In this article we are going to discuss the benefits and disadvantages of new online casinos, as well as provide some actionable steps you can take once you decide you need a decent new operator. Read on to learn more about the traditional metrics for trust and how they differ with new brands, or jump straight to our conclusion. The key takeaways will be:
- See if they have any independent certifications such as eCOGRA.
- Look at the gambling license the casino holds: Malta, Curacao, the UK, Alderney and Kahnawake are all good.
- Learn about the company that actually operates the casino.
It’s human nature to want to play with the newest names out there. However, when it comes to the nature of the online gambling industry, it’s not always clear if playing with a new online casino is a good idea or not. Logically, it would make sense to stick with sites that have been around long enough to prove themselves in terms of offering reliable cash outs and customer service, but there are exceptions.
Trust is the most important thing in online gambling of any form because you have to trust that the games are fair and that you’ll be paid out if you win before there’s any point in even playing in the first place. Over time, players in the industry have figured out a handful of particular metrics that we can use to identify sites that are trustworthy and those that are not. Unfortunately, some of these metrics can be misleading or completely absent when we’re dealing with casinos that haven’t been around for very long.
An online casino that has been around for a long time is typically one that can be trusted. If it wasn’t trustworthy, then it would have been blacklisted by so many web portals that they would have a hard time bringing in new players, and as a result, they would have to shut down. The industry can weed out the rogue sites over time in this way in a lot of cases, even though some of them may slip through the cracks.
For a new site, operating time isn’t a factor because they have none at all. If they haven’t been around for long enough to determine if they’ve been given a fair chance to fail, then that’s one factor that you don’t have at your disposal – or so it seems.
Instead of looking at the operating time of the site itself, look instead to that of the group that’s operating the casino. These groups typically operate a set of online casino sites, and they probably have a number of other properties that have been around for quite a while. Payments, customer service and even game selection will be the same between these sites in most cases, and you can decide if a new casino site is likely to be trustworthy based on the reputation of the company that runs it along these lines.
Another traditional metric for trust is the license(s) that the casino holds and where those licenses are granted from. Some jurisdictions like Costa Rica hand out online gambling licenses like they were candy on Halloween with no accountability whatsoever. Other jurisdictions like Malta, Curacao, Kahnawake, Alderney, Isle of Man and the United Kingdom have extremely strict guidelines with tight enforcement of those rules, so operators of online casinos have to follow good business practices from day one to keep their licenses.
If a new online casino has a license from one of these recommended locations, then that can be a good sign, but it’s not always the end of the story. There are cases, however few and far between, of sites that have these licenses eventually getting them pulled for not paying players or displaying other shady behavior. What’s more is that you need to make sure that the site is actually licensed by the jurisdiction they claim. Reputable Internet casinos will offer a link to the official online copy of their license for verification purposes.
While a license from a strong jurisdiction can be a huge indicator that a new site is okay to play with, it’s never a complete, 100 percent, locked-in guarantee. However, the same goes for established sites, so there’s not much difference there.
There are plenty of independent certifications that new online casino sites can have that will add to their level of trust. The Safe & Fair seal from eCOGRA is the most important one that a site can have at this point in the industry, and that means that the site in question is subject to regular audits and other check-ups to make sure they’re following an enhanced set of business practices that go above and beyond what most licensing jurisdictions require.
The reason the eCOGRA Safe & Fair seal is so important is that they’re very active about reporting on sites that lose their seal, so you can learn quickly and with a lot of detail what a new online casino is doing wrong if they have the seal and then lose it.
With that having been said, not having this type of independent certification isn’t necessarily a strike against an online casino, but there’s no denying that it helps to trust the site by quite a bit.
Promotions and Value
One of the interesting things about the process of starting a new online casino is that the operator knows they need to gain players quickly if they want to have any chance of staying afloat. Because of this simple fact of economics, they have an incentive to offer players bigger and better promotions than a lot of the competition so that the players have their own incentives to come and play. As a player yourself, you can take advantage of this dynamic by picking and choosing which of the promotions you accept from new online casinos. They will typically be much better than the industry average, so it’s obvious to see how this can work in your favor.
However, as is the case with every type of online casino bonus and promotion out there, it’s critical that you pay close attention to the wagering requirements and other terms and conditions of the bonuses and other deals you take advantage of. A failure to do so can create a situation where you’re worse off than if you hadn’t taken a bonus at all in many cases.
Putting It All Together
If you’re ready to put together a gameplan to decide if a new online casino is worth it, then here’s what we recommend. If you follow these steps, in order, then you’ll maximize your chances of figuring out if a new casino site is a good idea to play with:
- Find the name of the company that operates the casino, and find the other properties that they operate. You can also find information about the reputation of the company itself.
- Look at the background of each of those properties in terms of how reliable they are with cash outs and how good (or bad) their customer service is. Chances are that you will get the same result as what you find for these other sites.
- If that checks out, then look at the license they hold just to make sure it’s in a reputable jurisdiction. Malta, Curacao, the UK, Alderney, Isle of Man and Kahnawake are all good jurisdictions to be licensed in for these sites.
- Make sure that you actually verify that they have this license instead of just taking their word for it because there have been cases of online casinos outright lying about the licenses that they hold.
- From there, take a moment to see if they have any outside, independent certifications from eCOGRA or other groups.
Once you’ve been through this process, you’ll have a really good idea of whether or not a new casino can be trusted. You’ll also know about the quality of their customer service and support team as well as how reliable they are with cash outs. This is the information that you’re typically missing when dealing with a new online casino, and it’s the information you can best use to make a smart decision about where to play.