Following the Gambling Commission’s review of online gambling and the Government’s Review of Gaming Machines and Social Responsibility Measures, credit cards will no longer be accepted by gambling firms from 14th April 2020.
This means all gambling firms will be banned from accepting bets placed using credit cards in a bit to stop players getting into financial difficulty and accumulating gambling debts on their credit cards.
So you will not be able to use any credit cards to make deposits however there are still a variety of valid deposit methods available including debit cards, Apple Pay and Google pay.
The new regulations aim to make gambling safer, and ensure people will have to use a debit card or cash deposited into an account in they want to gamble ie gambling with money they already have, and not putting it onto a credit card they can’t afford to pay off.
Recent research estimates 24 million adults in Great Britain gamble, with 10.5 million of those gambling online. UK Finance estimate that 800,000* consumers use credit cards to gamble.
Separate research undertaken by the Commission shows that 22%** of online gamblers using credit cards to gamble are classed as problem gamblers – with even more at some risk of harm.
Neil McArthur, Gambling Commission chief executive, said: “Credit card gambling can lead to significant financial harm. The ban that we have announced should minimise the risks of harm to consumers from gambling with money they do not have.
“We know that there are examples of consumers who have accumulated tens of thousands of pounds of debt through gambling because of credit card availability. There is also evidence that the fees charged by credit cards can exacerbate the situation because the consumer can try to chase losses to a greater extent.
“We realise that this change will inconvenience those consumers who use credit cards responsibly but we are satisfied that reducing the risk of harm to other consumers means that action must be taken. But we will evaluate the ban and watch closely for any unintended circumstances for consumers” Mr McArthur concluded.
The new ban applies to all online and offline betting, except the National Lottery and other lotteries run for good causes.
- *800,000 consumers in the UK used a UK-issued credit card for gambling in 2018. Data source UK Finance.
- Separate research undertaken by the Commission shows that 22%** of online gamblers using credit cards to gamble are classed as problem gamblers – with more at some risk of harm. Data source: gambling participation research, March 2019. The research was conducted online by Populus and covered a representative sample of c.2000 adults, of whom c.150 had reported using a credit card to gamble online.