It can be so tempting when you have little money to spare. I have occasionally dabbled with gambling in the past; I’ve played the lottery a few times, and bet in a casino twice. I once lost £30 betting on horses at a day at the races! Not great money sense there, I bet you’re thinking! And I completely agree.
Gambling is a potentially addictive adrenaline rush, and is essentially another form of entertainment. A very expensive form of entertainment. If gambling was a worthy investment of your time and money, there wouldn’t be hundreds of huge companies making billions of pounds and dollars out of it. But there are, and the only reason they are offering you free spins, an extra £20 bet, £5 in your account, is because they know that if they hook you in, you will pay them much, much more in kind.
Viewing gambling as an expense is important – you might see it as a worthwhile investment, giving you the possibility of getting rich quick and paying off all your debt in one go. It won’t. It’s actually keeping you from paying it off right now.
If you have a problem with gambling, or even if you are regularly spending money on gambling and think you could cut down, the UK gambling helpline can help. Accepting help to cut down and stop, before it becomes a problem, is the best decision you can make.
There are other forms of gambling, that aren’t always considered gambling – they’re called risky investments. Cryptocurrencies and low-value shares are incredibly volatile, and you need to think twice before putting your money into them. Maybe three times.
As a rule, investment returns are not as good as interest charges – so if you have money you want to invest, but you also have debts to pay off, the best investment you can make is paying it off.