Best Online Casino Sites

Compare the best online casino sites in the UK, and the latest casino offers for 2024 below!

Written by Steven Hubbard
Verified by BettingLounge team
Last updated 24/01/2024

List of The UK's Best Online Casinos February 2024

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UK Online Casinos (February 2024)

Online casinos have never, ever been as popular in the UK as they are right now.

With land-based casinos across the country shut temporarily as a result of the global pandemic, anyone wanting to play gambling games has to go online.

This has led to a spike in activity at UK online casinos, which signed up large numbers of people to play games such as slots, blackjack, poker, roulette and even online bingo.

The boom time for new online casinos in the UK means there is a huge amount of competition within the industry and, for those who are new to playing online, it can all be a lot to take in at once.

To help out, here is our complete guide to online casinos in the UK, which will tell you everything that you need to know, so read on for all the details.

Introduction to UK Online Casinos

Online casinos are not exactly new to the UK, as they have been around for a significant amount of time.

Pretty much as soon as most homes in the country had an internet connection, companies were giving members of the public a chance to play real money casino games online.

Among the first UK online casinos to launch was 888Casino and this remains one of the top sites around to this day. Indeed, 888 shows how online casinos have changed over the years.

Previously just an online casino, 888 now offers a wide array of gambling games such as 888poker and bingo, while the company also operates a sportsbook (888Sport) in the UK as well.

Many of the best UK online casinos are similar, with a sportsbook and a casino site both able to be accessed with the same account.

This makes it easy for people to switch between having a bet on the day's big game in the Premier League and trying their luck at the virtual poker tables.

Most UK betting sites have scrambled to ensure that they offer as many different options as possible, with specialist sites that focus only on one particular type of gambling game now quite rare.

Some online casinos in the UK do focus on slots - which brings in by far the most cash for casino companies of all gambling games - but usually, they offer a strong array of options now.

Before getting into the meat of our complete guide to online casinos in the UK there is one important question that we need to answer fully: Are online casinos legal in the UK?

Are Online Casinos Legal in the UK?

The short answer is yes, it is fully legal to play at the best online casinos in the UK.

In fact, the UK's gambling laws are seen as being some of the loosest in the world, although the government has announced it is conducting a review to see if they need to be updated.

The Gambling Act 2005 was introduced in order to regulate online gambling, covering both sports betting and playing at online casinos in the UK.

Under the Act, operators of casinos sites in the UK have to be able to show that they can maintain a stable financial position, as well as being able to offer fair games to their users.

The Gambling Act also made it possible to advertise online casinos and other gambling sites on television. During most live sporting events, it is common to see these advertisements shown.

Various other changes were also introduced to the industry by the Act. Previously, players signing up to an online casino had to wait 24 hours before starting to play games, but this is no longer the case and they can now get up and running straight away.

Part of the Gambling Act 2005 was the foundation of the Gambling Commission - but what is it?

How Are the UK's Online Casinos Governed and Regulated?

The Gambling Commission is responsible for the governing and regulation of UK casino sites.

Operators must get a licence from the UK Gambling Commission if they wish to run an online casino in the UK.

The Gambling Commission also has regulatory powers that mean the organisation has the ability to take enforcement action against licensees if they are not meeting the guidelines.

Also in the body's remit is that it can take action, such as the imposing of fines, where its investigations find that operators and individuals are failing to follow rules and regulations.

In order to check rules are being followed, the UK's Gambling Commission carries out regular audits to check up on organisations that have been granted licences. The Gambling Commission is also responsible for introducing new rules around advertising in the sector.

However, the body does not handle consumer complaints about gambling operators such as those running UK online casinos, nor does the Gambling Commission give out legal advice to those companies within the online gambling industry.

How We Review Online Casinos

A wide array of factors are taken into account when we review online casinos in the UK.

Here are some of the main departments we are assessing when putting these reviews together:

  • Legal and licences
  • Safety
  • Range of online casino games
  • Mobile experience and apps
  • Payout percentages
  • Customer support
  • Different casino welcome bonuses
  • Deposit and withdrawal methods
  • Fast payouts

As discussed above, the UK Gambling Commission is responsible for regulating the industry. One of the first things we do when we review online casinos in the UK is to examine how they stand up in terms of legal and licences. Does the site itself hold a licence, or does it instead operate through a white label structure? What other licences does the online casino have?

Tied into legal and licences is safety and security, which is key for a lot of players in the UK. Online casinos need to make sure they protect the data of their customers through state-of-the-art encryption if we are to be able to fully recommend people sign up for accounts. Additionally, we check to make sure their games are checked for fairness by a testing agency such as eCOGRA - if they are not, this is a big red flag when it comes to safety and security.

Online casinos nowadays need a big range of online casino games to make sure they can compete with rival operators. Put simply, the more games in an online casino library, the better. It is not uncommon for online casinos to have hundreds of slots, but what is the variety like?

With many people now preferring to play games on devices like tablets and smartphones, the mobile experience and betting apps that an online casino has to offer is crucial. Games should be fully optimised for mobile and we test out the apps to make sure they work just as they should.

Casinos compete with each other in a lot of departments, but payout percentages are among the most important. Casinos with higher payout percentages are likely to be a lot more popular due to the increased value that they offer to their customers.

It is inevitable that players will occasionally have a problem or issue with their account. This is why top quality customer support is a must if an operator is to be considered one of the best online casinos in the UK. Ideally, customer support will be offered on a 24/7 basis, so help can be accessed at any time of the day or night. A variety of customer service options, like phone, email and live chat, also helps to cover all of the relevant bases in this key area.

One of the best ways UK online casino sites attract new users is through offers. So we analyse the various different online casino welcome bonuses that are up for grabs. Deposit match bonuses are among the most common of these promotions, but a lot of UK online casinos now give out free spins to tempt players into joining. No deposit bonuses are also on the rise, with this deal giving users the chance to try out a new site and games without risking real cash.

Next up are the deposit and withdrawal methods that are available to be used at a site. While credit cards can no longer be used to add funds to a casino account in the UK due to a recent change in regulations, it is still important that a good amount of choice is available. Various e-wallets should be able to be used and many people now want to be able to use a cryptocurrency such as Bitcoin when they make deposits and withdrawals from an account.

Last but not least, fast payouts are a must if a site is to rank among the very best online casinos in the UK. Players rightly demand being able to get their hands on their winnings rapidly and delays in this department can leave a bad taste in the mouth. We check to see if casino sites require verification documents to be provided before a withdrawal can be processed, as well as comparing UK online casinos to see how quickly withdrawals on their sites are paid out.

What Casino Games Are Available in the UK?

UK online casinos typically have a few types of games to play, such as the following:

  • Slots
  • Roulette
  • Poker
  • Video poker
  • Baccarat
  • Blackjack
  • Bingo
  • Live casino games

Slots are the most popular type of game to play at UK online casinos - and it is not close. Slots to suit all budgets are available, with players needing to keep two things in mind: RTP and variance. RTP - or the return to player - shows how good the value offered by a slot is, while variance demonstrates the frequency that the game pays out. All types of slots are available, from sports-themed games to those based on TV shows or movies from Hollywood. Progressive jackpots offer life-changing sums from a single spin of the reels, while many in the industry believe that virtual reality slots could be the future of online casinos in the UK. Some betting sites also offer slot games now in an attempt to keep up with the growing popularity of online slots and other casino games.

Classic casino games such as roulette remain very popular too. Roulette is great for newcomers as it is so easy to pick up, though it has a higher edge than a lot of the alternatives, which can make it hard to win a profit at the virtual roulette wheel. Various types of roulette games are able to be played these days, but they are all pretty much the same game.

Unlike a lot of casino games in the UK, poker involves a lot of skill, as well as luck. Many online casinos have a dedicated online poker room now, with both sit-and-go tables and tournaments available. It is often the case that players have the chance to win entry into real-life big-money tournaments as a result of playing poker at an online casino. Not being able to read the poker face of a fellow player at the table makes online poker a challenge that not everyone can master.

Video poker games could be a good alternative. A sub-section of slots, video poker games give players some control over the outcome as they can hold some of the cards that are shown. While some people feel video poker games are now a bit old-fashioned, they still have their fans.

Baccarat does not have a high public profile, but many people love to play it at online casinos in the UK. Baccarat seems complicated at first for newcomers but the game is deceptively simple, while the chance to bet on the dealer to win a hand offers something different from the norm. Baccarat has a very low house edge, which helps to explain the game's enduring popularity.

Another old-school casino classic is blackjack, which various types of blackjack game now offered by the best online casino sites in the UK. Players aim to get to 21 with the value of their cards, while a variety of basic blackjack strategies are available to help them to beat the dealer.

Some people might be surprised to see bingo included on the list of games that can be played on UK online casino sites. But bingo has a huge audience, which is why so many operators are now trying to secure themselves a piece of the pie. In fact, some brands are now offering no deposit bingo bonuses to attract new players. Online bingo rooms are known for their community too, which means they can be a fun place to hang out while playing games online.

Wrapping things up in the list of types of games is live casino games, which are arguably the hottest trend in the world of online casinos right now. Blackjack, roulette and baccarat are three of the most common live casino games that can be played in the UK. However, casino sites increasingly offer fun alternatives, like games based on Deal or No Deal and Monopoly. Live casino games provide a social aspect which means they are the closest alternative to a night out at a brick and mortar casino that can be found at an online casino site in the UK.

How to Play Casino Games for Free in the UK

Many of the best casinos now allow users to play casino games for free in the UK. The reason they do this is simple: they hope players will then end up spending their own cash on the site.

Demo mode is offered for a lot of online casino games, giving players the chance to test out slots without risking money, while casino free bet offers and bonuses can be used to play for free as well.

Free spins are up for grabs at many of the UK's best online casinos, while no deposit bonuses are becoming a lot more common too. With this promotion, players can sign up and start playing without making a deposit as they are given some bonus funds to play with.

However, it is vital to check the casino's terms and conditions. There is likely to be a wagering requirement in place for cash earned through no deposit bonuses and free spins promotions. But, we also offer a wide range of no wagering free spins bonuses for new UK players too.

Additionally, there may be a maximum win limit in order to protect the profits of the online casino.

How to Play Real Money Casino Games in the UK

While playing casino games for free is popular, most players will want to play for real money due to the added excitement this provides, as well as the chance to make a larger potential profit.

Most online casinos have a sign-up process that is quick and easy these days. After selecting which casino to join - checking out detailed reviews is a must first - players just need to fill in some details such as their name, email address and date of birth to get up and running.

Selecting a payment method and making a deposit into a new online casino account should take a matter of moments as these transactions typically go through instantaneously.

Users then just need to pick which online casino game they want to play - the top options are detailed above - and brush up on any online gambling strategy that might be useful.

Most online casino games have instructions to make sure players are not left confused, so learning how to play real money casino games is really very easy.

The main thing for players to keep in mind is that there are lots of great generous welcome bonuses available at the best online casino sites in the UK.

Using these can provide access to bonus money to boost a balance in a new account, though as mentioned above it is always important to read the small print of the terms and conditions.

The Best Online Casino Software Providers

UK online casinos tend to offer games from a range of software providers, including these:

NetEnt: Swedish studio NetEnt is one of the oldest online game developers around. Some of the most famous NetEnt titles to have been released so far include Hall of Gods, Arabian Nights and Mega Fortune.

Microgaming: Microgaming claims to have been the company that developed the world's first true online casino software in 1994. Since then, the firm has worked on its own award-winning online gaming software, as well as making games such as Mega Moolah, Immortal Romance, The Dark Knight Rises and Game of Thrones.

IGT: International Game Technology - or IGT for short - is one of the biggest companies in the world of online casino software. Top IGT slots include Wheel of Fortune on Tour.

Playtech: While Playtech says that the company is the biggest supplier of online gaming and sports betting software in the world, casual casino fans will know the brand more for slot games such as Desert Treasure, The Matrix and the Age of the Gods series.

Play'n GO: Reactoonz is one of the most famous Play'n GO online slot games, but the company is most known for its Book of Dead series. The Swedish company also produces its own platforms and back-office tools as well as online casino games.

Yggdrasil: Innovative mechanics often feature in games from Yggdrasil, which has had a lot of success in the industry through the release of slots such as Jungle Books.

Pragmatic Play: Right up there with the top content providers to the iGaming industry, Pragmatic Play has made a wide array of games such as John Hunter Tomb of the Scarab Queen, Triple Tigers, The Catfather and Great Rhino Megaways.

Evolution Gaming: A dominant figure in the growing sub-sector of live casino games, Evolution Gaming says that the company partners with more top-tier operators than any rival other providers in its marketplace.

Quickspin: A studio focusing on quality rather than quantity, Quickspin's top titles to have been released so far include Royal Frog, Crystal Queen and Treasure Island.

Thunderkick: Wrapping up our list of the best online casino software providers used in the UK is Thunderkick, which is the company behind high-RTP games such as 1429 Uncharted Seas. Thunderkick is an independent online casino software provider.

Online Casinos FAQs

Steven is an experienced iGaming content writer who has been working in the industry since 2018. He is passionate about sports betting and enjoys writing about all aspects of the industry, including bookmaker reviews, betting tips and strategies, and news and analysis. If you have any questions about online gambling in the UK, please don't hesitate to contact him.