Betting using Ukash

There are many ways to fund gaming accounts online. Some methods are subject to pre-set spending limits. Many, such as major credit cards, may require pre-authorization or entail a time-consuming approval process. Fees can also be a concern, too, especially for bank wire transfers or other cash transfer services.

That’s why more and more online gaming services are offering virtual banking options such as Ukash, a well-respected electronic cash and global e-commerce brand. Ukash is operated by Smart Voucher Ltd., regulated by the U.K. Financial Services Authority as an Electronic Money Institution. Noted for its flexibility, security and convenience, Ukash offers a prepaid system as a cash alternative so that consumers worldwide can make purchases and payments on the Internet using a unique 19-digit code.

Ukash grew out of Scott Thomson’s concept pioneered in 2001 for a “Smart Voucher Personal Payment System,” based upon the creation of a randomly generated, one-time-use unique voucher number. Based in London, Ukash began growing in 2007 to serve customers in eight countries outside the U.K.: Belgium, Germany, Italy, Portugal, Russia, Spain, the Netherlands and Ukraine.

The company’s reach has expanded since then to include Denmark, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, South Africa, Brazil, Mexico, Colombia, Argentina and 39 other countries around the world. In fact, services are now available at over 420,000 physical points of purchase across six continents.

In both 2011 and 2012, Ukash was honoured by Her Majesty The Queen with the Queen’s Award for Enterprise in the International Trade category. The award is presented annually in recognition of U.K. businesses that deliver “substantial growth in overseas earnings and improved levels of commercial success globally.”

In 2010 and 2011, the Ukash global e-money network reported 85% year-on-year growth. Projected growth for 2012 remains in excess of 70%. What’s more, customer satisfaction is extremely high, as indicated by a 2001 survey showing that 89% of customers say they would recommend Ukash.

Currently, some 1,126 gaming sites accept the service for deposits, and of those fully 1,034 use English as their primary language. Among them are most of the major Internet-based casinos, such as Bet365 Casino, 888 Casino and Party Casino, to name just a few of the leaders. Ukash is also a highly favoured option at many poker and bingo sites, as well as the online sports betting venues of such high street bookmakers as Paddy Power, Ladbrokes and William Hill.

For online players who do not like using their bank or credit cards online, or those who may not have access to a bank account, Ukash provides a private way to use banknotes and coins. The player simply visits a nearby Ukash outlet, hands over the cash and receives a Ukash voucher worth that amount. Then, when logged onto a gaming site, selecting the Ukash payment option enables a deposit to be made by typing in the 19-digit voucher code and the voucher value. The processing is instantaneous. It’s just that easy.

If an amount less than the full voucher value is to be deposited, a new Ukash “change” voucher with a new voucher code is issued, which can then be used in exactly the same way. The change voucher can be issued via email, SMS or presented on-screen, depending on the web site being visited. No additional fees are charged.

At some gaming sites, such as Ladbrokes, a minimum deposit may be required, typically on the order of £10. One drawback is that gaming web sites are not set up to issue vouchers for withdrawals, so another financial method must be selected to receive payments. Otherwise, Ukash is one of the fastest, safest and most convenient of all ways to conduct betting via the Internet.