Coral Casino Review
Coral the bookmaker has been going for over 90 years and were first founded back in 1926. They may be more famous for their sportsbook but Coral actually run one of the largest and busiest online casinos in the world.
They have used their wealth of experience and enviable resources and created an all-encompassing betting site package with some immense casino games and features. It is a perfect all-rounder and has something to suit everybody.
The Coral casino mobile products are extremely powerful, and their VIP scheme offers some mouth-watering benefits that smaller casinos just can’t match. Not to mention the fact that they have a major high street presence as well, which brings its own benefits.
- Brilliant all rounder – Especially good if your betting portfolio is diverse
- Excellent mobile offering – Their small screen products can do everything
- Downloadable and instant play casino – Multiple software with numerous games
Software and Games
Since there are so many different gaming sections on the Coral site that it can be difficult to decipher where exactly you need to go to find what you are looking for.
The main casino is easier to fathom since it contains only Playtech titles. There are only 90 games in total, though, with two thirds of them being slots and the rest made up of a quality selection of 30 blackjack, roulette, and poker variations. You can expect a lot of branded content in here, Playtech does this sort of thing very well, especially when it comes to jackpots of which there are 25.
In terms of the other areas of the site, you can count on a further 400 games at least, although there could well be more, it’s difficult to tell which games are duplicated in the different sections – it really is a lucky dip. These are a mixture of table games, lots more slots, and even some exclusives from Corals in-house developer CR Games. These titles will not be available anywhere else.
That makes 500+ games in total which is a good manageable number for players to chew through, and they come from a strong list of developers too. These include but are not limited to; NetEnt, Playtech, Cryptologic, IGT, Amaya Online, Blueprint, Merkur, and Electracade.
The live casino at Coral boasts around 85 different tables and it’s all about blackjack, roulette, and baccarat with 20+ tables of each. There are a handful of spin and win and poker games, but that’s it. There are some Coral exclusive tables too if this is something that appeals to you.
The good news is that table limits span the full range from a few pounds up to 20k per hand, so there should be something to suit everybody’s needs here.
It’s a Playtech powered casino but it’s a little different to how you might find it elsewhere. The live casino page on the Coral site itself serves as the lobby, so rather than the usual display that allows you to browse the lobby as you play you will have to keep closing a game to then reload another. This was a bad move in my view, as it’s slower and feels less integrated and immersive.
Still, in terms of what is on offer you couldn’t ask for much more unless you are a poker player, but then Coral have a dedicated poker product for you guys.
Promotions and Loyalty
Regular offers for existing customers are one thing you will never be short of at Coral Casino. Coral usually update their casino promos on a weekly basis which gives you lots of variety. The other thing you can be sure of is a good value deal.
There are the typical promotions such as betting X amount on a specific slot or game and get X amount free. Weekly prize draws are also available for top games including blackjack, roulette, and general slots, while the live casino has a particularly strong suit of regular offers available.
They are also experimenting with daily jackpots and jackpots that are guaranteed to pay out before they hit a certain amount to encourage play.
Coral Comp Points
Coral has one of the clearest loyalty schemes on the market with their comp points system.
Quite simply, you are rewarded with comp points every time you play at the casino. The number of points you get will depend on what you are playing, but the information updates in real time so you can keep track of where you are at easily.
You don’t need to do anything to set it up, points are awarded automatically once you have registered and begin playing, and if you enter the VIP tiers comp points will start to become worth more to you.
Once you hit a certain number of comp points they can be redeemed for cash which will go straight back into your account for you to do with what you wish. It’s not earth shattering but it’s a nice way to be rewarded for your loyalty.
Coral Priority VIP Scheme
The VIP scheme had a bit of an overhaul recently, and now the terms are laid out clear as day.
It’s a tiered VIP system with four levels. The last level is by invite only and the details of this are not made available, but the monthly deposit minimums and points level required for entry to the other levels is open for all to see. If you feel you have been overlooked for the top tier you can get in touch with the team and they will consider your case.
It’s not going to be for everyone as the minimums are not exactly chump change, but if you do find yourself qualifying you can be up for some cracking rewards and benefits which, depending on your VIP tier, could potentially include:
- Enhanced comp point redemption
- Exclusive tier dependent promotions
- Hospitality invitations and prize draws
- Personal account management
- Enhanced prices
- Faster withdrawals
- Tailored priority programme
- Bespoke event invitations
Interface and Features
Coral have so many different areas that host games on their site that it is difficult to keep up. Aside from their main Playtech powered casino they also run a live casino, gaming, and slots section from the main menu bar. Once you have selected one of these even more options await, and they are all very similar.
What they have done well here is given the whole site a through-line, so each individual section retains the look and feel of the last which helps with navigation and usability no end. However, the player has virtually no chance of knowing which game is going to be in which section so it’s a case of hit and hope a lot of the time.
This has the bizarre effect of making browsing simpler since there are fewer games to scroll through in each section, but I’m not sure this was intentional. It’s a bit of a mish-mash, to be honest, and the logic behind it is difficult to see.
There is a handy search bar so you can hunt down a slot that you know you like, and players can also add games to their favourites which allows you to create your own bespoke panel displaying only the games you want to see.
The interface is fairly quick to load initially but after that, it is very speedy. By not displaying too many games in the various sections the site can really power through. The same goes for game loading times; going from one game to another is a pretty fluid experience – so long as you know where your next game is hiding.
Character and Design
Like many of the bigger casinos, Coral have chosen to stay away from gimmicks or 3D characters to represent the brand.
Instead, a plain blue background with areas of white provides a sterile environment to house the game tiles. Unimaginative perhaps, but many players like the games themselves to deliver the experience rather than the website, and this approach is also sensible when your site is so large. Extra visuals could just add confusion.
There are a few unnecessary menu bars and game sorting options that clutter the place up a little without adding many benefits, these could do with being pared back, and the site is constantly showing you what else you could be playing which can be a bit distracting.
The games do take centre stage but they are given less room to show off than elsewhere.
It’s not always apparent which parts of the site relate to each other, for example, the sub-categories can be way off to the side and are mixed with quick links to sports betting features, but it doesn’t take long to figure out.
It just feels odd in places and lacks that instinctive feeling other sites have achieved.
Coral have one main app that covers the entire online casino, games, bingo and sports, as well as a separate app for live casino and a new one called Vegas – which is nowhere to be seen on the desktop site. However, you can still play live casino from within the main app and access Vegas from the mobile site.
Integrated apps have a tendency to be overcrowded which makes them slower and harder to navigate as a result. This is not the case with Coral, the app is correctly partitioned so that you can focus on the games you want to play but still move between sections freely. The menu button plays a big part in this, it’s brilliant, you can move backward and forwards through selections before committing to them and it also contains a search bar. It’s super smooth too.
Pretty much every slot, game, and jackpot is still available through the mobile app and in many ways it is a massively preferable experience on mobile. The slider menu lets you navigate between sections (new games, vegas, slots, etc) and is much more effective than the desktop site, and the mobile products as a whole will quickly become second nature after a few goes. You can also handle all of your banking and account management to the point where you never need visit the desktop site again if you prefer not to.
All offers are available on mobile with a few mobile specific deals that again make the mobile feature more of a draw. The lack of flashing promos and adverts means you can find what you are looking for in no time, going from opening the app to gameplay in less than 20 seconds. In general, performance is fast, but one or two functions felt drawn out, especially using the back button for some reason.
The app and mobile site are both very intelligent too, with certain features (the bottom menu bar) knowing when they might be needed and when to get out of the way. It’s a very responsive product and it works with the player rather than only working for itself.
Banking and Payment Methods
You can deposit and withdraw using all major methods including debit cards, eWallets, pre-paid cards, and bank transfer etc. The Coral minimum deposit is just £5 for most methods with no set maximum deposit limit.
Maximum withdrawals have no inbuilt limit although if you are making a big withdrawal it's worth contacting Coral and your payment provider in advance to give them the heads up so they don't block it. Minimum withdrawal is as low as it can get at only £0.01 and there are no fees. If you abuse this, however, Coral retain the right to charge you a fee for wasting their time.
The longest you should ever have to wait for money to hit your account is 2-5 days, but there are plenty of ways to speed this up. Read on.
Coral online casino has one huge advantage when it comes to banking with the ability to both deposit and withdraw in store. Playing with a casino that is land based as well means you don’t even need to register a bank car if you don’t want to.
Once you have signed up for a Coral Connect card, the money in your pocket and the money in your account are interchangeable, so you could deposit cash in store and use that money to bet on your phone, for example. Equally, if you win a few hundred pounds on a slot you can walk into your local Coral and withdraw that money in cash instantly.
Other benefits include exclusive in-store offers and rewards for being a Connect card holder, and it’s free to sign up too. It’s a bit of a no brainer really, especially if you bet on the sports as well.
About Coral Casino
The business was founded by Joe Coral in 1926, so it is steeped in history. Joe started his bookmaking career with a pitch at various greyhound and speedway tracks across the UK, but it was following the Betting and Gaming Act of 1960 allowing off-course betting that the Coral brand really took off.
Like many early days bookies, Joe was often on the wrong side of the law, and not just when it came to his business. An immigrant from Poland, Joe and his brother were fined £20 for failing to register as ‘aliens’ resident in the UK until 1924, 12 years after coming here. That was a lot of money in those days.
He also had run-ins with Darby Sabini (of Peaky Blinders and Brighton Rock fame) the gangland boss, over his involvement with London racecourses. Coral saw off this threat, which was relieved for good when Sabini moved his interests to Brighton. Coral was only a slight man, but he managed to defend himself and hold his own for a long time during a dangerous period.
He stayed active in the business for most of his life despite the company changing hands frequently, but he eventually developed dementia and finally passed away from lung cancer in 1996.
Coral Get Passed Around
Coral was one of the first operators to set up shop in Britain in 1961, quickly growing to tens and then hundreds of shops boasting nearly 700 licenced premises by the 1980s when the company was acquired by Bass, the brewing company.
Bass provided an injection of cash that allowed the business to grow to thousands of shops by the '90s. Coral were particularly famed in the early days, and still today, for their willingness to take large bets and high stakes wagers. By the late 1990s, Coral were fully established as one of Britain's biggest high street bookmakers, in the same league as William Hill and Ladbrokes, with over 1500 shops.
Following a failed buyout by Ladbrokes, Coral was sold to a private equity firm who merged the brand with an online gambling group to create Coral-Eurobet - one of the first online betting sites - all the way back in 1999. Coral were eventually merged with Gala in 2005 in a deal worth £2.18 billion pounds to create the Gala-Coral Group, who amongst their portfolio run over 30 land based casinos.
Coral were finally merged with Ladbrokes in 2015 although the brand will remain as separate entities for the foreseeable future. Despite moving the online brand to Gibraltar, the company still employs over 11,000 people in the UK across nearly 1800 shops. In 2018 GVC Holdings PLC (now Entain PLC) took the reigns of Ladbrokes Coral.
Coral Go Online
With Coral moving online so early in 1999 it gave them a real run on their competitors, to this day the likes of Ladbrokes have been trying to catch up - which may explain why they have bought Coral out. This means the online casino and sportsbook, which are run separately to the shops from the British dependency Gibraltar, has been honed into one of the most user-friendly sites in the market place.
The Coral casino has maintained a top 5 place in the biggest online casinos since their online casino product was launched in 2001. Coral boasts one of the biggest active customer bases in the world and this is a testament to the brand's ability to move with the times, provide what players want, and reward loyal customers.
Coral score well in this area but there is room for improvement. For example, the phone line is free to call but support is only available from 8 am to 11 pm, and for such a huge company this really should be a 24/7 service.
Live chat is another option and is accessible through the help centre. There is a green button at the bottom of each page there, but it is oddly easy to miss despite its size. It would be better placed near the top so it is immediately in view, but it’s such a minor detail and is quickly overcome. Emails promise to get a reply within 24 hours, although in reality it is usually quicker, and there is also a dedicated Twitter page or a Facebook messenger option. Coral clearly embrace the modern age, and they seem to push for customers to use these methods of contact where possible.
If you don’t embrace the modern age yourself you can always post them a letter, but taking this route will slow down solving your issue in a big way.
Despite the limited opening hours, Coral do offer a top-notch service, with agents who are refreshingly knowledgeable and come with a dollop of common sense plus one of the quickest live chat features I have used.
The FAQ and the help centre are one and the same thing, and the available pre-written answers are numerous and written in the plainest of terms so you should be able to solve most issues yourself really.
Contact and Licence Information
- UK Gambling Licence Number: 54743
- Name: Coral Casino
- Registered Name: Coral Interactive (Gibraltar) Ltd
- URL: https://gaming.coral.co.uk/casino
- Phone: 0800 44 00 11 (Freephone)
- Address: Suite 711, 1st Floor Europort (6-7) Europort Road, GIBRALTAR, GX11 1AA
- Twitter: @CoralHelp