Like other aspects of life, gambling has been significantly affected by the pandemic virus covid-19. There is a considerable behavioral shift among online gamblers before and after the covid-19 outbreak. There are two major phenomenons occurred; first, the digital footprint on online casinos increased appreciably; second, the daily betting amount declined over time. The number of high-risk players also declined during the lockdown period. Many social activists feared gambling and addiction would increase during the self-isolation period due to more gaming sessions. Evidence shows otherwise, as gambling intensity shrieked.
The Covid -19 virus changed the lifestyles of the masses; social distance, home quarantine, national lockdown, restricted gatherings. For bettors, one of the salient features were all major sports events were postponed. As there were no tournaments, sports betting was completely missing. This leads to speculation whether sports bettors would opt for other gambling forms, as there was a lot of leisure time.
The US witnessed a massive surge of 225%
A survey was conducted among two thousand five Canadian online gamblers in the first and half months of lockdown to evaluate problem gambling using the Problem Gambling Severity index. The high-risk gamblers among this group were more prone to addiction. The lockdown imposed to restrict the spread of the pandemic influenced many to try a hand in online casinos. Other risk factors included heavy drinking, acute depression, anxiety and smoking marijuana. Another interesting fact revealed in the study; sports bettors did not substitute sports wagering with another form of gambling. These players did not bet on sports, as there were no events, but also spend less money on online casinos.
The scenario of the US was quite different from that of Canada or Sweden. The US witnessed a massive surge of 225% of first-time poker players during the lockdown. Many new registrations were made at mega888 online casino. Overall the online poker industry observed a growth of 43%. There are about forty million poker players in the US alone. As poker is one the most favorite casino games, many downloaded mega888 ios on their smartphones. Furthermore, poker is the only legalized casino game in states like; Nevada, New Jersey, California and Delaware.
Casinos in New Jersey were closed in March 2020 due to pandemic, and revenue nosedived by 61%. But this revenue loss was compensated after a month as tax from online casinos increased by 65.7%. This legitimate data shows the growing popularity of online casinos during the pandemic crisis. Pennsylvania also witnessed the same phenomenon, revenue from online casinos increased after reduced tax revenues following the closure of mortar brick casinos.