Due to the stay-at-home measures that were a common occurrence throughout 2020, the online gambling industry saw a drastic spike in user activity. That event caused many to fear a rise in harm associated with playing games of chance over the internet and saw an increase in interest regarding casinos not on GameStop. These are foreign platforms that are not a part of the UK’s Gambling Commissions’ (UKGC) obligatory self-exclusion scheme titled GameStop.
The main reason why these non GamStop casinos saw a surge in popularity is a new set of measures implemented by the UKGC in February of this year that aim to lower the prevalence of problem gambling in Brittan. These restrictions make the online casino experience less intensive and a whole lot less desirable for many players. Below an explanation follows of how sites with no UKGC license operate and how they differ from UK online casinos.
What Is GamStop & How Does It Operate Exactly?
The UKGC is Britain’s gambling regulator. It took over this role in 2007 from the now-defunct Gaming Board for Great Britain. The UKGC oversees all forms of betting in the country, except for spread wagering, which falls under the jurisdiction of the Financial Conduct Authority.
GamStop is a self-exclusion program that all UKGC-licensed gaming sites must join. It originally got scheduled to go live in 2017. Yet, its release fell drastically behind schedule, and it was not until March of 2020 that it became mandatory for all UK online casinos to feature it. GamStop offers three self-exclusion periods, and once a player activates one, he/she is no longer able to visit and play at any UKGC-licensed platform until his chosen period passes. There is no way to cancel an activated self-exclusion. So, a change of heart is useless once GamStop comes into play. That is so that a player does not fall prey to the temptation of playing again when he/she cannot practice proper impulse control.
A request to self-exclude does not trigger an automatic withdrawal of funds, as GamStop has nothing to do with a player’s casino finances. Those with an activated self-exclusion who wish to empty their casino balance will have to contact their operator and submit such a request. That is only one of the many recent nuisances incorporated at UKGC sites. Others are spin timers, low max wager limits, and no auto-play.
Who Watches Over Non GamStop Casinos?
A non GamStop casino is a site that has gotten permission to offer gambling services internationally from a regulatory body not located in Britain. Such global licensors are usually government bodies in small countries like Malta, Panama, or Curacao. That is so because such locations were among the first regions to make online gambling legal. Smaller countries have limited tax revenue streams, so many opted to regulate internet betting to attract foreign investments.
Most of these international overseeing bodies have been active in this sphere for over two decades and have a wealth of experience to draw on when handling player issues. For example, Curacao eGaming got established in 1996, and it implements many of the same security measures as the UKGC.
Can You Legally Play at a Casino Not on GamStop?
Though technically only UKGC-regulated sites can offer gambling services to UK residents, there is no risk of facing prosecution when using off-shore betting sites. Authorities have better things to do than prosecuting everyone that chooses foreign platforms over UK ones. There is no history of such a practice and no inclination it can become a trend.
Foreign gambling operators that choose to make their services available for Brits are the only ones that can face any legal repercussions. Though that is also unlikely, which is why many sites openly advertise themselves to everyone, UK residents included on forums, social media, and other marketing avenues.
No one must see a casino not on GamStop as a means to circumvent his/her activated self-exclusion in this mandatory UKGC program. Only those who can gamble responsibly should seek out platforms that have an international license. That refers to individuals that can control their impulses when engaging in online wagering.
What Are the Benefits Offered by a Non GamStop Casino?
Casinos not on GamStop enjoy more freedom in providing a more robust gaming experience. Though international regulators promote responsible gambling, they do not feature the same stringent criteria that the UKGC enforces. That means that non GamStop casinos can offer a vaster range of payment methods, including credit cards, which the UKGC outlawed in April 2020. They also have a different range of bonuses, more unique loyalty systems, and games unavailable for the UK market on hand.
Sportsbook-wise, they feature less-established betting markets, different odds than those available at UK sites, unique promotions, more complex bet-building options, and more. It is noteworthy that non GamStop sportsbooks still offer all the UK events featured on UKGC platforms. So, Brits can still bet on things like the Grand National and the Ladbrokes Masters in darts on non UK sports betting sites listed at casinosnotongamstop.net.
UK Gamblings Platforms vs. Non GamStop Casinos
It is not a question of if one type of gambling site is better than the other, as each has its advantages and disadvantages. It is up to individual players to weigh all those aspects and decide which category fits them best. These are the main elements that they have to factor in when making their decision.
UKGC Online Casinos
|GamStop self-exclusion.UKGC’s strict regulation.GBP is always an option.Protection of funds. Third-party complaint handling.||Limited VIP programs.Spin timers.Low bet limits.|
Casinos Not on GamStop
|More diverse game libraries.Credit cards are a deposit option.Different types of altcoins get accepted. More enticing bonuses.Higher max bet limits.||GBP is not always an available currency.Dispute handling occurs per foreign laws.Operators are not as vetted.|
Final Bit of Advice
To wrap up. If a player can create an account with a gambling operator without using a VPN service, he/she does not need to concern himself/herself with the legality regarding his use of said platform’s services. All the legal burden in that scenario is on the operator that made such a sign-up possible.
Premium casinos not on GamStop get regulated by reputable organizations that have similar licensing standards as the UKGC. Though, in all honesty, they are a bit laxer in many areas and do not have the same type of firm grasp on their licensees as Brittan’s regulator body. That said, they do offer perks that are currently unavailable at platforms that operate within the GamStop network. Gameplay moves a lot faster and non GamStop sites due to the availability of auto-play and the absence of spin timers. These casinos also feature more generous welcome packages and different types of recurring deals. If all that sounds attractive, anyone interested in testing one of these sites should do so today. Demo-play is an option at all of them, so trying out games and browsing without a deposit is an option at most foreign online casinos.