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BetBlocker vs. GamStop

BetBlocker vs. GamStop

Gambling addiction is an ever-growing problem in the UK and elsewhere. To help minimise or eliminate it, responsible gambling tools like BetBlocker and GamStop have been developed. These two tools are intended for self-restriction or self-exclusion purposes. They come in handy when gambling enthusiasts have resolved to keep their wagering lifestyle in check. They can also be effective for gaming and betting fans looking to kick the gambling habit altogether, for at least half a decade or for good.

In the UK, BetBlocker and GamStop are two important tools that wagering fans currently use to gamble responsibly. Their intentions are similar, which are to help users limit or cease their activities on online casinos and sportsbooks. But their ways of helping differ, and we’ll explain their specific features below. What’s good about the two is that they can be used simultaneously or one at a time, depending on the users’ wants and needs. Moreover, they’re both free to use.

GamStop Overview

GamStop is the UK’s national self-exclusion registry that was launched in April 2018. Managed by the National Online Self-Exclusion Scheme Limited, a not-for-profit organisation, it’s fully supported by the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC), the country’s gaming and betting regulator. GamStop is participated in by UKGC-licensed gambling operators, who will readily block from their sites any persons signed up with the registry. There are more than 400,000 people registered on GamStop at present.

GamStop isn’t the complete solution to the UK’s problem of gambling addiction. If we’re registered here, we can still visit online casinos not with GamStop if we find the need to lay a wager. But it’s a good way to show that we’re gambling responsibly. One thing to note is that GamStop doesn’t only serve residents of England, Scotland, and Wales. It’s for those living in either Great Britain or Northern Ireland seeking to take time off gambling.

BetBlocker Overview

BetBlocker is a digital tool that, as its name suggests, blocks user access to gambling platforms. It’s run by the charity of the same name, BetBlocker, which is based in Scotland. Rolled out in 2017, this responsible-gambling tool is technically an app for smartphones, tablets, laptops, and desktops. It works well with most operating systems, such as Android, iOS, Windows, Mac, and Linux. When installed, the app will prevent users from entering more than 75,000 Internet-based casinos and bookmakers operating from near and far.

BetBlocker has been serving thousands of people in the UK, United States, Australia, and other parts of the world. It’s got a range of benefits. One relates to anonymity since users won’t need to provide personal information when using it. Another is ‘calendaring’, which allows users to set the restrictions in advance. Parental controls are in place for mums, dads, or legal guardians of minors at risk of gambling addiction.

BetBlocker vs. GamStop: Comparison

As we’ve mentioned earlier, BetBlocker and GamStop may be used by UK gamblers simultaneously. Turning to both tools at once is ideal for people who want to take a break from Internet-based gaming and betting. This is to say that they wish to be denied access to UKGC-administered gaming and betting sites, whilst barred from platforms regulated by other governments. But if you must choose between the GamStop and BetBlocker, you may want to see first how their upsides and downsides stack up against one another. You can then decide which responsible gambling tool is the perfect fit for you.

Feature GamStop BetBlocker
Customer Support Services Yes No
Service Type Website App
Min. Self-Exclusion Period 6 Month 1 Day
Block Offshore Sites No Yes
Cost Free Free
Implementation Once registered with GamStop, users are excluded from all UK online gambling sites. It blocks gambling sites on the device where it’s installed.

Customer Support

GamStop provides customer support, whilst BetBlocker doesn’t offer any. GamStop users may reach out to the help team by email, phone, or live chat. It’s best to contact them by email if you’ve got detailed, non-immediate enquiries. But if your questions require real-time answers, contact them by phone or live chat. They’re available 7 days a week, from 10 am to 8 pm. Do remember that GamStop’s help desk can’t end your self-exclusion period prematurely or remove your details from the database before the 7-year holding period.

Service Type

GamStop is a self-exclusion registry that uses a dedicated Website with a registration form. You must fill out the digital sign-up sheet here to join, keying in your name, date of birth, and e-mail address. You also need to furnish your current and former addresses, present and past mobile numbers, and preferred self-exclusion duration. Meanwhile, BetBlocker is an app that you can install on the devices you use for Internet-based gambling. You’re free to disable the app when your exclusion period has ended.

Minimum Self-Exclusion Period

Designed to wean you off gambling semi-permanently or permanently, GamStop has a minimum self-exclusion period of six (6) months. The maximum duration per sign-up is five (5) years, but you can renew this when it has expired. BetBlocker is a lot more lenient, setting the minimum to 24 hours and the maximum to 120 months. BetBlocker’s relaxed time frames will let you moderate your wagering activities at your own pace. You may want to restrict yourself on work days or weekends, depending on your goals.

Non-UKGC Sites Block

On the one hand, only UKGC-overseen gambling sites are entitled to participate in the GamStop scheme. This means that people who are currently on GamStop, no matter the length of their self-exclusion, can enter any non-UKGC-authorised online casinos and virtual bookies. On the other hand, BetBlocker allows users to have themselves, through their devices, banned from gaming and betting platforms licensed by the UKGC and other regulatory authorities. These platforms include the brands supervised by the Republic of Malta and the Country of Curaçao.


Both GamStop and BetBlocker are free of charge. The providers of these public services and no-cost tools are not-for-profit organisations and charities based in the UK: the National Online Self-Exclusion Scheme Limited (for GamStop) and BetBlocker (for BetBlocker). The GamStop register runs on funds that are collected from the UKGC-governed gambling operators, who want to maintain the industry’s viability without causing harm to consumers. As for BetBlocker, the app runs on donations coming from institutions and individuals advocating responsible gambling within and outside of Britain.


Once registered on GamStop, users are immediately denied access to every digital gambling establishment administered by the UKGC. There’s no turning back until the selected self-exclusion period has expired since it’s impossible to cancel it midway or end it prematurely. With BetBlocker, users have more freedom to set and reset the exclusion period or install and uninstall the app. One thing to note about BetBlocker, though, is that it may not be easy to remove this tool from your mobile and stationary gadgets.

What Is Similar Between GamStop and BetBlocker?

As earlier stated, in spite of their differences, especially in time frames and implementation, GamStop and BetBlocker are similar in many ways. Probably the most impressive one is their intention, which is aligned with the principles of responsible gambling. Another similarity is that they offer self-restriction and self-exclusion services gratis. This way, we won’t have to spend a quid just to fight our excessive spending on wagers. Here are three (3) important similarities explained:

Cost (Free)

We’ve said this before, and we’ll be happy to say it again: Both GamStop and BetBlocker are free to use. They’re supported by the gambling industry and a good number of responsible gambling advocates, who want to balance profitability with consumer wellness. These resources are far from being perfect solutions to the gambling problem in Britain and elsewhere, but they can help manage the crisis one user at a time. Other tools are available, although these require a paid subscription.

Impossibility To Cancel

A striking similarity between the two tools is that you can’t cancel GamStop or delete BetBlocker at all, which can be quite annoying to many users. It’s GamStop policy not to accommodate requests for the early termination of the self-exclusion period. And it’s BetBlocker’s protocol to stay stuck on the device where it’s installed. Thus, it’s best to weigh the pros and cons of using these tools before taking the plunge and actually signing up on GamStop or downloading BetBlocker.


For all their almost-prohibitive features, GamStop and BetBlocker share the same noble purpose of helping people control their excessive wagering urges, if not get rid of gambling altogether. In the UK, which is GamStop’s sole jurisdiction, the UKGC-backed self-exclusion scheme has helped (or continues to help) more than 400,000 voluntarily submitting people. BetBlocker may be helping fewer UK gambling fanatics than GamStop, but its user types include underaged people who can easily lay a wager with their computing devices.

BetBlocker vs. GamStop: FAQ

🤔 What are the differences between GamStop and BetBlocker?

There are several differences between GamStop and BetBlocker. One is that GamStop’s jurisdiction is limited to gamblers who are living in the UK. BetBlocker’s reach is beyond the UK. It can serve users from countries and territories like the British Crown Dependencies, the US, Canada, and Australia. Another is that GamStop can only ban people from UKGC-supervised online casinos and bookmakers. BetBlocker can deny users access to UKGC and non-UKGC gaming and betting sites worldwide.

🤔 What self-exclusion tool is more effective?

Based on first-hand experience and feedback from fellow wagering aficionados, BetBlocker is more effective than GamStop. It’s because BetBlocker lets the users ban themselves from UKGC-regulated and non-UK licensed casinos and bookies on the web. It’s also because BetBlocker has less forbidding and more realistic duration options, such as 24 hours that can progress to 7 days, 4 weeks, 12 months, or 5 years.

🤔 Can you cancel BetBlocker or GamStop exclusions before they expire?

No, you can’t cancel a BetBlocker or GamStop exclusion before it expires. Moreover, registering with GamStop means you’re ready to share your details with all UKGC-governed operators. Additionally, your data will remain in the system for seven (7) years after your self-exclusion ends. Meanwhile, installing BetBlocker means you’re fine with the app staying on your device permanently. We can’t emphasise this enough, but it’s best to understand the advantages and disadvantages before using either tool.

🤔 Are GamStop and BetBlocker free to use?

Absolutely! GamStop and BetBlocker are free to use, forever. The no-cost feature is real, without hidden fees, paid premium features, or purchase-to-upgrade options. What you see is what you get: gratis, honest-to-goodness ways to stop the urge to spend too much time, energy, and money on online casinos and virtual sportsbooks. You may go to the GamStop and BetBlocker sites to learn more about how the tools can help with your short-term and long-term goals.

Read Also

GamStop and BetBlocker are only two of the growing number of tools for responsible gambling that are available to wagering enthusiasts in the UK. Other names that have become increasingly popular amongst Brits include Gamban, GamBlock, and NetNanny. They differ from GamStop and BetBlocker in various ways, especially in the fact that these three brands require a paid subscription. If you’re up for using GamStop but don’t want BetBlocker to go with it, perhaps because you’re not sold to BetBlocker, check out the following articles:

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