Online gambling in Canada is a really big deal. It is almost as if online gambling was created just for Canadians. It sort of makes sense when you think about it. There are a lot of remote areas where people live in Canada and with internet access, they can do almost anything. This includes gambling online. To give you an idea of how popular it has become in Canada, the country currently ranks at eighth place in the world of countries that spend the most money gambling online.
A Closer Look At The Statistics
Exactly how many Canadians engage in gambling activities online? In the last count, the total hovered over 19.3 million. When you consider that the entire population of Canada sits at roughly 38 million people, the total number of gamblers is just over half of the Canadian population. According to a recent report published by the Canadian Gaming Industry, Canucks spend over $4 billion at offshore online gambling sites each year and dump around $16 billion into local land-based casinos annually.
Sports Fans Pave The Way
As far as gambling is concerned in Canada, the most popular form is sports betting. The top sports Canadians spend most of their gambling budget on include football, hockey, and basketball. These are followed by mainstream sporting events. Canadians are not big fans of unusual, exotic sporting activities. Gender also plays a role in online gambling in Canada. Men tend to gravitate toward sports betting while women are often happier playing bingo or other luck-based games. Another interesting trend to come on the heels of the pandemic is that although many land-based casinos are dotting the Canadian landscape, gamblers in Canada have found online casinos to their liking. An example is wildz.com in Canada.
The Demographics Tell A Story
Although male gamblers are fond of sports betting, and female gamblers prefer luck-based games, the split between the genders is close. A total of 43-percent of women and 56-percent of men are online gamblers with 55-percent of the female gamblers opting to use mobile devices to access online gaming. It is also interesting to note that the majority of Canadian gamblers are aged between 30 and 50 years with bingo reaching the older end of the spectrum and faster-paced games favored by the younger gamblers. As for the most popular online casino game in Canada, slots take the top spot.
The Value of the Canadian Gambling Industry
With all these figures, you would think that gambling in Canada is a huge industry. That would also be correct. In 2021, the industry generated $2.64 billion in revenue with $1.2 billion of that coming directly from online gambling. That figure would be greater if offshore gambling sites were not as easy to access and if each Canadian province and territory chose to license all online gambling operators. At least that way, some of the gambling revenue going to offshore ventures would come back to Canada in the form of licensing fees and other provisions.
The Future of the Online Casino Industry in Canada
The future is bright in Canada for the online casino industry. A shift took place in 2022 regarding the methods used to market online gambling sites. More emphasis has been on problem gambling and how to address it. In Canada, the federal government has enacted regulations governing gambling but has left the licensing, regulation, and enforcement of those guidelines to each individual province and territory. The same method applies to problem gambling. The general theme used in British Columbia for years was on setting a budget and staying within it. Other parts of the country have used different approaches.
The innovation in recent years of live dealer casino games has not been lost on Canadian gambling operators. With live dealers becoming a new trend in the industry, Canadian gaming sites are jumping on board to keep pace with American and international sites already providing this platform for players. Rather than not keeping up and risking the loss of players going to other sites with live dealers, Canadian online gambling sites are expanding their offerings to include at least some live dealer options. Expect this to continue to drive change in the Canadian online gambling industry.
Cryptocurrencies are not a fad. The extra layer of security that comes with any type of crypto transaction has made this digital currency a natural choice for online casinos. Many currently accept the most popular of the crypto coins along with other traditional cash equivalents. The growing popularity of cryptocurrency will see Canadian online gambling sites expanding their banking options to include cryptocurrency options. Players with an understanding of how the blockchain works will prefer the higher level of privacy that comes from this type of money transaction.
All indications point to 2022 as being a breakout year for eSports betting. Experts feel that this could grow into one of the most popular sporting games in Canada. The interactive nature of eSports is what will be the main attraction where gamblers can watch games in real-time and become part of the action. The unpredictable nature of the game will draw a lot of interest but will very likely attract far more men than women, which is currently the case with sports betting in today’s current form.
Canada is very liberal when it comes to all forms of gambling. With solid legislation in place that contains a fair amount of gray area regarding digital gambling, the Canadian government is relaxed about the popularity of online gambling simply because most of the revenue generated from it is through provincially- licensed operators. Canada also uses innovation in addressing changes to the online gambling landscape choosing to keep up with out-of-country offerings rather than playing catch up. This keeps Canada near the top of the list of countries earning big bucks from gambling revenue. If there are going to be any changes in the industry in Canada, they will be improvements rather than added restrictions as seems to be the case in other gambling markets around the world.