Even though the gambling industry is rather young to the scene, it is without a doubt one of the most profitable sectors in the world. In 2020, its global revenue exceeded $400 billion. Not only that but there are thousands of people employed in this sector.
For some regions/nations, gambling is actually one of the biggest contributors to the economy. Take Nevada, Macau, Hong Kong, and Singapore as examples. Of course, some people think that gambling should be illegal worldwide, but there’s no denying that it has massive contributions.
With that being said, we wanted to take a closer look at some of the gambling habits in different nations worldwide. We’ll see what the residents of these countries favor the most, how is the gambling industry regulated there, what the future is, etc. But first, let’s share a few words on one of the latest gambling trends in gambling.
Online Casinos – The Latest Gambling Trend
Casino sites have become the biggest trend in the gambling industry. Millions of people from around the world are now keen to register at these sites and have the best gaming experience of their lives. Every reputable online casino has tons of advantages over land-based casinos. Some of them include:
- Thousands of games to choose from
- Numerous bonuses and promotions for players
- Impeccable security
- Easy access and 24/7 availability
- Mobile-friendly platforms
- Responsive customer support
- Many available payment methods
To gain access to these features, players just need to register and verify their accounts. Registering at an online casino is rather fast. You just need to access the platform’s official website, click the registration button, and fill in the required fields. After that, the casino will provide you with a guide on how to verify your account.
After the verification process is done, all that is left is to deposit funds into your account and use them to play the featured games for real money. As it was just mentioned, online casinos have tons of payment methods at your disposal, including:
- VISA and MasterCard
- Mobile payment methods
- E-wallets (Neteller, Skrill, Paysafe)
Transactions are fast, and thanks to the fact that online casinos utilize the latest SSL encryption software, you can rest assured that all payments are secure. The only thing that you need to make sure of is that the casino is licensed.
Checking for a license is rather easy. You just go to the casino’s site, scroll down to the bottom of the homepage, and see whether the casino has details on the license. Every licensed casino needs to provide details concerning the license number. Then, you go to the regulator’s official website and double-check the data.
Some scam sites are known to create false licenses as a way to create a fake reliability status and motivate players to register on their platforms.
Once you’ve done that, you can proceed to register at the platform, claim the bonuses and promotions and use them to play the games.
Now that we’ve seen what the latest trend in the gambling industry is, let’s see some of the gambling habits around the world.
We’ll start things off with one of the world’s leading economies – the United States of America. Data indicates that the gambling industry is booming at the moment. Las Vegas, Nevada, is the Mecca of gambling in the US as all major casinos own properties here.
Not only that, but millions of people visit Vegas every year just to play the famous Vegas slots and enjoy a game of blackjack or poker. These three games are by far the most popular in this nation. The legal gambling age in the US is 21.
Sports betting is also quite major as residents love to place bets on American football, baseball, basketball, and horse racing. For all sports, the legal gambling age is 21, but that is not the case with horse racing, as people older than 18 can wager on this sport.
Horse racing is actually so well-developed in the US that some of the most popular racetracks are located here. Not only that but each year, the horse racing betting industry reports millions of dollars in revenue. Some of the most popular racetracks in the US are Belmont Park, Retama Park, Hoosier Park, Fairmont Park, and the well-known Churchill Downs.
Online Gambling in the US
Up until 2018, online gambling in the US was mostly forbidden. But, after the Supreme Court ruled that PASPA is unconstitutional, states were able to regulate online gambling as they please. As of now, all forms of online gambling are only legal in:
- West Virginia
- New Jersey
More than 20 states have legalized online sports betting, but not online casinos. However, that is likely to change as many states are open to the idea, and some research shows that by 2025, more than half of the states in the US will legalize all forms of gambling.
Next up, we move to Oceania, specifically Australia. This is one of the countries with a very fruitful relationship with gambling. There are many popular land-based casino resorts in the country, and the single most popular game here is pokies, which are basically slots.
Research shows that Aussies dive into gambling activities quite often, which is both good and bad. To help you visualize how popular gambling here is, data indicates that over 80% of the adult population regularly engages in some form of gambling, which is the highest rate in the world.
Although the gambling industry here is well-developed, Australia has a bit of an issue with gambling addicts. That is the reason why regulators in the country are keen on providing the best solutions that will prevent players from developing gambling addictions.
Other games that are popular in this country include poker and roulette. As for how gambling is regulated in Australia, each province has its own authority that oversees gambling activities and makes sure that the industry standards are maintained. These authorities include:
- Department of Racing, Gaming, and Liquor (Western Australia)
- ACT Gambling and Racing Commission (Australian Capital Territory)
- Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation (Victoria)
- New South Wales Office of Liquor, Gaming, and Racing (New South Wales)
- Tasmanian Gaming Commission (Tasmania)
- Licensing Commission (Northern Territory)
- Independent Gambling Authority (South Australia)
- Office of Liquor and Gaming Regulation (Queensland)
Online Gambling in Australia
According to the Interactive Gambling Act of 2001, it is illegal for Australians to access real-money online casinos and play the featured games. Moreover, operators are forbidden from offering their services to the residents, and they cannot be based in this country.
However, there are some holes in how the industry is regulated in the country, which is why Aussies are able to access off-shore online casinos from time to time, and they are even known to travel to neighboring countries where online gambling is either legal or unregulated.
You might be surprised to hear this, but India is actually the world’s second most sought out market for gambling. The reason why this is impressive is that gambling is forbidden in almost all Indian provinces. According to the Public Gambling Act of 1867, gambling activities are only legal in three regions:
Indian casino fans travel to these provinces from time to time, but illegal gambling rings are thriving in the country. One of the most popular and most played games here is baccarat, but there are some Indian and Asian-themed games that are worth mentioning – Andar Bahar, Asian-themed slots, Pai-Gow poker, etc.
According to unofficial data, illegal gambling rings have hundreds of millions of dollars in profit each year. It is rather hard for the government to control these activities because they are widespread. Many of its residents are pushing towards the legalization of the industry, but as of right now, the government is not even thinking about it.
Online Gambling in India
This is where it gets interesting. While there are specific laws and regulations on land-based gambling in India, the Public Gambling Act has almost no information on online gambling. The only piece of information that is included is that online gambling is illegal.
But here’s the major plot twist. There aren’t any regulations over this market, which is why it is thriving in the country. Although operators cannot be based in India, that does not stop off-shore companies from offering their services to the residents.
The Public Gambling Act does not affect these sites, and they face no penalties. Moreover, there aren’t any cases of Indian residents being penalized for participating in these activities. That is why they often register and play at these sites. Some of the most popular online casino games in India are:
- Live Andar Bahar
- Monopoly Live
- Live Mega Wheel
- Pai-Gow poker
- Texas Hold ’em poker
The United Kingdom
We mentioned earlier that India is the second most sought out market for gambling. Well, you ought to know which country takes the top spot. That would be the United Kingdom. This country regulates all forms of gambling in arguably the best and most effective way.
In terms of land-based gambling, the Gambling Act of 2005 allows these properties to operate and offer their services to anyone older than 18. Not only that, but the UK is also major in terms of sports, especially football, boxing, and cricket, which is why sports betting is also a popular gambling activity here.
The authority that regulates gambling in the UK is the UK Gambling Commission, which is one of the most popular and most respected authorities in the world.
Online Gambling in the United Kingdom
All forms of online gambling are legalized in the UK. In order for operators to provide their services to the residents, they must obtain a license from the UK Gambling Commission. In terms of the favorite games for UK players, every casino game is worth a mention as UK players are fond of all types of gambling. That includes slots, roulette, live casino games, sports betting, blackjack, and instant win games.
However, it is worth noting that in order to protect its players and make sure that they do not develop a gambling addiction, the UK Gambling Commission decided to ban credit cards as a payment method. Research showed that over 700,000 UK players used them to deposit and withdraw funds at online casinos and online sportsbooks.
So far, we’ve covered some of the major centers of the world when it comes to land-based and online gambling. So that is why we wanted to be a bit more dynamic and mention a rather small country that has a well-developed gambling industry.
North Macedonia is a small country located at the center of the Balkan Peninsula, and its residents are no strangers to gambling. The land-based casino industry is thriving here because a lot of Macedonian players are fond of these games and because gambling is illegal in Albania.
Since many popular gambling spots in North Macedonia, such as Ohrid and Skopje, are just a few hours away, and Albanians can enter the country with just a personal ID, they are no strangers to traveling here.
The most popular games in North Macedonia are VLT gaming machines. They are virtually everywhere. You can find them in both land-based casinos, slot clubs, and even land-based sportsbooks. As the law suggests, the legal gambling age in North Macedonia is 18.
Online Gambling in North Macedonia
As of right now, there is just one licensed online gambling operator in North Macedonia – 2win. It is hard for the online gambling industry to thrive here because there is one condition that operators need to fulfill to be granted a license by the Ministry of Finance. The government needs to own 51% of the business.
But that does not present a problem for Macedonians as the government hasn’t shown any interest in chasing individuals who access off-shore sites. That is why Macedonians are not shy to register at foreign online casinos to gain access to various slot games, roulette, and blackjack games.
Moving on, we go to China, where gambling is popular, but it faces massive restrictions. Ever since the Communist Power took charge in 1949, gambling throughout China has been made illegal. Residents can only gamble in Macau and Hong Kong, special administrative regions.
However, the residents can participate in the state-run lotteries, which are extremely popular. Not only that, but the most played games in the two aforementioned special administrative regions are pachinko machines. Additionally, Chinese residents are fond of playing mahjong and other card games.
Moreover, they have no problem traveling overseas to gamble at foreign casinos. Traveling abroad to play casino games is actually one of the biggest gambling habits in China. After all, they have numerous great destinations, one of which is Singapore.
Online Gambling in China
As the law suggests, online gambling is illegal in China, and there are massive penalties for those who do not adhere to the laws. The strict laws are the reason why Chinese residents are extremely open to the idea of traveling abroad.
Speaking of Singapore, it is worth sharing a few words on this country as it has been labeled by many as the gambling center in Asia. When it comes to land-based gambling, casinos are allowed to operate but as integrated resorts. Some of the resorts that are worth mentioning are:
- Marina Bay Sands
- Resorts World Sentosa
- Magnum Luxury Hotel
These properties offer a variety of other services apart from gambling. You can dine, enjoy a drink, get a hotel room, and whatnot. There are two regulatory bodies that oversee the gambling industry in Singapore: the Casino Regulatory Authority of Singapore and the Gambling Regulatory Unit.
When it comes to the gambling habits in this country, a majority of the gamblers here are tourists who travel from China, other Asian countries, and from around the world with the purpose of enjoying the best casino experience in the region. As a result, some of the most popular games here are roulette, blackjack, and poker.
Online Gambling in Singapore
Currently, online gambling in Singapore is only allowed through an exempt operator or a licensed one. Otherwise, gambling remains illegal.
Germany is also among the European centers for gambling, alongside the UK. Its residents are known for playing skill-based games such as poker, but they are also known for placing bets on sports. After all, Germany is a major leader in many sports categories, and sports fans are always looking to capitalize on that.
Land-based casinos are allowed to operate, and all patrons over 18 are welcomed to play the available games. In terms of regulation, German states are free to regulate gambling as they please. Lotteries are also quite popular in the country, especially for the elderly population.
One thing that is worth noting about the lotteries is that according to the Interstate Treaty, the government holds a monopoly in this sector. As far as casino gaming, states have various Casino Acts, and, in most cases, these acts distinguish table games and slot machine gaming.
Online Gambling in Germany
At the moment, the Interstate Treaty acknowledges online slot gaming as it provides licenses to these types of operators. That is the reason why slot games are actually so popular in the country. However, the situation is a bit different when it comes to the rest of the online gambling forms as states cannot issue licenses for other casino games like online roulette, blackjack, poker, etc.
The final country that we are going to take a closer look at is Canada. This is yet another nation that has a pretty rich history with gambling, and its residents are known to participate in gambling activities quite often. Land-based gambling is considered legal in the country, and some of the games that Canadians like to play include:
Tribal-owned casinos are also operating in Canada, similarly to the way the US treats them. What’s interesting about gambling in Canada is that up until 1970, it was considered illegal to participate in any form of gambling. There are a total of 10 provinces in Canada, and each of them regulates gambling in a slightly different way.
Online Gambling in Canada
The Criminal Code states that unlicensed operators cannot be based in Canada. The Kahnawake Gaming Commission is in charge of licensing online casinos, but since the laws have no regulation on off-shore sites, foreign licensed operators are more than welcome to offer their services to Canadian players.
That is the reason why Canadians have developed a habit of registering and playing at online casinos, both domestic and foreign. Slots are by far the most popular games on these platforms, but the residents are not shy in trying to be more dynamic, which is why they often try out other games such as poker, Andar Bahar, blackjack, and baccarat.
As you can see, gambling habits around the world vary a lot. Not only that, but there are major differences as to how the gambling industry is regulated. Some states only allow land-based casinos to operate, while some allow both online and land-based operators.
On the flip hand, online gambling falls in the law’s grey area, which is the case with India and North Macedonia. That is why players from these countries are open to registering at foreign operators as a way to gain access to the best online casino games on the market.
However, gambling is completely illegal in countries where Sharia Law is in effect. That includes most countries in the Middle East. As a result, residents of these countries who like to gamble often have to travel to neighboring nations to enjoy the best casino games. China is facing a similar problem. Even though gambling is mostly illegal there, its residents are not shy to travel to experience what casinos have to offer.