Formally announced back in January, the government’s ban on credit card gambling in the UK officially came into law on Tuesday April 14.
It means that you will no longer be able to make deposits and withdrawals into your betting accounts using your credit card, and crucially – and this has also been missed by many – e-wallet services and ‘money service businesses’ are also banned where they are funded by credit cards.
So, this would also include things like PayPal, Skrill, Neteller and Apple Pay where your primary payment method is a credit card from Visa, Mastercard and co.
The ban comes in the wake of an online gambling review from the UK Gambling Commission, in association with the government’s paper ‘A Review of Gaming Machines and Social Responsibility Measures, as well as a public consultation period between August and November of last year.
The credit card ban applies to all online and offline gambling products, including high street and online sports betting and casino gaming, but does not apply to non-remote lotteries and those set up to raise funds for charitable causes.
The move has been designed to help cut the number of problem gamblers who are getting themselves into debt by funding their betting accounts using their plastic.
It will fall upon betting operators to police their own platform, and they will use a card’s unique Issuer Identification Number (IIN) to determine whether the card is attached to a credit, debit or prepaid card. Any transactions confirmed as from a credit card will be blocked.
Neil McArthur, the chief executive of the UK Gambling Commission, said:
“Credit card gambling can lead to significant financial harm. The ban that we have announced today should minimise the risks of harm to consumers from gambling with money they do not have.”
Payment Methods Still Accepted by Betting Sites
The key thing to remember for punters is that there are still countless ways to deposit and withdraw funds to and from your account.
Indeed, many of the formats you are used to are still available – as long as you change the primary payment method with them.
So, if you have a debit card, for example, then you can use this to deposit directly into your betting account, or you can use that card to power your PayPal, Skrill, Neteller and so on.
If you have an Apple Mac, phone or tablet, you could always sign up for an Apple Pay account – this is a platform that is becoming more widely accepted by a number of shops and merchants, and a number of betting sites welcome payments in this form.
You can also take advantage of methods like Visa Checkout, which stores the details of your Visa debit card to accelerate the payment process.
And don’t forget, you can still resort to a good old-fashioned bank transfer if you wish. This will slow the process of getting money in and out of your betting account, but at least offers an option outside of credit cards which are now banned.