When you start looking for an online casino to start playing at for real money, it can be a good idea to look for one that offers a low minimum deposit level. Of course low is a relative term. For some people a low deposit will be $100, while others are more interested in something closer to $25, or even less.
The lowest minimum deposit at most online casinos is either $25 or $20. They don’t generally make you deposit this much because they want to. They understand that if they can get you to make any size first deposit that you are infinitely more likely to make future deposits than the players who never get started. But they have fees associated with any deposit and in order to make it worth their time to cover these fees they need a minimum amount for a deposit.
Continue reading to find out some of the pros and cons of low minimum deposits as well as a few options you may not have thought of.
Low Deposit Pros
The largest advantage to starting your online casino playing adventure with a small deposit is that you can transition from a free money player to a real money player without risking too much money. You also can keep things fairly safe by only risking a small amount. If you are really concerned with your online safety, get a credit or debit card only for use at online casinos. Set it up with a limit that you are comfortable with. That way all of your deposits will be from only one place and you can track them all easily.
Low Deposit Cons
One of the biggest issues you will face if you make a deposit that is too small is that you won’t be able to play as many games as you might like. All online casino games have minimum wagers. For example, if you deposit $25 and want to play blackjack, if the lower end of the table limits is $5, you only have enough for a few hands if you hit a quick run of bad luck. If you are playing progressive slot machines, you often need to bet the maximum number of coins per spin to be eligible for the top prize. This can make the minimum amount per spin be $2.50 or $5 or more.
Of course there is nothing wrong with only having enough bankroll deposited to play a few hands or take a few spins, but it is something that many players don’t think about on their first deposit. And there are many online casinos that start some of their table games at lower bet limits, so you can look for these opportunities. If you are a video poker player there are many games where you can lower the amount per coin and still bet the maximum amount to be eligible for the top payout and only bet .25 per hand.
Another possible con is you will usually not receive as large of a sign up bonus as possible if you make a small deposit. For example, a common first time bonus is 100% up to a certain amount, usually at least $100. If you deposit $25 you will still get an extra $25 to play with, but if you deposit $100 you will get another $100 to play with. This is an extra $75 in free money to bet with just for making a larger deposit. Some casinos offer thousands of dollars in sign up bonuses, so making small initial deposits can really cut down on the size of your playing bankroll.
Other Low Risk Deposit Options
One other way to get your feet wet while playing for real money the first time at an online casino is to find one that offers you a small free amount to try their games. These are generally called no deposit bonuses and usually range from $5 to $25 or so. Only a few casinos offer them and you usually can’t cash out much even if you do hit a lucky streak, but it does change the feel of the games when you are actually wagering real money. Always read the terms and conditions of any bonus before claiming it so you understand how it works. For example, some casinos offering free chips won’t let you cash any winnings out until you make your first real deposit. Of course they plan on you playing until you give back any winnings you make.
Another possibility is if you have any friends who are already playing online. Many online casinos allow player to player transfers within the software, so you might be able to give your friend cash and they can transfer you the money. Each casino that offers this service has different minimum transfers, but they can be lower than their deposit limits.