How to pay off gambling debts

Gambling is essentially anything that involves risking or staking anything of value with the hope of gain on the outcome of the event. Although it is a common pastime for many, compulsive gambling often results in uncontrollable debt. More often than not, gambling and debt work together.

With the availability of the internet, gamblers can easily access online casinos to place wagers. online poker South Africa is an example of websites that provides online gambling services 

Gamblers can pay with their credit cards, debit cards or prepaid cards e.t.c these options make things easier for compulsive players that are trying to compensate for losses.

Photo by Heather Gill on Unsplash

What is Gambling Debt?

Gambling debt is any money owed that stems from gambling activities, in other words it is any debt that occurs as a result of gambling activities.

You can owe money to family and friends, credit card companies, or a party you gambled with like betting firms, casinos, bookmakers. 

Gambling debts can become detrimental to both physical and mental health of the gambler when they borrow more money for their habits while struggling with the increasing debts. This could occur by using credit cards, personal loan, overdrafts or diverting other funds to gambling.

When it comes to clear gambling debts, the severity of the debt might require you to quit gambling and seek help. Here are some steps you can take to stop gambling and pay up your debts.

How to quit gambling 

Once you’ve gotten your mind right to stop gambling, it might be hard to figure out the next step to take. Fear not, here are some steps to prepare you for this journey.

  • Acknowledge you have a problem.

This step might not seem as important, but like every other disorder, you need to acknowledge it and make the choice to deal with it. 

Gambling debts can cause harm to not only you, but to family, friends and other relationships.

Acknowledge your problem, make the decision to quit gambling and get straightened out. 

  • Cut off Gambling fund

As soon as you’ve made the decision to quit, you want to stop running up your debts as soon as possible. 

Close any account that might fuel your gambling, cut off credit cards especially ATM cards. Compulsive gamblers are most likely to place bets at any time, you need to create that buffer between you and the funds that feed your gambling habit today!

  • Timeouts and self-exclusion 

Timeout and self exclusion is a way to pause and access your gambling actions for as long as you want. 

Self-exclusion is a longer version of timeout that can last from a minimum period of 6 months up to 5 years.

How to clear debts

Recovering from your debts can require a couple changes to your spending habits. You might need to get help from a credit counselor. They can help you to get on a budget and assist with other things.

The simple steps you need to take are:

  1. List who you owe and exactly how much you owe them. This step should contain everyone you owe (casinos, bookies, loan sharks, credit cards, overdrawn bank accounts, personal loans).With this, you can access how they interact with one another and the best method of approach
  2. Pay off as much as you can. You might need to sell off some valuables, electronics to pay off what you can immediately.
  3. Create a budget, you need to know how much you can put towards paying off your debts from your earnings. Remember you need to pay bills like gas and electricity monthly. Create your budget to accommodate those with greater consequences 
  4. You might also need to get a second source of income if after creating your budget the numbers don’t add up. You need a stable and predictable source of income to boost your income.
  5. You may also want to consider handing over the control of your finances to someone you trust while working on your debts.


Although all this might sound so overwhelming, it doesn’t have to be. If you’re ready to quit and tackle your debts, you don’t have to face the problem alone.

You can seek help from non-profit credit counseling agencies. They have professionals that review your finances and come up with the best plans to get you out of debts.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked as *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.