Responsible Gambling

‘Gamble responsibly’ isn’t just a catchy slogan. It’s crucially important advice, which all UK-licensed bookies must include in their adverts for a reason.
Responsible gambling is not only important to making money from your betting. It’s also key to preventing your betting from becoming a problem, or – if it’s too late for that – tackling the issue properly. In this article, we’ll help you identify if you have a problem, and give you information on how to deal with it.
Joseph Haliday
Author, Betting enthusiast

July 4, 2023

Joe is a passionate sports fan, who also loves the field of sports betting. He has been creating sports betting content full-time since 2016. In that time he has written hundreds of articles, including sportsbook reviews, strategy guides, explanatory articles, betting tips, and more. Joe also enjoys wagering in his spare time, particularly on football, the NFL, and the NBA.

How to Understand if You Have a Gambling Problem

The first step towards addressing an addiction like this is admitting that it exists. Actually identifying whether or not you have a gambling problem in the first place, however, might be trickier than it sounds.
We’ve already addressed this issue in more detail in another article, which you should definitely check out if you fear you’re addicted. For now though, here are a few of the most common telltale signs that you might have stopped gambling responsibly:

How to Keep Gambling Under Control

After reading through the list in the previous section, you might fear that you do indeed have a gambling problem. The last thing you should do now is panic.
Firstly, you should firstly realise that hundreds of thousands of other British punters are in the same boat. Secondly, you should start looking immediately at ways in which you can tackle the issue head-on, and keep your gambling under control. Here are some of the best ways to practise responsible gambling:

Responsible Gambling Measures from UK Bookies

You don’t have to fight the responsible gambling battle alone. Instead, UK sportsbooks provide various tools to help you out here.
Some of these are mandated in order to get a UKGC licence, while others are provided voluntarily by bookies. Either way, we’d definitely recommend using sportsbooks which have these tools, to help both reduce temptation or deal with problem gambling if it arises. Here are three of the most useful services.

Deposit Limits

This is an easy and effective way to limit your spending on sports betting.
All licensed bookies nowadays should make it easy to impose deposit limits on your account. As the name suggests, these forbid you from paying more than a certain maximum into your account within a given time frame.

Time Outs

This is a common feature on the top British sportsbooks. It’s basically a halfway-house between the self-imposed breaks we mentioned earlier, and full self-exclusion (which we’ll discuss shortly).
Basically, you can use a time out to lock your betting account for a short-ish amount of time; a couple of weeks, say. This is easily done within your account settings, and can prove to be a perfect respite from constant betting action.

Self Exclusion

To get a UKGC licence now, all British bookies must partner with GAMSTOP. This is a completely free service which – while using it is certainly a big step – can be your only remaining option in tough times.
If you sign up to GAMSTOP, you’re basically self-excluding from all licensed UK sportsbooks for at least six months. You need to provide proof of identity to confirm this, which will ensure you’re unable to create (legitimate) new accounts within that time frame, in addition to losing access to your old ones.

Final Thoughts

For some people, responsible gambling is completely straightforward. For others, it’s more of an ongoing struggle.
As noted earlier, the most important thing to realise here is that – if you are having problems with responsible gambling – you’re certainly not alone. Plenty of others are in the same boat. We’ve suggested some of the best steps you can take to try and improve matters here though, and explained some of the most effective tools to help you along the way.

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