Scratch cards are one of online gamings best kept secrets. Unlike the often murky world of internet poker and casinos, with their perplexing array of lingo that often leaves the casual player feeling confused, scratch cards (or occasionally scratch-and-win cards) are the perfect way to get in on the action.

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The big draw to scratch cards is their simplicity. Absolutely anybody can play scratch cards. Traditionally a scratch card was played by taking a coin or a fingernail, and scratching away the boxes to reveal whether you had matched the appropriate amount of symbols to claim a prize. Fortunately, technology comes on in leaps and bounds, so now the need to find a coin or dirty your nail has been completely eliminated, and revealing if you have won with an online scratch card is as simple as pressing a button.

You would be hard pressed to find another game online that gives you the instant gratification of knowing whether or not you are a winner. Unlike other forms of gambling online, there is no waiting to see if your horse has come in, or your team will win the match. The prize is there, ready to win when you are.

The rules for online scratch cards could not be easier; after choosing your stake, you play your card by scratching away the boxes to reveal the symbols. Usually these symbols will be marked as 1X, 2X, 5X, 10X, 20X and 50X.

“But you told us that scratch cards don't have any complex terminology!” I hear you cry. Well fear not, these numbers merely depict how much return you will be getting from the amount of money you put down on the card. For example, if you played £1 and match three 10X symbols, you would get a £10 payout from the scratch card.

That really is all that there is to know. So now you're fully clued up, why wait to start winning? With scratch cards being so quick and easy, there is no excuse to not have a quick dabble when you find yourself with five minutes to spare. You never know when you're going to get lucky with scratch cards...