How Many People in the UK Gamble? How Many British Casino Punters Are There?

Posted on October 7th, 2011

One of the things we are keen to highlight here at Online Casino King, is that casinos are not suitable for everyone. Some people, are by their nature, adictive gamblers. (Around 0.7% of the population actually). One of the important things to highlight, for everyone in this area, is that there ARE problem gamblers around. It is important to identify these individuals quickly (both by the casino companies themselves, and by the individuals recognizing that they have a problem).

Theoretically, this should be easier and more efficient online, as playing profiles can be easily tracked and compared to a database of other known problem gamblers. If you are in doubt, it’s easy. Just stay away.

There are plenty of other things to do! (learn to sail, get a dog, play with your kids!)

There’s a survey that comes out every year tracking the behaviour of British people with regards to gambling: casinos, sports betting, poker, bingo etc. The survey asks questions like:

How many people in the UK gamble?
What games to they play?
It’s called the British Gambling Prevalence Survey, and the 2011 version is out soon (more on that later).
We take a look here at the findings of the 2010 UK Gambling Survey which starts off with a claim that nearly 75% of adults in Britain gamble.
More punters are playing  according to this independent report published by the Gambling Commission.
Almost 75% of adults (73%) gambled, an increase from 68% in 2007. Most people say they gamble “because it’s fun” and “for the chance of winning big money”. Only a relatively small proportion of these people gamble online, however, although this is an area that is seeing fast growth (particularly in mobile).
The report highlights problem gambling and shows that 0.7% class themselves as having a problem with their gambling. These rates are similar to those in other European countries (Germany, Norway and Switzerland) and lower than countries like the USA, Australia (well known for its love of slots or pokies) and South Africa.
Internationally recognised tools are normally used to highlight problem gambling – the ‘DSM-IV’ and the Problem Gambling Severity Index (PGSI).
DSM-IV stands for Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of the American Psychiatric Association.
Problem gamblers in the UK are about the same % as they are in Norway (0.8%), Germany (0.6%) and Switzerland (0.8%), and lower than the States (3.5%), Oz (between 1.4% – 2.1%) and South Africa (1.4%),
For a more detailed summary of this report, head to gamblingcommission.gov.uk.
And please, make sure you are not making up the numbers of those players in the 0.7%! Only play with money that you can afford to lose and treat casino play as entertainment- set yourself a budget, much as you would do if you were going for a night out.
In particular:
Don’t bet with money you can’t afford to lose.
Bet with money that you have set aside for entertainment.
Keep a close eye of how much money you are really spending – not only the amount you bet at first, but also the winnings that you may bet. Pocket your winnings, don’t put them back in the machines.
Having a budget helps you  plan and manage your spending, including at the casino.
Are you a Problem Gambler? Are you in the 0.7%?
Signs of problem gambling
  • Is your betting causing problems for you or others around you?
  • Are you spending more money and time on betting than you can afford.
  • Do you find it tough to manage or stop your gambling.
  • Do you have arguments with family or friends about money and gambling.
  • Have you lost interest in other activities or hobbies?
  • Are you always thinking or talking about gambling.
  • Are you concealing your gambling or hiding it from other people.
  • Do you chase  losses or are you betting to get out of financial trouble.
  • Do you play until all of your money is gone?
  • Are you borrowing money, selling stuff or not paying bills in order to play at casinos?
  • Are you betting with larger & larger amounts of money or for a longer period to get the same adrenaline buzz?
  • Are you ignoring work, school, family, or other responsibilities because of gambling.
  • Do you sometimes feel anxious, worried, guilty, depressed or irritable because of gambling.
If you answered yes to any or all of these questions, you may have a problem and you should seek help. Call the GamCare Helpline NOW on 0845 6000 133 .
Talk to someone about it.
For more information, head to gambleaware.co.uk.

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