Responsible play

We have probably all witnessed it before – a football match can become more exciting if you have placed a bet on it, and an evening at the casino can be fun and exciting as real money is involved.

However, games of chance also entail danger because you can lose (a lot of) money and maybe even become addicted to gambling. Therefore, play consciously and deal responsibly with games of chance.

It is essential to realize that games of chance always favor the house, including odds offered by online bookmakers. The only exception to this rule are some poker variants, where you play against other players and not against the casino, bank, or house.

You simply cannot beat the casino in the long run. And even in poker, winning structurally is only possible for a small percentage of all poker players. Unless you cheat, you will lose out in the long run for all other games. The bank always wins, so to speak.

At we have a lot of information about all games of chance that are offered by New Zealand online casinos and by casinos and bookmakers in general. We have extensive articles on the optimal blackjack strategy and the best way to play roulette, for example. What is beyond dispute, however, is that even with an optimal strategy, the house still has an advantage over you.

The casino, be it an arcade or online, earns from you the more you play. After all, they also have to pay their dealers, software developers, servers, and customer service and also want to keep a profit afterward. Some games have a more considerable house edge than others, but every game is designed in such a way that the casino wins in the long run.

By Amelia Smith - Updated 24/11/2023 - Estimated reading time: 9 minutes.

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Responsible play

Play Responsible 20+

Online gambling at offshore and foreign-owned casinos is technically legal in New Zealand but subject to strict conditions. On the website of the Department of Internal Affairs, you can find all the regulations that online casinos must comply with in order to be able to offer their games in New Zealand.

One of the most important conditions is that you must be 20 years or older to play games of chance. That is why you must also show your identity card or passport when you enter SkyCasino, Christchurch Casino, Dunedin Casino, or when you create an account at an online casino. In many other countries and at some amusement arcades across the world, the minimum age is 21 years.

The website of the Department of Internal Affairs or Te Tari Taiwhenua, contains a lot of information about the age limit in New Zealand. There, among other things, an answer is given to the question of why the limit has been set at 20 and why the institution classifies gambling activities as either class 1, 2, or 3.

It is a fact that you become addicted to some games of chance more quickly than to others. For example, the standard view is that lotteries are less susceptible to gambling addiction because you do not get the result immediately.

However, you also have to be careful with these games of chance. If you've been looking forward to the lottery draw all week, you may not be entirely in control. Or if you run to the store to buy a lottery ticket just in time for the draw instead of waiting for the next, you have to ask yourself if you still have yourself under control.

The 2003 Gambling Act prohibits remote interactive gambling on websites that are hosted and owned by New Zealand-based companies. This means that it is essentially illegal to participate in online gambling, but you can do so as long as you play at offshore, foreign-owned online casinos.

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Tips to Play Responsible

The casino experts over at have formulated a series of tips to promote responsible gaming. It's essential to keep an eye on these when you start playing:

Determine your budget for playing in advance - If you have decided in advance how much money you can lose yourself, then things will get out of hand less quickly. Moreover, it is a signal to yourself if you cross this self-drawn limit.

Make sure you are aware of the rules of the game- As with any game, game of chance or not, it is important that you know the rules when you start playing. In games of chance, the need to familiarize yourself with the rules is even greater, as the house edge can increase significantly if you don't know the rules. The chance that you will win will then only become smaller, and the speed at which you will lose money will only increase. On OnlineCasinosRealMoney we have described all the rules of all popular games in detail, but you can also request the rules at every casino. Besides, you can always familiarize yourself with casino games by playing their free demo versions first.

Take a break now and then, and don't play too long- If you play too long, you quickly lose sight of certain things. Instead of a healthy tension, you can no longer feel any excitement, or get irritated more quickly. Plus, no one plays their best game if you spend too long at it. Taking regular breaks can prevent you from entering that state. Even with breaks, you still have to make sure you don't play too long. Luckily, most online casinos allow you to set playtime limits for your account.

Ask yourself if you (still) play for fun, and be honest with yourself- Playing for fun is the only good reason to gamble. Other reasons, such as boredom, habit, or trying to “win back” money, are not healthy reasons to gamble. If you find yourself no longer enjoying a game, stop immediately. Even if you've lost money, it's essential to be honest with yourself and stop if you're not feeling well.

Playing regularly can become a habit, and losing sight of the above recommendations is quick. It is, therefore, essential to ask yourself if you have everything under control. Play consciously and not out of habit.

If you end up in a casino more often than you actually want or log in to your favorite gambling site more often than before, you may well belong to the category of problem gamblers. If you get into problems in your social environment with your gaming behavior, get into financial problems because of playing games of chance, or can't think about anything else than a certain game, there is a problem.

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If you feel you have a gambling addiction or are showing symptoms that indicate a problem, help is available. First, you can first try to solve these problems yourself. At most (online) casinos you can apply for a ban on yourself and self-exclude yourself from participating in real money gambling.

This may sound like a last resort, but it doesn't have to be. Even if you are still well off financially and have no problems in your environment due to your gambling behavior, you can already protect yourself. It is better to avoid getting into the danger zone than to sound the alarm when it is already too late. The goal is to play consciously and seek help if you can't figure it out yourself.

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Institutions That Can Provide Assistance

Even if you are excluded from playing or if you are not yet that far but are already experiencing problems, it is good to know that there are various institutes in New Zealand that can help you free of charge.

Safer Gambling Aotearoa- Safer Gambling Aotearoa is an organization that aims to minimize the harm of problem gambling in New Zealand on both a local and international level. The organization has local service centers available across the country where people addicted to gambling can talk with others and receive support and counseling.

Gambling Helpline Aotearoa- The Gambling Helpline Aotearoa is an institution that mainly provides assistance by phone. It has four divisions, the Māori Gambling Helpline, Pasifika Gambling Helpline, Debt Gambling Helpline, and Youth Gambling Helpline. You can call any of the 4 numbers 24/7 or send a text message to 8006. Alternatively, you can visit its website and use the Gambling Helpline Forum.

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More Information About Gambling Addiction in New Zealand

The Department of Internal Affairs has an extensive page and brochure about responsible gaming called 'Problem Gambling in New Zealand' The Ministry of Health, a collection of gambling providers in New Zealand and the state, also has information available online about responsible gaming here.

At OnlineCasinosRealMoney we try to be honest about games of chance and your chances as a player. If you do find an article or page on our website that you think is not straight forward with regard to the chances of winning or that stimulates excessive gambling behavior in any other way, please let us know via our contact form.

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Frequently asked questions about Responsible Gaming In NZ

Why is gambling so addictive?

Gambling can be very addictive for some people because it stimulates the brain’s reward system in the same way as alcohol or drugs can, which leads to addiction. People that have problems with compulsive gambling may continually chase bets that eventually lead to losses, use up all saved money, and create dept.

What causes gambling addiction?

The exact causes of gambling addiction are not yet fully understood by doctors and medical experts. However, like most psychological problems, it is a combination of biological, genetic, and environmental factors.

Certain factors contribute to compulsive gambling, including mental health issues, age, family or friend influence, medications that cause compulsive behaviors, and specific personality characteristics such as impulsiveness and high competitiveness.

Can gambling addiction be cured?

Although the treatment of gambling addiction can be challenging, compulsive gambling can be minimized through therapy, medications, and self-help groups. Additionally, relapse prevention can reduce the chance of gambling addicts returning to gambling.

Where to find gambling counseling in NZ?

There are multiple gambling counseling services in NZ, such as the Māori Gambling Helpline, the Problem Gambling Foundation of New Zealand, and the Pasifika Ola Lelei Services Manukau. For a complete overview of gambling counseling services in New Zealand, you can visit this page.

Are there any gambling support groups near me?

You can check if there are any gambling support groups near you by visiting this page.

Author: Amelia Smith

Amelia Smith

Amelia Smith knows a lot about different areas of gambling. She's been our main writer for most things since 2019. She spoke at a big conference in London in 2022 and has been recognized at several industry events.

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Article published 28/01/2021

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