The online casino industry can be relentless, especially when it involves the Unites States. With the federal government seemingly set on not allowing Americans to play casino games for real money, operators are having to navigate dangerous waters just to open their doors to players from the U.S.
Bodog knows this pain all too well. They were one of the largest brands in the U.S., growing by leaps and bounds in the early 2000s until their legs were cut off in 2006 with the passing of UIGEA. Despite this setback, the brand decided to continue taking play from this lucrative market, spinning off the U.S.-facing portion of their database and creating the Bovada brand. While the ownership of this casino is listed as a separate company as the Bodog sites, it is evident that this is just an arms-length relationship at best.
If you are an American looking to play casino games (and sports), then Bovada may just be the site for you! Let’s have a detailed look at the company.
If a company broke off their U.S. business to a separate company to protect the rest of the Bodog interests, it probably goes without saying that the Bovada casino is open to all residents of the U.S.
In fact, this brand is only available to American players; residents of other countries who click on the Bovada site will be redirected to Bodog from the homepage.
Long Company History
Weak Information About Their VIP Program
Dual Sports Betting Lines
Not As Many Big Promotions As When It Was Bodog
Is Bovada Legit for U.S. Players?
You’re damn right it is!
Bovada is probably the strongest brand in the U.S. facing market right now. With their rich history, and with the “backing” of the Bodog brand behind them, American players are going to have a very safe environment where they can play without any concerns.
For their casino offering, Bovada uses three different software vendors: Rival, Betsoft, and Real Time Gaming (they purchased a license of RTG a few years ago and did their own development on top of the original platform). This is excellent news for players at the site because although there are limited options for software that accept U.S. play, Bovada has selected the three best. Between the RTG games, the Betsoft 3D slots and the iSlots built by Rival, the catalog is one of the best we have seen in the U.S. market.
The casino loves to promote when players win big prizes (who’s kidding, we know they are earning more from the rest of the players) and they have an entire page dedicated to their recent winners.
The site has a full suite of casino games as well as a sportsbook and an area dedicated to horseracing.
I will gladly admit that I love to play casino games. I am not picky; I will spend my money on all kinds of table games, and at Bovada there are many for me to choose from. When I was writing this review, I was sitting in Canada, so I wasn’t able to play the games directly at Bovada, but I can tell you from experience that the roulette games they offer are fantastic. I recommend the European Roulette table.
On top of the great Roulette action, Bovada has a slate of other table games which are standard for most online casinos:
Caribbean Stud Poker
Classic European Roulette
Classic Single Deck Blackjack
Let ‘Em Ride
Let ‘Em Ride Classic
Pai Gow Poker
Tri Card Poker
Vegas Three Card Rummy
As I mentioned before, having taken the best slots games from the three providers gives you the best options for gameplay, themes, and graphics! The Rival Gaming iSlots provide a lot of fun content, while the graphics of the 3D slots from Betsoft are some of the best our there. As they purchased a license from Real Time Gaming, the jackpot games at Bovada do not hook into the network, so they are considerably smaller, but that shouldn’t stop you from playing those games.
The largest jackpot game that Bovada currently offers is Food Fight, which at the time of writing this review was up to over $630,000. You can check out the game and even try it for free if you like:
What all this adds up to is a spectacular array of games which you will no doubt enjoy if you are a slots player. There are hundreds of titles available; here are some of my favorites.
A Night With Cleo
As the Reels Turn 3: Blinded by Love
Baby Boomers: Cash Cruise
Best of Luck
Diamonds Down Under
DJ Moo Cow
For Love and Money
Hole in Won
Lost Secret of Atlantis
One Million Reels BC
Reel Crime 1: Bank Heist
Scary Rich 2
Scary Rich 3
Witches & Wizards
World of OZ
Zombies vs. Cheerleaders
Here’s a nice bonus if you are a video poker player: Bovada has a robust offering in their casino. Some casinos tend to think of video poker as a secondary game, but if you are like me, you know that us real casino players love to play these machines. For me, I like to stick to the original Joker Poker games, although sometimes I will mix it up and play the multi-hand versions of the game. Check out Joker Poker at Bovada right here:
They have a broad range of other variants available as well:
Bonus Deuces Wild 1 Hand
Bonus Poker 1 Hand
Bonus Poker Deluxe 1 Hand
Deuces Wild 1 Hand
Double Bonus Poker 1 Hand
Double Double Bonus Poker 1 Hand
Double Double Jackpot Poker 1 Hand
Double Jackpot Poker 1 Hand
Jacks Or Better 1 Hand
Jacks Or Better 10 Hands
Jacks Or Better 3 Hands
Jacks Or Better 52 Hands
Joker Poker 1 Hand
Joker Poker 10 Hands
Joker Poker 3 Hands
Joker Poker 52 Hands
Loose Deuces 1 Hand
I am not usually a big fan of specialty games in a casino; they are mostly made for casual players, and the odds are horrendous. Bovada, a site that is clearly catering to the recreational player has a few different types of Specialty Games available. Many of them are Bingo variants and scratch cards, but if this is your kind of thing, then you are all set (don‘t say I didn’t warn you though):
Cast For Cash
Itchin’ 2 Win
Sudoku Box Game
When Bodog started in the late 1990s, they were first and foremost a sports betting site. It is no surprise then to find that Bovada’s sportsbook offering is very robust. The site has been designed for mobile use, which is excellent with all the new in-game live betting options that are available to players these days.
As pointed out in the Likes and Dislikes section, Bovada currently has two sets of betting lines for players. This is a tactic used by a few sportsbooks to mitigate the damage of sharp bettors. The site has a way to track your betting with which they determine your skill level; if you are winning too much, you will see the “sharp” lines rather than the public lines. To me, this is disgraceful considering the maximum bet amounts are set so low that it is unlikely anyone can really beat them up too badly. I don’t mind that a sportsbook is looking to take action from recreational players, but they shouldn’t try to have it both ways here. Either increase the limits or stick to one set of lines.
As I am more of a recreational sports gambler, I can deal with the two-line system. If you want to bet on some sports in the middle of your casino session, then Bovada has all the action you could want. Look at all the sports you can wager on:
UFC / MMA
Bodog has always put customer service as a top priority over the years. They have always been known for fast response times and quick resolution of any issues that players may have. The move to Bovada has not changed this line of thinking, and the levels of service have remained the same. This is particularly important to me because there are too many casinos that seem to not care about their players. People are spending their real money on these sites, so being able to reach someone friendly and helpful when you have a problem is critical to the experience.
Bovada provides its players an excellent Live Chat functionality, where you can reach an agent within seconds. They also have a toll-free number for you to call if you like to hear the sound of a voice when you are having your issues taken care of, and for those of you who like it to be old-school, you can always send an email to the site.
Overall, I was hoping for a more aggressive set of promotions from Bovada. Given the aspirational aspect of the casino’s brand over the last two decades, the current promotions are relatively bland by comparison. I suspect that is just because they want to keep a lower profile than they once had, and you will probably find the VIP promotions to be more Bodog-like.
Let’s review a couple of offers currently found on the site:
Refer a Friend
I like what Bovada has done here with this promotion. Rather than have you get your friends to register and receive a flat bonus, Bovada encourages you to have your friends make bigger deposits as they offer you a 200% bonus on their deposit. Here’s how it works:
Spread the word with Bovada’s boosted Refer-a-Friend bonus. It’s now that much easier to cash in on your friends!
Here’s what you get:
Score 200% of your friends’ first deposits, up to $100 USD.
Refer as many friends as you want to pocket unlimited bonuses.
Here’s what your friends get:
Once they join, we’ll make sure your friends get started off right with up to $3,250 USD in welcome bonuses and instant access to our fully-loaded sportsbook, racebook, and casino.
Here’s how it works:
You send your friends a referral link
Your friends click, join and make a deposit
You get 200% to your account, up to $100 USD
Refer as many friends as you want via Facebook, Twitter, or direct link and score unlimited bonuses.
Bovada splits their Welcome Bonus offer into three different deposits, making it a little more palatable to players. There are two options for first-time depositors. The first is the standard deposit bonus for anyone using credit cards:
If you’re looking for excitement, you’ve come to the right place. We’re giving away $3,000 in welcome bonuses, allowing you to explore our selection of over 300 entertaining slots and classic casino games.The great news is that we’ll be giving you three times the welcome. Grab your bonus code and redeem it up to three times.
If you are willing to make a deposit with Bitcoin, then Bovada is going to reward you with an even better deal! Bitcoin deposits cost Bovada nothing, so they really want to encourage their players to try the cryptocurrency. For players, Bitcoin withdrawals are instant, which is the best way to get your money back from the casino. Here is the Bitcoin Welcome Bonus:
Bitcoin, the popular digital currency, is revolutionizing how we trade and use money. As electronic cash, it’s fast, easy to use and, even better, it’s now part of your welcome package. Score a 150% Bitcoin Casino Match Bonus up to $1,500 – redeemable three times – and a 50% Bitcoin Match bonus up to $500 to bet on sports when you join Bovada.
50% Match Bonus up to $500
150% Match Bonus up to $1,500
To me, it is a no-brainer to set up a Bitcoin wallet and use that service for making your first deposit at Bovada.
Ongoing Casino Bonuses
Bovada offers players an everyday 100% match bonus on your deposits, up to $150 for slots play and $100 for table games play.
Also, the site is currently running a Blackjack Weekends promotion, where you can earn an extra $100 in cash just by earning points playing Blackjack on the weekends.
Finally, Bovada runs a promotion called Table Mania Tuesdays. This offer is specific to table games players; here are the details:
Whether you’re into Blackjack, Roulette, Baccarat, War or the like, wager $250 on any of over 20 of our table games every Tuesday and we’ll send a $10 casino bonus your way on Wednesday.Tuesdays just got a whole lot more exciting. Swing by the casino and take the tables by storm to secure your $10 casino bonus every single week.
Seeing as Bovada only accepts players from the U.S., the deposit and withdrawal options are relatively limited. What I will say about Bovada is that they process payments very quickly; the people we have spoken with who play there say that this is one of the most important reasons they continue to use the site.
Here are the banking options:
For withdrawals, you can use:
The history of the Bodog/Bovada brand was built on aspirational behavior – players wanted to be a VIP, be invited to all the top parties and be treated like royalty. The site has run their promotional and VIP program with that in mind and continuing on today, Bovada has a VIP program that meets those demands.
At least, I think they do.
The Bovada Red Room is their VIP program. However, there are no details on how to qualify for the different levels, nor is there anything specific about what each level receives as rewards. Here is how Bovada describes the Red Room on their website:
Elevate your Bovada experience with next-level service, exclusive benefits and non-stop action inside Bovada’s Red Room. We believe that our players deserve special treatment, so we’re rolling out the red carpet and pulling out all the stops because that’s what the Red Room is all about. Our members enjoy exclusive cash rewards and offers; score weekly deposit bonuses; receive unparalleled, personalized customer service and so much more.
Red Room Events
Have a blast and attend the party of a lifetime. You’re on the list.At Bovada’s Red Room, we don’t just bring the party to you, we also bring you to the party. Get ready to globe-trot to coveted destinations and enjoy some of the most exciting events all over the map.
Exceptional players, exceptional rewards.
Benefit from special rewards and personalized customer service, exclusive only to Red Room members, and double the regular Bovada Casino rewards. Here’s what you can expect:
Weekly deposit bonuses
Exclusive Red Room offers
Convenient deposit options
Free expedited payouts
Exclusive prizes and bonuses.Take advantage of all the lucrative prizes and bonuses available to Red Room members.
While there isn’t much more in the way of details on the VIP program, the site does have a comp program which is easy to follow. Comp programs are important for players because they give you an opportunity to get a little extra for your money, essentially working out to a small bonus on your deposit.
At Bovada, you earn points for every $10 of real money wagered. Here is a breakdown of how many points you can earn:
3 points for every $10 bet
2 points for every $10 bet
1 point for every $10 bet
1 point for every $10 bet
This ratio improves for players as they reach higher VIP levels. Once you reach 100 points, you can redeem them instantly for $1 of real money. I always recommend this option to players as you want to get that cash back to the tables as quickly as possible.
I have been a big fan of the Bodog group of companies since they first arrived on the scene. The way that they treat their players is top-notch and worthy of commendation more than once in a review.
While the promotions at Bovada aren’t as exciting as the ones they used to run, there is still excellent value that comes from playing at this casino. If you are a poker fan, then you are out of luck, but slots players are going to find best-of-breed games in that category.
I definitely recommend that you grab one of the welcome bonuses and get playing!
This review was made by: LegitCasinosOnline.com Rating: 10 out of 10