There has once again been a lot of talk recently about problem gambling and gambling addiction, and whilst we do not see our job here at gambling.ie as preaching to online sports and casino gambling fans it is perhaps time we pointed out some of the golden rules of gambling. The primary target of the anti-gambling lobby is once again the fixed odds gambling games machines or FOGT’s we now see in almost all our high street betting shops, but the dangers of gambling more than we can afford on playing gambling games are just as obvious at the online casino gambling sites. There are of course a few professional gamblers who claim to make a living out of gambling, most notably on horse racing and gambling on poker, but for the vast majority of us gambling is a leisure activity for us to enjoy. Whether we are gambling on sporting events or playing gambling games we should never think of it as a way of making money because the odds are clearly stacked against us. If anyone needs proof of that simply ask yourself have you ever seen a major bookmaker going bankrupt. All forms of gambling should be treated as a leisure activity for enjoyment, and as such will probably cost us money in the same way as almost every other leisure activity we indulge in. Having established that we then have to decide how much we are prepared to spend on this leisure pursuit. Most of us who enjoy an occasional meal out for instance would think very seriously before going to a Michelin star restaurant when our budget is more suited to the local pizza place. All of us have some idea of how much or how little we have to spend after the bills have been paid and we generally cut our cloth accordingly. Whether it is planning holidays or a night out we are mostly pretty responsible in terms of what we can spend, and the same rules must apply when we are gambling. At the risk of being accused of preaching there is one other piece of advice, never gamble with borrowed money and that includes a credit card.