Credit and Debit Cards
Regardless of what you are looking to pay for, credit and debit cards are a very convenient payment method. Thousands of people across the world use them, both online and offline, and they are gradually becoming the dominant payment method as society moves ever closer to becoming cashless.
Nearly all online casinos will allow you to make real money payments using major credit and debit cards such as Visa and MasterCard. In general, they are a very fast and easy way to deposit funds, and in nearly all cases, there will be no fees involved. Furthermore, they are a highly secure payment method with many additional layers of security, such as two-factor authentication, to ensure that your money is safe at all times.
However, while there are numerous advantages, for some players, credit and debit cards won’t be the ideal choice. To begin with, gambling using credit cards is banned in the UK and there are other countries that are considering following suit. This means that for some players, the use of credit cards is immediately ruled out.
Furthermore, despite the advances in security technology, some players will not feel comfortable using their card details online and will be keen to avoid doing so. In addition, the withdrawal times to credit and debit cards can be quite slow. As such, while there is no doubt that credit and debit cards are an excellent choice for many, others will be interested in exploring additional payment methods.
E-wallets have been a very popular way of making real money payments at online casinos for over two decades. In fact, some of the best-known e-wallets, such as Neteller, were created specifically for use at online casinos. They allow players to deposit funds very quickly and more importantly, they are one of the only payment methods that allow for instant withdrawals.
There are some advantages to using e-wallets that go beyond the obvious. For instance, a number of e-wallets, such as Skrill, run loyalty schemes, so players are rewarded for using them regularly, and these e-wallets can be used at a huge number of websites beyond online casinos. Furthermore, those who are worried about security will be pleased that there is no need to share any banking information with a casino when carrying out transactions using an e-wallet.
However, there are some clear disadvantages. Many e-wallets will charge transaction fees for depositing in the wallet, withdrawing from the wallet, and in some cases, making payments using the wallet. Furthermore, players will also have to put in the effort of setting up a wallet and funding it, which for many will seem like an unnecessary step.
There are a number of well known e-wallets. PayPal is the most famous of them, with over 200 million active accounts. Not all casinos are able to offer PayPal due to local laws, but this is changing and players in the UK and many other European countries will now find that PayPal is one of the payment options.
The most common e-wallets found at online casinos are Skrill and Neteller. These have always been popular with casino players and impressively, at its peak popularity, Neteller was used to process 80% of all online gambling transactions. Both of these e-wallets are available in many countries and the vast majority of online casinos support them. However, it is important to note that in some countries, recent regulations have banned their use at casinos, in particular Norway, and there is a chance that other countries will follow. Nonetheless, for the time being, e-wallets are likely to remain a highly popular real money payment method.
Pre-Paid Cards and Vouchers
More and more casino players are turning to pre-paid cards or vouchers for real money deposits. This is simply because they offer a far higher level of security and privacy than any other method. All players need to do is purchase the card in a shop and then enter the card details in the casino cashier to deposit the funds.
However, there are some downsides to this. First of all, it means players have to make an effort to go and buy the cards, which means visiting a shop. Secondly, it is usually not possible to withdraw to pre-paid cards, there are some exceptions to this, but it will nearly always mean sacrificing on privacy.
The two most famous pre-paid cards are ecoPayz and Paysafecard. Both can be purchased at a huge number of shops around the world, and once the card has been purchased, deposits take a matter of seconds. As long as players keep the PIN number that comes with the card safe, then there is no chance of their money being stolen or of their personal details being revealed. Furthermore, both of these services offer prepaid debit cards, and this means that they can be used for all forms of online payments.
Instant Bank Transfers
Instant Bank Transfers are growing in popularity for real money deposits. It essentially requires a player to use a third party service that acts as a link between their bank account and the casino account. This means that players do not have to provide the casino with banking information, which makes them popular with those worried about privacy. The main disadvantage is that very view of them can be used for withdrawals.
There are a number of popular Instant Bank Transfer providers, such as Trustly, POLi, and Giropay. Giropay was developed for the German market and in 2019, it was one of the leading payment processors for casino payments. It does charge players some fees, but they are not large. POLi is steadily growing in popularity as it has been designed with mobile players in mind, it is free to use, and it does not require players to provide credit card information. Trustly is probably the most popular service at present, thanks to its ease of use and speed.
There are many other services, such as iDEAL, which is particularly popular in the Netherlands, and players who want to make fast and secure deposits should certainly make the effort to see which are available in their country.
More and more online casinos are accepting real money deposits in cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash, and it is also possible to withdraw using them. There are many advantages to using cryptocurrencies, they are fast, extremely secure, and provide a high level of anonymity.
However, there are some disadvantages. To begin with, at present it is mainly the smaller online casinos that accept cryptocurrency, so players may not find a relevant casino that appeals. Secondly, cryptocurrency is still largely in its infancy, which means that it can be difficult to purchase and requires a fair amount of technical knowhow. Finally, there are some fees involved, and often players will have to pay more for fast transactions, which could well put them off.
A bank wire is one of the oldest ways of moving money around, and it certainly has its advantages. Mainly, it is one of the securest ways of sending money. However, with so many other secure payment methods available, the disadvantages often outweigh this.
For starters, bank wires are very slow. Before the money is sent, an identity check is carried out, meaning that money can take up to seven days to arrive, which is hardly ideal for those who want to start playing straightway. Secondly, often there are large fees involved, so players will have to deposit or withdraw more to make it worthwhile.
However, bank wires remain popular in countries where the other payment methods discussed above are not available and as such, they are sure to remain an option for real money deposits for the foreseeable future.