For several centuries, land-based casinos were unrivalled in their business plan. Entertainment, gambling, card games, and networking were all of the reasons why casinos grew into a culturally significant place that soon became featured in endless films and was seen as a sophisticated night out.
During the past decade, they have finally seen some competition. The birth of the internet meant that we could digitise many of the traditional casino games and play them on our laptops, and eventually our phones, wherever we are and whenever we like. Whilst there are some unique benefits to both, when we look at platforms tested by betting.co.uk, it’s important to recognise that online casinos are slowly taking over…
Accessibility and convenience
Accessibility has become increasingly important in today’s economy. It’s not enough phoning up a taxi service and describing where we are, we want an app to do it for us instead. Plus, it’s the lockdowns from coronavirus that pushed almost everybody online for their shopping and entertainment.
Casino games are no different. If you love poker, you love poker – it doesn’t matter too much where and how it’s played. Being able to open an app in one click and play the games we love is where online casinos have a massive advantage. They’re all about the games, and the convenience of playing them.
Socialising and atmosphere
The inaccessiblity of land-based casinos is perhaps what brings power to the main advantage that they have. Not being able to easily go to a casino, as it requires ID and possibly signing up, along with a dress code in some circumstances, creates a unique buzz. The atmosphere of casinos can be extremely unique, with no windows or clocks so that time stands still, and everyone in there shares a common goal. This is where you can easily start conversations with people next to you, making it great for both solo gamblers and networking businessmen.
Online casinos are inherently less social, but they’re doing their best to close the gap. At first, it was text chatting in poker rooms that grew in popularity, but there may soon be microphone integration with VR rooms where you can walk around a virtual casino with an avatar interacting with others. It may not be completely the same, but it’s certainly closing the gap.
Casino games are at the crux of either option. You want to play exciting games and potentially win money. In this regard, online casinos triumph traditional casinos, with the latter being restricted to a certain floorspace and rooms, where they usually fit 100 or so slots, several poker rooms and maybe 20 tables – if you’re lucky. Compare this to online casinos, which when in partnership with various game dev publishers are receiving an endless conveyor belt of new games each year, racking up a back catalogue of hundreds if not thousands of options.
Online games also have more potential, as the tools at their disposal are far greater. It’s easier to gamify these games, making them competitive, story-based, have leaderboards, and different themes. This is easier to do with a computer casino game with visual effects compared to a physical machine.
Bonus and promotions
Physcial casinos have a lot of overhead and labour costs to run their establishments. A lot of the money made from the house advantage on games will go to paying these, making it more difficult to hand out bonuses and promotions. Of course, there are still instances of receiving a free drink, or perhaps vouchers that can be used for drinks, but they’re a far cry from online bonuses.
Online casinos will use generous sign up offers, and spend a lot of their outgoings on such marketing campaigns because they have fewer overheads. Furthermore, it’s not just about comparing one online casino to one traditional one no a like for like basis. Sure, the average online casino will give better promotions, but it’s about how many different online casinos there are.
If you’re lucky enough to get a sign up offer at a traditional casino, that’s probably the only one in town (unless you’re in Vegas or similar). But on the internet, there are a near-endless amount of casinos offering bonuses, meaning you can rinse them all and try out different platforms.
What’s the right option for you?
Your choice entirely depends on your personality and casino needs. Unless you’re an extreme introvert or extreme extrovert, it’s likely that they can both co-exist together. Online casinos are probably what most people will find themselves using more frequently, whether it’s in an airport or in bed, but traditional casinos possess an experience that is irreplaceable, whether you go there once a year or once a week. As long as you know your limits, either choice can be good fun. Plus, many use online poker as practice for real-life poker tournaments, which is an intuitive strategy.