Remote Gaming Duty To Be Introduced On ‘Free Bets’

'Free Bets' To Cost Operators In August 2017

As a casino player how many times have you enjoyed a free spin or two from your favourite online casino or received a little something extra on your deposit as a reward for being loyalty to a certain brand?

We’ve all taken one incentive or another in our time as players but this looks to be set to change in the next 17 months.

The Budget of March 2016 saw the announcement that free bets are to be subject to the remote gaming duty as from 1st August 2017.

Although not yet 100% clear how this will work, the assumption has been that ‘free spins’ or ‘free plays’ and other player incentives will be affected. UK-facing remote gaming operators now have to consider the implications to player acquisition and retention.

How Will The Remote Gaming Duty Affect You?

Obviously there is still well over a year before the changes are implemented but we would suspect that what we are going to see is a substantial drop in the amount of ‘free’ money that is given away by your favourite casino.

We also imagine that we are going to see quite a change in how casinos try and incentivise players to sign with their brand over their competitors.

Whilst there aren’t that many brands currently offering the no deposit required bonuses, there are quite a few who offer a substantial number of free spins to their new players.

If taxed at 15%, a £10 no deposit bonus will cost the operator £1.50 in August 2017 whereas today, there is no cost per se.

This type of offer often attracts the bonus hunter, the player who comes along, registers, takes the free money and never deposits. That’s not an issue when the bonus has no cost to the operator…

What does the future hold for bonuses and free play? Only time will tell.

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