Why Are Some Payment Methods Like Skrill & Neteller Excluded from Casino Bonuses?

skrill netellerSome people are more cagey about their identity and bank account details being out there than others. The idea that they should trust some faceless company with their private information is problematic for them, which is fair enough, and so they find alternative ways of doing things.

In terms of online payments, this is where ewallets like Skrill and Neteller come in handy.

Acting as a middleman between the bank account and the company that ultimately receives the money, these services keep the individual’s bank details more secure, since only one company (the ewallet) has access to them.

Any company the individual wants to buy products or services from gets their money via the ewallet and not the customer’s bank account, so their bank details are much more contained.

However, when it comes to online casinos, while they will usually accept ewallets as a payment method, they often exclude anyone using these methods from deposit bonuses and the like.

It probably seems unfair, but there are some good reasons why this is the case.

UK Regulations, Source of Funds, and AML


To understand the casino’s view of different payment methods, you have to understand their obligations to the regulator in this country.

All online casinos must have their own internal processes for checking the identification of their customers, in order to prevent things like:

  • Underage Gambling
  • Fraud
  • Gambling Harm
  • Money Laundering

If you want to deposit with a debit card then this is all nice and easy for them because the banks have already gone through this process in order to open your account in the first place, whereas using certain ewallets makes the process more difficult, drawn out, and labour intensive.

Of course the casinos do still run their own checks, but it takes longer to do without linking to a bank account and could require human involvement, whereas verification via bank account can be automatic.

Services like Skrill and Neteller do run their own checks as well, but again, they take longer to verify.

There is no way around this for casinos; if they don’t want to lose their license they have to comply with the rules, so these checks are key.

Some online casinos have processes that mean this isn’t a huge problem, but for others it is more of a pain.

Whether or not a casino chooses to accept certain ewallets as payment methods where bonuses are concerned largely comes down to if they can be bothered with the extra administrative hassle.

Other Reasons Some Payment Methods Don’t Qualify for Casino Bonuses

When a casino offers a deposit bonus or a sign up bonus etc., they are effectively giving away free money for the customer to play with, and this is a risk for their business.

The customer could win more than they deposited, withdraw it all, and leave the casino in the red.

Since the casino are already running the promotion with risk attached (they also have to pay tax on bonuses), they aren’t willing to take extra risks on top, and certain ewallets do increase the risk for casinos.

Higher Fees

big fees small feesMost casinos absorb the cost of using third party payment providers like Skrill, Paypal, and Neteller.

If you deposit £20 using an ewallet you will have £20 to play with and if you withdraw £20 that whole amount should hit your account, but the ewallet has to make money from somewhere, and they are making it from the casino.

Debit cards charge fees to vendors too, but they are much smaller than those charged by ewallets, so from a purely financial point of view this is the ideal way for a casino to receive your money.

Since the casino is already taking a risk by running the promotion in the first place, they aren’t often willing to also take the extra hit on the fees charged by ewallets.

This probably wouldn’t be a big enough issue on its own, but combined with everything else we talk about in this article, it makes ewallets an unattractive option from the casino’s point of view, so while they will accept regular deposits using these methods they will often not qualify for bonuses.

That said, Paypal runs differently than Neteller or Skrill in terms of security, so fees are likely to be one of the main reasons Paypal might be excluded. Then again, it's rarer for Payapl to be excluded as well.

Bonus Abuse

bonus abuseThis is a big subject and the people involved can use quite sophisticated methods to rip the casinos off, so we won’t go into the nitty gritty details here, but will give an overall understanding.

Bonus abuse is where a player or a group of players create multiple accounts at the same casino, and claim potentially lucrative bonuses as many times as possible.

Often it will be groups of people with lots of resources doing this, so that they can take the maximum advantage from sign up offers that match deposits etc.

This is only really possible using ewallets as trying to create multiple accounts using debit cards would be picked up straight away unless some serious identity theft was going on. Ewallets come with more anonymity making them more difficult to run checks on so the simplest thing for the casino to do is to not allow ewallet deposits to qualify for the bonuses in the first place.

With regulations in the UK tightening it has become more difficult for people to open multiple ewallet accounts without being caught these days, but it isn’t impossible, and most serious bonus abusers intend to be in and out so fast that the casino doesn’t have time to catch them anyway. They don’t intend on coming back once they have siphoned their ill gotten games – not with the same account details anyway.

Even without creating fake accounts, a group of players could pool their money together to get the maximum bonuses possible, then transfer that money between ewallets and effectively use the same funds to claim several bonuses at the same site.

Despite bonus abuse being more difficult to get away with, many casinos will continue to exclude the likes of Skrill and Neteller in their bonus terms simply because they would rather you used a debit card. It’s a good way of pushing anyone who isn’t all that bothered in the direction they want.

Why Do Casinos Accept Alternative Payment Methods if They are so Problematic?

online payments

It’s a good question, but the answer is fairly obvious.

The casino still want your custom, even if it costs them a little bit more to get it. Therefore, they want to give players as many banking methods as possible so that they don’t lose them to a competitor.

They might not be happy about it, but they would rather get 80% of something than 100% of nothing, so they are willing to accept regular deposits from sources that are more costly to them than others.

However, when it comes to special offers where they are already potentially going to end up losing out, or where there are risks of bonus abuse, they are less willing to do so.

This is totally the casino’s decision though, and since they all have their own processes when it comes to their checks some casinos find ewallets easier to handle than others.

This means that not all casinos will exclude certain payment methods, so it is possible to find bonuses that you can use with the likes of Skrill and Neteller etc.