If you’re experiencing difficulties associated with gambling, our self-exclusion program, Game Break, may be a great way to help you take a break and regain control.
What is Game Break?
The Game Break program offers the opportunity to voluntarily and confidentially take a break from gambling facilities and/or online gambling.
Game Break can help support you if:
• Gambling is putting stress on your finances, health, or relationships
• Stopping or taking an extended break from gambling will help you feel more in control
• You want help to commit to changing your gambling habits
Looking for immediate support?
Gambling Support BC is available 24/7 to offer free resources and services to British Columbians struggling with their own or a family member’s gambling.
How does it work?
The length of your break can be for six months, one year, two years or three years. Once you have registered for Game Break, your self-exclusion begins right away for the time period selected and cannot be changed.
What happens during my Game Break?
• BCLC will automatically close your existing PlayNow account
• If you’re an Encore Rewards member and you exclude from gambling facilities, your Encore Rewards account will be deactivated and any points may be eligible to be redeemed for cash.
• You will not receive direct marketing materials from BCLC or its gambling facility operators
• The information and photo you’ve provided will be given to security offices at the applicable gambling facilities to help you stick to your commitment
• You have the option to be contacted by a gambling support professional free of charge. There’s often greater success in regaining control for those who access support or participate in gambling support while self-excluded. See the Frequently Asked Questions section below for more information.
How do I enrol?
Within B.C., there are three options for you:
In-Person at any Gambling Facility
Visit any casino, community gaming centre or commercial bingo hall and have a government-issued photo ID ready. A GameSense Advisor or staff member will guide you through the enrolment process and have your photo taken.
Arrange a video call with a GameSense Advisor to guide you through the enrolment process and have your photo taken. Remember to have your government-issued photo ID ready.
To book an appointment, call 1-866-815-0222 and press ‘3’.
Log in to your PlayNow account on PlayNow.com or the BCLC Lotto! app. In your account menu, go to “Take A Game Break” and the on-screen instructions will guide you through the process.
Note: this method will only exclude you from gambling on PlayNow.com and the BCLC Lotto! app.
Not sure which option is best for you?
Speak to a GameSense Advisor to help you start a Game Break plan today.
Use the Live Chat function in the footer or call 1-866-815-0222 toll free and press 3
(available 7AM to midnight every day for immediate support).
What happens when my Game Break period ends?
If your break is ending soon, there are two paths you can take. If you decide not to take any action after your Game Break period ends, you will continue to be self-excluded from playing until 12 months after your Game Break period ends.
Path 1: Extend my break
Not quite ready to return? If you would like to extend your Game Break, please know you can do so at anytime. You will be asked to review and sign a new Game Break Enrolment Form, again specifying the new Game Break period you would like.
Speak with a GameSense Advisor to request an extension by using the Live Chat function in the footer or call 1-866-815-0222 and press 3 (available 7AM to midnight every day for immediate support).
Path 2: Ready to return? Complete the reinstatement requirements
Thirty days before your Game Break term expires, you will receive an email with reinstatement instructions to the email address you used during sign-up. To return to play, complete the following two steps any time after you receive this email or after your Game Break period expires. Remember, your Game Break period must expire before you are able to return to play.
STEP 1: Complete the Game Plan Course
• The course link will be emailed to you. If you’re having trouble
accessing the course, please contact a GameSense Advisor.
• The course will help you make decisions
about whether to go back to gambling or whether you want to
extend your break. Available in English, Simplified Chinese and Punjabi.
STEP 2: Submit the Return to Play form
• Enter in the course completion code provided to you after completing the Game Plan course. After submitting the form, BCLC will email you within seven days to confirm when you can return to play.
Frequently Asked Questions
Those who participate in gambling support services along with a self-exclusion program have a much higher likelihood of successfully regaining control over their gambling behaviour.
Gambling Support BC offers prevention, treatment and support services to anyone struggling with their own or a loved one’s gambling. If you suspect that you or someone you love needs support or treatment for the negative impacts of gambling products, you can request support online or contact the multilingual Gambling Support Line (24/7 toll free): 1-888-795-6111.
Please visit gamblingsupportbc.ca for more information about their services.
Strengthening your financial literacy can help you play safer and avoid the behaviours that increase the risk of experiencing gambling-related financial harm. The BC Credit Counselling Society offers tools, tips and education about reducing debt and building your budget. Learn more at nomoredebts.org.
• BCLC does takes steps to identify those who attempt to breach their commitment, however it is ultimately your responsibility to honour your self-exclusion.
• The information and photo that you provided will be given to security offices at the applicable gambling facilities. If you enter a gambling facility during your Game Break period and are identified, you’ll be escorted from the building by security staff. Any jackpots won while playing during your Game Break will be forfeited and the monetary amount donated to support responsible gambling research.
The option to be referred to Gambling Support BC is part of the Game Break enrolment process. During enrolment, you were given the option to opt-out of this free support service. If you did not opt-out, Gambling Support BC would have contacted you as per the referral you agreed to during enrolment. Please know if you do not wish to continue with the referral, you are empowered to make that choice.
The online course, Game Plan, is an integral part of the reinstatement requirements for returning to play with us and will provide you with an opportunity to decide on what goals you may have as you return to gambling.
Local libraries and community centres often provide access to computers for public use. Friends and family are also a great help! If those aren’t options for you, please give a GameSense Advisor a call at 1-866-815-0222 and press ‘3’ in the main menu.
If you choose not to complete the reinstatement requirements, which include the online Game Plan course and the Return to Play form, you will not be able to return to play with us until 12 months after your chosen Game Break term ends. As an example, this means that if you chose a one-year Game Break and you decide not to complete the reinstatement requirements, you will not be able to return to playing with us until two years after you enrolled.