Bancontact: An easy-to-use means of payment
While those familiar with the online gambling industry are familiar with the most popular payment processors worldwide, there are many other brands that have a strong local presence in various markets. Because of their popularity, often established decades ago, they are essential to the success of casinos operating in certain countries.
An excellent example of this type of market penetration is the Bancontact card, a product also known as Mister Cash. This debit card system was introduced by Belgian banks from 1979 onwards, and eventually saw the two competing systems (Bancontact and Mister Cash) combine into a single network serving the whole of Belgium. Since 2006, the system has also made it possible to make online payments similar to those made with Visa and MasterCard-branded cards worldwide.
Today, the service is extremely popular with both land-based and Internet merchants in Belgium, where it is said that more than 80% of all Internet merchants accept the card. Users can also find their accepted cards in a reasonably large number of shops in the Netherlands (and, to a lesser extent, in the UK). Online, cards were used in around 27 million different transactions in 2015, making it a truly important player in the world of payment processing.
How to make a deposit using this method
To begin with, you must have a bank account with a Belgian bank that participates in the Bancontact network. You also need to register in a casino that accepts this deposit method. This should not be a problem, as there are many reputable casinos in Belgium, and most of them accept this card.
Once you are ready to make your transaction, you will want to take a look at the list of options in the cashier of the gaming site you are playing at. You should see Bancontact as a specific option that can be selected. Once you have made your choice, you will need to enter your name, card number, expiry date and verification code, as well as the amount you wish to deposit.
This is where the process differs from using, for example, a Visa or MasterCard. Rather than processing your payment immediately, you will be directed to your bank’s online banking system. There you will need to confirm that you want to make the funds transfer, just as you would if you were paying your bills on the Internet.
Once confirmation is received, you will be returned to the casino. Assuming there are no problems, the money should be transferred to your account immediately, allowing you to start playing in a matter of moments.
The advantages of Bancontact
Essentially, Bancontact has the same advantages as those you will find with any credit or debit card. The fact that it is so widely used in Belgium makes it an easy way for almost every gambler in the country to get into online gambling. It also shares the speed and ease of use found with other similar cards.
To be fair, it is not as convenient as using a Visa or MasterCard, as it involves an extra verification step. But it adds very little time or complexity to the process, while providing additional security against identity theft or fraud. As you need to be able to log in to your bank account for these transfers to work, even someone with your card information will find it difficult or impossible to spend your money. We also appreciate the fact that it is a debit system, which means you cannot go into debt using it.
F.A.Q: Frequently asked questions about Bancontact
Can this method be used in other countries?
It is surprising that Bancontact has a reasonable level of coverage outside Belgium, and that this can be extended to certain foreign gaming sites. A large proportion of the transactions made with these cards take place in the Netherlands, and you will also see that they are sometimes accepted in the United Kingdom. However, this product does not have a global reach.
Can I treat this card as a credit/debit card?
As this is a hybrid debit system that requires verification of your bank account, you can only use this card where it is specifically supported. This means that if you find « credit card » or something similar as an option on a bank screen, you will not be able to use your Mister Cash card by this method.
What other options are available?
Of course, other credit and debit cards can also be used in a very similar way to this option. If this is not possible, other bank transfer options can also be offered to you, such as bank transfers. Finally, you can try to link your current account to an e-wallet such as Skrill or Neteller.