An Ever-Developing Brand
Trada Casino is based in Jersey, having relocated from Isle of Man, which is where it was previously licensed since 2011.
In 2014, with the introduction of the UK Gambling Act, it obtained its UK Gambling Commission licence and relaunched with an updated website in late October. Since then, Trada treats 2014 as its official launch year; holding its third birthday celebration in 2017.
The site operates on a principle of fast, fair and fun. Wherever possible, games are available to play for free, even if you haven’t registered an account, and payments are processed free of charge (apart from unavoidable third-party fees).
Members are encouraged to provide feedback, with a promise of new games being added all the time.
Built on Pariplay and Evolution Gaming
We’ll look at the Live Casino in more detail in a moment, but it’s worth noting that the rooms are streamed from Evolution Gaming’s studios, so if you’ve played at the majority of other online casinos, you’ve probably encountered those live dealers before and should know what to expect when you play in a live room at Trada Casino.
The RNG games are largely provided by Pariplay, but there are also titles from other third-party developers including Microgaming and NetEnt, so again, you might see a few titles you recognise from elsewhere.
The Support pages include a link to a Google Doc that lists the specific RTP for every individual title on the site – it’s a fairly back-to-basics way to provide this information to members, but it’s effective, and there’s plenty of pledges around the site regarding the fairness and randomness of the RNG used.
Mobile in Your Browser
There’s no need to install any software in order to access Trada Casino, and that includes no downloadable desktop client, and also no native mobile apps.
To play on mobile, just visit the site in your browser as you would on a desktop or laptop computer, and it should load in a mobile-friendly, responsive format. This lets you log on with your normal username and password and play the same usual games that you know from playing on desktop.
You might wish there was an app you could install to your phone’s home or start screen, but most smartphone operating systems should allow you to pin a shortcut to the website instead, which will function equally well as a one-tap way to get to the games when you want.
On mobile, the games still have the Play for Fun option even if you’re not logged in, making Trada Casino an entertaining site to pin a link to, even if you don’t want to play for money from your phone.
Instant Play for Cash or Fun
With nothing to download and install, playing at Trada Casino is just a case of visiting the website in your desktop or mobile browser. As mentioned, you don’t even have to log on if you just want to look around and play for fun, and the navigation is very intuitive, which is probably helped by the fact that it’s a fairly compact site mainly based around slots, with a few roulette and blackjack titles and the separate Live Casino section.
Everything seems fast to load and functioned well during our visit, and while the variety of games could be larger, the overall quality seems very good indeed.
Slots Listed by Studio
In an unusual move, Trada Casino lists its games according to the software studio that developed them, so right from the homepage menu bar you can skip straight to a specific studio’s games.
If, for example, you’ve played at Microgaming casinos before and only want to see games you’re likely to recognise, just go to the Microgaming page to list only their titles.
There are also general indexes for all slots and all table games, plus the Live Casino, but it’s an interesting and fresh decision to put the developers front and centre in this way and it helps to add a sense of greater variety to what is otherwise a fairly limited choice of games to play.
Not Fussed About Jackpots?
One thing that is quite clearly missing from Trada Casino is a jackpots page, or any prominence given to progressive jackpots at all.
There are some slots with movie tie-ins, such as Planet of the Apes and Jurassic World, but you won’t see a big thing made out of even the regular jackpots that are available. This fits with Trada’s play-for-fun approach, but it doesn’t mean there isn’t cash to be won, and with that complete list of RTP for individual games, it’s easy to look out for the titles that return around the 99% mark of all stakes back to the player – while remembering that the absence of huge progressive jackpots should mean they make smaller payouts on a more regular basis, too.
A Surprising Choice of Roulette
Despite combining all the table games into a single menu, Trada Casino has a surprising variety of RNG Roulette tables to choose from, with 14 available during our visit.
At first glance, they are mixed in amongst blackjack and other table games, but type “roulette” into the search box and this will instantly filter out your results, making it easy to find what you want.
Unlike many other online casinos, Trada doesn’t appear to include a link to Live Casino Roulette here, so there should be no fear of clicking on a game only to find yourself confronted by a live stream of a human dealer. The flip side to that is, of course, that if you actually want that live interaction, you’ll probably need to go via the Live Casino homepage to get there.
Don’t Miss Out on Blackjack
If you take the same approach to blackjack – typing it into the search box to filter the Table Games menu – you risk missing out on some of the variations and other titles with similar gameplay. There are, for instance, several versions of Pontoon to choose from, which would otherwise be filtered out. There’s baccarat and Punto Banco too, again with multiple versions of each to play.
It’s unfortunate there isn’t a menu specifically for card games, or the usual menus for roulette, blackjack and other games that you usually see, especially considering the unusual focus on each individual game developer here at Trada, but it’s not too much of a hardship to scroll through the Table Games list and find the one you want.
Trada Live Casino by Evolution Gaming
As always, the Evolution-Gaming-powered Live Casino brings peace of mind and familiar interaction with a human dealer streaming live via webcam from a custom-built studio. It’s probably the closest you can get to playing in a real-world casino online, and Evolution do it really, really well, with clever use of technology to keep the games streamlined while providing an immersive experience for the player.
This is one area of the site where you will need to sign in before you can even view the tables, although the Trada Live Casino home page gives you a glimpse into what tables are active at any one time – usually dominated by blackjack tables due to their limited number of seats.
Quick to Win Awards
Newly launched sites often win awards for their design, as it’s only natural to give them extra attention in their first year. Beyond that, it’s always good to see a fairly young casino win recognition for its service to members. Trada got just such recognition in 2016 when it earned itself the Casinomeister Best Customer Service Award.
Considering Trada only relaunched in 2014 and was basically an entirely new site at that time, it’s pretty good going to earn an award for supporting members well within the first couple of years, and we’ll look in more detail at the support options in a moment.
Fast Withdrawal Promise
Deposit options are decent but not quite comprehensive – there’s no option to deposit via PayPal, for instance.
When it comes to withdrawals, make sure you verify your identity ahead of time, as not doing so can introduce a delay of up to 24 hours. Your withdrawal will be processed using the same method you used to deposit, so, for example, if you paid into your account via debit or credit card, your withdrawal will go back on to the same card if possible. This is industry-standard practice done to reduce the risk of fraud and money laundering, and if it’s not possible to pay to the same card or account, you should be able to specify an alternative method of your choosing.
There are some unavoidable processing times, up to four days on cards and seven days on bank transfers, although e-wallets are much faster.
Trada also operates a fast-withdrawal promise for all members, so if you request a withdrawal between 9am and 10pm UK time, it will be processed within six hours. This isn’t much of a cooling-off period once you’ve requested a withdrawal, but it means you should get your funds into your account as soon as possible.
SSL Security and Regulated Fairness
SSL encryption across the Trada Casino site means banking details and game sessions are secure – probably even more so than most regular e-commerce sites you might choose to buy from.
There’s also mention of third-party validation that the random number generators used on RNG games really are random, and the UK Gambling Commission licence gives some extra confidence on this, although it would be nice to see copies of the actual certificates made available in the Support pages. Likewise, the list of RTP for every individual game is just a Google Doc spreadsheet, and it would be good if third-party confirmation of these figures were made available.
Having said all that, the major developer studios like NetEnt, Microgaming, and Evolution Gaming’s live dealer tables all combine to add extra confidence too, even if you’re new to Trada Casino.
Effective Online Support
About that award-winning member support – Trada Casino does what it does very well, although there are still a few gaps that could be filled in.
The support that is available includes Live Chat for an instant response and email support via a direct email address, not hidden behind an online contact form.
It’s also worth mentioning that the FAQs and online help on issues like responsible gambling and game fairness are pretty good, although the Responsible Gambling page could be prettier.
The main thing missing overall, though, is telephone support, as there’s no direct number listed on the site. Maybe that doesn’t matter so much with Live Chat and email available – you can even write to the head office in Jersey if you want – and it definitely seems like the support channels that are available are manned well enough to deal with members’ problems effectively.
Responsible Gaming Could Be Clearer
There are just a couple of places where Trada Casino lacks finesse in its page layout and design – the Live Casino home page is one example, as it just looks a little bit basic.
Unfortunately, the Responsible Gaming page is another. It’s hugely important for members to be able to access advice when they need it, whether that’s to put a deposit limit on their account, block their own access completely, or seek third-party advice and counselling.
Trada’s Responsible Gaming page has plenty of guidance to give, with a fairly exhaustive list of external advisory services, software to block access to minors, account limit settings and so on. But it’s all displayed as dense blocks of text and the links don’t really stand out as clearly as they could. Bizarrely, it also then links to the Google Docs file with RTP percentages at the bottom of the page.
Members looking for advice on how to avoid overspending need clear and consistent advice – not a reminder that they can expect to get 99% of their stakes back on some games. It’s the distinction between fair and responsible and it’s a bit of a shame to see, when the breadth and depth of information on the page is really good overall.
A Calendar of Promotions
Regular promotions are always a plus point, and at Trada there’s a welcome bonus of 200% to get you started. It has a fairly small limit – you can only pay in up to £25 – but it’s still a decent handshake to greet new members.
There are seasonal promotion calendars too, such as an advent calendar of daily bonuses in December, so although there’s not much in long-term promotions to choose from, there should be something new to boost your playing power or account balance on any given day, while the regular cashback scheme that we’ll look at in a moment is a great way to bag yourself a few quid in extra cash, without having to stake it 30 times over before you can withdraw it into your bank account.
A Choice of Loyalty Programmes
Trada Casino deserve applause for their approach to customer loyalty. For once, the VIP scheme isn’t really the main loyalty scheme. There is a VIP programme, but when you click through to it from the Promotions page you find it is just a Google-hosted contact form to request VIP status from customer support, and you might find it easier to ask via Live Chat to find out whether you qualify or not.
The real star of the show is the instantly withdrawable Cashback programme, which is available to all slots players. You need to use the code CB100 (first deposit) or CB25 (all subsequent deposits) to get a 100% or 25% cashback bonus, which you can then stake on slots. Until this bonus balance hits zero, you will also receive an extra £2 cashback for every £70 you stake. Best of all, this cashback comes with no play-through/wagering requirements – you can withdraw it immediately.
Just make sure your cashback bonus balance drops below £10 before you make another deposit, as the terms warn against taking advantage of the offer by topping up an account that already has a substantial positive balance.
Trada Casino very much falls into that category of smaller online casinos with a focus mainly on slots. It’s also part of the rare breed where playing for entertainment value is prioritised over huge progressive jackpots – and with no jackpots menu at all, you’ll need to be okay with this if you want to play at Trada over the long term.
Published RTP for individual games give you the ability to focus on those with the highest rates of return, while offers like the ongoing slots cashback loyalty scheme are a useful extra boost, too.
Trada seems to score well in terms of customer support, both in third-party reviews and industry awards, but the absence of a telephone number for support is a bit of a shame, even with Live Chat and email to choose from.
Overall, a fairly basic but welcoming site that seems to load well on desktop and on mobile for some quick play wherever you happen to be, with some interesting games from the less common developers to spice things up a bit.