Casino welcome bonuses are great but understanding how to use them can be tricky at times.
Gala Casino offers £40 and 50 free spins for new users who deposit and play £20.
Like many online casinos, the welcome bonus comes with many caveats but even at a worst case scenario the welcome bonus gives you a chance to play the games and see whether the casino is right for you.
We recently took advantage of the welcome offer and although it was a little confusing at times, we managed to claim our bonus and our 50 free spins.
In this article I will explain exactly how the Gala Casino bonus works, how to use it to your advantage, some caveats you need to be aware of and whether the Gala Casino bonus is right for you.
The Gala Casino bonus works by visiting the Promotions page and opting-in for the £40 welcome bonus after depositing and wagering £20 on the list of games shown. 50 Free Spins, worth £5 in total, requires a separate opt-in through the Promotions page. Winnings from free spins are withdrawable.
The initial £20 deposit must be staked and played first before the bonus can be claimed and must be used on games as shown on the Gala Casino website.
The games list can be a little difficult to find so here is a helpful link direct to the games list.
How to Activate the Welcome Bonus and 50 Free Spins
Once the initial £20 deposit has been played a notification should appear showing the bonus is available through the Promotions screen, as shown below:
You will need to click on the More Info button, and then activate the bonus. Once this is complete the £40 bonus will be added to the ‘Restricted’ amount in your account balance:
It is important to note, the £40 bonus – and any winnings playing the £40 bonus – will not immediately be withdrawable. Winnings will be added to the Restricted balance.
All online casinos operate this way, but in Gala Casino’s case a minimum stake of £1,600 must be made to withdraw the Restricted balance.
This does not necessarily mean £1,600 needs to be deposited, but continuous slot wins using the £40 bonus could see £1,600 staked just using the bonus alone.
If this happens the bonus, and any winnings from it, will be yours to withdraw.
This exercise will need to be repeated to activate and claim the 50 Free Spins in the same way.
Each free spin has a value of 10p, which gives the 50 Free Spins a total value of £5.
Only one game is currently allowed to be played using the 50 free spins, which is the slot Big Bass Bonanza. This slot can be played using the link from the same page the the free spins are activated from.
Fortunately, my 50 Free Spins won me £12.15 in total from the £5 played. Winnings from free spins can be cashed out immediately and so this amount was added to my Withdrawable balance.
I spent my original £20 deposit playing The Goonies Revenge slot, and with my stake of £20 I lost £12, leaving me £8 remaining.
Adding my free spins win to my remaining deposit total, it gave me a withdrawable amount of £20.75 from my original £20 deposit and stake.
Is the Gala Casino Bonus Worth It?
Unlike some online casinos, Gala Casino do not allow users to play roulette. The full £20 must be played on slots.
This is probably because roulette wheels offer a 48.6% chance of keeping the initial deposit of £20, if the player continuously stakes £1 a play twenty times on either red, black, odds or evens.
The choice must be the same across all twenty plays, but after twenty spins of the roulette wheel a player will on average end up with an account balance of £18.00.
By playing slots you do not have the odds advantage and are relying on the fortunes of the RTP value to be returned, or more.
This doesn’t necessarily make the casino bad, far from it. We just can’t leverage our odds in the way we would like.
Testing out the welcome bonus I deposited £20 and cashed out £20.75.
I could have continued playing with my initial £20 cash stake and gone and played Blackjack or Roulette and look for a big win, but the goal of the case study was to understand whether a return could be made using a deposit and the free bonus.
In my case, in this one scenario trial, it could.
My biggest win came from the 50 free spins on the Big Bass Bonanza slot. I wasn’t expecting much after playing the rather awesome The Goonies Revenge slot, that has some great features and amazing retro, and nostalgic, graphics and sounds.
The resulting £12.15 win, which went straight to my withdrawable fund, is the reason I ended up in overall profit trying out the Gala Casino bonus.
In fact, I withdrew £21.25 at the end of the free plays, as each day Gala Casino allow you a free spin of wheel with a chance to win a prize.
I won 50p.
The Gala Casino games are fun to play but not allowing the initial deposit to be used on roulette, which give better odds and a strategy advantage, the user relies on the randomness of the slots to win.
I think it would be challenging to stake the full £1,600 to gain access to withdraw the £40 bonus, and its winnings. A further deposit is almost certainly required, although a big slot win that exceeds this value means a cash deposit and play of this value unlocks the winnings.
The Gala Casino bonus is worth it to try out the casinos slots and games using the free play, but there are risks the £20 deposit is used in full on the slots before the bonus is paid.
Are Winnings from Bonus Plays Withdrawable?
Winnings from the £40 bonus at Gala Casino are not withdrawable unless the minimum stake value of £1,600 is played. Winnings are added to the Restricted amount in the My Account area until this stake has been met. Winnings from the 50 Free Spins are withdrawable as cash instantly.
It is better to win using the free spins than the £40 bonus.
I found it is best to play at the lowest value of 10p per spin, which gives you the maximum of 50 spins. The winnings would naturally be lower, but at £1 a play this gives only 5 chances of winning at a higher return than 50 at a lower return.
The majority of my £12.15 winnings in this Gala Casino bonus review were on the thirty eighth spin. I wouldn’t have made a return on just 5 spins.
Of course, though, things are different for every player!