🥝 Hi New Zealand, how are you!?
Haere mai fellow kiwi players, and welcome to Bigwinboard.com! Thank you for visiting the largest and most influential slot review platform on the planet and letting us assist you with your casino and gaming search. Just like you, our thousands of monthly readers are looking for honest assessments of every new slot release and casino you can find online. We appreciate you taking the time to visit Bigwinboard and know you will find value with what you find here. Whether you are a new player to the scene or an old hand in the industry, you have come to the right place. We have spent countless hours scouring the internet for perfect online casinos to fit the bill in both cases. This ongoing search involves sifting through Welcome Bonuses to find the best combination for your gambling buck.
Despite the heavy regulation in the industry now, there are still cowboy sites floating around that should be avoided. Our list of recommended online casinos for New Zealand players below will ensure you avoid them. Online gambling can be a hugely enjoyable, and even profitable, pastime when conducted responsibly. The first crucial step is finding the right online casino that matches your needs. We are all different with different gambling wants and needs. With that in mind, let’s start with a look at some of the very best online casinos for New Zealand players. Beneath the list, we will detail how we came to these decisions and how you can assess whether a casino is suitable for your gaming dollar or not. Thank you for visiting Bigwinboard.com, and we look forward to providing the highest levels of satisfaction and safety for you and all of our readers.
Is online gambling legal in New Zealand?
If you are new, the first thing you might be wondering is whether online gambling is legal in New Zealand. Fortunately, the laws are crystal clear on this matter as outlined in the Gambling Act of 2003. The Department of Internal Affairs (DIA) states that ‘it is not illegal for someone in New Zealand to participate in gambling over the internet if that website is based overseas.’ The Gambling Act forbids companies setting up an online casino within New Zealand and its territories. But it is perfectly fine with players using offshore-based casinos.
What makes a great online casino?
Every player is different. Some prefer a staid and solid traditional casino experience; others want something ultra-modern. The great thing is that both preferences, and practically everything in between, are catered for. We acknowledge personal difference, so what we cover here are the critical elements that every solid online casino possesses. These are the things that often take place beneath the aesthetic presentation that great casinos invest significant resources and time into getting right.
There are dodgy online casinos that are looking to pick up punters with hastily cobbled together platforms that have cut corners to save time and money. The tricky thing is that they often look pretty slick, but when you delve into the small print – licenses, payment schedules, and so on, the slapdash nature becomes apparent and should be avoided. Fortunately, there are also a ton of legit casinos out there. To find them, we thoroughly run each casino we review through a strict set of criteria before stamping an approval on them. The points here detail what we look for and will provide peace of mind for you in two ways. First, you’ll realise that we delve into every essential aspect. Secondly, this list will arm you with your own criteria with which to judge any new casino you come across.
Licensing and regulation
Since the New Zealand government allows gambling at offshore casinos, the first step is to find one that is fully licensed and regulated. But, just because an online casino has a license does not give it an instant pass. For one, there are varying degrees of protection between the governing bodies. Some are certainly better than others. EU regulators, such as the MGA and UKGC, offer the best protection and are the most respected in the industry. They enforce things like random number generators to ensure fair gaming and put forth strict guidelines.
As mentioned, not all licenses are created equal. Some regulators that are best avoided include those from places like Curacao, Cyprus, and the Kahnawake Gaming Commission. You are not guaranteed problems from these casinos, but some regulators seem more interested in selling licenses than helping the players they are meant to protect. With so many online casinos licensed by respected European regulators, it just makes sense to stick with the best. These are the ones that we would use, and the only ones to be recommended by Bigwinboard.
Gambling is an activity that can have a serious unintended side to it. Like any hobby or pastime, it requires setting a reasonable budget, or bankroll. Stick to it, and gambling remains a fun and exciting way to past the time. Lose control, and the consequences are not so enjoyable. Bigwinboard believes responsible gaming to be of paramount importance. That being the case, good casinos show care and responsibility towards their customers and score higher in reviews. Bad ones aren’t interested.
We look out for online casinos that have trained support staff to spot warning signs or provide help. We look for tools such as deposit limits, withdrawal protections, and self-exclusion options that minimise risks for problem gamblers. While following regulations to the letter is the bare minimum, those that go the extra mile garner better reviews. New Zealand gamblers with any concerns can contact the Gambling Helpline which is a free service that is open 24 hours a day.
Software and Games
If a casino makes it past the mandatory checks with flying colours it is on to the fun part – the games. Like bonuses, bigger is not always better, and a huge catalogue is not necessarily an indicator of the quality of a casino. The bad ones might have huge and enticing lists. Likewise, the most trustworthy casinos might have a more compact selection. Casinos that make it to our recommended list have all been vetted to make sure they each offer a solid range of games from the best providers in the industry. That is, after all, why we are here – to find and play the most exciting games available. From slot classics of the past to the new favourites of the future, the casinos here provide excellent options to satisfy whatever gaming mood or interest you might have.
Smartphones have had a huge impact on the gambling industry. Players are no longer chained to their desktop computer but can roam and play wherever they have coverage. Many online casinos have a native app that you can download from iTunes or the Google Play store. If not, they will have a web app that has been optimised to fit on a mobile device regardless of screen size. The great thing is that virtually anything you can do at a casino’s full site, you can do on the mobile version. This includes setting up new accounts, banking, contacting customer support, and of course – playing games. Whether you want the convenience of having the app on your device, or prefer not to download additional software, you can log in and spin reels in both scenarios.
How does online gambling in New Zealand work?
It can be a little confusing if you have never patronised an online casino before. So, we will answer this question by breaking each key step down.
Nearly every online casino these days offers a Welcome Bonus in one form or another. It is usually a combination of bonus cash and/or free spins for signing up and depositing a certain amount of money. A big generous welcome bonus always goes down well and can be used to gain an edge, but try to treat them as the icing on the cake of a great casino rather than the main event. It goes without saying that massive offers do not make up for a dodgy provider. There are so many great promotions out there that there is no need to sign up just because of an amazing offer. If the rest of the casino doesn’t feel right, simply move on to the next one.
Registering and making a deposit.
Once you have found the right online casino, are happy with the games, and like the look of the offer its time to sign up. Registering is a straight forward process that is similar to signing up with any other online service. In saying that, don’t be surprised if a provider asks you for documents to prove your identity or address. This is evidence of a robust anti-money laundering protocol, and these checks are to protect players - it certainly isn’t personal.
Once your account is set up head over to the cashier to make your first deposit. The casino will probably alert you to any offers during this step, but it also pays to check. It also pays to go over the terms of any offer with a fine-tooth comb. Key points to look out for are whether bonus cash or free spins can only be used with certain games. The other important term is the wagering requirement. This is the amount that must be wagered before you can withdraw bonus cash or winnings from bonus cash/spins. Some offers will have wagering requirements that don’t match your betting style. Others might low or even no wagering requirements at all.
When it comes time to make you first deposit make sure you’ve picked a casino that offers your preferred payment method. Most New Zealand gamblers use credit or debit cards when making deposits which nearly all online casinos accept. Others to look out for are eWallets such as Skrill, PayPal, bank transfers, as well as prepaid cards, and occasionally crypto. The bottom line is that kiwi players will have no problems betting with their preferred payment method. When it comes to withdrawal times eWallets are generally fastest, followed by cards, and bank transfers. Typically a withdrawal request can take up to 24 hours to process followed by the transfer time.
There are typically three ways to contact an online casino – phone, email, or live chat. Some offer all three, some just one. As to opening hours, due to the time difference between New Zealand and European casinos, this won’t be such an issue. But if it is, look for a support team that when you might need them. Those on the recommended list all have a dedicated team, trained to help with any query.
Can I play for free?
Yes, the great thing about online slots is that they can be played for free. Obviously, you won’t be able to win money that way but demoing is a perfect way to try new slots and work out if they are right for you.
How safe is online gambling?
If you choose one of the legit operators on our recommended list then gambling is as safe as any other online activity. Personal information is encrypted using the same technology as banks and financial institutions do to protect personal data.
Are online games fair?
Yes, choose a legit online casino from this list and you can be assured of fair games. Slots use random number generators (RNG) to ensure that every spin is independent of any previous result. Casinos must prove their RNGs are working correctly as part of licensing.
Are online casinos legal in New Zealand?
Yes, playing at online casinos is legal in New Zealand. Online casinos cannot be based in New Zealand, but kiwi gamblers are completely free to patronise offshore-based casinos.
Do I need to pay tax on my winnings?
When it comes to taxation, New Zealanders who gamble as a pastime or hobby do not have to pay tax on any winnings. If you get lucky and win some mega progressive jackpot, you get to keep every penny. The situation is different for professionals who gamble for a living, say, pro poker players. But for the rest, recreational gambling is a non-taxable activity.