Online gambling is great. Not only can you access things with a click of a button on a device that fits in your pocket, but you can also choose when to do it and for how long. There's so much stuff out there nowadays too that it's hard to determine where to even begin.
What's wise to consider before you join any casino is your online gambling budget. After all, it's very easy to get carried away with your favourite slot or at a virtual poker table. You need to implement limits so you don't end up running out of wagering money too soon. Not everyone is clued up on how to go about maintaining their budget, though.
1) Set A Time Limit
The first thing to consider (and many people forget about this) is to set yourself a time limit. Odd to think, but limiting the amount of time you spend gambling can be an effective way of limiting the amount of money you spend. This makes perfect sense, though, especially with online gambling. With real life casinos and bookmakers, the physicality of having to travel and be present inside a building in order to play blackjack or roulette automatically gives you a strict time limit to play with.
With online gambling, however, this is not so easy. Since you can gamble anywhere from the comfort of your own home to the lumpy seat on a commuter train, time limits become much harder to keep in mind. Try restricting your gambling time to between half and hour to a full hour a day. Any more than that would be fine if you've got a large budget but this is a general guideline. Point is, set yourself an alarm on your phone so you know when your time will be up. You'll stay well within your projected budget, we can guarantee that much.
2) Plan Ahead
No budget is of any use unless the person who made it has planned ahead. While it's unfeasible to try and think of every possible outcome, it's still important for players to have a little foresight. If you know that you have a tendency to spend £20 a week on slots, limit yourself to £15. Make a spreadsheet of all the money you spend online gambling, on which site and for how long. Planning and keeping track is an effective way of seeing if you are making progress.
Of course, extra cash in your pocket is also a pretty good indicator however having the written evidence before your eyes is just as satisfying, if not more. If nothing else, planning ahead makes your budget feel more tangible and easy to stick to. If you just make loose targets off the top of your head, they tend to be less effective.
3) Use Deposit Limits
Deposit limits are an incredibly effective way to help curb your spending with online gambling. With pay-by-phone deposits in particular, where there is a daily £30 limit, this can come in very handy. The limit imposed by a third party guarantees that you won't be tempted to overspend. Such measures can feel restrictive at times but they are, nevertheless, a great way of making sure you toe the line. Sometimes, it's necessary, especially when you know you aren't the most disciplined person in the world.
Outside influence is always a good idea, in any case. Tell someone what you intend to do. Have an online gambling buddy. They'll set you straight and inform you when you've stepped over budget if necessary. Though, deposit limits are more equal, if you get our drift. Less likely to let things slide when you make a mistake.
4) Set Realistic Goals
As any decent Life Coach would tell you, setting yourself realistic goals is the key to success. Nothing ever gets achieved if you become too ambitious and set yourself targets you have no hope of reaching. It happens at the gym, it happens with long-term projects, it happens in budgeting for online gambling. If cutting down from £100 a month to £20 sounds impossible for you at this point, that's probably because it is.
Try cutting down by a small amount at first. With the £100 example, try cutting down to £75, then the following month to £50, then the month after that £25… You get the idea. Move the goal posts the further you go along so that you are constantly on your toes and have something to work on. This will significantly reduce your sense of failure and motivate you much more into maintaining that all-important budget.
5) Stay Within Your Means
Finally, the most important (and most obvious) tip we can give is to stay within your means. No, duh, right? Of course budgeting requires you to stay within your means! That's the whole point of it. Well, we thought we'd tell you anyway, seeing as it's integral to your financial well being. If you refuse to stay within your means, you'll quickly find yourself running out of money quickly and having to explain to the bank why you can't pay the mortgage this month. Just try to stay in budget as often as you can.