The Dangers of Underage Gambling


How old do you have to be to gamble in the UK?

The legal gambling age is 18 for casinos and 16 for the national lottery. Casino and betting sites also have strict regulations and identity checks in place to prevent minors from gambling online.

What happens if you get caught gambling under 18 in the UK?

You would be unable to collect any winnings and the casino would be in trouble. Although as a minor you can’t technically be persecuted, your legal custodians – as well as those who have allowed you to gamble at their establishment – may well be in legal trouble.

Are children more likely to develop a gambling addiction?

Very much so. Up to 300% more likely, in fact, according to some studies. To be more specific, children who are exposed to gambling at a young age are 300% more likely to develop an addiction than those who aren’t.

Is buying loot boxes in video games a form of gambling or gaming?

A bit of both. This practice is only considered illegal in Belgium for now, and it’s not classified as underage gambling in the UK. The mechanism does involve spending real money on randomised rewards, though, which means it works pretty much the same way as a slot machine or roulette.