Student Advice Service – Money Matters

News from the Student Advice Service at the University of Brighton

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Worried about gambling? Student Advice is here to help – Money Week 2024

Many students struggle financially on their student loans and with the ongoing cost of living crisis, we appreciate now more than ever that students are looking at many different ways to supplement their income.

Studies show that 4 in 5 students have gambled at some point in their lives and further research has shown that gambling has become as synonymous with sport as alcohol used to be, especially with betting companies sponsoring certain sports teams and prominent events like the Cheltenham Festival.

Of course it is possible to enjoy gambling safely, which lots of people do, but what may have started as a casual dabble may have now snowballed into something unmanageable. A recent report into gambling harm identified that 60% of the gambling industry’s profits come from people who have a gambling problem or are at risk of developing one.

If you find yourself gambling more and more, if it’s no longer an enjoyable experience, or if you find yourself dipping into next week’s food budget, it might be time to take a break.

Anyone who gambles more than occasionally should find time to think about their habits. Has gambling made you or someone you care about:

  • Spend less time on things of interest or avoided hanging out with friends
  • Be easily distracted from important things like studies.
  • Spend more than you can afford on gambling.
  • ‘lost’ time to gambling or regretted time spent gambling

If you are experiencing some of these issues or you just want to cut out your gambling there are practical steps you can take:

Block your online access to betting sites

GAMSTOP is a free service that allows you to exclude yourself from all online UK licensed gambling websites for a period of six months, one year or five years depending on what you prefer.

GAMBAN is a global app blocking software that can be used to block each of your devices from the websites in addition to GAMSTOP. It’s also a good idea to use additional gambling blocking software to manage potential urges and prevent relapse.

Ask your bank to block payments

Most banks (and sites like PayPal) now offer transactional blocking software, where you can block debit cards for gambling websites and casinos.

Seek support

Organisations such as GamCare and YGAM offer 24-hour support for anyone affected by a gambling problem. YGAM have created a Student Hub, a resource to support students with any gambling or gaming related issues if you’re worried about yourself or someone else. There is no judgement from these organisations, and they are very experienced in supporting students.

If you want to talk to someone about gambling related harm, the Student Advice team are here to listen to you, in confidence and without judgement. We assist students with a wide range of concerns, and help you find the support you need.

It is never too late to reach out and change your spending behaviour, so let us help you get back on track.

Student Advice


Helen Abrahams • March 6, 2024

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