The detrimental effects of gambling are nothing new, and one of the main reasons these effects persist is the players’ failure to see gambling as a source of entertainment.
However, there are tools that help players curb the negative influence of gambling and get things under control, and one such tool is GAMSTOP.
GAMSTOP is a self-exclusion scheme created to assist online gambling addicts in the United Kingdom. It is operated and run by The National Online Self-Exclusion Scheme Limited. All participating online casinos allow players who register to the scheme to limit their online gambling activities or become completely banned from all online casinos.
The notion of becoming banned from online gambling does seem too drastic for most players, which is why many of them are reluctant to join the program.
With that said, it is safe to say GAMSTOP online casinos, and those that aren’t included in the program have their positive and negative sides. Join us as we explore those sides to help you choose between the two.
GAMSTOP Online Casinos — Advantages
GAMSTOP is an excellent tool for problem gamblers that allows them to limit all of their online gambling activities.
It is an entirely free program and works with all UKGC-licensed online casinos, which means that all reputable and regulated casinos in the UK market are a part of GAMSTOP. Casinos used to have the right to choose whether they wanted to participate in the program. However, now, participation is compulsory for all that want to still operate under the UKGC license.
The scheme allows you to choose the duration of your exclusion. The minimum is six months, while the longest period is five years, which is excellent for those who wish to quit gambling altogether.
GAMSTOP Online Casinos — Disadvantages
Although the program is essentially great, we should address a few of its downsides. First of all, the duration of the exclusion program. The bare minimum is six months, so if you want just some time to cool off, say a couple of weeks, you can’t rely on GAMSTOP to help you out. Also, after the initial six-month period, you can extend it to a year or choose the full five-year period. There’s nothing in between.
Moreover, it only works with UKGC-licensed casinos, which leaves players a big window of opportunity known as offshore online casinos. Many of these casinos accept UK players and do not impose any limits.
Finally, other people can register you for the program by providing your basic personal details, such as name, postal code, date of birth, and email address. What’s worse, you can’t lift the ban until the exclusion period expires, limiting you greatly, especially if you don’t need the cooling-off period.
Should You Then Choose Non-GAMSTOP Online Casinos?
As we have briefly mentioned earlier, only UKGC-licensed online casinos are obliged to participate in the GAMSTOP scheme. These online casinos are labelled fair and secure, but that doesn’t mean other online casinos with licenses from other gambling jurisdictions are not equally fair and safe. These sites also have complex security measures and have gone through detailed software testing, much like the UKGC sites.
Furthermore, by playing in online casinos registered in other jurisdictions, you can also claim enticing bonuses for new users that let players use the free spins and other incentives to win some real cash. If the bonuses require a deposit, you can use your credit card and other payment methods that the UKGC online casinos don’t allow.
Besides, the account verification procedure is much faster and typically does not require submitting that many documents.
The effects of a GAMSTOP ban are undoubtedly salubrious to some players who are in dire need of a cooling-off period. It also means that GAMSTOP online casinos are heavily regulated, which means that you are playing in a safe and secure gambling venue.
On the other hand, the program has its drawbacks. The inflexibility of the scheme’s duration and the fact that others can register you for the program are just some of them.
So, the bottom line is that if you feel you can’t control yourself when gambling, you should try restricting yourself and opt for GAMSTOP. However, if the situation is not that dire, maybe you should think twice before joining the program because even if you do join it, you can still access offshore online casinos despite that ban, so what good does it do?