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How To Deposit At Online Casinos

Dec 9, 2007
Following the passing into law of the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA), it's been difficult for US players to find safe, reliable methods to make deposits into their favourite casino, poker room or sports book.

Solutions exist, of course, but it's not always easy to find a match-up between your chosen casino and preferred deposit method.

The biggest casualty of UIGEA was, of course, NETeller, which had dominated the market following the departure of PayPal. Both those methods acted as so-called ewallets - intermediaries that allowed customers to fund their casino accounts from their bank accounts, without the final recipient having to see their bank account details.

In the early days of online gambling, this was important as not all casinos could be trusted, and this 'barrier' served to increase customer confidence. These days, players have to be more trusting of the casinos they're playing with. The advantage of this is that now very few disreputable casinos exist - the ones that remain have stood the test of time and can be seen as trustworthy.

So, what options do players now have? Credit cards, of course (though some banks will prevent gambling transactions), debit cards and instant bank transfer are the most obvious ones.

But in a classic case of necessity being the mother of invention, the casinos are finding more and more ways to allow players to fund their accounts. It's beyond the scope of this article to give precise details on a method and casino basis, but casinos exist that allow easy financial transactions for US-based players that are completely safe and legal - if you know where to find them.

UIGEA was meant to be the end of internet gambling. Although it undoubtedly affected the market, with both casinos and players pulling out of the US, along with the payment processors, the core market that remains is both strong and vibrant.

There is a huge upsurge in online gambling expected when the so-called 'baby boom' generation start to retire. These people will be internet-savvy, have disposable income, and will resent being told that they can't spend their money in a way that they see fit.

These people will demand to be allowed to gamble online if they so wish. The largest demographic for online gambling is the 45-65 female group, and this is a massive lobby that no Government should ignore. With 'regime change' expected in the USA in 2008, all involved with the online gambling industry are hoping for a more liberal attitude to an individual's right to choose how to spend the money they've earned!

What the industry needs now is a number of payment processors that offer variety and choice to the consumers, whilst being 100% safe and reliable. These may come from the existing solutions or may be yet to be invented.

Whatever methods come to the fore in the next few years, one thing is certain: online gambling is here to stay. Players want - and deserve - quick, simple and secure methods of spending their leisure money that don't require them to jump through hoops or act outside the law.

The sooner Government and industry can facilitate this, the better for all concerned.
About the Author
Andy Follin is author of Fortune Palace, an eCOGRA 'reputable gambling portal' that includes a full online casino deposit guide, indexed by casino and method.
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