The Fine Print Behind Online Gambling Bonus Offers
With the online gambling sector set to triple to an astounding USD25 billion by 2010, one cannot help but question the masked identity of the consumers who game online, and just how is it that these people are keeping the market alive with possibility.
According to recent media reports the world online is vastly becoming a women’s playground with at least two thirds of the majority of gamblers and poker players being of the female sex. The biggest gambling event in history, The International Casino Games, boasts at least 56 of their 100 esteemed players who are to take part in the prestigious finale tournament aboard a Caribbean cruise, are female.
So just what is it that drives the ‘fairer sex’, as they are commonly known because of the patriarchal view that women are no more than objects of beauty that to be ‘seen and not heard’, to go online and game away?
Head of Poker Girl, a website catering for the gambling needs of British women, Julian Morel says, “the majority of our [female] clients are in property, fashion and public relations (PR), and the prizes like manicures and facials are not the reason why they game online.”
Morel attributes the spike in female players on the Internet to the social aspect of gaming online. The interaction could be seen as the equivalent to a ‘girls night out’ which is typically a night when girlfriends get together and let their hair down for some fun and a good chat.
The good ol’ ladies of Wisteria Lane in the award-winning soapie, Desparate Housewives, have also been contributing to the growing interest in poker, and it is a fact that well-known female celebrities like Nicky Hilton, Jennifer Tilly and Mimi Rogers, all hold regular poker tournaments so they can duke it out with other celebrity players for the title of “Star Poker Player”. Television shows like Las Vegas and sports shows such as ESPN Poker and The Small Town Poker Tour, all add to debunking the mystery that is gambling.
Celebrity endorsements enhance the popularity of many online endeavours as can be seen with the new Palms Home Poker Host, a poker software initiative, taken on by Jamie Spears, father and mentor of the illustrious pop star Britney Spears. This only adds to the attractiveness accrued to gambling online and for many women who look to the stars as their role models, seeing a Britney or Ben Affleck playing poker would give them the incentive to try it out too.
Usually this leads to regular sessions online and winnings that are quite appealing when it comes to beating the odds in games like Texas Hold’em, which is proving to be a women’s favourite when gaming on the Internet.
John Hughes, Marketing Director for 7Sultans Online Casino and Royal Vegas Online Poker says, “We are seeing an increasing number of female poker players. As women tend to be more disciplined and analytical than men, poker as a sport seems to offer both a social and competitive aspect, making it the perfect ladies’ game.”
So there it is in black and white, women like the freedom that Internet gambling affords them and winning online gives them the added bonus of being independent, and being able to afford the finer things in life is just one of the incentives that any woman needs to get gaming.
Gambling became popular in China in the last phase of the imperial dynasty i.e. from 1644 to 1912. Canton, Macao, Shanghai and Hong Kong became the famous for their liquor and gambling. These areas inhabited foreigners, usually Americans, who were known to be rough. Moreover, majority of these inhabitants were males. Chinese natives indulged in gambling along with the foreigners.
Famous gambling games in China include Mah Jongg and Pai Gow.
Pia Gow consists of a bank having one woodpile. The banking duties are entrusted to one of the players. Other players are given four tiles of the woodpile, which they have to group in pairs of two such that the player’s pair should have a greater value than the bank. If the player succeeds then he wins the bet. A lot of money can exchange hands over this game.
Mah Jongg, meaning ‘sparrow’ is an ancient game which was developed primarily for the rich class of China. The game is said to have been invented by a fisherman to prevent sea sickness. It is said that the fisherman invented this game to distract the other fishermen from the surroundings, so that they do not feel sea sick in the middle of the sea. Later, a Chinese general heard of the game and engaged his soldiers in it at night to prevent them from falling asleep. The game underwent a lot of variations and every region called it with a different name. Finally, the game was standardized in early 1990s. the game consists of 136 to 144 tiles depending on the whether the players choose to play with flowers or seasons. The play resembles rummy except for the fact that the game is played with tiles. The game also uses a pair of dice and chips to keep the score. It requires four players, the aim of each being to obtain a set of tiles. The set types that are permitted are “kong”, “pung” and “chow”. A complete hand contains four sets and a pair of similar tiles. The fist one to have this combination of fourteen tiles wins.
Another game is Sci Bo, meaning ‘two dice’. This game is a betting game with players betting on the total of their dice. It is played with three dice. The bets include small bets that is the total may fall; between the range of four to ten, or big bets i.e. the total may fall between eleven to seventeen. The players shake the dice in a cup and keep the cup upside down with the dice hidden in the cup. Wagers are then made on the outcome. The player guessing the total can earn hugs sums. It is rumored that skilful players can predict the total by hearing the clanking of dice in the cup. In casinos the entire game is mechanized. Bets are placed on the number marked on the table. The dice are then shaken using a vibrating platform. The results are displayed on a screen. Other famous gambling games include Keno and Pachinko.
If you have never opened an account with an online casino, poker room, or sports book you may be wondering if the bonus offers are legitimate. We are all aware of the wisdom in the sayings, “If an offer sounds too good to be true, it probably is” or “There is no such thing as a free lunch”. บาคาร่า So what’s the catch? When a casino offers you $100-$1000 in free money should you dismiss it, assuming that there are all sorts of strict requirements, making it too difficult to achieve the pay-out? The quick answer is no. These offers are for real and in most cases the required terms and conditions to receive the pay-out are typically quite easy to achieve. Some are as simple as making small minimum deposit of $50 to $100. Some require, in addition to minimum deposit, a minimum, but achievable, level of play.
How are the online gambling sites able to give away free money and remain in business? The answer is simple. In most cases they get the entire bonus back and more. Casinos live by the odds that all casino games are in their favor and that eventually you’ll lose your original deposit and the bonus. Online poker rooms, on the other hand, get the bonus back by taking a rake (usually 5%) of every pot.
Let’s take a look at the various “free money” offers and the requirements for full cash-out access to the money. The requirements (the catch) are found in the terms and conditions of the bonus offer on the site.
No Deposit Required! Some casinos and poker rooms offer free money without any initial deposit requirements. These offers legitimate and you will be able to play at all the real money tables and slots. The typical catch is that you will need to make at least one deposit before the bonus plus any winnings are released. For example, if you receive a $10 bonus and have $50 in winnings from that bonus, you will have to make a small deposit to your account before the $60 is released for withdrawal.
First Deposit Bonus. To entice you to deposit real money into an online gambling site, a first deposit bonus is almost always offered. The interesting thing is not that they all do it, but the very wide range of bonuses offered. You’ll find one online site offering a 10% bonus while one of its competitors offers 200%. All online gambling sites have a maximum bonus limit. So a site that offers a measly 20% bonus could have their maximum bonus set to $200 (deposit $1000) while the site that offers the whopping 200% bonus could have a maximum bonus set to $100 (deposit $50).
Poker Room First Deposit Bonus. The catch for a poker room is that you will have to play a minimum number of raked hands and there may be a time limit. For example, to receive a $50 bonus you may have to play 100 raked hands in 60 days. The raked hand requirement is typically easy to achieve; however some of the very large bonus offers are more difficult. Sometimes these large bonuses are paid in installments. For example, to receive a full $200 bonus the poker room might require 500 raked hands with $20 released every 50 raked hands. If you’re new to online poker, don’t be discouraged by the number of raked hands required; a typical online table will play 50 to 100 games per hour.
Casino First Deposit Bonus. The catch for an online casino is that you will have to wager a required amount before the bonus is released for cash-out. The typical online casino will deposit the bonus into your account soon after you make your initial deposit. Some deposit bonuses are instantly deposited at the same time as your deposit. Some casinos require that you claim your deposit bonus by filling in a simple form. In this case the bonus may not get credited to your account for 1 to 3 days. Even though the deposit bonus has been credited to your account and you can use it to wager, you will not be able to withdraw the bonus portion until you meet the wagering requirements. The wagering requirements typically state that you must wager 10 to 20 times your deposit plus bonus to release the bonus for cash-out. For example, you deposit $50 and receive a $10 bonus. The casino has a wagering requirement of 10 times your deposit plus bonus, which means that you will have to wager $600 (10 x $60) for the $10 bonus to be released for cash-out.
Sports Book First Deposit Bonus. The catch for an online sports book is that you will have to wager a required amount before the bonus is released for cash-out. The typical online book will deposit the bonus into your account soon after you make your initial deposit. Some deposit bonuses are instantly deposited at the same time as your deposit. Some books require that you claim your deposit bonus by filling in a simple form or sending an email. Even though the deposit bonus has been credited to your account and you can use it to wager, you will not be able to withdraw the bonus portion until you meet the wagering requirements. The wagering requirements typically state that you must wager 3 times your deposit plus bonus to release the bonus for cash-out. For example, you deposit $100 and receive a $20 bonus. The online sports book has a wagering requirement of 3 times your deposit plus bonus, which means that you will have to wager $360 (3 x $120) for the $20 bonus to be released for cash-out.
Reload Bonuses. Reload bonuses are very typical for online sports books, but occasionally you will see them offered in online casinos and poker rooms. The reload bonus simply offers a bonus on deposits made after your initial deposit. The requirements are generally the same as the first deposit bonus requirements.