How Do Free Spins Work?

Before signing up to any of the best online casinos or new slot sites all casino players should know exactly how free spins work.

The most important thing to research before you spin the wheel is the availability of all free spins offers and the difference between free spins no deposit bonuses, free spins where you need to deposit funds or free spins no wagering welcome bonuses that do not force you to play through a certain amount of times.

Free spins on a slot game are where you can spin the wheel without betting any of your real money. You can keep what you win on the spinning of the reels which makes it appealing to many online slots players because you cannot lose.

This is what makes promotional free spins bonus so popular with online slots fans. Whether you’re a brand new player or an experienced pro, everyone loves getting free spins to use on their favourite games.

Free spins are given out as a way to reward or encourage casino online players and the number one incentive is used as a promotional tool and entertainment factor to entice new customers.

In this guide, we will run through everything you need to know about a free spin bonus online and how it boosts gamblers online gambling experience.

What Exactly Are Free Spins with Online Casinos?

A free spin is essentially a free go on an online slot game.

In online casino terms, a single bet on a slot machine is called a ‘spin’.

It refers to the physical action of spinning a reel on a slot machine, despite digital video slots only having a virtual reel. A free spin is a spin of the reels, or one single bet, given to you for free.

A promotional free spins bonus are the best way to make money!

Different Types of How Free Spins Work

Here are all the different types of how free spins work:

Free Spins in a Game

There are actually two different ways of getting free spins when playing slots online.

The confusion comes from the distinction between free spins bonus from promotions and free spins feature won during a game. The latter is when you get a given symbol combination on the reels or a certain feature that triggers a number of free spins.

Nearly all casino games offer some sort of winning free spins round. When it’s triggered you’ll get a set number of free spins automatically. You could also win extra bonuses like multipliers, depending on how that particular game works.

Free spins during a slot game are usually triggered with symbols on the reels like Scatters, Expanding Wilds, Sticky Wilds, Colossal Symbols or bonus feature symbols.

Free Spins Received from Promotions

The promotional welcome free spins bonus are the most popular form of free spins.

You will usually receive this via new signup and receive the special offer through some sort of marketing offer.

There are lots of top websites which provide these bonuses for new players.

You won’t be lucky enough to get these in the middle of casino games as they’re usually given when you first sign up to a website.

If you’re fortunate, you can get to have a go on the slot and possibly win some money without spending any of your own.

Deposit Free Spins

The online casinos’ bonus incentive “Deposit Free Spins” is where a new player deposits some money into their casino account to trigger a free spins bonus offer.

The most popular deposit free spins offering is deposit £10 get 50 free spins promotions bonus.

To claim your free spins bonus the deposit sum needs to be deposited for the verification of the “Play Free Spins” to be added.

No Wager Free Spins

The no wager free spins promotion is a hugely sought after casino promotion as require zero playthrough requirements before being able to withdrawal money.

Having the ability to keep what you win on the no wager free spins means all the funds in your casino account can be withdrawn instantly.

No Deposit Bonus Free Spins

The no deposit bonus free spins require zero deposits to be made in your casino account before the free spins promotions icon is available.

Non-depositing incentives do attract bonus hunters who have no intention to ever wager any real money so many online casinos are cautious of offering no deposit bonus free spins.

How Do You Use Free Spins?

Here is how you activate free spins promotions by following the instructions below:

  1. Click The Claim Button to select a desired online casino
  2. Click the Join or Sign Up button on the casino site to start the registration process
  3. Register Your Details to verify you are 18+
  4. Click the ‘Free Spins’ icon on the casino games window
  5. The free spins get added to your account
  6. When you click ‘Play’ in the widget, this will begin a session of Free Spins in a separate window
  7. Use the free spins to try and win some real cash payouts

Can You Win From Free Spins?

Yes, you can win real money from free spins.

But do be aware you will usually have to meet some criteria before you can withdraw any winnings. These can include having to wager a certain amount or meeting a minimum withdrawal value.

It’s important to check these terms and conditions before playing to make sure you know what’s required before you can withdraw what you win.

Are Free Spins Worth It?

Yes, free spins are definitely worth having.

The best part about them is you aren’t risking any of your own money by playing with them. You could even win some real money jackpots with a free spin.

They’re also great for new players who want to test out a game and get familiar with the features without spending anything.

Can you withdraw money from free spins?

The great news is that any winnings made from free spins offers can be withdrawn right away if you follow the terms and conditions.

Many casinos offer a wager-free bonus that does not require you to gamble a set amount of times before withdrawing any money.

Some casino operators do have many requests like you have to make a deposit prior to a withdrawal or set time limits in their terms and conditions.

What to look out for on free spins?

It’s a good idea to read through the casino operators terms and conditions for the free spin bonuses.

The T&Cs will vary from casino to casino, but common limitations to look out for can include:

  • Huge wagering requirements – must wager a set amount of bets before being able to withdraw
  • Winning limits – some casinos limit your winning total to like £500 maximum payout
  • Time restraints – after claiming the free spins the offer must be used within a few days
  • Incompatibility with other promotions – can’t put your free spins towards special jackpots or deals
  • Limited to certain slot games – some casino brands only allow free spins on select fruit machine games

Why Do Online Casinos Offer Free Spins Bonuses?

Online casinos offer free spins as an incentive to attract new players.

Online casino websites offer free spins bonuses in the hope you enjoy the gambling experience on their website and carry on playing by wagering your own money.

Casinos wouldn’t offer free spin offers if they didn’t expect to get anything in return.

The idea is that gamblers will sign up for a new casino to take advantage of the signup offer, then keep wagering once they have used up the free spin plays.

Free spins are generally a reward for new customers, refer a friend commission, following a social media group or sometimes rewarded on your birthday.

How Do I Earn Free Spins?

There are a few different ways to get free spins when playing slots online. Check out our tips below.

Sign Up to a New Site

Lots of online slot sites will give out free spins as a welcome bonus for new players. In many cases, you can get these without even making a deposit first.

Be sure to check the details of these offers before signing up, and ensure you can claim your bonus.

Make a Deposit

The simplest way to get free spins is via a welcome bonus. A lot of sites offer free spins in addition to, or instead of, a typical cash match bonus. The main offer might be something like “deposit £5 and get 20 to play with”, but the added bonus of “plus 30 free spins on X Game”.

Remember that free spins awarded via a promotion like this usually have some terms and conditions or a limit, as online casinos bonuses usually do.

Read the Terms and Conditions

To give one example of a limitation is a cap on the number of your potential winnings. This will be the amount that can you can convert to real money, from the bonus.

Say you might get 200 free spins. Despite how much you win from those spins, you can only ever withdraw £30 (eg). Or you might have to play your winning amount a set number of times before you’re allowed to withdraw (like a standard cash bonus). These are known as wagering requirements.

You will see the same with non-welcome bonuses. Check the terms of the offer to find out the wagering requirements and more. Free spin offers are usually on a given slot and there’s a requirement to deposit real money before you can have them. This won’t always be the case, but they can originate from interactive offers like a random reward.

Hunt Out the Free Spin Offers

Hunt around for zero deposit free spin offers. They’re quite rare these days, but some sites still let you have some free spins simply for opening an account, hopefully, without making a deposit.

This is a fantastic way to get something for free. Plus you get to try out the site and familiarise yourself with it at no cost to yourself. They’ll have a wagering requirement or cap, but with zero deposit needed there’s really nothing to lose by giving it a go.

So why not try out some of the slot sites with free spins today and see what you think!

How many free spins do casinos offer?

Check out a list of different free spin offers offered by some of the biggest online casinos in the UK:


Although free spins are a superb promotion when signing up with a new casino operator you really need to analyse and research the pros and cons.

The biggest complaint from gamblers is the wagering requirements which state you must wager a particular amount of real money before being able to withdraw your free spins winnings.

Or players who win a large jackpot and find out there is a winning limit on promotional offers to a maximum payout of £100 or specific real money value.

But if you are looking to try before you buy then the free spin promotions is a great way to explore the vast array of online slot games to experience.

The free spin bonuses vary from 5 free spins all the way up to 500 free spins. But don’t be dazzled by the promise of 500 free spins if it comes with a lot of T&Cs to make it impossible for the gambler to win any real cash big win payouts.

Consider which incentives will work out the best overall (whether that’s wager-free spins, zero deposit required or huge free spin quantities) and you can play safely in the knowledge that you’re getting an amazing deal as well as having fun playing online slots.

From the how free spins work in-depth guide you can see there is no one size fits all on how free spins work and the free spins bonus can vary massively when comparing online casinos.

James has almost a decade of experience in the iGaming Industry. Winning several awards including "UK Casino Affiliate of the Year" he uses his experience to research the UK market to source the best bingo welcome bonuses, highest casino slots real money payouts and free spins sign up offers.