UK gambling has changed in the last few years as a raft of new restrictions were implemented. Bookies were under pressure from social groups and the government to help tackle the rise of problem gambling and this saw many punters flocking to gambling sites, not on GamStop. Although they shouldn’t be used as a tool to get around GamStop, many players are finding that these alternative sites offer a less restricted and fun gaming environment.
This article looks at some of the advantages and disadvantages of using non-UK sites.
How Does GamStop Work?
The UK Gambling Commission was asked to clamp down further on the gambling industry after an increase in the number of problem gamblers in the country. Changes in technology saw gambling more available and punters were able to bet 24/7 from the comfort of their own home. This has become a problem for those who are prone to addictive gambling habits and the UKGC has applied tougher oversight on gambling sites.
The UKGC works with a not-for-profit enterprise called GamStop to fight against problem gambling. UK punters can sign up for the service for free and a GamStop self-exclusion can be enforced on all UK gaming sites for a period of 6 months, 1 year, or 5 years. Signing up to the scheme requires sharing the contact details and email addresses that were used to open gambling accounts.
Alongside the new GamStop rules, the UKGC has added further restrictions on license holders, with lower stake sizes, spin timers, and limits on marketing activities.
How Non-UK Gambling Sites are Regulated
When deciding to choose non-UK gambling sites, UK consumers will find that these operations are regulated by different bodies depending on their jurisdiction.
Just as technology has given rise to UK gambling opportunities, it has also given gaming businesses the chance to shift from bricks-and-mortar setups to an online environment where they can set base themselves in foreign countries. These countries usually offer more suitable tax arrangements and a warmer climate.
Examples of this trend can be seen with the surge of casino sites in Malta or Cyprus, which are not regulated by GamStop. Both of these countries are regulated by their own gaming authorities, similar to the UKGC, while both are also members of the European Union. Gamblers moving to these companies will find that they operate under similar rules on compliance, money laundering, and other directives to protect consumers. Punters will also find that they provide a professional environment that is similar to what you would expect in UK casinos.
Alongside the European nations, there are Central American sites offering access to UK gamblers, such as Curacao and Costa Rica. Costa Rica was this year named as one of the top destinations for retirement, while it was given the title of “The Switzerland of Central America” in the same report.
One issue that UK consumers need to consider when using foreign sites is that they often offer a lack of third-party support for dispute resolution. If this is an issue, then online forums can offer guidance on the best sites to use.
Are Casinos Not on GamStop Legal?
It is 100% legal for UK punters to use betting sites not on GamStop. The UKGC has limited the ability to market these services in the UK, which is why many haven’t heard of the option. Sites not on GamStop can be easily found in Google searches.
It is actually the responsibility of the gaming providers to ensure that they are following the UK rules when offering services to UK consumers, which means punters are not liable for any infringement.
Consumers are allowed to decide which services they use online, and these sites should not be used as a way to avoid the GamStop regulations. The rules were introduced for a reason and if punters have a history of problem gambling then they should not be considering a lighter regulatory environment than the UK.
What to expect at Non-GamStop Casinos
Punters are signing up to the non-UK sites in order to recreate the freedom that was once offered by the UKGC companies. have more freedom in their betting experience once again. By signing up to these sites, gamblers will find fewer limitations on bet sizes, or other restrictive measures, such as spin timers.
Although the library of game titles may be different in the UK, there is still a large selection on offer.
Sports Betting Sites Not on GamStop
Sports betting sites are also available for those seeking sites, not on GamStop. Punters can get access to unlimited payment transfers, while there are often more regular and generous bonuses, with welcome rewards of 100% or more. Sign-on bonuses can be matched up to £500 in some cases, while these sites also offer a wider range of payments, such as cryptocurrency funding. Another drawback is that GBP deposits are not always offered, but this can be researched before choosing a site.
UK gamblers will find that their favorite teams and sports are still available, with the usual selection of football, rugby, cricket, US sports, etc.
Slots Not on GamStop
Slots available at these sites will most often provide a wider selection of games than the UK sites, which is another result of the UKGC marketing rules. These slots sites often have even larger welcome offers of 500% or more, up to £1,000 or £2,000.
Pros of Using Casinos Not on GamStop
· Larger welcome bonuses
· Fewer deposit and stake size restrictions, no spin timer
· Larger game libraries than UK sites
· Self-exclusion is still an option
· Wider range of funding, including crypto
Cons of Using Casinos Not on GamStop
· Sites can be exploited as a GamStop loophole
· May not accept GBP deposits
· Different game titles
· Separate regulatory body from the UK
· Less support for third-party disputes
With the rules being tightened on UK gambling companies, more and more are seeking out gambling sites, not on GamStop. Those who do are finding a very similar environment to their current providers, but without the restrictions that are being applied to betting.
It is right that regulators should do what they can to prevent a rise in problem gambling, but they usually implement a heavy hand, and a “one size fits all” approach. Gamblers who are in control of their habits still want to enjoy the fun of the experience and that is being taken away with more and more restrictions being applied.
UK gamblers should consider signing up for one of the sites if they find themselves unhappy with the current rules and see how they enjoy the switch.