When it comes to making payments online, for people who do not want to use their debit card or credit card (or make a direct bank payment) there are usually two choices – an eWallet or an internet banking payments facilitator. Examples of eWallets include PayPal, Skrill and Neteller, and examples of internet banking payments facilitators include iDeal, EasyEFT and GiroPay.
For people in Canada, this choice comes down to two options. For people who want to use an eWallet, they usually go for Interac. For people who want to make direct internet banking payments, they typically choose iDebit.
A Brief History of iDebit
iDebit was originally set up alongside InstaDebit, which itself was set up as long ago as 2004. InstaDebit was set up to allow people to make instant internet payments to merchants over the internet. As this proved to be successful, InstaDebit set up iDebit to allow non-Canadian customers to make instant bank payments from their account no matter where they were in the world.
However, in February 2020, all that changed. InstaDebit decided to withdraw iDebit from the global market and concentrate on Canadian markets instead. InstaDebit and iDebit practically offer identical services, although with iDebit customers receive the option of running their iDebit account as an eWallet, in a similar fashion to PayPal, Skrill, Neteller and Interac.
iDebit – Pros and Cons
- Extremely secure – uses bank-standard encryption.
- Accepted by an expanding number of online casinos.
- You do not need to open an iDebit account..
- Only available to players in Canada.
- Can only be used for withdrawals if you have an iDebit account.
How to use iDebit at Online Casinos
You do have the option to open an account at iDeal, but that is not necessary. Having said that, you can only really make withdrawals from an online casino (if available) if you have an iDebit account. By having an iDebit account, you are using it as a pseudo-eWallet, but you can use iDebit with an account as a ‘guest’.
You also need to have an internet banking facility at a participating bank. The list of participating banks is as follows:
- Bank of Montreal
- Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce
- National Bank
- Royal Bank of Canada
- Simplii Financial (formerly PCF)
- TD Canada Trust
To deposit at an online casino, you need to visit that casino’s cashier and choose iDeal as your payment provider. You can also select how much you wish to deposit.
Once you have okayed everything, a list of banks will appear containing all the banks that have accepted the iDebit scheme. Choose the bank that you wish to take your payment from, and which you have an account at.
An applet will then appear requesting that you enter your customer ID and the password associated with the bank account from which you are depositing money. This applet is provided by the bank and not by the online casino or iDebit, so it uses the same security protocols as your normal online banking facility. If everything is okay, your transfer will be given the go-ahead. Your money should be in your online casino account within less than a minute.
If you prefer, you can set up an iDebit account which means you have the option of transferring money from your bank account to your iDebit account, and then transferring money from your iDebit account to the online casino. You can only make withdrawals to an iDebit account from your online casino account if you have an iDebit account – you cannot make withdrawals from an online casino directly to your bank account via iDebit.
Creating an account at iDebit, making a payment from your iDebit balance and transferring funds from an online casino (or any other merchant) to your iDebit all come without a fee. Making a payment from your online banking facility will cost you CA$1.50 though, and transferring funds from your iDebit balance to a bank account will cost you CA$2.00. These fees are enforced by iDebit, and your online casino should not add any further charges for using the iDebit facility. If it does, then look for an online casino that does not.
While the majority of the people in the world use their debit or credit cards to make deposits at online casinos, others prefer to use alternatives such as PayPal. For those who want to do neither, they can use an alternative eWallet such as Skrill or Neteller, or any online banking payment facilitator available in their jurisdiction.
For online casino players in Canada, iDebit gives them to the best of both worlds. It can be used directly as an online banking payments facilitator, but it can also be used as an eWallet if the player chooses and signs up for an iDebit account. No matter the choice, players should remain aware of any fees that are charged.
No matter your own decision when it comes to using iDebit, please make sure that you gamble in a responsible fashion, and that you never gamble with more than you’ve put aside for the more important financial considerations of your life, like rent, food and utility payments.
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Do I have to maintain an iDebit balance in order make deposits at an online casino?
What happens if I want to withdraw and I don’t have an iDebit account?
What currencies can I use with iDebit?
Can I use iDebit if I am not a resident of Canada?