MasterCard was founded in 1966 by a network of California banks that wanted as competition for Visa, which was founded 10 years earlier. MasterCard grew to become the world’s #3 credit card networks, behind only Visa and China UnionPay. MasterCard transacts trillions of dollars of payment each year.
In the online gambling industry, MasterCard is behind only Visa (3391) in the number of sites its services. MasterCard credit, debit, reloadable prepaid cards, and gift cards are deposit methods at 3,355 online gambling sites worldwide. For all practical purposes, MasterCard is available to fund your account at any legitimate online cardroom.
Behind the scenes of a Mastercard transaction
This is the sequence of events for every purchase made with a Mastercard credit card:
- The consumer uses his or her Mastercard to purchase something from a merchant.
- The merchant sells the transaction to a Mastercard-licensed acquiring company for the purchase amount minus a processing fee.
- The acquirer processes the transaction through the Mastercard system.
- The card-issuing bank reimburses the acquirer for the transaction, minus their processing fee.
- The original charge posts to the consumer’s account.
- He or she is then responsible for paying the issuer the full amount.
Types of Mastercard products
Mastercard currently offers three card types:
- Credit cards: Provides a line of credit for you to make purchases, with the agreement that you’ll reimburse the card issuer within a set time period.
- Debit cards: Though it can be used like a credit card to acquire goods and services, it uses the cash value of a bank account rather than a credit line.
- Prepaid cards: Similar to a debit card, but does not require a bank account.
All three of these Mastercard products can be used at many online poker rooms.
8 Ways Mastercard Protects Consumers
Mastercard offers these programs to protect its cardholders. Though Mastercard and the card-issuing bank provide a number of methods to protect your purchases, there are also several ways you can protect yourself from theft and fraud:
- Zero liability protection for charges that you did not make.
- SecureCode produces a private code that merchants never see, shielding your online purchases with enhanced security.
- ID Theft Protection program includes:
ID theft alerts, Resolution services, Wallet replacement
- Use the notification/alert options offered by your card issuer.
- Sign up for Mastercard ID Theft Alerts.
- Don’t let unauthorized users make purchases with your Mastercard.
- Avoid making financial transactions while connected to an unsecured public wireless network.
- Research the online casino before opening up an account.
MasterCard for US Poker Players
Bovada, Slots.lv, BetOnline Poker, Sportsbetting Poker, and Ignition Poker all accept MasterCard deposits from US players. In the New Jersey regulated online poker market, sites like PokerStars New Jersey, Borgata Online, PartyPoker New Jersey, WSOP.com New Jersey, PalaPoker.com, PlayMGM New Jersey, and 888 Poker New Jersey all accept MasterCard payments. William Hill and 888 accept MasterCard deposits and withdrawals, while the remaining poker sites only accept MasterCard deposits.
In the early months after New Jersey’s online poker rollout, many MasterCard deposits declined. Officials and executives have worked together to smooth out transactions, but some MasterCard payments still decline. In the Delaware online poker market, the poker sites for Dover Downs, Delaware Park, and Harrington Racecourse all accept MasterCard deposits. In the Nevada poker market, WSOP.com Nevada allows MasterCard payments.
MasterCard for European Poker Players
Though MasterCard for US players has some limits and restrictions, MasterCard is a safe a reliable choice for European, Asian, and South American poker players. Most online poker sites offer MasterCard as a deposit and withdrawal choice. William Hill Poker, 888 Poker, Paddy Power Poker, Ladbrokes Poker, Bet365 Poker, Betfred Poker, Betfair Poker, and PokerStars are just a few of the hundreds of online card sites which accept MasterCard deposits.
Maestro Debit Cards
Maestro is MasterCard’s debit card, which accepted as a payment method at most online poker sites. Usually, if MasterCard credit works at a gaming site, then Maestro debit should work. One of the benefits to using the Maestro Debit Card is that (theoretical) identity thieves can only drain a debit card to $0, while they could charge thousands of dollars of debt with a credit card. Debits cards are useful for bankroll management if you are a problem gambler, because you can’t lose more than you have. Debit cards don’t require interest payments, though MasterCard credit cards offer better rewards.
MasterCard Prepaid Cards
MasterCard and Neteller released two prepaid cards that poker players should like: Net+ Prepaid MasterCard and Net+ Prepaid Virtual MasterCard. Each is a reloadable prepaid card that you can use not only for your poker play, but also in millions of retail locations and ATMs around the world. With the Virtual Card, you have the ability to enjoy online shopping with added ease and security.
For American poker players using the Net+ prepaid card method, anywhere MasterCard deposits are welcome, you should be able to use your Net+ card. A prepaid card like Net+ also allows you to keep your bank information more private by adding some sort of a barrier between the operating site and your personal bank while still having the safety and security of MasterCard.
As time passes, all the various forms of online banking merge. While Neteller and Skrill want their name on a MasterCard credit card, the MasterCard network has created an e-Wallet branded with its name: MasterPass. The MasterPass digital wallet is designed to enhance the buying power of MasterCard cardholders. Due to the widespread use of e-Wallets these past 20 years in the online gambling industry, many MasterCard users might prefer to use MasterPass for poker deposits. With this online payment option your payment and shipping information are stored securely in one place by your bank. This makes paying online easy and safe.
Mastercard Securecode bolsters the existing security on all MasterCard credit, debit, and prepaid cards. When you sign up for the MasterCard Securecode, you create a code that will be required for any online transaction. When you make a payment on the top poker sites that accepts MasterCard, you will be asked to enter your SecureCode before the payment can be processed. This helps eliminate fraud with online merchants and poker sites alike.
MasterCard Deposits vs. Withdrawals
Although many poker sites take MasterCard deposits, there are still quite a bit of sites that will not process MasterCard withdrawals. This has more to do with MasterCard’s reluctance to handle poker payouts than the card sites themselves. For those who want to make MasterCard deposits, but who need an alternative payout method, here are some options below.
Bank Wire Transfers – This is a safe and rather fast withdrawal option. Though there is usually a fee, bank wire transfers are one of the most secure means of collecting your winnings. Bank wire transfers typically take anywhere from 1 to 5 days for your money to arrive, but payouts might take longer. If you don’t mind the fees or the longer wait, this is the best option when it comes to security.
Courier by Check – Waiting for a foreign check to arrive at your bank can be a beating, but the courier check is delivered to your door via FedEx, UPS, or another courier service. This option requires a waiting period and a fee, but many consider it the most convenient payment method.
Bitcoin Withdrawals – Bitcoin is one of the direct ways and the quickest for withdrawing your money. Bitcoin is a virtual currency for deposits and withdrawals at many online poker sites but may or may not be paired with MasterCard online poker deposits. Funds clear typically immediately and take no longer than 12 hours. At many sites, Bitcoin payouts take 1 to 15 minutes.
Frequently Asked Questions
How quickly will a Mastercard deposit post to my poker account
Your approved credit card transaction will post to the poker site’s bank account instantly. Your account balance should reflect the deposit as quickly as the site updates.
Will I qualify for the online poker welcome bonus if I make my first deposit using my Mastercard?
Yes, you’ll be eligible for the welcome bonus. Make sure to read the poker site’s Terms and Conditions page to see if there are restrictions to how the bonus may be used.
Are there fees for making a deposit with a Mastercard?
Your credit card will not charge you fees since the deposit is treated like a regular purchase. Most poker rooms will not charge you a fee, but some might pass their processing fees to you, the customer. Review the casino’s Terms and Conditions to see what their fees entail.
Are there limits or restrictions to the size of a Mastercard-based deposit?
Your credit card issuer will restrict your deposit to the size of your available credit limit. Every online poker site has maximum and minimum requirements for deposits. If the deposit page doesn’t outline the rules, then you should review the site’s Terms and Conditions for this information.
Will my deposit count towards my card’s reward program?
Definitely. Your credit card will treat the deposit like a purchase, so it will be reflected as such by the rewards program.