With increasing regulations being enforced on the UK betting scene, some punters are looking to casinos not in GamStop. These sites are based overseas and are not bound by the UKGC regulations. The UK has seen strict rules applied, such as a ban on credit card deposits, in-game spin timers, and bet limits. A result of this loss of freedom has driven many punters to seek out overseas sites but these can have pitfalls.
This guide will help you to find the more reputable casinos.
Security and Licensing
The first thing to look for in a reputable site is the security of the platform and of users’ funds.
For the platform, it is important to find a site that has the latest security measures. One of the basics is SSL encryption, which was designed to provide privacy and data integrity for users in internet communications. Sites using this feature are showing that they value customer safety and data security. Firewalls are another important feature, which can prevent hacking with a high standard of data protection.
To protect your deposits, you will still need a site that is regulated by a gaming authority in their respective country. For UK gamblers, the obvious choice is the UK Gambling Commission as citizens are offered more security and support in their home country, but some punters have been increasingly looking overseas to casinos not registered with GamStop. Malta and Gibraltar are two examples of European countries that have attracted betting companies. These are regulated by their own body, such as the Malta Gaming Authority and are still subject to strict EU money laundering rules. These can be a good starting point for finding reputable sites.
In recent times, there has been a rise in South American destinations offering services, with Costa Rica being popular. These countries tend to have less strict regulation and they will have little or no consumer protection for UK punters, so they should be handled with care.
The UKGC has also joined forces with the GamStop non-profit organisation to apply a strict self-exclusion scheme in the country. Anyone who has experience with, or is vulnerable to, problem gambling, can apply to the scheme and have their accounts blocked from all gambling sites for a pre-determined period. This can be for a period of up to five years. Another organisation being used is Gamban, which is a for-profit private enterprise that will block gambling sites from mobile devices and PCs. Unfortunately, many gamblers are in denial of their problems and may look for casinos not on Gamban as a loophole.
Variety of Payment Methods
Outside of the safety measures, choosing a suitable casino site will require a variety of payment and withdrawal methods.
The standard for online payments is debit and credit cards, but another restriction enforced by the UK was a ban on credit cards at British sites. This is another reason why punters have looked to overseas sites as many consumers prefer to separate their betting transactions from their bank statements to avoid stigma when applying for a mortgage or a loan. For withdrawals, UK betting sites will provide wire transfers and payment wallets, but the overseas sites will also offer these, and many are now supporting cryptocurrencies. This is giving non GamStop casinos an advantage over the British sites.
Consumers also need to check the terms and conditions for withdrawals to ensure that fees and times are at an industry standard. Withdrawals are usually instant for e-wallets, 1-3 days for cards, and 3-5 business days for wire transfers.
Bonuses and Promotions
One of the exciting parts of choosing a new casino is the welcome bonuses and promotions. Companies like to offer generous odds or matched deposits to entice new users, but another issue with the UKGC restrictions has been a clamp down on the marketing of UK companies. Bonuses and promotions are often more generous at the non-GamStop sites, but you should be wary of deals that seem too good to be true. Despite this, welcome rewards can be up to 100% or more, with sign-up rewards being matched up to £500 in many cases.
A reputable casino will offer a strong selection of game titles on their platform. Overseas sites can provide access to a wider range of game titles, which is another effect of the reduced marketing in the UK.
The most popular games are slots, live dealer roulette and poker. Those who are conducting their own research should also look for a company that provides transparency in gaming statistics and ensure that they are certified by their respective gaming authority. The site will have to prove that it values fairness, and that payout ratios are at an acceptable industry level.
Customer Support and Responsible Gaming
Customer support is another factor to consider when seeking an enjoyable casino experience.
Many users will not require customer assistance but it’s important to have it as an option. Reputable sites will offer access to 24/7 chat support, and they will also provide other contact options available such as phone, email, and a good FAQ section. The larger firms, such as the listed companies in the UK, will often provide smoother customer service due to increased staff numbers and this is another area where the UK sites have an advantage.
A Summary of Casinos not on GamStop
Many bettors are now considering casinos not registered with GamStop on platforms like this due to pressure applied by government and mental health groups on problem gambling which has resulted in the creation and enforcement of new rules and regulations.
It is right that the authorities tackle this problem, but the measures introduced are also punishing users who are comfortable in their gambling habits. The new rules have also expanded to the in-game casino experience, with measures such as spin timers and bet size limits. These rules are giving overseas sites an advantage over British sites.
If you are an experienced gambler, you will find that doing a little background research with our tips should be enough to help you find a safe online casino experience.
The UKGC is the preferred regulatory body for UK consumers because of the increased consumer protection and support for problem gambling. The next best option would be European casino sites due to the EU banking system and money laundering rules. These are a good starting point for using overseas sites and can give you the confidence to seek out casinos not on GamStop.