The team at Canada Online Slots believe that gambling should be enjoyed sensibly. We fully endorse all Responsible Gambling practices. Betting on any event, from sports to table games, slots, bingo, keno and poker, is a lot of fun and can bring big potential rewards. However, we should never lose site of the fact that it is a form of entertainment in which over time, the house always wins. Throughout the ages, whenever there has been gambling there has been a small percentage of those taking part who are at risk of becoming addicted. And in the online age, where access to betting markets and slots and live dealer tables has never been easier, the risks are higher.
To make our readers aware of those risks and to help those whose gambling is becoming problematic we have published the information on this page. It will help to understand where the dangers in playing slots online lie, how to keep your spend and playing time in check and how to spot the signs of addiction.
RESPONSIBLE GAMBLING TOOLS TO MANAGE YOUR TIME AND MONEY
Let’s start with the responsible gambling tools found in the account pages of all licensed casinos. Firstly, we should say that all the casinos listed on Canada Online Slots are licensed in either a Canadian jurisdiction like iGaming Ontario, or one of the big European regulators like the Malta Gaming Authority. Under the terms of their licenses, our recommended casinos must all provide Responsible Gambling tools for their customers. You can normally find them by looking for a ‘Set Your Limits’ or ‘Responsible Gambling’ once you are logged in. Alternatively, you can speak to a support agent who will help you set your limits.
Here are the common tools available to you.
TAKING A ‘TIME OUT’
If you feel that you are spending too much time or money gambling online then the first sensible step is to take some time away from the casino to cool off. This can be a short period – 24 hours – or much longer, normally up to six months. Using the Time Out tool you can simply block your own access to your account which will be inaccessible until the time period has ended.
NOTE: using Time Outs is a good first step but it is only applicable to the site you restrict your access too. If you want to avoid using other sites you need to access self control there too.
LIMITING YOUR DEPOSITS, WAGERS AND LOSSES
Another simple tool with which you can restrict your own spend is Loss Limits. Using this feature in your account you can set limits on how much you can deposit, wager, or lose during a specific time period like a day, a week or a month. Should you reach your limit then you will not be able to bet any further until the time period refreshes. This is a good budgeting tool and will make you aware of how quickly you are spending money, an important piece of information to have when assessing your own gambling behaviour.
The next step from loss limits and time outs is self-exclusion. Triggering this feature will block access to your account and stop the casino from sending marketing material to you. Some casinos allow you to self-exclude within your account page whilst others require you to contact the support team.
In the UK, self-exclude has become part of a industry-wide initiative called GAMSTOP that all licensed gambling operators must sign up to. If a player excludes from one site, they exclude from all. This is not the case in Canada and if you exclude from one casino you can still sign up and play at others. Once again, it requires self-control to prevent yourself from doing this.
Self-exclusion periods vary from 1 week to six months and sometimes indefinitely.
MORE WAYS IN WHICH TO MANAGE YOUR SLOTS PLAY
Responsible Gambling tools are a useful way to keep your gambling in check. But they are not the only options available to you. Using simple budgeting techniques, maintaining a diary of your time spent online, using eWallets and even site-blocking software, can help to varying degrees. Of course, if none of these soft, self-help options work then you should seek help from one of the charities listed at the foot of this page.
Here are some simple techniques to manage your money and time.
SETTING A BUDGET
Many gamblers who are regular players at sports and casino sites use a budget to control how much they spend. It is a great way to set out how much you can afford to lose and to enjoy slot play sensibly. Remember, in the heat of the moment it is very easy to keep depositing when you lose and quickly forget how much you have spent.
Our advice is to set a monthly budget based on what you can afford, then broken down into how much you can spend each week or day. Keep a running total of how much you are depositing, what you are withdrawing, and what you win and lose during each session. You can also tie it into the games you play as a way to show which slots are lucky and which unlucky. You will also soon notice an drastic shifts in your playing patterns where you start to spend too much.
USING EWALLETS LIKE PAYPAL
eWallets are a convenient and fast way to deposit and withdraw into a casino account but they also provide a great way to manage your gambling budget each month. The most popular eWallets are Paypal, Neteller and Skrill but there are others. Each one requires you to set up an account on their platform first before you can transfer money into your virtual wallet. Once this is done you can transfer funds from your regular bank account to your eWallet, keeping them separate from your everyday expenses.
Provided you only use your eWallet to deposit and withdraw to your gambling accounts you can manage your budget very successfully in this way. Just keep in mind that you need to exercise self-restraint and stick to your budget.
USING BLOCKING SOFTWARE
Responsible Gambling tools, budgeting and eWallets are a soft way to be in control of your gambling time. If you feel that these are not helping then you can also try setting up blocking software that will prevent you from accessing gambling websites or apps from your desktop of mobile device. There are some softwares that are specific to the gambling industry and others that are generic and used to exercise parental control of internet access as well. Most are easy to download and can be installed in just a few minutes.
These are some examples that you can try:
SELF-ASSESSMENT- DO YOU GAMBLE TOO MUCH?
If you have arrived on this page concerned that you gamble too much then you should take a moment to answer this list of questions that helps to identify those with gambling issues. If you answer yes to each of the questions, or even just some of them, then we recommend that you look for help at one of the charity organisations listed below.
- Have you ever lied to family and friends about how much you spend on gambling?
- Do you regularly spend more than you can afford on gambling?
- Do you think about gambling a lot even when you are not betting?
- Do you gamble at the expense of other hobbies that you once enjoyed?
- Do you regularly look for that one last bet to extend your gambling session?
- Have you ever borrowed, sold possessions or stolen to gamble more?
- Have you ever chased your losses and got into debt?
- Have you given up other important responsibilities to gamble?
- Have you increased the size and frequency of your bets to get the gambling rush back?
- Do you suffer depression when you think about the amount of money that you have spent on gambling?
CHARITIES THAT CAN HELP YOU WITH GAMBLING ADDICTION
If you have reached a point where you feel that you need help with your gambling behaviour then the good news is, there are many useful organisations out there who can help you. The charities listed here are all available via phone or email and many organise regular meeting for addicted gambler to discuss their issues or find counselling.
Responsible Gambling – Toronto-based charity involved in educating and assisting gamblers, whilst helping regulators and operators to set high safe-gambling standards.
Canada Mental Health – A mental health institution providing support to those with gambling addictions.
National Council on Problem Gambling – Provide a website and National Helpline for problem gamblers and publish a directory of addiction counsellors.
Gamblers Anonymous – Provide support for gambling addicts through a helpline and meetings for those seeking help or recovering from addiction.