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Why Slots are Named Pokies in New Zealand

The most popular casino games across the world are pokies. In many regions, they are known as slot machines, puggy and other names. The name “pokies” is widely popular in Australia and New Zealand. So, if you happen to visit these countries, you will see that there is no difference between slots and pokies. The term “pokies” is widely used at brick-and-mortar NZ casinos as well as at casino sites that cater to online kiwi players. But how slots got the name pokies?

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There are a number of online casinos in New Zealand that offer pokies. Practically, all gaming sites that we recommend on our website offer to play online pokies. So, choose the best casino that suits your preferences and play pokies for real money.

Origin of the Name “Pokie”

People from Australia and New Zealand like giving abbreviations and short names to the common words. So, it isn’t difficult to assume that the term “pokies” is short for poker machine games. But poker and slots are different things. Still, in the early 1900s, when players visited only land-based casino venues, there were two types of gambling machines: with slots and with poker. Both machines were pretty similar technically, so it didn’t make a difference to players how to call these machines.

With the rise of gambling in these countries, brick-and-mortar casinos used to place poker machines next to slot machines. It’s important to mention that in New Zealand poker machine games were introduced before slot machines. So, when slots appeared, many gamblers confused these two types of machine games. And they started calling both of them just pokies. Nowadays, this term is only used to name slots in New Zealand, Australia, and some European countries.

There is another version of how the term “pokie” originated in New Zealand. To play slot machines at malls or land-based venues, players needed to insert coins. And when they won, the machine would pop out coins and players collected them. But as the technology was not as developed as today, the slot machines were slow to pop out the coins. Meanwhile, excited players would poke their fingers into the machine. So, the term “pokie” could come from the phenomenon of poking a slot machine.

Are There Differences Between Pokies and Slots?

New players who have never gambled before often take pokies and slots for different things. But in fact, they are completely the same. The difference is in how people from different regions call it. Kiwis call them pokies, while the UK players call them slots. Gamblers from North America will be definitely confused with the term “pokie” taking it for a poker game.

Regardless of where you play pokies in New Zealand, at a land-based or online casino, the game rules remain the same. Before playing pokies for real money, you need to make a deposit or buy casino coins. Then, you just open your favorite pokie and make some spins. If the result is great and you win a sum of money that overtop your initial bet multiple times, you can cash out these winnings.

In any part of the world, playing online or offline, pokies or slots are games powered by the technology of random number generators. It ensures honest play and fair results.

How to Choose Online Pokies Right

Many players and as many tastes. So, the first criterion to choose a pokie game is your preference. If you enjoy classic fruit-themed pokies, choose one of them. If you prefer something modern with Egypt or space theme, then decide on this type of game. And only then get to choose a pokie by other criteria.

Pokie’s payback

All casino games have a certain return to player. This is called the RTP percentage. It doesn’t have an impact on your current winnings, but in the long run, you can take a percentage of your bets back. The higher the RTP, the more bets you can return. So, choose pokies that have a higher RTP percentage of more than 95%. You can check it in the game rules section.

Special features

Most pokies have many in-game features and symbols. The most common are wild and scatter symbols. But there are advanced pokies that also have bonus games with free spins, cascading reels, gamble games, bonus re-trigger function, buy bonus feature, and so on. The more features, the better because they multiply your wins by several times.

Ways to win

There are pokies that have only 5 or 10 pay-lines. And there are pokies with thousands and millions of ways to win. The latter is way better for players as their winnings can come from various winning combinations. And all of them are different at each spin. Most old version pokies have just a few ways to win. Besides, players can adjust the number of available pay-lines, which decreases or increases their odds of winning. But in this case, the bet itself also fluctuates.

Betting limits

Some pokies may have low or high betting limits. Depending on your bankroll, you can choose pokies with low betting limits or high betting limits. For example, if you play with low or medium stakes, it’s better to choose pokies with low minimum bet limits. On the other hand, if you are a high-roller, we recommend choosing high minimum bet limits.

In Conclusion

Now you know a little more about the history of the most popular casino games in New Zealand. Pokies are a type of game that is widely played all around the world. But kiwis pay them special attention. If you want to play fair pokies and get real money winnings, simply follow our recommendations about the best pokies casinos. And don’t forget to choose pokies right according to certain criteria.

Why Slots are Named Pokies in New Zealand
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Every self-respecting online casino has more than one currency available for the game, but if we are talking about New Zealand casinos, then this is the NZ dollar. But it is worth remembering that this choice is usually made during registration and further changes may only be possible through the casino support service.

First of all, the main advantage of this payment method is the fact that you can process in a few steps. Easily, go to the payment options, choose the mastercard, fill in the code and type the amount of money you want to deposit. The process will take a few seconds to transfer the money to the casino account. That’s why many casinos have this type of method in selection. Such as the most popular casino in NZ Jackpot City provides all kinds of methods, including Mastercard Bonfire.

  1. Jackpot City – the withdrawal time 24-48 hours.
  2. Spin Casino – the withdrawal time 24-72 hours.
  3. Royal Vegas – the withdrawal time 24-48 hours.


The Bonfire Mastercard has a place to be. In fact, it’s a really convenient method to make a deposit, however, you are not allowed to withdraw the money through prepaid cards.

This is a right question to ask before you actually start gambling. But, please, clarify what exactly needs to be safe. Does it refer to safety of your wallet? Or is it about your data security? Maybe mental health? To be honest, all these aspects interact with gambling activity. So, make sure each of them are okay with you.

Financial protection

Let me make everything clear for you and start with the most sensitive – your money. Playing at online casinos the first thing you do is you waste your money. Exactly, waste forever. The thing is being a new player, you will lose your deposited money even if you claim for the welcome double bonus. The bonuses are tricky, and your experience is low. So, fail is unavoidable. Only after some time of practice you will see the lucky winnings. But again, learn to play responsibly unless you want to lose all your money after the first big win. That is why it is recommended to practice in a free mode before you place actual bets.

Protection of your personal information

What should be protected more than your money? Of course, your personal data. It refers not only to your ID number, full name and the day you were born. It’s also about the documents you send to verify your account. Remember, everything that goes to Internet remains in the Internet. Besides, the banking details are all at risk when you enter them to deposit or receive your money back. Thankfully, technologies are not that simple. The encryption methods, TSL, SSL and others will not let the frauds steal your info. Online casinos apply precisely these security measures to guard your info. However, no one is really insured for connection breaks and super smart frauds.

Gambling addictions

Technical issues are clear. But what’s wrong with mental health? In fact, this is the most endangered barrier. In other words, if your mind gets obsessed with the casino games, your money and data become prone to bad conclusion of this story. So, play responsibly. This is what every online casino tell you. But let’s be honest, gambling is indeed addictive. If you feel unsure about your mental stability, you can contact the special help centres that support addicted gamblers. They can be individual like BeGambleAware or Gamblers Anonymous sites. And they can be created within online casinos. For example, Casumo with its own centre Play Okay and LeoVegas with LeoSafePlay program which you can contact whenever you feel like addicted to their games.


Considering the mentioned reasons, I think you have already made up your mind whether it’s safe to play online casino games for you. Anyway, you’ve already known that gambling ir risky. There’s no way to be totally safe. One aspect can come out and will pull behind another consequently.

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