Other than PayPal, the credit card is the easiest way to make any online purchase. Since PayPal doesn’t work with USA casinos, the card is the next best option. It’s just like making a purchase at Amazon or any other online retailer.
It’s no surprise that I’ve gotten a few e-mails from people wanting to know if credit cards work at US-friendly gambling sites. The short answer to that question is yes. Every legitimate casino that I’ve ever visited was happy to take credit cards, debit cards and even certain types of prepaid gift cards.
Visa, MasterCard and American Express are all accepted by the majority of casinos. Many of those also accept Maestro and Visa Electron cards (these are basically just debit cards linked to your bank account). The process is as simple as inputting your card number and typing in an amount to deposit.
Here are three major gambling sites that accept credit and debit cards:
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Why do these casinos all have the same minimums and maximums?
It might seem odd that three different casinos all have exactly the same minimum and maximum deposit amounts, but there’s a reason for that. A lot of the casinos in the industry outsource payment processing to companies that specialize in getting money from Point A to Point B. Whenever one payment processor proves itself reliable, a bunch of gambling sites jump on board.
In all likelihood, that’s what’s happening here. One payment processor for multiple casinos.
Other Things to Know
Here are a few other things you should know about credit card deposits.
Gambling sites do not charge any fees for depositing with a credit card or debit card. However, they sometimes bill your card issuer as if it was a “cash advance” and not a regular online payment. Your bank might charge you a 1-2% cash advance fee in that case. If this happens, you might pay an extra $1 or $2 on a $100 deposit – not too bad in my opinion.
You should also know that your transaction won’t show up in your statement as a deposit to a gambling site. For example, you won’t see “Lucky Red Casino” in your online banking statement. You’ll see something vague instead like “CR Services Fee” or whatever.
If you make multiple deposits over a course of several days, there’s a good chance everything will be wrapped up into one transaction and deducted all at once. This is worth keeping in mind in case you see a $300 debit in your account and can’t figure out where it came from (until you remember you made three different $100 deposits last week).
Verified by Visa
You may also be prompted to enter your “verified by Visa” password if you deposit with a Visa card. Verified by Visa is a program that many banks run in coordination with Visa. They add an extra layer of security by asking you to input a password when making online purchases.
My bank uses Verified by Visa so I always have to enter my password. It’s no big deal. If you don’t have Verified by Visa set up, you may be asked to create a password when you make your first deposit. If your bank doesn’t support Verified by Visa, you can skip it all and just make the deposit.
Card Verification Form
All gambling sites require you to fill out a “card verification form” before you can withdraw any money that you deposited with your credit or debit card. Casinos ask for this information to protect themselves against scammers and thieves with stolen credit cards.
It’s the same thing your grocery store is technically supposed to do to prevent fraud. They want to know that you are the true owner of the card and not some thief who’s going to end up getting caught and the deposits reversed. You can read more about withdrawal documents here.
The verification form will ask you to scan a copy of your ID and credit card (or maybe a billing statement to verify your address). You can then send it to your gambling site via e-mail or toll-free fax. It’s a pain in the rear, but you only have to do it once at each casino.
Prepaid Gift Cards
Some prepaid gift cards can be used to deposit to a gambling site. However, you should first check to see if the prepaid card you’re about to buy can be used to make international and online purchases. If not, the transaction will fail and you’ll be stuck with a gift card that you’ll have to spend elsewhere.
Problems Depositing with Credit Cards
Your credit card deposit might not always work the first time. Ever since the UIGEA was passed in 2006, American banking institutions have had obstacles to overcome in processing deposits. The biggest obstacle is that many card issuers refuse to do business with known gambling sites.
Some gambling sites are better than others when it comes to successfully processing credit card deposits. That’s why you often see websites that say “xxx casino currently has the highest credit card acceptance rate.” They’re letting you know which sites are more likely to accept your deposit.
But even the best gambling sites sometimes have problems processing your deposit. There may be a time in the future in which you try to make a deposit and get that “declined” message on your screen. It’s not because your card is no good; it’s because your bank automatically blocked the transaction.
So what do you do? Well, you either try a different card or choose a different deposit method. You can also call your casino’s customer support number and get help there. They should give you simple instructions for funding your account via some other method. This happened to me once and it was no big deal. I was gambling for real money later that same day.