Best Live Online Casinos & Promotions
Despite being a huge fan of slots, Casino Professor has collected a list of the best live online casinos for the UK and elsewhere. Playing at live casino sites can be an exhilarating feeling, but what really makes it special are the live dealers. Still, you want to make sure you’re playing at a top site for the awesome all-round experience you deserve.
Check out our the best online live casinos and take your pick.
What is Live Casino?
Despite the explosion of online casino’s popularity, one thing that’s always been criticised is the lack of social interaction. As stated by the Malta-based conference SiGMA’s website, online casinos focus on being “as practical as possible” whereas land-based casinos “try to preserve their social function as an overall entertainment center” (SiGMA – Land-based vs. Online Casinos: The Ultimate Showdown).
However, this internet industry never sits back and is constantly on the verge of new breakthroughs. This led to the birth of the live dealer casino many years ago.
In case you’re very new to the scene, you’ll have probably seen a live table in action. There are several live casino game types, with a few requirements in order to play:
- A steady internet connection
- A compatible device (e.g. desktop or iOS/Android mobile)
- An account
Once these three are in order, you can simply select a table to be taken to a stream of a real dealer issuing cards or spinning wheels – just like in a land-based establishment! This is how online casino combats a lack of social atmosphere, with a chat box included for interaction with the dealer. Respectful comments only, please.
While this was seen as a huge technological achievement a few years ago, game developers haven’t rested on their laurels with additional live casino developments since.
Best Live Casino Providers
Unlike slot machine development which has several major players, the production of live casino is much more focussed. That’s probably due to their complexity and expense – with studio space, dealers, technology, props and other costs to consider. However, the very best live casino providers always leave no stone unturned, giving players plenty of reasons to return:
- Tables open 24/7
- Fast-paced action (no waiting around to place bets)
- Professional and engaging croupiers
- Multiple games, not just roulette and blackjack
- Interactive experience
- Themed tables for special events
- Surprise bonuses and other promotions
Perhaps the most famous suite is Evolution Live Gaming, streaming from their three bases of Riga in Latvia, Vancouver in Canada (for players at certain Canada online casinos), and sunny Malta. They claim to have “the widest selection of shared and bespoke live tables” around, and one look at their mind-boggling number of options (eight specific gaming areas in total!) is evidence enough. Some sites have even bought exclusive tables from Evolution Gaming for their gamers.
But they’re the only players in town. While NetEnt Live Casino doesn’t have as many games as Evolution, they focus on creating the most advanced technology to achieve, what they describe to be, “Better Live Gaming”. With the growing iGaming trend moving towards smartphones and tablets, NetEnt focusses on mobile and uses Chroma Key technology to enhance the atmosphere.
The leading NetEnt Live casino in the Professor’s eyes is undoubtedly Mr Green (See: Mr Green Casino review). These two powerhouses joined forces in early 2018 to bring you Live Beyond Live – a new live casino mobile experience with unique technology.
Finally, Playtech Live Dealer states to be the largest supplier of this gaming type “in Europe and Asia”. They have also set up camp in Latvia’s capital of Riga and are known to create unique environments for some of their leading sites – similarly to Evolution. One such Playtech exclusive table can be found at Mansion (see our Mansion Casino review).
Although your actual selection of live casino games varies dramatically – first by studio and then by casino – there are a lot of classic card games overall.
Roulette and blackjack – plus their many variations – are obviously included. After all, they are the most popular table games among players at an EU casino!
However, live baccarat is widely popular in Asia and other areas as well so many studios offer tables for it.
Card poker variations – such as Hold’em, Three Card, and Caribbean Stud – are frequently found. Finally, those spinning Money Wheels – most notably, Evolution’s Dream Catcher – may be hosted.
Is Live Casino Rigged or Fixed?
It’s no secret that some gambling sites are scams. It’s also widely accepted that some land-based casinos rig or fix their games to issue certain results. This is, of course, unfair – so, naturally, there are plenty of questions and Google searches questioning live casino’s credibility.
However, the Professor believes that choosing a trustworthy live casino follows the exact same principles of selecting ANY genuine gambling site.
- Proper licensing: All live online casinos in the UK must be licensed and regulated by the Gambling Commission. A license from this kind of authority is a big indicator of trust, and all on this page have one from them or the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA).
- Regular game audits: Checks by independent bodies – such as eCOGRA – make it extremely unlikely that fixing is taking place.
- Prior reputation: Those that often pop up in lists of best casino sites are there for a reason – and a lack of fairness isn’t one of them!
How to Find Your Best Live Online Casinos
Alongside these hallmarks of trustworthy casinos, the best live dealer casino sites have a proper plan. What we mean by this is, instead of a casino seeing live casino only as an add-on or sweetener to slots, they would create dedicated sections on par with them.
Live Casino Bonus Promotions
One easy way to the heart of a gamer is to offer a top live casino welcome bonus. Too often, we’re left with casino bonuses for slots only – so any site who goes direct with a promotion for live dealers on arrival is bound to get some interest.
Better yet, live casino promotions for existing players wouldn’t go amiss either. Not just sporadic one-offs either, but regular deals (maybe weekly?) which cater perfectly for streaming fans. Just watch out for the wagering requirement weightings!
One site that nails live casino bonuses perfectly is 888 (see our 888 Casino review).
Live Casino for Android & iOS
All the top live casinos arrive fully equipped for Apple and Android mobile devices. Previously, it used to be reserved for computers only, due to technological restraints for providers and data costs/slow internet connections for players. However, studios have made significant progress with their hardware and software, while low-cost 4G data plans have opened up mobile live casino worldwide.
The Professor isn’t about to waste your time with anything else, so you can rest assured that every live casino option on this page is mobile-ready.
Live Casino Reviews
One great way to find your best live online casinos is to take a look at the casino reviews we publish on Casino Professor. If a casino’s live dealer section is any good, he’ll make sure to write an entire section on it.
Included within this part will be the actual number of live casino games that can be played. While a casino site might have Evolution installed, for example, this doesn’t mean they’ll host every single table in the studio. Instead, they can pick and choose a select package, so if you like to have a lot of choice then a large portfolio is required. Rizk is perfect for this (see our Rizk Casino review).
You can combine the live casino review with other useful aspects too. For example:
- PayPal casinos are popular
- Any good VIP program should include live real money wagers and offers.
- 24/7 support is useful if you run into any problems.
New Live Casinos
Whenever new online casinos impress the Prof, there’s a very good chance they include live dealers as well.
Therefore, if you’re after a new live casino, the above page is a useful resource.
Live Casino FAQ
Can anyone see me as I play?
Even though you’ve probably got a webcam on your laptop or front-facing camera on your mobile, live casino dealers or fellow players cannot see your side of things. It’s a one-way video stream.
Can I play at multiple tables?
That depends on the site and provider.
In some cases, you may be able to play at multiple tables of different games to enhance the action. On the other hand, you can simply watch others if you’d prefer to take a timeout.
Playing your standard games, poker or sports betting on the side is easily be done by opening another tab or window in your browser.
What happens if I lose connection?
This depends on the policy of each casino site and the game you were playing.
Often for roulette, if you lose connection before the spin takes place then your bets will be returned to you – although not always!
For blackjack, things are a bit trickier if you were halfway through a hand. In this case, you may be given the opportunity to complete the round on a temporary table once your connection resumes.
Be sure to check the terms and conditions or FAQs to understand how they work. Alternatively, contact their customer support.
Are there any live dealer casinos in the USA?
If you reside in a US state which has legalised online gambling then live casino sites should be everywhere. Check out our PokerStars Casino review for one such site.
What are private tables and how do I get invited to them?
Similarly to Las Vegas, casino sites may decide to put on special private tables for esteemed patrons. These could be for VIP members only, or perhaps high rollers.
Alternatively, a private table may be exclusive to players at one specific platform – as we mentioned above.
Entry requirements depend on the nature of the private table.