Betting on games of chance from home has been a reality since 1996. While this industry has grown year-to-year ever since, it got a dramatic shot in the arm in early-2020, when the global pandemic hit. That occurrence served as a massive catalyst for this sector, giving rise to non GamStop casinos. These are gambling sites with a home base in a foreign country, existing outside the UKGC’s mandatory self-exclusion scheme called GamStop.
They are platforms predominantly similar to UK online casinos but feature subtle differences that make them more alluring to some UK casino enthusiasts. That is particularly true after February of 2021 when the UKGC decided to implement new measures that make slot gameplay less addictive. What motivated this move was public pressures stemming from recent polls that showed that problem gambling is rising in Britain. Thus, though the UKGC’s reaction had the player’s best interests in mind, many saw it as unfavorable, believing that these novel restrictions sour the online gambling experience.
This article will provide a deep dive into betting sites not on GamStop, their benefits, and how they stack up against UK casinos.
The GamStop Self-Exclusion Program Explained
GamStop self-exclusion is a relatively new thing. It got implemented at all UK casinos in March of 2020. Though, plans were for it to make its debut as early as 2017. It is a database that all UKGC-licensed casinos share. Once any player decides to activate any one of the three offered self-exclusion periods at any UK online casino, he receives an automatic ban valid for all UK gambling sites. GamStop self-exclusion is irreversible. Once activated, there is no cancelation. A player must wait out his chosen period and then contact GamStop support to get his ban lifted. Only then can that player resume playing casino-style games at UK gaming platforms.
The UKGC is the UK’s overseeing body of all gambling-related activities, except for spread wagering, a form of sports betting. In 2007, it took over this role from the Gaming Board for Great Britain, and in 2013, it began regulating the National Lottery. The UKGC licenses all operators that wish to offer internet gambling services to Brits. It also oversees all their practices to make sure the UK players get a fair shake.
Thanks to the UKGC’s interest in player safety, this organization implements strict measures that some players frown upon and international regulators lack. These include spin timers, low wagering limits, no auto-play, and irreversible self-exclusion.
HowCredible Casinos Without GamStop Operate
Simply because a gambling site does not have a UKGC license, that does not mean that it isn’t a trustworthy casino. On the contrary, many gambling sites not on GamStop have been operational far longer than most established UK casinos. That is so because online gambling became legal in Britain in 2005 with the passing of the Gambling Act. Yet, other countries have passed similar legislation in the mid-1990s. Thus, there are sites not on GamStop that have been around for close to two decades. These have licenses from regulators such as the MGA, The Junta de Control de Juegos (Panama’s Gaming Control Board), and one of the four Curacao master license holders.eGaming Curacao is the most famous of the latter bunch.
Non UK casinos incorporate security measures that are identical to those found at UKGC sites. So, 128-bit or 256-bit SSL encryption is a mainstay at almost all non GamStop casinos, as is game testing from agencies such as iTech Labs and TST. Many operators also have designated independent arbiters that render unbiased verdicts in disputes.
Are Non UKCasinos Legal?
UK authorities have never prosecuted residents that choose to spin reels at slots not on GamStop. There are no indications that they plan on doing anything of that sort soon. If legal problems arise from a UK player using a non UK casino, the liability will rest with the operator that allowed UK players to open an account at his site. Individuals are unlikely to be legally at fault.
UK law states that only UKGC-approved platforms can offer internet gaming services to gamblers residing on UK soil. However, the reality is that no one cares where people choose to gamble and if they pick a non UK casino over a UKGC one. They can do so freely without fear of facing prosecution. Most view such a choice as a consumer exercising his options to attain a better quality service.
That said, players with impulse control issues should not see non GamStop casinos as a way to circumvent an activated self-exclusion. Doing so can lead individuals to financial and emotional peril.
What Awaits at Sites Not on GamStop
Before the UKGC decided to enforce its new measures in February of 2020, there was a negligible difference between the two categories of gambling sites discussed above. These were mainly concerning payment and game selection. Non GamStop sites had and still do a reputation for housing products unavailable in the UK. That is so because before a provider can offer its title in Britain, it has to pass UKGC testing and receive this organization’s permission to do so. Many game suppliers do not wish to go through this arduous process, so they skip the UK market.
Platforms that do not have access to the GamStop player database allow the use of niche altcoins. Their offer of cryptocurrencies stretches beyond Bitcoin, Litecoin, and Ethereum. They also still accept credit cards, whose use got forbidden at UK gambling sites in 2020 and still feature auto-play functions and high wagering limits. Additionally, they have the freedom to feature bonuses the likes that many British gamblers have never seen due to UKGC limitations.
UK Casinosvs.NonUK Casinos
There is no definite authority worthy of passing judgment on which type of gambling site is better, non GamStop casinos or UK ones. It is up to individual players to weigh all the advantages and drawbacks of these categories of casinos and decide for themselves which is a more proper fit for them.
Casinos With GamStop
|– Players can always utilize GBP.
– UKGC player protection.
– Reliable self-exclusion system.
– Independent dispute resolution.
– Multiple problem gambling help avenues.
|– Wagering restrictions.
– Two and a half-second wait between slot spins.
Casinos Without GamStop
|– Credit cards are an allowed transaction option.
– Richer gaming libraries.
– Altcoins are a viable payment method.
– Lax identity verification processes.
– Site-specific self-exclusion.
|– Players may not always have GBP as an option.
– Dispute resolutionaccording to foreign laws.
No one can say that non GamStop casinos are substantially better than UK platforms. They undoubtedly have their benefits, like allowing players to fund their balance using a diverse set of payment options and giving them access to expansive gaming libraries.
Those who crave strict operator control would be wise to stick to UKGC casinos. However, players that desire freedom when spinning reels should test out a casino without GamStop today. There is no need to deposit to get a firm grasp of what these sites offer, as demo-play is always an option. If a player finds hunting for fictitious riches at foreign sites enthralling, the same practice with money on the line is likely to be twice as thrilling.