What Should Canadian Players Look for in an Online Casino?

Choosing the right website to play online fruit machines in the real money mode and other classics like blackjack, roulette, poker, craps, and baccarat isn’t as easy as it sounds.

I live in Alberta, and when I last checked, there were hundreds to choose from.

Even I found choosing a new site to join tricky, and I consider myself a seasoned pro, so I can understand how difficult it is for some people to find a new website to join, especially new users who don’t know what to look for in a legally permitted site that allows you to play this kind of content.

Photo by Ahmed Zalabany on Unsplash

Therefore, I’ve decided to reveal, in list form, some of the most important factors every Canadian player should look for when choosing which real money gambling site to register a new account with.

If you live in Alberta, like me, or in Quebec or Ontario, you must be at least 19 years old to join one of these sites. However, in British Columbia, it’s just 18.

What are the key factors every Canadian should look for in a trustworthy site with fruitys and other classic titles?

Whether you consider yourself a seasoned pro like me, who is looking for somewhere new to join, just for a change of scenery, or a newbie looking to play on online fruit machines for the first time, there are many things everyone should look out for.

The worst thing you could do is join an unlicensed and unregulated site, which, fortunately, I have never done, but I could have easily signed up to an untrustworthy site if I didn’t know what to look for.

Before signing up anywhere, people living in Canada should always try to find out the following information:

  • Licensing and regulation – only ever join a website that is fully licensed and regulated by at least one internationally recognised (or Canadian) gambling commission/licensing authority. I always like to ensure the sites I join are licensed and regulated by the Alberta Gaming and Liquor Commission. Other reliable international licensing authorities you can also trust are the UKGC (based in the United Kingdom), the MGA (based in Malta), and the GRA (based in Gibraltar), to name a few
  • Ownership and reputation – I try to stick to sites that I know are owned and operated by trusted names and avoid joining sites where I can’t find out much about the operator. All the sites I have joined are controlled by companies with great reputations and have excellent standing in the industry
  • Currencies, banking, and payout speed – I only play at sites that accept Canadian dollars and ones that accept a range of trusted Canadian online payment options. For example, I prefer using my Visa debit card, PayPal account or Interac, so I try to find sites that accept one or more of these trusted payment processing gateways. You can find out if your preferred online payment method is accepted by going to the cashier section
  • Website/app security – I would never sign up to a site whose URL doesn’t start with https:// or one that doesn’t use 128-bit or higher Secure Socket Layer (SSL) encryption to protect my account. Today’s most trusted sites will always be protected in this way and will have the proper security measures in place to ensure your money, preferred payment method details, transactions, and bankroll are always in safe hands. I also only look for sites that are quick at processing deposits and withdrawals
  • Player support – today’s most trusted sites should offer friendly and professionally trained support with excellent customer service levels. Perhaps test the support before signing up anywhere to see how responsive and reliable they are. A sign of a good site is excellent support, available 24 hours per day
  • Responsible gambling – today’s best sites will also provide a range of ‘safer gambling tools‘ to protect users. Many sites today allow users to manually set win/loss limits. Other things that can help you stay in control that always work well for me include session time reminders (I usually set it for 30 minutes), short time-outs (you can take temporary breaks for anywhere from 24 hours up to six weeks), and daily, weekly or monthly deposit limits (I always set a C$100 monthly deposit limit)

It may seem like a lot to remember, but it’s essential that you find out all this information before signing up anywhere, especially about licensing and ownership.

Avoid signing up to unlicensed sites or ones that are licensed by what are commonly referred to as bottom tier or ‘rubber-stamp’ licensing authorities.

What else should I be looking for?

You should also check that it has overwhelmingly positive reviews. I generally prefer conducting my own research, but I’ve also found that globally renowned review sites like AskGamblers give me a much better insight into the website I am about to join.

After carrying out my own checks, I will always read the expert reviews before deciding whether to join.

The other most important thing I look for in a good site is that it has content from multi-award-winning software providers.

In other words, if everything else I’ve mentioned above checks out, I like to make sure it has content from market-leading providers, such as Games Global (which acquired Microgaming in May 2022), Red Tiger, Blueprint, IGT, Pragmatic, Evolution, Play’n GO, Thunderkick, ELK Studios, Yggdrasil, and Relax, and NetEnt, to name a few.

Also, ensure the site has plenty of attractive bonuses with fair and realistic wagering requirements for new and existing members.

I consider low/medium requirements to be worth anywhere from 1x to 40x times the bonus amount. I tend to avoid claiming bonuses with 50x or higher wagering requirements attached. The last thing I will say is to have fun and make sure you always gamble responsibly.