How Casino Deposit Bonuses Work - A Guide

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In the past few months, U.S state after state press forwards with bills and legislation to legalize sports-betting and online casinos in order to drive revenues to pandemic-stricken state coffers.

With new operators entering the markets in many states which have already regulated online gambling in U.S states, there’s plenty of what seem at first glance to be ‘lucrative offers’ from casino and sports-betting companies - vying to attract new customers.

The most popular form of casino promotion comes in the form of a casino deposit bonus.

Most online sportsbooks offer online casino games to their customers (as casino-games tend to generate vastly more profits for operators) - and lucrative sign-up bonuses (which sometimes include “free” casino cash, free plays or free spins) are the new norm.

How do casino deposit bonuses work?

A casino bonus (or ‘casino deposit bonus’ or ‘match bonus’) is where a casino gives a new depositing customer an additional “bonus balance” of cash or credits to play with in addition to their initial deposit amount.  

Deposit bonuses can be part of a welcome package and may also be offered to existing casino customers for retention purposes, as a reload bonus.

There are 2 key types of casino deposit bonuses -  sticky bonuses and non-sticky bonuses.

Examples - How Common Casino Deposit Bonuses Offers Work

Example Offer 1: Casino Match Bonus – 100% up to $100 with 30x wagering on both deposit & bonus.


  • Kim activates a 100% up to $100 deposit bonus by depositing $50 and receiving a $50 bonus.
  • In total Kim has a total of $100 to play with at the casino (his deposit balance of $50 &  his bonus balance of $50).
  • In order to complete the wagering requirement in order to withdraw funds, Kim needs to wager a total of $3000 [(50 + 50) * 30].
  • If Kim converts the bonus successfully (by completing the required wagering requirement attached to the promotion) -  the funds will be available for cash-out.
  • If not, the bonus can end in three ways:
  • Kim loses both his deposit and bonus balance - ending the bonus promotion
  • The bonus expires (as it wasn’t cleared in the allocated time-frame)
  • Kim decides to cancel before completing the wagering requirement in which case the bonus funds and any winnings will be forfeited.


Example offer 2: 100% up to $100 + 20 Free Spins. Min deposit $20 | 30x wagering for both deposit bonus & Free Spins Win


  • Refer to the match deposit bonus example above and add on 20 Free Spins to the offer.
  • Paul takes his 20 slots free spins and wins the grand sum of $3. The $3 is referred to as Paul’s free spin winnings. This $3 balance must be wagered 30x before it’s possible to withdraw the won funds - therefore Paul needs to wager an additional $90.
  • If Paul manages to convert the bonus successfully by completing the wagering requirement, the funds will become available for cashout or further play.
  • If not, the free spins win can end in three ways:
  • Paul loses free spins winnings
  • The bonus expires
  • Paul cancels before completing the wagering requirements for the bonus -  in which case the free spins win will be forfeited.


“Consumers joining casinos and sportsbooks should take the time to ensure they completely understand the terms and conditions attached to signup bonus offers & the mechanics which affect bonus releases and cashouts” -  


 - David Johnson - CEO at CasinoDepositBonus.com - “The Casino Bonus Experts”

How do Sticky and non sticky Deposit Bonuses Compare?

A Sticky Casino Bonus

  • Your restricted cash and bonus balance are mixed
  • The wagering can be applied to both deposit + bonus, or just the bonus.
  • The restricted cash + bonus funds = bonus balance.
  • The only way to withdraw your bonus balance is
  • to convert the bonus (by completing the associated wagering requirements)
  • by cancelling the bonus
  • Letting the bonus expire
  • If you cancel the bonus or the bonus expires, you lose the bonus funds + winnings, but any remaining cash becomes withdrawable.

A Non Sticky Bonus


  • Players being to play with their deposited cash balance first
  • The cash balance & winnings may be withdrawn (however in this case you will forfeit the bonus balance).
  • If you use the bonus balance, the wagering requirement applies (on the bonus balance only).


As you can see casino bonus terms and conditions vary widely, depending on the promotion, the geo-location of the customer, and applicable laws..

Gamblers are advised to always read the terms and conditions before signing up for any casino or sports-betting site.

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