What is responsible gambling?

Responsible gambling means staying in control of how much time and money we spend gambling. Whether you are buying a lottery ticket or scratch-card, placing a bet, playing poker or bingo, or playing on a gambling machine or casino game, gambling responsibly means treating the activity as just one form of entertainment in a balanced lifestyle. Just like with other forms of entertainment, gambling is a form of expenditure, and responsible gambling means not spending more money or time than we can reasonably afford, keeping in mind all our other responsibilities in life.

Around 73% of adults in Britain gamble at least once a year, and the vast majority do so responsibly. It is important that anyone who gambles understands the price of the entertainment that they are buying, and due to the nature of gambling this is not always very clear. As consumers we must make choices based on the facts behind the gambling product, knowing and accepting the odds, and keeping our chances of winning in perspective. This means that consumers and businesses licensed to provide gambling opportunities in Britain have a shared responsibility in gambling.

Remember that, just like any other business, those licensed to provide opportunities to gamble in Britain are doing so to make a profit. However, gambling businesses have a responsibility to do this legally and fairly. This means that they must provide the information consumers need to make responsible decisions about what they spend. We have a responsibility to budget for our gambling activity just as we do for other forms of entertainment such as going to a restaurant, the cinema or a sporting venue. We should spend only what we can afford.


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