Depositing at bookmakers with Visa Electron
The designated account I'm using to deposit at bookmakers is an old Halifax Cardcash account with a Visa Electron debit card, a simple no nonsense account with no interest and no overdraft.
I've had no trouble depositing at UK/Ireland-based bookmakers (SkyBet, PaddyPower, BlueSQ, BoyleSports, Coral, Ladbrokes, Betdaq, William Hill and Betfred to date), and no difficulties with Stan James either (headquartered in the British overseas territory of Gibraltar).
But I've tried depositing money with the Visa Electron at Unibet and BetClic (or is it BetClick?), both registered in Malta, and both were rejected and triggered the bank to look into fraud on the account (which I've now cleared up). Meanwhile, 188Bet, registered in the Isle of Man, wouldn't give me the option to deposit with a Visa Electron debit card.
So far I've simply deposited at these three bookmakers from my student current account, but want to avoid doing this in future as I'm well into my overdraft and a series of deposits into bookmakers where I intend to lose simply isn't going to look good on the statement.
Can I expect to continue to have these problems depositing with a Visa Electron card at bookmakers not registered in the UK and Ireland? If so, should I open a new bank account, and which, if any, would you recommend?
Thanks for any help you might be able to give.
Nationwide Flex isn't too bad to have especially for depositing overseas (they have close to 0% charges for euro transactions and usd isn't too expensive either). Never had any issues depositing into gaming sites with a Flex card touch wood.
Maybe you could start out with a new current account dedicated for gaming, don't get an overdraft on it (or don't use it if it comes with one) and strictly only use it for gaming. Also grab a Moneybookers account if you don't have one already, whenever possible only use Moneybookers (ie if you have the choice of card vs MB, always go with MB, mainly because you're not likely to get a fraud detection alert triggered using Moneybookers).
Whatever you do though make sure you protect the MB account with a separate email address and password from any other accounts you have, see here for some nightmares!:
Thanks Munk, went to Nationwide yesterday to sign up for a Flex Account, we'll see how it goes.
I've looked into Moneybookers and signed up. Wherever it's free to deposit and withdraw in pounds with a Visa Electron (or Visa Debit) I think I'll stick to that though rather than incurring the 1%/45p on every deposit at a bookmakers and the £1.63 on every withdrawal to my bank account - I imagine those small fees will build up relatively quickly. Would I be correct in saying that Moneybookers only really comes into its own when a) you need a quick turnover withdrawing from one bookie to deposit at another and b) when depositing in foreign currencies? Or are there other benefits that I'm overlooking?
Well, a few things to say there.
Originally Posted by Diffusion
Generally Moneybookers is a lot better to use for depositing into gaming sites than a card for a number of reasons:
- Deposits to most merchants (ie gaming sites) are free - occasionally (mostly US books) you will have to pay a deposit fee (and note it's usually more like 2-3%, not 1%, not sure where you got that from, maybe personal payments cost 1%?).
- Withdrawal from merchants are free - again same as above holds true, a lot of US books do charge for withdrawals to Moneybookers.
- Payments via Moneybookers are a lot faster than by card - Moneybookers payments are instant whereas withdrawals to card take 3-5 days usually (unless you're lucky enough to have BACS faster payment in effect, though that's not widely in place yet). This makes a HUGE difference when you're starting out with a small bankroll because cashflow is the biggest obstacle to making money quickly - you want to be able to move your money around as quickly as possible so you can get lots done.
- You can isolate your bankroll - you can keep all your gaming related float in once place in your Moneybookers account which makes it easier to stop from being tempted to 'dip in' to it as you might be with a bank account. Along the same lines you can see that float as money that - whilst it wouldn't be great - if you did lose it all, you wouldn't go bankrupt (at the risk of sounding patronizing this is really the first rule of gambling, don't gamble with what you can't afford to lose which is what makes ringfencing your money a good idea).
These are just a few reasons why MB is better than bank/card for making payments related to gaming and there are probably more that I can't think of off the top of my head!
The £1.63 withdrawal fee IS one downside though - ideally though you wouldn't be making many withdrawals at all though, just keep your float intact in Moneybookers/gaming sites almost like an investment vehicle (like an ISA or savings account or w/e), just keep the money there ad infinitum and build it up slowly, only dipping into it in emergencies or when you've reached a goal or target amount maybe. Note though, if you can manage to obtain VIP status on your Moneybookers account (there are posts about this on the forum), you can get the withdrawal fees repaid every month.
Another downside is that you're keeping all your eggs in one basket with Moneybookers. HOWEVER if you make sure you have a separate email address / password for moneybookers, and make use of the security token that they offer for free (one time password generator), your money will be very safe there. They are a safe place to have your money in terms of their financial stability, the only thing you have to worry about is YOU keeping your security arrangements secure (ie change password once a month).
But at the end of the day it depends how hard you're going to go at it, if it's just going to be a little flutter here and there then fair enough all of the above is probably not worth it! But if you want to make a decent amount to live off then it's worth bearing the above in mind.
Ah, I assumed that "sending money" (for which the Moneybookers site's page on fees states there's a 1% charge up to a maximum of 45p) meant any transaction of funds out of the MoneyBookers wallet (i.e. a deposit at a bookmakers) that wasn't withdrawing to your own bank account. If that is instead just referring to sending money to other individual's MoneyBookers' accounts, that's obviously a different thing altogether and (typically) completely free deposits at bookmakers makes the service a lot more interesting. I make it then that you're essentially trading off the very occasional £1.63 fee against instant withdrawals from the bookmakers, which is a winning trade in terms of the much improved cashflow.
Originally Posted by munk
Yes that's right it's just personal payments that incur a charge on the outgoing side, if you're making a payment to a merchant via MB then the merchant is charged 'up front' and generally they just absorb the fees as part of their operating expenses.
Originally Posted by Diffusion
Some books do charge you if you use Moneybookers, but it's quite rare really for UK/European books - usually only the US books charge any fees for Moneybookers transactions which you don't need to worry about really until you've run out of Euro/UK books.
The only charge you need to worry about is the withdrawal one yes, but like I say if you just think of your betting float almost as a savings account that you only 'dip into' (ie withdraw from) very occasionally for emergencies or once you reach a target (pay off fees, get enough for a holiday/laptop/whatever), then the £1.63 every 3-6 months really isn't a lot.
I have used visa electron to deposit at Betclic - but I wonder if maybe I should start using Moneybookers instead
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