Online casino play is thrilling in large part because of what a player can stand to win if luck is on their side. To be in with a chance to win, however, you’ll need to deposit some of your own real money in order to play.
Problem gambling is a real issue, for players both online and in real-world gambling situations, which is why is it so important to learn about budgeting for your gambling sessions.
Keeping a casino budget is not as complex as it sounds and ensures that you can have fun without risking an unpleasant surprise the next time you check your bank account.
In this article, we will be looking at ways to help you devise a casino budget that works for you and how to stick by it.
Benefits of a casino budget
First up, let’s look at why it’s a good idea to have a casino budget. The main advantage of keeping to a budget is the control it affords the player. Gambling is exciting and a player can easily get carried away and spend more than they intended. Having a budget negates that risk, allowing players to enjoy their sessions with peace of mind.
It also lets you keep a close eye on your gambling patterns, such as the online casinos you prefer to play at and your overall spending habits.
The first thing a player should do when getting into online casino play is to create a banking account for their casino deposits. This can be a second account with their home bank or a virtual ewallet through any of the many ewallet sites out there.
The point is to keep the casino money away from any savings or current accounts, thus making it easier to monitor the account’s activity. It also limits the damage in case the player becomes the victim of fraud or theft.
Once you have set up your gambling-only account, it’s time to look at strategies to help you stick to your budget.
Set your limits
This is where your own gambling style comes into play. Setting a gambling limit depends on what strategy suits you. We will be outlining the most popular ones so that you can make an informed decision
This one is easy. The truth of the matter is that most players will lose when they play – the longer they play, the more they stand to lose. That’s not to say that the activity isn’t enjoyable but it can wreak havoc on your budget.
One way to keep a tight rein on your losses is to set yourself a time limit. Say you like logging on to your casino account after work. Give yourself one hour to play and then log out, no matter how well your luck seems to be holding out. Set a timer on your phone if it helps but aim to stay within your time limit.
Another related piece of advice is to stick to your routines. Staying up too late in order to continue gambling can impair your decision-making faculties. Stick to your normal bedtime to ensure that you don’t make gambling choices while too tired to think properly.
Another way to keep your budget under control is to set a limit based on how much you lose. You can set a loss limit for a single casino session or for a whole day. Whichever you choose, you have to commit to sticking to the plan and stopping once your loss limit has been reached. Chasing losses can and does often result in more loss.
Here is an example to show how this works. You have a bankroll of £100. You want to limit your losses so you set a 5% betting limit. This means that your maximum bet on any spin or hand at the start of your session will be £5.
You have a couple of successful rounds and win £50. This means your bankroll is now £150 and at 5% of your bankroll, your maximum bet goes up to £7.50.
You then have a few unsuccessful rounds and your bankroll falls to £80. At 5% of your bankroll, your max bet now drops to £4.
With a little bit of maths, you can limit your losses without impacting your gambling session too much.
This strategy is for players who have good self-restraint. As previously discussed, playing for longer often means losing more. Setting a win goal means that you quit while you are ahead, thus limiting your playing time and your chance to lose money.
A win goal is relatively easy to understand. You set yourself a goal – say £100 – and once your overall winnings reach that goal, you stop playing. No chasing more wins, no trying your luck one last time. You call it quits when you make a profit.
Other ways to protect your bankroll
Having gambling limits in place are a good way to make sure you control your spending. There are other things you can do to keep your gambling trouble-free.
Understand the games – Players can lose a lot of money simply by being unaware of how the casino game they are playing works. Demo or free play mode comes in handy here. Play a few free rounds to get the hang of things and play for real with your eyes wide open.
Gamble sober – While this piece of advice might seem more relevant for land-based casino gambling, where players are often plied with free drinks, it is still valid for online casino gambling. Never gamble while under the influence.
Know your own limits – All players, whether enjoying online casinos or land-based ones, should be aware of the signs of problem gambling. If you suspect that you might be falling into bad habits, there are plenty of ways to get help. Self-exclusion is an option offered by most online casinos and can help you take a break from gambling. A plethora of online resources exist that can offer guidance and support if you feel you need help.
Gambling is a lot of fun – that’s why we do it! When it comes to managing your gambling budget, it only takes a little bit of effort to ensure that your spending is controlled and won’t have any negative consequences.