Pandemic forces Australians to turn to online casinos

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Traditional land-based casinos in Australia have yet to reopen in the majority of the country, which left no choice for 8 million residents who gamble regularly but to turn to online action. Sadly, the online market remains closed for operators who wish to be licenced, so the only businesses that remain are those who don't shy away from working in the grey area.


Gamblers are now forced to visit websites such as BestCasinoAustralia.com before signing up with some online casino to read the professional reviews and find out which of the operators available to them are actually legit. Turning to a third-party source is a necessity since there are no licences being issued to operators.

  1. Pandemic hurts land-based casinos

The largest land-based casino chains in Australia, Crown Resorts and Star Group, are dealing with the new regulations due to covid-19 outbreak in different ways in order to try and stay in business. The Star Sydney (pictured) has to battle new restrictions due to the second covid-19 wave in NSW, so it's reducing staff levels and allowing access to the floor only to members. The floor capacity used to be 5,000 but now it's separated into sections of 300 patrons. This casino laid off 90% of its workforce during the first coronavirus wave.


Crown Melbourne is in an even more difficult situation as there is a stage 3 pandemic in the state of Victoria, so it will remain fully closed for at least another three or four weeks.


Across all casinos that have their doors open we see the same trend – they are focusing on high-rollers as they are worth more than casual players. This is a necessity as the number of people who are allowed to be in the casino at the same time is reduced.


Also, there are no more Asian gamblers who visit these gambling resorts so casinos have to focus on one thing and one thing only – Australian high rollers. For these gamblers, the doors will remain open and they'll be more valued than ever.

  1. Where does an average Australian gamble now?

Australia is probably the gambling champion of the world, as more than 8 million people gamble regularly (out of 20 million adults), and they spend more than 250 billion AUD on gambling anually.


The govermnent has long been battling online gambling and finally banned it altogether, which is an effort to keep the aforementioned sum of money in the country instead of letting it go overseas. However, the ban had a different effect. Most of the honest operators fled the market while those operators who don't have a problem with working in grey area markets such as USA remained.


This significantly reduced the quality of gambling offered to Australians, which especially goes for slots, or pokies as Aussies call them. The largest developers such as NetEnt, Playtech, Yggdrasil and the others all left – while Betsoft, Rival and Realtime Gaming remain.


There can be no penalty or tax for an Australian gambling at an unlicenced online casino. This creates a situation where Australians do have to gamble online, but the offer is significantly reduced. Fortunately, several quality online casinos still accept Australian gamblers, and in fact the numbers are through the roof.

  1. The tables have turned

While the Australian gambling laws were focused on keeping the majority of the gambling income in local casino chains, the pandemic situation hurt the land-based casinos significantly and gave a huge boost to online gambling.


Unless the restrictions are completely lifted and the world goes back to old normal – which isn't certain at all – land-based casinos will continue to focus on high rollers while online casino businesses will thrive since they don't rely on humans to be in close proximity to one another.


High rollers will still get whatever they want at land-based casinos, while everyone else needs to turn to online casinos in order to be able to gamble.

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