Do Britons Prefer Sports Betting or Online Casino Games
Britons are among the keenest sports fans and bettors in the world, but are casino games or sports betting more popular? Here’s how they stand today.
Comparing and Contrasting Sports Betting & Casino Games
As any bettor knows, there are some pretty hefty differences between sports and casino betting. The latter is largely down to random chance, although some games (such as blackjack and poker) do have outcomes affected substantially by player choice. Some years ago there were plans for several so-called ‘super casinos’ in the United Kingdom and while these didn’t come off there are still a significant number of land-based casinos in major cities. Casinos that are land-based can offer a more complete experience than sports betting, thanks to on-site restaurants and bars, coupled with live sports often available, plus other forms of entertainment (both within the casino and from recreational businesses that have sprung up nearby). Sports betting, by contrast, tends to be a much briefer affair of popping into a bookie and simply making a bet, then leaving.
Sports betting does offer the chance to combine the passions of sport and wagering, and outcomes are a combination of luck and insight on the part of the bettor. If your favoured Formula 1 driver gets done out of a race win due to the timing of a rain shower that can’t be predicted or helped. In terms of scale of win, there are long shots available in sports betting (the notorious 5,000/1 on Leicester City winning the Premier League, for example) but generally returns will be lower than the big wins in casinos. Sometimes, however, land-based casinos do offer sports betting on the premises, so there isn’t a totally clear dividing line between the two. One pro of sports betting is that the country is football mad, as proven by the huge degree of attention given not only to football matches but off-pitch matters such as the transfer windows.
The Advantage of a Small Country
The UK is not the biggest country in the world, and that coupled with its particular geographical footprint is actually very useful for land-based casinos. This is because unlike a country like Canada, Australia, or the United States of America, every single Briton is within driving distance of a land-based casino, and it can often be very close indeed. Major cities like London, Leeds, Glasgow, Birmingham, Cardiff, and so forth have not only large populations but strong road links to significant hinterlands. In much the same way every Briton is within easy reach of the coast, a land-based casino is always accessible.
One of the great things about these beautiful British casinos is that UK players can take advantage if attractive rewards programs such as loyalty club points that can be redeemed as free spins on bonus slots games, video poker and more.
Much the same is true, it must be said, of bookies, with most high streets having at least one. However, this is commonplace in most countries, whereas other nations may have cities dispersed enough that it may be more difficult there to reach a real world casino (which is not a problem in the UK).
Online Sports Betting
Players can also bet on sports online, which enables even more accessibility to an astonishing array of markets with hundreds of options on each individual EPL match. Perhaps even more advantageous for bettors is that differing bookies can be easily compared so that the best price can be exploited for the maximum potential win. Online sports operators are also well-known for introductory bonuses and recurring free bets for regular players, which can be used to good effect. Sports betting was naturally hit hard by the pandemic, but soon rebounded to exceed even pre-pandemic levels of interest.
In addition to traditional sportsbooks, the online sphere is also home to betting exchanges. These enable players to both bet for and against specific outcomes and can offer those with an eye for hedging their bets plentiful opportunities to end up in the black.
The value of the UK sports betting industry was recently made plain by a bid of $22.4bn on Ladbrokes and Coral owner Entain.
Online Casino Games
Online casinos do have certain advantages over their real-world counterparts. Because the establishment is virtual rather than real, there’s no upper limit on the number of games available to play which means that online casinos can offer a fantastic selection of slots and table games. The live dealer category mingles the atmosphere of playing in person with the convenience of playing from home. Additionally, the doors never shut so you can bet when you please. Mobile compatibility means that players can bet on the go or just for a short time, which is entirely feasible with a smartphone or tablet. And because there are fewer overheads for online casinos they can even offer a better rate of return than the land-based version.
Promotions are another great strength of casinos both land-based and virtual, with the latter offering even more generous bonuses, particularly of the welcome variety. Shopping around for the best deals can be a great way to get generous match deposit and no deposit deals for the best possible start.
Ultimately, there is slightly more betting in the UK on sport than slot machines and table games, but the numbers are pretty even and both are highly popular. Whatever you pick, always remember to be sensible and only bet what you can afford to lose.