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Should Casino Listings Revisit Their Review System?

Many casino players rely on Casino Listings for an objective review of the different online casinos in order to decide where to play and which casino to trust. Overall, they do a very good job. But lately, I find myself comparing some casinos which have the same number of stars on the site and wonder if casino listings might have missed something.

For example, take the casinos in the Jackpot Capital casino group which includes, Jackpot Capital, Grande Vegas, Lucky Club, and Slotastic. They have very good customer service, process and pay their players on time and have the same game lineup that the casinos in the Club World Group have. Yet the Club World Group casinos have mostly 41/2 stars while the Jackpot Capital casinos have mostly 4.

I know you would think that it's okay because having 4 stars is pretty good. However, what about casinos like Slots Plus and Sun Palace. They also have 4 stars. But their customer service is not up to par and they are very slow when it comes to paying players. Why do they deserve 4 stars like the jackpot capital casinos and the Slotocash casino group which also has good customer service and process and pays quickly?

If you ask me, I think casinos like Slotocash and Jackpot capital deserve 41/2 stars like the casinos in the Club World group, while slots plus and Sun palace deserve less than 4 stars.

My point is if you go through some 4 star casinos. You would think that they are the same in terms of customer service and payment processing. But that's not correct. As I point out, some are much better than others. Because of that, shouldn't these differences be taken into consideration in the reviews and the assignment of stars by Casino Listings?

3 members gave thanks for this useful post: CL-Ed, barbadosslim93, kerch123

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barbadosslim93's picture
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3 March 2015 - 2:07pm

I like your blog, newflorida, please keep it up as I enjoy seeing someone else's opinion on the world of online gambling.

Here are my personal thoughts on the review system here and what I have seen since I began using the site many years ago:

I think the reviews are a bit fluid in that they can change given recent history on payouts and such, and you could see ratings change when payout issues arise or policies change. There are also other factors that could potentially get a casino a 4 star review even though they could be slower on payments, etc.

Let's say that there is a casino that is great on payout speed (2 days), but its bonuses are capped and have a high play through requirement (100x) and has weekly withdrawal limits of $5,000. Could that casino be the just as good as a casino that has excellent bonus terms (all cashable, play through of 15x) and is a bit slower on payouts (5-7 days) but has no withdrawal limits?

I'm not sure, but I think that its possible that both of those casinos could be graded 3-4 stars based on the varying issues they have and speeds, and possibly the same. I guess the real answer would have to come through Ed, as I am sure he will be able to give a much better analysis as to how the site does its reviews.

With that being said, I have been visiting CL for several years, and have found their reviews to be honest and reliable, and I can only think of one or two sites that I disagreed with on rating. You don't see many sites willing to dive deep in to analyze some aspects of casinos, or many that will actually criticize them for policies on a regular basis, even if it comes at the expense of outgoing traffic. CL is the most reliable online casino site because of this, and is the reason I keep coming back.

1 member gave thanks for this useful post: newflorida

CL-Ed's picture
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4 March 2015 - 12:01am

Thanks for your excellent post newflorida.

I totally understand where you're coming from and I think that the points you make are fair.

Slim touches an important point which affects U.S.-friendly casinos way more than others and that is that their ability to pay players in a timely manner fluctuates from time to time. Let me elaborate on that a bit.

This is due to their need to use 3rd party payment processing companies that work to move money around despite the attempts by the US government to block it. These companies come and go, and in the past some have disappeared overnight with a lot of money, leaving the casino operators in no position to pursue or recover it. This means that many are wary of leaving any money in their accounts with the processors for fear that it will disappear. So the process, as explained to me by the owner of a U.S. friendly casino, goes something like this:

1. Player submits a withdrawal request and the casino goes through its regular vetting process, checking ID and authorisation forms etc.
2. The casino uploads the approved withdrawal request to the payment processor.
3. The processor approves it and sends back a confirmation. This step is not immediate and can take days depending on the processor and where the money is being sent and the method used.
4. The casino then sends the money to the processor which has to wait to receive and confirm it.
5. The processor initiates the payment and informs the casino.
6. The casino confirms with the player that the withdrawal has been sent.
7. The player receives the money.

Now the obvious thing here that everyone will say is why can some casinos can pay people in the USA within a couple of days, while others can take weeks? I can't give a definitive answer to that because I don't know how each individual casino structures their operations as it is naturally a well kept secret but I have a few guesses:

1. The casino could be cutting out step 4 above by leaving money in the hands of the processor to handle daily payments. This makes the payment process quicker but is risky for the casino for reasons stated.
2. The casino group may have set up its own private payment processor. In this case there would be no risk of funds disappearing and everything can be done electronically and instantly.
3. The casino is paying with employees that manually use face to face money transfer services like Western Union or equivalents. This can be quick but the fees are ridiculous.

That taken into account, here are my thoughts about a few of the groups that you mentioned, plus a few more that I regard as reliable for people from the USA:

Mainstreet group (Slots Plus etc): have been around now for well over a decade. They are not a fly by night operation and they have always paid players. I agree though that their current delays put them in a lesser light than some of the other groups, but I feel that they have well and truly proven themselves to be trustworthy. I believe them when they say that they are trying to do better, as I have seen them do better in the past.

Sloto'Cash group: currently among the quickest payers for Americans, but go back 12 months and look at their review comments and people were saying the exact same thing about them that you guys are saying about Mainstreet now. Which goes to show these things change over time.

Intertops / Jackpot Capital group: I agree they are one of the best options for U.S based players. Similar to Mainstreet, they have been around for a long time and have proven themselves to be reliable.

Club World group, Bovada, 3Dice: All excellent options for U.S. based players.

Tropica Casino group: Probably the only other good group if you like Rival casinos.

Everyone else: Apologies if I have forgotten anyone particularly good, but if it was me I wouldn't go there.

So, to get back to the original point, rather than increase Jackpot Capital group's ratings I am inclined to lower the Club World group's. I think in contrast to a European based casino that has a great choice of new games and the ability to pay players within hours (like this one we recently reviewed and gave 4 stars), they aren't really worth the 4.5 stars unless you are based in the USA. But bear in mind that we write the reviews for U.S. friendly casinos with American players as the audience so the ratings reflect that moreso than a direct comparison with the European casinos. We should probably try harder to bring them into line with each other and as I say, I think this will mean the lowering of ratings of some casinos rather than raising others.

We are always grateful to have feedback about the payment times of casinos, particularly the U.S. facing ones. We check them when we first review them and from time to time when our testers play there but with hundreds of casinos to keep track of it can happen that things change for a while before we become aware of it.

In terms of customer service the way we test is to contact them as a player and see how long they take to respond, then ask a few mundane and curly questions and see what happens. I can appreciate that those conversations are different to those you would have when chasing money, but I can also see how the CS people have no control over a payment process which is out of their hands. Unfortunately this is the nature of unregulated online gambling for people from the USA. It is far from ideal but its the best you guys have at this point in time.

1 member gave thanks for this useful post: newflorida

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