Let’s assume you recently encountered some problem gambling issues. Maybe, you felt you were on the verge of full-blown gambling addiction. As a means of protecting you and your family from financial and emotional damage, you decided to register with GamStop through your favorite UK-licensed online gambling site.
It’s been a few months since your one-year self-exclusion started, and you are now thinking about resuming your online gambling activities because you no longer believe a problem exists. The obvious problem you are facing is that GamStop is preventing you from using any gambling site that has subscribed to the GamStop scheme. Let’s discuss your options if you are committed to resuming your online gambling.
Before we proceed to discuss possible ways to get around GamStop, it seems prudent to briefly review how GamStop works.
GamStop is a voluntary self-exclusion program run by the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC). The UKGC mandates that all licensed online gambling operators have to subscribe to the program. When they do, they can then offer their gamblers access to the program.
Gamblers who want help staying away from online gambling sites only need to complete the short registration process. After doing so, they will be blocked from accessing any UK online gambling sites that are members of GamStop. By the way, it’s the gamblers who get to decide how long they want to be blocked.
While the program works pretty well, its access and protection protocols are all tied solely to member websites. That leaves gamblers with plenty of ways to get around their GamStop self-exclusion should they decide to start gambling online again.
Options for Getting Around GamStop
Since GamStop is only applicable to member online gambling operators, excluded gamblers still have ways they can resume their gambling activities. If staying with a licensed UK operator is preferred, they can usually play online without GamStop at NonGamStopWager casinos. Since these casinos don’t have access to the GamStop database, they aren’t concerned with a new customer’s GamStop status. We’ll discuss this option in more depth in the next section.
As far as other options, there are plenty of other ways online gamblers like you can gamble in spite of their GamStop status. Here is a list of options worthy of consideration:
- Open a shared gambling account under the name of a friend or relative
- Use offshore online gambling sites
- Use sites that accept Bitcoin and don’t do any account verifications
- Avoid online gambling by going to retail gambling establishments
Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Be Afraid of Casinos without GamStop
Since the UK is home to many of the world’s top online gambling sites, the UK gambling community is often considered the best in the world. With that being the case, it’s understandable if you want to restrict your online gambling activities to operators doing business in the UK.
Should you be worried about using UK sites that aren’t GamStop members? Absolutely not. Here are a couple of reasons why you should not be concerned.
First, there are plenty of top licensed UK gambling sites that aren’t subscribed to GamStop as of yet. They have been able to avoid doing so because while the UKGC has made it mandatory for all licensed sites to join as a condition of licensing, enforcement has been slow or lacking. Until the UKGC takes appropriate steps, there will be licensed operators that don’t want to join. For what it’s worth, the UKGC has been getting much stricter about enforcing this mandate to help address the country’s growing problem gambling issue.
These non-GamStop operators are great online gambling destinations because they are licensed by the UKGC. That stands as an indication they are operating under the rest of the guidelines being set forth by the UKGC. For the most part, they are just as safe and secure as any website that does subscribe to GamStop.
Second, there are plenty of online gambling sites that aren’t yet licensed to operate in the UK yet they still provide gambling services. Most of them are quite good and reliable, offering many of the same betting markets and games as licensed providers. If you do your homework, you should have no problem finding the right operator.
Where you need to be cautious is to not align yourself with non-licensed gambling operators with questionable reputations. That’s where the population of problem-causing rogue operators exists.