Information about live casinos
What do you get if you cross a real-life casino with internet streaming? No, it's not the start of a bad joke, but one of the many live dealer casinos that you can find online these days.
Live online casinos have improved a lot over recent years. From their early days of grainy videos to today's super-smooth playing experiences, they've helped players experience what many believe to be the magic mix in the casino world: the thrill of playing a live game while sitting on your sofa.
Unfortunately, not every live casino will offer you great service. Like any other gambling site, they might be bad at dealing with players or paying out big wins.
Here at Casino Meter, we believe that you should play on the best live casino possible, which is why we've put together a list of top live dealer online casinos and live casino guide.
Here, you can read about what makes a great live gambling site and how to find one, plus extra information about deposits, casino bonuses, and more.
Give yourself a few minutes to brush up on your live casino knowledge – it'll be worth it!
In this guide, you can learn more about:
What is a live online casino?
Live casinos, also called live-dealer casinos, are betting sites that offer live casino games streamed directly to their players.
The game action normally takes place in a studio, where the games are run by real people in real time. Like in a land-based casino, the dealer or croupier responds to the game as it happens. This way, players get to feel like they're actually in a physical casino.
With live games, the player also gets to hear the noises of a real-life betting establishment, such as the spin of the roulette wheel, the shuffling of cards, or even sometimes the conversation of live players at the table itself. Some sites even give the player the chance to interact with the dealer, much as you would in a real-life location.
Thanks to advances in streaming technology, live online casinos really started to take off after 2010, when high-speed internet meant a smoother playing experience. Today, many casino games are available to play in the live-dealer format. Roulette is probably the most popular, but it's easy to find blackjack, baccarat, poker, and other games on offer, too.
Live casinos pros and cons
People like live-dealer casinos for many reasons, but there are some drawbacks that we should be aware of, too. Here's a rundown of some of the positives and negatives of the live experience.
The obvious selling point of a live casino is that you get to feel what it's like to participate in a real-life casino game without leaving your home. You can interact with a real-life dealer or croupier, or even other players if a chat feature is available. This gives it the thrill of a live occasion and a sense of camaraderie that virtual online casino games don't have.
Another plus is the fact that most live casinos are mobile-friendly these days, so you can even experience the live feel while commuting to work or in the back of a car.
The live stream might also give you immediate access to tables that real-life visitors might have to wait for if they're there in person: after all, only so many people can fit around a physical table!
Live casino games are often played at a slower pace than your average online casino game, which requires a little extra patience. This may not be a bad thing, though, as it gives you more time to think about what you're spending. In fact, some countries have introduced rules enforcing slower game speeds in a bid to curb problem gambling.
The range of games at a live casino is also more limited. Table games such as roulette and blackjack are common, but it's very difficult to play slots or bingo games live, so you won't really see these. Nevertheless, developers are constantly coming up with new unique games and versions to offer live, so the selection is definitely growing rapidly.
Finally, it's very difficult to find live casino games that you can play for fun (in a free demo mode). The cost of running a studio is pretty high, so these games tend to require you to play for real money.
If you'd like to play other games without paying a penny, then you can always visit our free casino games page which has a wide selection of titles for you to choose from.
How to find a great live casino in the UK
Every online casino player has a right to expect a great playing experience, however, it doesn't always work out that way. Not to worry though, as we are here to help. If you'd like to improve your chances of finding a fair live casino, then our unique rating, sorting and filter system is here to help.
Our team of experts has scrutinized the performance of live casinos on this list and awarded them a special expert rating. This score considers a series of factors, including its customer service, its ability to pay out big wins, the number of complaints relative to its size, and more, so that you can get a quick idea of the casino's quality.
To see the very best of these sites, at least in our team's opinion, make sure the 'Best rating' tab is selected on this page. This will put the sites with the highest scores at the top of the list, and we advise you to start with these.
If you'd prefer to see new casinos, then you can do that, too, by selecting the 'Newly opened' tab, while 'Oldest' will simply give you the more established sites.
You can also use our series of filters to narrow down your list of live casinos to choose from. Some of the most popular are listed below, and we recommend you spend a few minutes playing around with them to find sites fitting your personal preferences.
- Casino games — As great as live casino games are, you may want to find some non-live varieties, like virtual slots, to play on for a while. This filter lets you do that.
- Payment method — Making sure your casino accepts your chosen payment method is important if you'd like to play for real money. This filter lists pretty much any provider you can think of, from Apple Pay to Visa.
- Withdrawal limit — This filter works as a toggle which you can adjust to the minimum monthly withdrawal limit that you'd like your casinos to have.
Frequently asked questions (FAQs) about live online casinos
Are there live casino bonuses?
Yes. Some casinos offer bonuses and promotions that are exclusively available to use on live casino games. Most "regular" deposit bonuses are also possible to use on live casino games if you wish.
Go to our list of online casino bonuses and choose 'Live games' from the 'Casino games' filter. This will give you a list of promotions available from UK live casinos today.
How do I make a live casino deposit?
Live casinos generally have the same deposit process as "normal" online gambling sites, and they try to make it as simple as possible: after all, they want your money!
Here's how to do it:
- Once you've opened your casino account fully, open the cashier section and click to make a deposit.
- Choose your preferred payment method.
- Enter the amount you wish to deposit.
- Follow the on-screen instructions (depending on your payment method).
- Double-check your details and click 'confirm'.
For most payment methods, the money should appear instantly or within a few hours, at which you'll be free to start playing.
Are live online casinos 100% fair?
All casinos on this list hold a license from the Gambling Commission (UKCGC), which holds them to strict requirements that protect the player's rights.
Live casino games are played in real-time, too, so you can see the dealer or croupier deal the cards or spin the wheel. Every spin or deal is truly random, just like it should be in a real-life casino.