If you have a question about your gambling, or the gambling of someone close to you, our FAQs from gambling consumers during lockdown may provide valuable information. Try the new Gambling Commission website we're working on, and give us feedback. UK Minister Urges Gambling Companies to Do More to Protect Vulnerable People. Nigel Huddleston wrote a letter to the five chief executives of the largest gambling companies; Wants safer gambling messages in adverts to be more prominent during the lockdown; Anecdotal evidence points toward many people playing online casino games while at home.
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Our experts have chosen the best online betting sites for bettors located in the United Kingdom
Why do we think the sites listed on the page are great for punters? There are many, but here are a few of our top reasons:
Judges’ comments: “Gaming is being embraced by an ever-widening demographic and this is a really exciting company in the gaming sector - a great UK rising star.” MadeWithGlove A wearable technology company designing heated gloves for women. The 11 largest online gambling sites in the world have allowed people to play their favorite games from the comfort of their own homes. Online gambling also provides an easy and less intimidating.
- Regulated by the GamblingCommission.gov.uk
- Deposit & withdraw using your favorite payment methods including Paypal
- Excellent first time offers including free bets and deposit bonuses
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Online Betting Sites Information
[toc]The United Kingdom is one of many countries in Europe that regulates online gaming. This includes online poker, casino games and sports betting. Punters can feel comfortable giving action to sites that adhere to the strict licensing process set forth by UK Gambling Commission. Funds deposited at these sites are just as safe as they would be at corner betting shops.
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The UK started regulating online gaming in 2005. It was one of the first countries in the world to do so. That was at a time when the industry was still evolving. The industry was regulated by the UK Gambling Commission.
A loophole in the law permitted companies to remain offshore and dodge taxes and regulations set force by the UKGC. These companies had the same access to the market as ones located in the UK.
The only difference was the lack of regulation or taxes paid. The law was changed in 2014 to address this concern.
Licensing procedure for UK gaming sites
The Gambling Licensing and Advertising Act of 2014 required remote gaming companies to register as of October 1, 2014. Sites were mandated to do this to obtain proper licensing to operate in the UK. The full law went into effect on December 1, 2014.
A separate license is required for each segment of gambling offered to UK players. Poker, casino, sports, bingo and lotteries all require unique licensing. Those that do not comply with these regulations and still accept UK players violate the act and are subject to criminal penalties. Media outlets are not permitted to accept advertising from these companies.
The largest point of contention between remote gaming companies and the Act is the tax rate. The UK has a point of consumption tax of 15 percent. This and the licensing procedure caused several major players to leave the UK market. Some of those that stayed were forced to adjust pricing to cover the tax rate. Many of these companies previously operated in tax havens like Gibraltar and Isle of Man where rates were well into the single digits. This kept operating costs down. That luxury is no longer available to these companies.
Some sites moved players to .co.uk domains and away from .coms. There is little or no difference between the two sites in most cases. UK poker sites network into international player pools. All casino games and sports bets available to customers outside the UK are available to those in the country, even if access is from the .co.uk domain. Most changes were to bonuses or VIP programs. Additional taxes were typically attributed to these changes in policy.
Types of gambling legal in UK
There are no restrictions on the menu of gaming available at UK sites.
Poker, casino games, sports betting, bingo and lotteries are all permitted. All of the traditional brick-and-mortar bookmakers operate the same games and bets online as they do in the local betting shops. The online sites simply add a level of convenience to the player’s experience.
More about the UK online gambling marketplace
As one of the most tightly-regulated online betting markets in the world, the United Kingdom is a wellspring of information regarding the operators that offer products such as online sports betting and the consumers who use those products.
A majority of that information can be found via the website of the United Kingdom Gambling Commission, which is broadly charged with oversight of all sports operators that serve the jurisdiction along with online poker, bingo, casino, and other real-money wagering products.
The UKGC recently released a comprehensive take on the online gambling habits of players in the UK. Read Facts and Figures: 2016for a broad array of insights into the nature of the market for online sports wagering and other types of online betting in the UK.
Below is an infographic that captures some of the highlights of the paper.
United Kingdom Online Betting FAQ
Is online sports betting legal in the UK?
Online sports betting is legal in the UK. Many of the brands that operate the largest online sportsbooks are also bookmakers in the UK or were in the past. This includes Betway, 888Sport, Bet365, William Hill and Ladbrokes.
What types of online sports bets can I make from the UK?
Football, basketball, American football, hockey, eSports, boxing, golf, tennis, mixed martial arts and handball are among the types of sports available for wagering from the UK. Entertainment and political menus are also available. Some books offer exotics on special events.
What types of wagers are available at UK online sports books?
UK online sports books offer straight bets, parlays, teasers, pleasers, in-play and a variety of exotic cards.
Do UK betting sites work with Macs?
Yes. All UK betting sites are compatible with Macs.
Are there apps for UK betting sites?
Yes. Almost all UK-licensed sports betting companies offer mobile apps. These are available in iPhone, iPad and Android devices.
What if I have a dispute with a UK betting site?
The UK Gambling Commission will intervene in all player disputes. The Advertising Standards Authority will investigate false advertising claims.
How do I deposit at online UK sportsbooks?
UK online bookmakers accept Visa, Mastercard, Delta, Switch, PayPal, Neteller, Skrill, uKash, Click2Pay, Maestro, bank transfer and Visa Electron are available as deposit options.
How do I withdraw from a UK online betting site?
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UK betting sites process withdrawals to debit cards used to deposit, bank transfer, check, PayPal, Neteller, Skrill, Click2Pay and uKash.
Is it safe to play at UK betting sites?
Any site that is licensed by the UK Gambling Commission is just as safe as any betting shop.
Can I play at unlicensed betting sites?
Players that deposit at unlicensed sites are making an unnecessary risk. There are no consumer protections at these sites. We highly recommend avoiding sites that do not hold a UK remote gambling license. There are too many great licensed sites available.
Can I get a deposit bonus at UK gaming sites?
Yes. Most poker, casino and sports sites available to UK players offer a first deposit bonus. Most require a minimum wager amount before it may be withdrawn.
Is online poker legal in the UK?
Online poker is legal in the UK. All major poker sites are available to UK players. This includes PokerStars, 888, PartyPoker and a variety of major poker networks. Unlike players in France, Italy and Spain, UK players have access to international player pools.
Are online casino games legal in the UK?
Online casino games are legal in the UK. This includes slots, video poker, blackjack, punto banco, roulette, craps and house-banked card games. UK online casinos often use European rules in roulette but not all do. Make sure to check the rules.
Biggest Gambling Firms Uk
According to the latest stats published by the UK Gambling Commission, UK gamblers bet a massive £14.5 billion last year. Yes, you read that correctly — that’s billion, not million.
That figure includes the gross gaming revenue across multiple sectors, including both online and offline gambling. After reading the summary of this latest report, I began to wonder, “What type of gambling is most popular in the UK?”
I had an intuitive feeling that sports bettors would be the biggest group. However, I wasn’t so sure about which group bet the most money. So, I dug into the data, and here’s what I found regarding which type of gambling is most popular in the UK. This is a breakdown of gambling in the UK by the numbers.
Some Headline Findings
Before breaking the industry down section by section and finding out which type of British gambler bets the most, I dug into the infrastructure of the UK gambling industry. Here are some key stats.
- There are 8,423 betting shops across the UK. Brands like William Hill and Ladbrokes dominate the landscape in all four countries.
- There are 183,813 gaming machines in the UK. That includes fruit machines in pubs and any other type of gaming machine which requires a UKGC license to operate.
- There are 152 casinos in Britain. This includes big franchises like Genting, world-famous casinos like The Hippodrome, and small-time operators all over the country.
- There are 650 bingo halls all over the UK. That number is up 1.1% from the previous year despite the rise of online bingo.
- There are 1,639 licensed arcades in the UK. These even exist in places like Northern Ireland, where casinos are still illegal for now.
- In total, including all of the above, there are 2,757 operators licensed by the UK Gambling Commission.
Phew! That’s a lot of places to make a wager, whatever kind it may be. A quick calculation tells us that there’s one betting shop for every 7,832 people in the country. I suppose that likely equates to one in each town of any significant population, and lots clustered in major cities like London, Edinburgh, Cardiff, and Belfast. However, there’s only one casino per 434,472 people, and they’re virtually nonexistent outside of medium and large-sized cities.
All of these establishments provide 106,670 jobs for UK citizens. Newspapers often overlook this side of gambling when they report all the doom and gloom of gambling. It’s a mega-industry in this country, and to either cripple it or shut it down would be extremely foolish from an economic point of view.
After understanding this, I was feeling fairly good about my prediction regarding which type of gambling is most popular in the UK. I initially thought sports bettors made up the biggest sector. My logic told me that there couldn’t be this many betting shops unless the demand was there.
What Does the Money Say?
The first thing I’m certain of is that more and more money is migrating online. When you consider that the average age of a UK resident is 40 and that the number of UK gambling sites is increasing exponentially, it isn’t difficult to understand what direction this industry is heading.
I looked at the revenue by sector, and here’s what I found.
- Betting accounted for £8.42 billion in revenue and £1.37 billion in yield.
- Bingo generated £1.01 billion in revenue and 355.28 million in yield.
- There is no revenue figure for casinos, but the yield was £1.07 billion.
Of this, remote betting generated a total of £115,456 million. Here’s a quick breakdown of the sector-by-sector numbers.
- Remote betting generated £26.79 million.
- Remote bingo generated £1.54 million.
- Casino gaming generated £87.01 million.
- Pool betting brought in £99.48 million.
While it bugs me that I couldn’t find an exact revenue figure for casino gaming, it’s clear from this data that sports betting is indeed the biggest gambling sector in the UK. That’s true, at least when it comes to profits for operators and the number of locations to bet. However, there isn’t much in it. If I had to guess, I’d say that casino games generate more revenue, even if the profit is a little lower.
What did I learn about online gambling? It isn’t yet as big as I thought it was, and there’s still lots of room for growth. However, I’m sure the numbers are a lot bigger than this when gambling sites without UKGC licences are factored in.
Other Interesting Stats and Facts
While digging around in the UKGC’s data, I decided to let my curiosity take me wherever it wanted. Here are some other interesting facts I learned about gambling in the UK.
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- The National Lottery generated £2.99 billion in profits and contributed £1.5 billion to good causes. This is more profit than the other three forms of gambling combined.
- In terms of the total number of machines across the UK, bingo is the winner. There are 74,692 bingo machines. There are 33,324 betting machines, and 3,305 machines offering casino games.
- Of the £8.42 billion generated by betting, only £257.52 million of that was on-course betting.
- Of the big-name betting shops, William Hill has the most premises. There are 2,282 William Hill betting shops in the UK. The runner-up is Ladbrokes with 1,849 betting shops.
- There are 846 roulette tables, 545 blackjack tables, and 172 baccarat tables in UK casinos. There are 3,783 electronic gaming machines.
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When we consider all forms of UK gambling, the National Lottery is the biggest of the lot. It’s staggering to think that the lotto made more profits than all of the others combined. Then again, every newsagent and filling station in the country sells tickets, and it’s not even considered “gambling proper” by most people, so it’s much more socially acceptable.
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When it comes to the three main “gambling proper” sectors, sports betting is the biggest of the lot. However, casino gaming isn’t far behind it in terms of profitability. While no exact revenue figures are available, I’m fairly sure that casino gaming generates more in terms of sheer cash.