What exactly is a sweepstakes casino, and how different is it from a normal online casino? Are you really even gambling if you use a sweepstakes casino? The answers to these questions are a little complicated, so let’s take a closer look at them.

What are Sweepstakes Casinos?

The US gambling industry is growing rapidly, and this means that there are opportunities for different kinds of gambling venues to spring up, both online and in local venues. Sweepstakes casinos are becoming more popular as many gamblers prefer the sweepstakes model. These casinos allow players to buy ‘coins’ for real money or to earn similar coins in various ways. The coins can then be used to play at the sweepstakes casino.

Many players feel that the experience of playing at a sweepstakes casino is somewhere in between playing at a social casino, which is generally a free-to-play, just-for-fun experience, and playing at a general casino, where the emphasis is all on the real-money play. At a sweepstakes casino, there is a fun, social feel to the experience, with the additional benefit that you have the chance to redeem your sweep coins, either for prizes or for real money.

How Do Sweepstakes Casinos Work

In a sweepstake casino, you do not deposit real money into your account, but rather use your money to buy coins, which are effective credits that you can use to play the various casino games on offer. Many casinos offer ‘gold coins’ and ‘sweeps coins’, which work in slightly different ways.

For example, you may be able to buy a package of gold coins and win some bonus sweeps coins for doing so. Read the terms and conditions at your sweepstakes casinos carefully to ensure that you understand exactly what the different types of coins can be used for.

Why are there two types of the coin?

Sweepstakes casinos usually use two kinds of virtual currency. One is generally known as sweepstakes cash or coins. These are the credits you can use to play real casino games, and also the coins that can be redeemed for cash or prizes.

In addition, sweep casinos offer another type of currency, usually known as gold coins, which do not hold any direct monetary value but are a currency more linked to the social aspect of the sweep casino experience. Remember that different casinos may use slightly different terminology, and offer different benefits and features with each currency.

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Are sweepstakes casinos legal in the US?

Sweepstakes casinos are legal in many parts of the world, and that includes 49 states within the US. They are often legal in places where ordinary gambling activities are restricted because they simply follow a different model.

You do not deposit any money directly when you ‘gamble’ in a sweeps casino, and there is always a way to play there without purchasing any credits, therefore fulfilling the ‘no purchase required’ principle that sets sweepstakes apart from other types of wagering experience.

How do I play for free at a sweepstake casino?

There is always an opportunity to play for free at a sweeps casino. The number of ways to obtain free sweeps coins will vary between casinos, but they will all be only too happy to explain to you how to get them. Often, there will be a welcome package of coins just for signing up at the casino. Specific games may also allow you to win sweeps coins, and often there is a mail-in offer that allows you to access more coins.

At many sweepstake casinos, you will get a bonus package of free coins whenever you purchase a package of the paid version of the casino’s coins, usually known as gold coins. It is highly advisable that you sign up for promotional emails as these will often let you know about extra ways to get hold of sweeps coins.

Can I really win real cash at sweepstakes casinos?

Yes, players regularly win real money from sweepstakes casinos, but the whole process is a little different from playing at a regular casino. Any participating player may win any one of a number of predefined prizes every sweepstake session. Just like in an ordinary casino, there is no guarantee of a payout, but prizes are regularly awarded, and sweepstakes casinos tend to be transparent about when and how often they are paying out.

You will have to verify your identity and show proof of age before you are able to receive any cash winnings. This will involve having to upload a government-issued photo ID, which can generally be any official state or national ID, including a driver’s license or a passport. 

How old do I need to be to play at sweepstakes casinos?

You might assume that you can play at a sweepstakes casino even though you are underage because you are not gambling in quite the same way as at an ordinary casino, but you would be wrong. Sweepstakes are still a form of gambling, and you must be at least 18 years old to sign up at a sweeps casino in the US.

The age limit is taken seriously, and any legitimate sweep casino will check your age and ask for proof in the form of documentation that shows your date of birth. Age limits on all kinds of gambling, including sweeps casinos, are strictly enforced across the US.

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Where can I play sweepstakes casino games?

There is a wide choice of sweepstakes casinos where you can sign up and play for fun or for real prizes. Some of the more popular online casinos you can play at include Fortune Coins Casino, LuckyLand Slots, and Chumba Casino.

All in all, sweepstakes casinos can be a fun and social way to play online casino games, even in places where other types of gambling are restricted, while still retaining the chance to win real cash prizes. It is always possible to play for free, just for fun, but there is also the opportunity to top up your account with gold coins. For many players, sweepstakes casinos are the perfect option when it comes to playing slots and other casino games online.