Responsible Gambling Tips & Strategies
The Gambling Truth
It is important to understand that although different games have different odds of winning and varying degrees of skill or influence from the player can affect the odds of winning, players are more likely to lose, particularly over time, than they are to win. If that wasn't true, gaming operators and vendors would be out of business.
When players think they are the exception to this truth, they can get themselves into trouble. Faulty thinking about one’s control over gambling outcomes can lead a person to bet more often with more money than they would otherwise. This behaviour tends to lead to bigger losses and more trouble for the player.
Arrange your day and evening beforehand and plan other leisure activities in addition to gambling.
Set a Time Limit Set a Money Limit
Determine the amount of money you are going to bet before you start. Use only money set aside for entertainment, not money needed for food, bills or other necessities. Decide in advance if you are going to play any winnings along the way or keep them separate to take them home. To help you stick to your set limit, leave your debit and credit cards at home.
Check in with yourself before you start to gamble. Are you feeling lonely, anxious or depressed? Making healthy decisions about anything (diet, relationships, shopping, gambling) can be more challenging during times of increased stress or hardship, or if you are experiencing anxiety, depression, pain or loss.
Gambling to escape other life problems doesn’t work. Often the effects are that the problems may increase and/or new ones can be created.
Keep It Social
Bring a friend or plan to meet a friend at the gambling venue so your time and energy spent aren’t just about gambling.
Know the Game
Before gambling, learn how the games work. Understand the odds of winning so you can make informed decisions about how much to bet, how many lines to play, whether to take another card, etc. Don’t be embarrassed to ask questions of gaming staff and GameSense Advisors. It’s better to admit you don’t fully understand a game than it is to risk losing more than you can afford.
Keep a Record
Keep track of how much time and the money you spend each time you gamble, as well as how often you go. Sometimes people are surprised by how much money and time they spend on gambling. Review your notebook before and after each session and check to see if you are staying on track with your decisions.
Take Frequent Breaks
People can get anxious about taking breaks when gambling because they think they are going to lose a win by stepping away. When you understand how gambling works (for example, that there is no such thing as a “hot” slot machine) it can be easier to take breaks.
Leaving a machine, a table or your computer is important because that time away allows you to check your limits to make sure you aren’t over in time or money. You can also check in with yourself to make sure you are feeling okay and still enjoying what you are doing. If you find you are feeling anxious, frustrated or depressed you may want to just call it a day and go and do something else.
Have an Exit Strategy
Let your family and friends know about your plans beforehand. Make transportation and other arrangements ahead of time. This allows you to stop exactly when you are ready to do so, and encourages you to stick to your time limit. Have a back-up plan in case you lose your money more quickly than planned.
Balance Gambling with Other Activities
You’re more likely to enjoy the time you spend gambling if gambling isn’t your only form of entertainment. That’s because even when you’re playing for fun, it’s no fun to keep losing money. If you’re playing for fun and you win, it’s nice to use that windfall for other things. If you balance gambling with other activities you are less likely to let it interfere with your work or your relationships with friends and family.
Know Where & How to Get Help
Get additional help services through the Responsible & Problem Gambling Program.
Check out other information available on this website or call the Problem Gambling Help Line at 1.888.795.6111 (24hrs) to be connected to free support services.
Retrieved from https://www.bcresponsiblegambling.ca/responsible-gambling/responsible-gambling-tips-strategies
Myths & Facts
More often, gambling is a way to lose money. If you gamble, think of it as a kind of entertainment you have to pay for, just like a movie or dinner with friends. That can help you keep gambling in perspective—and if you end up winning some money now and then, it’ll be a nice treat instead of something you were depending on.
Teens tend to gamble with friends and not in casinos, but that doesn't mean they can’t develop gambling problems. In a 2008 survey of Alberta students in grades 7 to 12, just over 2%, so about 2 out of every 100 students surveyed showed signs of problem gambling. About 4% or 4 out of every 100 students showed signs of being at risk for developing problems with gambling.
Not true! Casinos stay in business because most people don't win their money back. Think about it: how long would a casino stay in business if it paid out more money than it took in? The fact is that most gamblers lose far more money than they win in these places.