While gaming and the national lottery provide important employment opportunities and a fun diversion, some individuals struggle with gambling intelligently. For over spenders, regular gambling can lead to financial stress, insolvency and even serious marital problems. That’s why it’s essential for those who struggle with gaming addictions to learn how to control gambling spend sprees and enjoy the casino experience without financial frustrations. Thankfully, doing so is a simple matter of mastering the art of controlled gambling.
Six Powerful Ways to Gamble Intelligently and Stay Solvent
Some individuals who struggle with gambling compulsions or addictions can only overcome the problem by getting professional assistance to quit gambling altogether. For others, though, gambling intelligently is the answer to beating overspending and enjoying a night at a brick-and-mortar or online casino. If you struggle with spending more than you should at the casino or betting shop, use these six proven strategies to keep your pockets padded and stay out of financial trouble.
Open an Individual Savings Account (ISA) for Casino Adventures
An ISA provides a great way to save money for special purposes, and you can enjoy earning interest on your money without paying income tax. Set up one of these specialized accounts, and designate it for gambling purposes only. Once the money in your ISA has run out, call it quits on gambling for a bit and begin formulating your savings plan for the next year. Remember that for the 2016/17 tax year, you can keep up to £15,240 in a cash account or £4,080 in a Junior ISA without incurring a tax liability.
Get a Prepaid Debit Card for Physical and Online Casino Trips
Prepaid debit cards are a great tool to limit spending while still enjoying the fun of an occasional gambling outing. Before you secure your prepaid card, determine exactly how much money you will load onto that card and how frequently you will be able to add more money. Stick to your budget and use only that debit card when gaming. This strategy is particularly effective for individuals who prefer to visit online casinos or betting sites as it will prevent mixing regular bank funds with designated gambling funds.
Don’t Carry Your Bank Card When You Gamble
All too many individuals who struggle with overspending while gambling make the crucial mistake of carrying bank and ATM cards to the casino. Doing so can lead to compulsive spending and the temptation to take just a touch more money out of a checking or savings account to keep gambling. There’s simply no temptation or way to do this if you leave your bank card at home. If you’re concerned that you’ll go home, get your card, and then return to a casino, ask your partner or a trusted friend to hold onto the card for you until your gambling evening or weekend is over.
Carry a Limited Amount of Cash to the Casino
Carrying a limited amount of cash when you go to a casino is another effective way to prevent overspending while still having plenty of fun. Well before your casino outing, determine how much you can afford to spend. Then, withdraw that amount from your account and put only that cash in your wallet or handbag. Once you run out of cash, leave the casino and resolve not to return until your budget allows. Of course, you might need to leave your bank card at home for this strategy to be truly effective.
Head to the Casino with a Trustworthy Mate
Heading out to a casino or betting shop alone can be a fantastic way to get yourself in a ton of financial trouble. Instead of going on solo trips where no one will hold you accountable, choose a trusted friend or family member to take along for the trip. Let this individual know exactly how much you can spend, and ask that person to hold you accountable if you try to go over your budget. Of course, it’s important that you pick someone who doesn’t struggle with gambling or overspending issues for this important role.
Talk to a Counselor About Spending Problems
There are some situations where individuals with gambling issues try a variety of strategies and still don’t succeed in staying on budget. In these cases, it’s generally a good idea to seek the help of a qualified counsellor or rehabilitation professional. Doing so will allow you to get to the root of your spending problem and will provide you with new ways to cope with overspending. While getting professional help may require some upfront investment, there’s no doubt that it can save you an incredible amount of money in the future.
Remember that no safe-spending strategy will be effective unless you are fully committed to it. Before trying these strategies, create a budget and designate a set amount of your money for gambling. If you’re in a serious relationship, you’ll likely want to consult your partner as you do so. It might seem frightening, but planning ahead and setting spending goals is the only way to ensure that you can enjoy gambling and stay free of serious financial problems caused by casino outings.