UK to Limits Max Bet for Online Slots in September 2024

Online slots will have to limit bets to a maximum of £2 for younger adults and £5 for everyone else, as the government looks to crack down on problem gambling and create a healthier igaming environment.
UK to Limits Max Bet for Online Slots in September 2024
February 29, 2024

Starting in September, regulated online casinos in the UK will only be able to offer slots with a maximum bet of £2 for adults between the ages of 18 and 24 and £5 for adults over the age of 25.

The decision followings a 10-week consultation period, during which a variety of respondents were asked questions regarding limiting maximum bets in online slot machines. The UK government has subsequently instituted measures that ensures such limits are put into place.

This means that the overall max bet will be significantly reduced for most slot machines, while the limits for young adults will be reduced further in an attempt to minimize the impact of problem gambling among young adults and the population at large.

New Limits Go Into Effect in September

Land-based slot machines in the UK have had max bet limits for some time, but online casinos were able to offer slot machines with much higher bets without limitations.

Starting in September, the new limits will apply to all operators licensed by the UKGC, with a six-week transition period to allow for the overall £5 limit to be introduced and an additional six-week period to implement the £2 limits for younger adults.

Operators who fail to comply will risk being fined by the Commission or losing their gaming licenses, and we will likely see all UK online casinos abide by the new regulations by the end of the year.

The change only impacts slots games. It will not affect UK online poker players, nor table casino games.

Protecting Young Adults from Problem Gambling

While gambling is a widespread hobby in the UK, gambling addiction is also a very real problem that a portion of the population has to deal with.

Broadly speaking, younger populations tend to be more likely to become victims of gambling addictions for several reasons.

Being responsible of their finances for the first time, many young adults are not sure how to handle money and how to limit their expenses or losses in popular casino games.

What’s more, the brains of young adults are not yet fully developed, and there is some evidence to suggest they are neurologically more susceptible to addictions.

The new measures instituted by the UK government are aimed at all these issues, looking to protect young adults from losing too much too fast and binge-playing slots until they have lost it all.

UK’s Gambling Minister Stuart Andrew said: “Although millions of people gamble safely every single day, the evidence shows that there is a significantly higher problem gambling rate for online slot games.”

“We also know that young adults can be more vulnerable when it comes to gambling-related harms, which is why we committed to addressing both of these issues in our white paper.”

“The growing popularity of online gambling is clear to see, so this announcement will level the playing field with the land-based sector and is the next step in a host of measures being introduced this year that will protect people from gambling harms.”

Responsible Gambling in Focus

UK has been one of the biggest proponents of responsible gambling over the years, with UKGC and other government agencies continually looking for new ways to protect the public from the harms of addictive gambling.

While gambling remains a big part of the UK way of life, setting limits like these and ensuring the operators and players both benefit from their mutual relationship is the only way to maintain a healthy gaming market in the long run.

With the new measures going into power in September, it will be interesting to see how they are reflected in the overall revenue numbers for UK casino operators and what further steps the government may want to take to ensure safety in the online gambling sector.

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