Whether you're new to online gambling or see yourself as a bit of a pro, understanding how to remain safe when betting is essential. On this page, we at Free Betting Tips provide an overview of the safe gambling tools and resources out there, ensuring our online betting community is equipped with all the knowledge to forge a healthy and happy relationship with betting.
Safe Gambling Tools on UK Betting Sites
UK betting sites are obliged to offer safe gambling tools. In most cases, this will be a condition of the operator’s gambling licence.
Here are the safe gambling tools players can access should they feel they require support:
Profit & Loss
The Profit and Loss tool effectively shows gamblers the results of their gambling activities. As the tool's name suggests, Profit and Loss allows players to clearly see how much they have profited and lost when gambling over certain periods, permitting them to adjust their spending accordingly.
When using the tool, players can select a time period to view data from. This can be a day, a week or a month.
One of the most important things to consider when looking to gamble responsibly is how much money you are parting with. If you are eager to keep your deposits to a minimum, utilising the Deposit Limit tool on your gambling site is advised. This restricts your account, only permitting you to deposit a predetermined amount that you are comfortable with. When setting a budget, please ensure that funds always come from your disposable income.
Implementing a Cool-off Period on your betting site is recommended if you feel your gambling is starting to get out of hand. A Cool-off Period restricts your access to betting services for a chosen amount of time, allowing you to regroup and return to betting when you’re in the right frame of mind. Many players implement a Cool-off Period when they’ve experienced a loss or a string of losses. By doing so, players can refrain from ‘chasing’ bets and overspending in an attempt to recoup losses.
When playing on gambling sites, players have the option to set Reality Check alerts. These are notifications that give players the option to stop playing or dismiss the message. The Reality Check tool essentially helps players to stay on track and reduce the risk of spending too much money or time on online gambling activities. Reality Check alerts can be applied to both betting and online casino sessions.
Responsible gamblers will want to ensure that they remain in the perimeters of safe gambling at all times and their judgments are never impaired. A tool that helps players to achieve this is the Self-assessment tool. This is a resource whereby players can take a test, answering questions based on their gambling behaviours. The answers provided will help the betting site to generate a score which will indicate whether or not you have a healthy or worrying relationship with gambling. Taking a self-assessment test takes just a few minutes and can be incredibly helpful for players that wish to air on the side of caution.
The Self-exclusion Scheme is a facility where players can request a blanket ban on gambling, completely removing their ability to gamble online or at bricks and mortar betting establishments. Exclusions are implemented for at least six months via this service. Self-exclusion can be activated via GAMSTOP, the multi-operator self-exclusion provider. All gambling sites must participate in this scheme by law.
Other Responsible Gambling Support Services
While the above tools are the most effective ways to protect your wellbeing, there are numerous other tactics players can utilise if they feel they have an gambling issue or a gambling problem is being formed.
95% of UK gambling sites now have a live chat facility where players can get around the clock support from a customer support representative. Whether you have a question about one of the safe gambling tools or need some clarity on the terms and conditions of a free bet bonus, they will be able to answer your queries in a professional, prompt fashion.
If you want to remove the temptation of gambling online altogether, using gambling-specific blocking software is advised.
There are many companies offering software that blocks gambling sites. However, in our experience, GamBlock is the most comprehensive option. When downloading the GamBlock software, it cannot be bypassed by VPNs or proxies, meaning players are truly blocked from accessing online gambling services.
GamBlock is suited to those using Windows computers and Android phones. Other options include Betfilter, NetNanny and GamBan.
Safe Gambling Charities
When a player feels they need additional support aside from the tools available on gambling sites, there are many charities to reach out to. Here are some of the most acclaimed:
Gamblers Anonymous - Gamblers Anonymous describes itself as a "fellowship" that aids recovering compulsive gamblers. On the Gamblers Anonymous website, gamblers can find information on local meetings where they can talk openly with others in the same boat.
GamCare - GamCare assists those who have suffered as a result of gambling. It provides free in-person support groups as well as free telephone counselling. GamCare can be contacted on 0808 8020.
GAMSTOP - Customers who use GamStop have the opportunity to sign up for the National Self Exclusion Program, which enables them to bar themselves from all online gambling for a period of six months, a year, or five years.
The Samaritans - People who have been impacted by gambling can access a variety of services from the Samaritans. Counselling, mentoring, and emotional support are a few of these. In order to inform individuals about the risks associated with gambling, the charity collaborates with the UK Gambling Commission. On samaritans.org, gamblers have the option of speaking with a Samaritan via live chat.