Placing a bet or two, whether betting on the football, at the races or at the roulette table, can be a fun and exciting experience. Who knows, you may even win something!
However, for some, gambling can have a dark side. Gambling can lead to financial pressure and even addiction – which is something which should be taken very seriously. This doesn’t mean that you necessarily need to avoid betting completely, but there are a few things to keep in mind when you do so.
Follow these 6 top tips to keep gambling a safe, fun experience.
1. Don’t Gamble More Than You Can Afford To Lose
When you gamble, you should always keep in mind that there is no such thing as a safe bet. Because losing is always a possibility, you should never bet more than you can afford to lose. See gambling as a form of entertainment, and set aside some cash for entertainment each week: such as for meals out, going to the movies, and placing a few bets. Draw from this money when you a betting on a race or a match, but never put down money that you need to pay the bills, even if you think you’re guaranteed to win.
2. Set Limits
Before you head to the race track or casino (whether online or otherwise) it is a good idea to set some limits for yourself. That way, when you get caught up in the excitement of placing bets you will already have a few things set in mind. Firstly, set a limit on how much money you are prepared to bet in total. Once you have lost that amount, it is time to stop.
It can also be worthwhile to set a limit on the amount of time you will spend on a given session, or a limit on the amount of time you can afford to spend gambling throughout the week. These kinds of activities can be something of a time vacuum, so a limit will help you to stay in control.
3. Consider Matched Betting
Want to have a guaranteed return on your bets? One of the few ways to do this is through matched betting. Matched betting is a very specific technique which takes advantage of free offers on betting sites in order to generate guaranteed returns. Many online bookmakers give out free offers to new customers as well as special “reload” offers to existing customers. By taking these bets, and placing an equal bets at the same odds on the exact opposite result elsewhere, you essentially gain the amount of the free offer, which you can then use to place more bets, repeating the process and generating a return each time.
Most sites will pay out 80 – 90% on free offers, meaning that on a $10 free introductory or reload offer, you will earn $8 – $9. Repeat this process and over time you will generate a healthy side income.
4. Avoid Gambling at Certain Times
If you feel you may be at risk of developing a gambling addiction, or even if not, it may be best to avoid gambling at certain times. For example, if you feel depressed or upset and are tempted to gamble as a solution to that, it may be best to avoid placing a bet at that moment. The same is true when you are drunk or under the influence of drugs and your judgement is impaired.
5 . Recognise If You Have a Problem
Although for many people gambling is a perfectly healthy activity, for some it can lead a destructive addiction. People have fallen into steep debt and even lost their house and other assets because of a gambling problem. If you think you may have a problem with your gambling, it is important to seek help.
Some signs that you may have a gambling problem include:
- Placing more bets to “chase” or win back losses
- Lying to your friends or family about your gambling
- Borrowing money in order to gamble more
- Feeling that you need to gamble, or feeling unable to stop
By following these tips, and seeking help when you need it, you should be able to enjoy your love of gambling without it becoming a problem.