The impact of COVID-19 on the gambling industry

Harry Mason

The impact of COVID-19 on the gambling industry

Businesses all over the world, as well as the people, have been affected by the global pandemic in the worst possible way. The pandemic has hit very hard and left millions of people at homes in quarantine, without jobs, without activities, and with no hope. Industries are fighting hard in order to overcome this period and maintain stability in the market. 

One of the biggest industries in the world, the gambling industry has been affected by the global pandemic as well. The casinos all over the world have been recognized as a non-essential business and had to shut down their venues all over the world even before the quarantine measures were introduced in certain countries. The casinos were shut down even in Las Vegas, and the City of Lights, is now the City of Silence. 

The traditional casino industry is slowly sinking and while many countries are still unaware when they will start reopening their venues and how the process will proceed, many small casinos may not survive these hard times and crises at all. Even those ones that managed to survive have had to sacrifice a lot, such as employees, money, and visions. Everything has to be cut in sizes. 

Blossoming of the online sector 

While people all over the world are practicing social distancing and are staying at homes most of the time, we all still have to do something. Otherwise, it will simply be impossible to stay sane for a long time. While the traditional industries suffer a lot, the online sector is definitely flourishing. People are at home and many have plenty of time to spend. Thus, the best thing to spend the time on is online entertainment platforms. Most of those platforms include online casinos as well. 

Online betting operators are an exception though. They have not been as lucky as online casinos. Sports are the main interest of a huge part of the public. Thus, almost every sports event has been canceled or postponed including the Summer Olympics in Tokyo 2020. Many simply do not have any reason to bet, while betting operators have no categories to offer. 

Thus, betting operators have made efforts to find solutions and offered even the most ridiculous betting options, such as weather forecast, prices of flight tickets, pandemic end date, and even the death rates of the coronavirus. Yet, many operators have gone “corona-free” and do not advertise and offer any corona betting opportunities. Now, the most popular bets are placed on eSports and eSports events, which have not been affected even by the pandemic. 

The online casinos on another hand are offering great values and promotions, including welcome bonuses to the audience. Thus, the number of online casino players has increased significantly, and the amount of money spent on gambling activities has also grown. Online casinos introduced a lot of new games in order to attract more customers and to offer clients many different options of games including slots and live casino games, which have increased in popularity a lot. 

Many countries have set limits on the maximum bets and wagering amounts per week. Others have banned betting on corona related activities. The UK Gambling Commission went as far as suggesting setting a daily deposit limit, as well as a ban of all VIP programs that usually provide additional bonuses and promotions that motivate players to play more often, especially in times like these when there is not much left to do. Some regulators banned any kind of gambling-related advertisements. 


The gambling industry has been affected a lot, and many amendments have already been made. The impact of this global event is huge and every single industry, every business and millions of people will experience this on their own sooner or later. Though, not everything and everyone should experience the negative aspects of the pandemic. Some of them, like online gambling and betting, maybe on the other bank of the river.