As you progress throughout your gambling career, you’ll find a range of interesting paths and opportunities naturally opening up over time. For example, with skill, experience, and a healthy dose of luck, many players find themselves graduating to high-roller casinos. Others start to explore the differences between real-world play in glamorous locations such as Las Vegas or Monte Carlo and the various online casino options available to them.
In this piece, we’ll be shining a light on an option that’s available to the vast majority of players – VIP online casinos. It’s an interesting way of adding a bit more glamour to your overall play, and opens up a range of benefits and potential additional value to players who’ve already established a good relationship with their online casino.
Casinos are naturally looking to attract passionate gamblers and treat them well throughout their time on a site and putting together a VIP package gives them a great way of doing so. It’s also an excellent option if you’re already a regular player as it enables you to significantly improve your overall experience online when you actually sign up to the type of programmes typically offered by VIP online casinos.
Let’s start by considering the question of how to know when you’re ready to make this particular leap when you're playing for real money.
This question can often be a tricky one for players to judge. Naturally, the allure is strong and it’s tempting to dive straight into exploring VIP options from the very beginning, but this isn’t always the best strategy.
The ideal time to start exploring VIP casino options is when you’re already comfortable with the basic patterns of play online, and feeling confident about your overall approach to casino strategy and pot management. With a secure foundation in place, it’s an excellent opportunity to start exploring some of the wider benefits available via VIP programmes. That way, you’ll have enough spare mental capacity to truly enjoy them without running the risk of distracting yourself from the fundamentals.
The sequence you start your search is important here. Rather than being led primarily by the range of VIP options available, you should ideally be looking to start with a selection of casinos that you know to be solid across the board generally, and then start whittling down the candidates based on the specifics of their VIP offerings.
With that in mind, the best place to start your search is among already established providers who can boast an unimpeachable track record in terms of customer service and overall probity and reliability. You will find new entrants among far flung corners of the internet who are trying to lure gamblers in with incredible sounding VIP options, but tread carefully here – a great sounding VIP programme is worthless without being backed by solid fundamentals in terms of day-to-day account use.
As mentioned above, your immediate focus should be on the overall package offered by the casino, before then drilling down into the details of their VIP offerings. VIP programmes, by their very nature, bring two points in particular to the surface when it comes to assessing their merits:
- Quality of customer service: High standards of customer service are absolutely paramount if you’re going to be taking advantage of a VIP programme and you should demand the best. Make sure you’ve really tested out your candidate casino’s telephone, email, and chat support in this regard before taking the plunge.
- Reasonable terms and conditions: As with any casino-related endeavour, you want to be very certain that you’ve actually gone over the small print of your VIP programme with a fine toothcomb. Offers may look great in the context of shiny ads and promotions, but the proof of their attractiveness only comes when you actually attempt to redeem them. Make sure there are no nasty surprises lurking in the conditions attached.
Ok, let’s get down to business about the type of rewards typically on offer with VIP programmes. The first thing to note is that they’ll typically be structured in tiers so that you’ll be looking at graduating through the various levels on offer as your relationship with the casino progresses. Essentially, the longer you stay with a casino’s loyalty programme (and the more money that is passing through your account), the more you’ll rise through the virtual ranks. Let’s look at some common rewards you can expect to enjoy as a VIP:
- Welcome bonuses: More often than not, you’ll receive some type of additional welcome bonus as you join each tier of the programme.
- Increased limits: VIP members are some of the most valuable customers an online casino can hope to have – and are treated accordingly! You’ll typically benefit from deeper account limits.
- Points programmes: Many casinos will run a points-based loyalty scheme in conjunction with their VIP programme which allows you to bank points for redemption over time in much the same way as you would with air miles. You can then redeem these points over time with a host of top-tier VIP partners who’ll happily accept your points in exchange for luxury goods.
- VIP bonus offers: In addition to you welcome bonus, you can expect to receive regular ongoing bonus offers which are targeted exclusively at VIP members.
- Weekly and monthly rewards: The majority of VIP programmes will run some type of weekly or monthly giveaway scheme where individual members are selected at random for prizes. This isn’t one you can rely on coming your way of course, but it’s a nice little bonus when it does.
- Dedicated account managers: As you rise through the ranks of a standard VIP programme, you’ll start to receive more and more personalised customer care attention.
All casinos treat their VIP customers exceptionally well and you’ll find a steady stream of promotions coming your way throughout the year once you step up to VIP status. Many of these will come in the form of third-party tie-ins with selected commercial partners which are made available to you either for free or on very favourable terms. In keeping with the overall theme being granted privileged access, a lot of these promotions will be themed around luxury goods providers or exclusive hotels. Long story short, you’re looking at a significant upgrade in style once you become a VIP!
The type of promotional offers which will come your way here include exclusive deals on selected hotels, VIP-specific bonus offers, and regular prize draws with a host of gadgets, jewellery, and designer goods on offer. These will often tie in with both seasonal events and account deposit options as casinos seek to encourage you to up your overall game at certain key points throughout the year.
The final type of benefit you should seek to explore as a VIP are special casino VIP events, real-world meetups where you can interact with your fellow VIPs in generally luxurious surroundings. You’ll often find these centred around major offline sporting events where you can benefit from free access and generous hospitality courtesy of your casino partners. Tickets to high-profile concerts and invitations to exclusive weekend getaways are also not uncommon.
If you’ve a taste for glamorous Champions League fixtures or fancy taking your partner to that Beyonce show that’s been impossible to get tickets to, these are exactly the type of high-profile events where simply being a member of a casino VIP programme can be enough to get you in the door and secure incredible seats and lavish entertainment you’d otherwise never have access to.
By this stage, you’re almost certainly wondering how you actually go about becoming a VIP. As in real-life, it’s generally a matter of invitation to make the virtual grade, though you can also explicitly apply to join VIP programmes in some cases.
The thing to realise is that VIP programmes are essentially a type of loyalty scheme run by the casinos in order to attract and retain their best customers. What will typically happen once you join a casino is that you’ll gradually build points on these schemes until a certain threshold is passed. At that stage, you’ll be formally invited to join the VIP programme by an account manager whose job it is to get you on board and then help you rise through the ranks of the VIP programme itself.
Knowing this background helps you plan your overall strategy for making the leap to VIP status. All casinos which offer VIP programmes will have a dedicated section on their site explaining the particular benefits on offer and giving you a rough guideline on how to get in the door. That should be your first port of call when deciding if this is the casino to go with long term. Once you’ve identified a likely candidate, your progression will then largely come down to two factors:
- Frequency of play: Casinos are looking for passionate, committed players who frequently use their services. You want to make sure you’re maintaining a consistent level of play to catch the attention of a VIP programme managers.
- Money wagered: Naturally enough, the more money you’re helping to pass through the casino, the more favourably your case for becoming a VIP will be looked upon. While you can certainly bolster your position with regular play and small amounts over time, the reality is that the more you naturally lean towards being a high-roller, the quicker you’re likely to get into VIP programmes and rise within them.
In summary, you have to convince a casino by your actions that you’re worth being let behind the virtual velvet rope and into the upper echelons of their overall membership.
The good news for gamblers is that funding and payment options are largely the same when you graduate to VIP status. You should never expect a lowering of ease in terms of possibilities as you start to explore VIP options. If anything, you’ll start to see more options open up the higher you rise. The basics, however, when it comes to getting money in and out of your account will remain largely the same. Let’s step through some common options used by VIPs across the world:
- Bank transfer: Though this funding method doesn’t grab the headlines much these days, it remains one of the most reliable and secure ways of actually handling your business. You’ll also find this available as a funding option at pretty much 100% of all major casinos. Naturally, you’ll want to check carefully with your partner bank to make sure that you’re not running the risk of large transaction fees anywhere along the line. If you’re regularly moving relatively small amounts in and out of your account, this probably isn’t the way to go. For more scattered payments involving greater sums, however, it’s still an excellent option to have available.
- Credit cards: Credit cards remain very much the workhorse of much day-to-day account management. When it comes to sheer convenience and ease of use, they’re hard to beat and options such as Visa and Mastercard are accepted worldwide and in the vast majority of online casinos. In fact, it’s safe to say that if a casino doesn’t accept these as a payment option, it’s a sign you should be looking elsewhere. As a VIP you’ll have the added benefit of being able to add credit card company loyalty benefits to your already bulging portfolio of VIP options.
- PayPal: The final option in our big three is of course PayPal. The online payments giant offers unbeatable security and ease of use, along with incredibly swift transfer of funds. It’s not the only provider in the space (European VIPs often also use a Skrill account in tandem), but it’s an essential part of any balanced funding portfolio and should definitely be part of the mix.
Hopefully our breakdown of VIP options above has helped you map out some of the possibilities around actually breaking into this exclusive choice with your chosen casino provider. You may have to exercise some patience before actually making the grade, but the wait is more than worth it. Once you’re inside, a whole host of benefits and bonuses are unlocked which will transform your overall experience. We wish you all the best with rising through the VIP ranks!
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