A recent large scale study funded by the UKGC, has given us better insight into British gambling behaviour than ever before. With over 8,000 people having been interviewed about their gambling, we have a far more accurate representation of how people gamble in the UK. The study uncovered data about where people gamble, what devices they use to gamble online, how many accounts they have and how age demographics affect gambling behaviour.
UK Gambling Behaviour Breakdown
Below, we’ve split up all the best bits of the study, to give you a quick insight into how the UK is gambling.
The results are finally in. It’s no surprise that the National Lottery is the most popular gambling activity. In fact the National Lottery was so popular, that the fall in participation in gambling from 57% in 2012, to 45% in 2015, can be attributed primarily to a drop in players playing the lottery. Those numbers come from a comparison between this study and the last time the study was conducted back in 2012.
All other areas of gambling are growing, except for the National Lottery. That shows the massive impact the National Lottery has had. Even with that, the National Lottery remains the most popular gambling activity over all other scratch cards and other lotteries.
Mobile gambling is on the rise in a big way. But that doesn’t mean it’s quite the biggest yet. When it came to who was using which devices to gamble:
- Laptops were used by 61%
- Mobiles were used by 23%
- Tablets were used by 16%
It shouldn’t be a surprise that the younger participants were more likely to mobile gamble, with 50% of 25 – 34 year olds gambling online using their mobile or tablet predominantly.
However, when it came to where they use their devices, even though the younger audience were using mobile devices, they weren’t very mobile when it came to where they played.
- 97% said they gambled at home primarily
- 10% said they’d gambled while commuting
- 7% said they’d gambled while at the pub
It may very well be the case that as mobile internet improves in both speed and data limits, we may very well see increased used outside the home. For now though, it seems laptops and a wifi connection are the preferred ways to play, among old and young.
Of the 8,000 interviewed, 45% were regular gamblers and had gambled in the past 4 weeks. 27% of them had gambled online (not including the National Lottery) and 18% had participated in the National Lottery only.
Age yet again played a factor in people’s likelihood to gamble. 18 – 24 year olds were least likely to gamble, comprising only 33% of gamblers. On the other hand 45 – 54 year old were most likely yo gamble, making up 54% of gamblers.
A third of the total gamblers of the group gambled online, with 15% of the total group claiming they did online gambling. The ones who did gamble online had a good spread across the mobile casinos, with the average number of online casino accounts hitting 3.5.
When it came to problem gambling, the results unearthed by the study were very interesting. Although 18 – 24 year olds were less likely to gamble, they were the most likely to experience problem gambling, with 1.1% of them claiming they had had problem with gambling. This came to .5% of the total number quizzed.
With 18 – 24 year olds also the most likely to gamble online and on the go, it’s ever more clear why the UKGC has stepped up their regulations when it comes to tackling problem gambling, primarily for online casinos.
Understanding Gambling Behaviour
Studies like this are incredibly useful at confirming and identifying where regulation needs to be focused. The current data on gambling problems shows that the UKGC’s efforts seem to be well placed for the time being.
Outside of the lessons learned in terms of regulation, it’s fascinating to see all the other ways gambling is changing as different age groups move in. Now we have a good idea of the players and what they’re playing. It’ll be interesting to see how the behaviour changes in the future.