Can You Really Win Free Money Gambling Online?

The Fine Print: How to win free cash at online casinos and poker rooms.

The Fine Print: How to Win Free Cash at Online Casinos and Poker RoomsFor nearly two decades, online gambling sites have been luring players with promotions that promise a chance to win money without investing a single dollar. Do these promotions actually exist? Can you really win free money gambling online? Yes and no…

It’s true that online casinos offer free credits to play with. It’s also true that free poker tournaments are available to non-depositing players. But there’s fine print involved in all of them, and if players aren’t familiar with the context of those terms, they could be disappointed, if not irate, before it comes time to collect on any winnings.

Can You Really Win Free Cash at Online Casinos?

The short answer is yes, and here’s why. If you take advantage of a no-deposit bonus – they are getting more and more rare these days, but they do still exist – you can use those free credits to play the games. So long as the terms of the bonus state it’s cashable, and you manage to complete the (some would say) exorbitant wagering requirements, any money left (up to a capped amount) is yours to keep!

That’s the good news…

The bad news is that you can’t just take the money and run. In order to withdraw the cash, you’ll now need to verify your identity. Part of that process includes making a deposit. Then you have to submit documents that connect your identity with that deposit method, proving you are who you say you are, and that you’re legally eligible to gamble in the first place.

It all sounds like a pain in the a$$, but this is actually a means of protection. It protects the operator from being shut down for facilitating illegal underage gambling, and protects players from identity fraud. So while it’s a good thing, it also gives online casinos the ability to demand you make a deposit before you claim any winnings.

Next up is a little matter of regulatory protocol known as an “anti-money laundering” (AML) policy. In order to ensure money is not being laundered through the website, all deposits must be played through at least one time before the money can be withdrawn. So, with ID verification and AML prevention combined, you can’t really win free money gambling online without a little risk from your own pocket book.

What About Online Poker Freerolls?

The same anti-fraud and AML rules apply at online poker rooms. However, it’s actually much easier to win free cash at online poker sites, assuming your a decent player. Most sites provide their non-depositing players with an assortment of freeroll tournaments they can participate in at no cost. The prizes are tiny, and aren’t even real cash, but they can be valuable nonetheless.

Let’s say place high enough in a freeroll to win 0.10 worth of tournament dollars (T$). That is not cash, and cannot be redeemed for cash. It is basically a $0.10 coupon for entering a real cash tournament. There aren’t many $0.10 tournaments on the menu, but T$ prizes add up. Win enough of them, and you could buy your way into real cash tournaments, with real cash prizes. Win those and you’re banking real money in your poker account.

Of course, you’ll have to go through the same process of depositing and verifying ID before you can make a withdraw. The difference is, you can keep playing free poker tournaments all you like until you (hopefully) win enough free money to make it worth a minimal monetary investment. Free casino bonuses don’t keep coming – they’re generally one-and-done.

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