Gamble more safely

Skip to content

Gamble more safely

Three rules to help you set your limits

The first step to lower your risk of gambling harm is to put safeguards around how much you spend, and how often you gamble and how many ways you gamble. 

How much? - no more than 1% of household income

So… how much can you spend on gambling each week?

Yearly household income (before tax) Maximum weekly amount for gambling 
 $30,000  $6
 $90,000  $17
 $180,000  $35
 $210,000  $40

If you gamble regularly, try to keep it less than once a week.

The number of ways you gamble makes a difference. It is easier to lose control if you regularly take part in more than one type of gambling.  

Some types of gambling are fast paced and involve frequent betting, such as poker machines. People can spend lots of money in a very short time. It is a good idea to take a closer look and learn how gambling works.


The three rules are adapted from the Lower-risk gambling guidelines developed by Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction in 2021. The guidelines aim to help people of legal gambling age to make more informed choices about their gambling. 

To view the full Lower-risk gambling guidelines, please visit: https://gamblingguidelines.ca/.

Deciding what’s right for you

Following the three rules is a great start. But remember to follow all three at the same and not be selective.

For some people, these three rules may not be enough. 

You should consider setting stricter rules around gambling or not gambling at all if you:

  • have issues with alcohol or other drugs

  • have mental health issues such as anxiety and depression

  • have a personal or family history of experiencing gambling harm.

Sticking to your limits

Once you’ve set your limits, there are steps you can take to help stick to them.

If you’re going to gamble in a casino, club or pub, you can leave your bank and credit cards at home and only take cash you are happy to spend – and can afford to lose.

If you gamble online, you can set limits on how much you can deposit into your account, the minimum time between deposits and how much you can bet.

You can also get support from your bank. Your bank can help control what you spend on gambling through blocks and limits on gambling transactions from your account, spending trackers on banking apps and activity statements, and by setting general transaction limits.

Other tips for safer gambling

Think about how you gamble

Everyone is different. Some people place a bet on the Melbourne Cup once a year. Others bet a few times a week. For some people, gambling is a fun and harmless pastime. For others, it can cause serious problems. So what’s your style? Understand your own gambling and what works for you. 

Do your research. You might be surprised to learn the real chances of winning for different types of gambling and what you stand to lose. It helps to learn about gambling on every level.

 

Use the three rules above to set your limits before you start and walk away once you reach them. Don’t chase your losses. 

Drinking or consuming drugs while gambling affects your ability to make decisions. Try to limit your consumption of alcohol and other drugs when you gamble. 

Gambling with other people can affect the way you gamble. It can be hard to stop when your friends are betting big and egging you on. Be aware of the peer pressure and stand your ground. 

If you tell your friends what your limits are, you’ll be more likely to stick to them. Having a support network can help if gambling is becoming a problem for you.

Balance is important in all aspects of life, so make sure gambling is balanced with other activities. If you can do this, you can reduce your focus on gambling. You may also save the money and time you spend on gambling in check.

If you’re worried about how gambling is affecting you, there’s no shame in reaching out. GambleAware is here for you with free, confidential support 24/7, and it could change your life. You can talk to someone over the phone, online or face to face.

Practical financial and legal support is also available. You can even connect with others who’ve been through it.

For free, confidential advice and support, call GambleAware on 1800 858 858 and arrange to talk to a counsellor near you.

GambleAware acknowledges Aboriginal people as the traditional custodians of the land and we pay respects to Elders past, present and emerging. GambleAware is an inclusive support service.
Copyright © 2021 NSW Office of Responsible Gambling