While Asia is gaining plenty of momentum, Europe and the US are still the largest bodies of gambling conniseurs. Asia may well become a leader in the future, but a lot of countries are going to have to loosen the reins on its residents before that’s likely to happen.
An in depth look at the gambling industries in both Europe and the US indicates both regions are currently experiencing explosive growth, though not necessarily in the same gambling sectors. While the differences will be identified below, there are areas where the gambling industries are quite similar. For instance, online casino sites in the USA are pretty much the same as top casino sites operating in Europe. In some cases, the top online casinos are owned and operated by the same ownership groups. Moving on, we want to spend some time discussing important differences.
Integration of Gambling into the Culture
In Europe, particularly in the UK, gambling has been widely accepted as a viable form of adult entertainment for a long time. There are opponents advocating for the cessation of gambling activities, but they really don’t have much of a voice.
Part of the reason why there is such a high level of integration of gambling into society is because of the influence the region has had on gambling in general. Aside from slot machines, most table games were invented and rolled out in countries like France and Italy. The longest existing land-based casinos reside in Europe. The reality is some forms of gambling has been legal in portions of Europe for over 200 years. It’s also noteworthy that Europe has always been well ahead of the curve when it comes to online gambling of any kind.
In America, horse racing in the only form of gambling that has any real longevity. Up until the 1950s, most other forms of gambling (slot machines, bingo, poker) were being provided in churches and the back rooms of bars. When land-based casinos finally came into the mainstream in the late 1950s, access was only available in Las Vegas with Atlantic City following suit almost 20 years later. It’s only recently that Americans have begun accepting gambling in general as a viable form of adult entertainment.
There’s a stark difference in the forms of gambling for which each region shows a preference. In the UK, there’s a large contingent of gamblers who support the horse racing industry. Truth be told, there’s more race tracks in Europe per capita than anywhere else in the world. Europeans also love to wager on European football (soccer) as well as bingo. Neither of those betting options have much of a following in the US.
In America, slot machines are king in the casinos. Next up would be blackjack where as Europeans prefer Baccarat and Roulette. The horse racing industry is strong in the US, but many people consider it a bit of a niche market. By the way, Americans love to play lotteries, a reality that has produced dozens of people with a net worth of over $100 million.
There is one other area within the gambling industry that offers insight about the people’s attitudes towards gambling. In Europe, the regulation of gambling operations is important, but there is a higher level of tolerance for unregulated providers. In the US, the government goes to extraordinary lengths to keep a tight grip on how and where citizens are permitted to gamble.