Casino betting can be a harrowing experience for anybody. I know this more than anyone. I spent many years learning the ins and outs of gambling the hard way. Unfortunately, in my day there was no internet where I could log in and conveniently learn how to place bets on roulette or what the proper way to play blackjack was. I had to learn all that by myself.

It’s a different era now. Information is everywhere, but it’s just as hard as it’s ever been to find good and useful information. That’s why I threw in the towel and decided to take the time to put together this list of the best online casinos Think of it as a gift from an old timer. I will impart some basic bits of wisdom on you if you have the patience to hear them.

The first thing I want to address is the most basic thing of all. The issue of where to go play these casino games. The options are limitless. Well…almost limitless. You see, casinos aren’t legal everywhere. And not everyone has the money to fly to Macau on a whim. Especially if you live in Australia, like I have for the past 35 years. I haven’t even been to Vegas since the 1970s.

You see, today, you don’t really have to go anywhere in order to play casino games. And I am not talking about video games. You can leave those for the kids. There’s such a thing today as online casinos. Online! You can play real games for real money through the internet. You have to excuse me if this feeds into my Jetsons future fantasies. But it does. I never could have dreamed up something as strange and wonderful as the internet when I was a boy watching Jetsons cartoons and reading Flash Gordon comics.

But here I am, well into the new millennium, playing baccarat on my cellular telephone against other people scattered across the globe. I have never really had any other passion other than gambling and now I have access to it no matter where I am.

So now that I’m done preaching about how wonderful online casinos are, it’s time for a healthy dose of reality. Not all online casinos are trustworthy. Some have been known to just take your money and disappear. Others have been known to refuse to release your fairly won money. Some will even make scary threats when you call them. It’s a big, bad world, and there are some bad people in it. And some of these people run online casinos. Not all online casinos are bad, though.

Most online casinos are good and honest. Those are the ones you need to look for. You might be wondering how? I have compiled a short list below of my favorite casinos to play at. You don’t have to take my word for it, but it is a good place to start. All the casinos I list are honest and vetted.

They are all regulated and licensed in the European Union. These are serious businesses with serious interests to protect. Many of them are traded publicly on the stock exchange.

If you look in my eCOGRA section, I will go deeper into detail about what makes an online casino trustworthy. Suffice it to say that with this hand picked list of online casinos you can’t go wrong. Each one has something specific to offer different players. And the perks are enormous. Here is some more detailed information about my favorite online casinos:

Royal Vegas Casino

This is a great place to come gamble. It looks just like a casino in Las Vegas would! They certainly have me convinced. The graphics look very realistic. This is one of the industry biggies. They give new players $1,200 to play with along with the money deposited. This is one of the casinos that allow you to play from your cellular phone or tablet. If you have flash installed you don’t need to download anything else. You can just log in and play. All your credits will be in place. They have about 400 games to choose from, so there is no way you will ever get bored. The games are a healthy mix of table games and slot machines. I highly recommend this casino to those who are very discerning about production quality.

Grand Reef Casino

I have been an Australian for the past 35+ years, so there is no chance that I could put together a list of my favorite casinos and not include the Grad Reef. It is the Australian themed online gambling parlor. It looks like an underwater paradise. SCUBA diving along the great barrier reef was one of the things that brought me to Australia in the 1970s and made it hard for me to leave. I don’t go diving anymore, but I still love the underwater world. The Grand Reef Casino makes you feel like you’re in the midst of it all. I’m waxing poetic here, so I will cut to the chase. What makes this casino worth your time? They have a very large number of gifts and promotions for players who return on a regular basis. Their bonus is no slouch either, at $750. But there is a lot of stuff to be won in this casino besides money.

Spin Palace Casino

Now, I have an admission to make. I have a soft spot for slot machines. I just love them. I know, I know, serious gamblers know better and all. But you know something? I’m old and I like what I like. Slots are fun and there is just no better place to play them than at the Spin Palace. They built their entire casino on the premise of filling this particular niche. Now before you go and get all huffy about slots, let me tell you something you might not know. These are not the slots you played in your old local reservation casino, where you hunched over the machine and pumped money into it and never saw a dime. These slots have a payout rate of 98%. You read that correctly. In fact, some of these slots have a payout rate of just have to find them. Don’t look too hard, though, they usually advertise them as a promotion. Now do you understand? Spin Palace Casino has almost 300 slot machines, and all of them are loosey goosey with their money. About a quarter of these slots are progressive jackpots, which means that there is a one in four chance you’re playing at a machine that might cough up six million dollars at any moment. What to expect from a world class online casino, just click here.

EuroPalace Casino

Awkward name for an absolutely fantastic casino. Now, I have never been a europhile myself, but the EuroPalace is really top of the line in every way. It has this French Riviera look to it that looks real classy and makes you feel good about yourself while playing. You want to know what makes this casino special? It’s their bonus. Not the $200 match bonus, that small potatoes even though free money is free money. They don’t even make a fanfare of it, but if you sign up, you get 1,500 credits to go wild with and they don’t ask you to deposit a dime. You just show up, open an account, don’t deposit any money, and go wild with 1,500 dollars/euros/whatever currency you like. Whatever you win is yours to keep. If you know what you’re doing you should be able to put together a nice little pile of money this way with absolutely no money up front from your pocket. There are a lot of games to keep you busy, along the lines of 400 or so to choose from. The games are top notch. All the table games look like real tables and all the machines look nicer than what you might find at your local reservation casino.

JackpotCity Casino

The name says it all. Jackpots, jackpots, and more jackpots. Jackpot City Casino are not kidding. They have set their global casino payout rate at 98%. That means that on average, any game you play might yield a 98% return rate. Let me be clear. This does not mean you will see 98 cents to every dollar. This means that the house has a measly 2% edge. When there are so many progressive jackpots to play with—and not just in slots since many other games are tied up to progressive jackpots. When players at JackpotCity win, they win big. The amazing thing is that they also win often. That’s how they built their business model. They have a small edge they keep for themselves and they let everyone else take home huge prizes. They have a $500 sign on bonus, but also weekly reload bonuses, and all sorts of other incentives to keep you playing. You can also play at JackpotCity from any browser you like. Even your cell phone. They made it very easy for anyone to just dive right in and start playing.