therefore, a low volatility game that pays out more frequently could be more suitable when you only have 10 or so free spins to play with.


Now you’ve got a good understanding of what’s up for grabs when it comes to betting site bonuses, you’re ready to browse our list of the best sites and choose one that’s right for you. Once you’re set on a good choice, click through to sign up and claim your very own welcome offer.

The people behind this page

Online gambling content experts helped write, edit and check this page:

Marcus is Head of Content at Gambling Deals, overseeing the site's overall content development, planning, and application. Along with working to improve the site's overall quality and thereby increase its usefulness to our users, he is always looking for ways to uncover new elements of the online gambling landscape and highlight how they may benefit players. Outside work Marcus splits his time between playing basketball and chess, listening to as much music as he can, and forcing himself into the gym.
Eddie is a contributor at Gambling Deals with a wealth of gambling industry knowledge and experience. Along with producing top quality guides to all things online casino and betting, Eddie drills down into the brands we promote with in-depth reviews and recommendations.

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