How is self-exclusion affecting the UK gambling scene?

Gamstop has become very important in the online gambling industry, with the UK gambling commission now making it compulsory for all casinos or gambling operators to register with Gamstop as part of their licensing conditions.

Since its introduction back in April 2018, Gamstop have helped countless people stay in control of their gambling habits. However, not all gamblers are problematic. Statistics show that many people just see it as fun and enjoy the entertainment.

What is Gamstop?

Gamstop is an independent self-exclusion scheme created as a responsible gambling tool to help keep gambling from being problematic. Gamstop is available for players in the UK and will restrict online gambling activities for its members. This is from playing with any casino licensed by the UK gambling commission.

Registering is easy and within 24 hours you will be effectively self-excluded from all gambling sites licensed in the UK. The minimum term for a self-exclusion with Gamstop is 6 months ranging up to 5 years.

Things to know

While gamstop registration is a requirement when obtaining a license from the UK gambling commission, there are still plenty of casinos not on gamstop.

When signing up for the casino self-exclusion, it does prohibit playing at many online gambling sites. Probably the ones that UK players are used to seeing too. However, it is a UK based scheme. Meaning there are other licensing bodies, operating legally but do not have the same gamstop conditions being outside the UK.

Online casino sites that are licenced in Curacao, Malta, Cyprus and other offshore jurisdictions are not registered on Gamstop and do not need to be.  It is however illegal for them to advertise to UK players.

How to get around gamstop

Even after the self-exclusion period has ended, it is not always easy to get instant access back into a casino. The gamstop exclusion does not lift automatically when ended – players will still need to contact gamstop and go through their process of requesting removal. Due to this along with many players claiming it was a decision made in haste, there are people looking for a way to get around a self-exclusion.

There is a way to continue playing even after a gamstop self-exclusion. The only option is to play at a casino not regulated by the UK gambling commission. This does not mean that they are not safe however.

Of course, there are some, but many operate under a license and the regulations set out by another gambling authority. There are plenty of trustworthy non gamstop casinos regulated in Curacao, Malta and Cyprus. There are even some benefits to playing at a non gamstop casino.

Benefits of playing at a non gamstop casino

Even if you are not registered at gamstop, and ideally so, there are still some great perks of playing at a casino licensed outside of the UKGC.

The UK Gambling commission is highly regulated and this extends to bonuses and promotions. Restrictions have been put in place for what operators are allowed to offer. This means that in order to find the best promotional offers and match bonuses you would need to look at a non UKGC regulated casino anyway. These are much more competitive in terms of bonuses.

All aspects of the online casino will be highly regulated by the UKGC so it could also restrict deposits, withdrawals and include extra verification. While offshore sites are also regulated, not to the same degree of UKGC casinos so you can play without limitations. Players can benefit from a wider range of deposit methods as well as enjoying the anonymity of certain methods.

If a player does find themselves developing a problem, these offshore casinos will have their own self exclusion schemes in place too. While you will have to self-exclude with each site individually, it is still easily done.



What is Gamstop?

Gamstop is an online service enabling people to self-exclude from all gambling activity. This will stop them from being able to play at any casino registered with Gamstop.

Are all casinos on Gamstop?

No, gamstop is a UK based initiative so any casinos not regulated by the UK Gambling Commission need not to be registered with them.

Are there UK Casinos not on Gamstop?

No, all UKGC regulated casinos must be registered with gamstop but there are plenty of trustworthy offshore casinos with alternative regulated bodies as given throughout the site.


Can I self-exclude with non gamstop casinos?

Yes of course. All reputable sites and certainly all the ones mentioned here have their own self exclusion process, however you will need to self-exclude from each casino individually.


Is it legal to play at a non gamstop casino?

Yes, it is completely legal. Gamstop is a voluntary scheme and therefore not punishable by law.

Is it safe to play at a non gamstop casino?

As long as you make sure to play with a site that is still licensed whether it be from Curacao, Malta or Cyprus it is absolutely safe. Look out for the badge.