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European Gambling: Peculiarities and Problems

| On 05, Feb 2022

Europe accounts for a huge share of the gambling activity taking place around the world. The history dates back to ancient times but has shown constant improvement to date. It has several land-based casinos that have been a big attraction for years. The surge of online casinos sweetened the deal even further for gamblers by allowing them to play conveniently at the comfort of their homes or cars. Moreover, online gambling clubs usually provide visitors with different bonuses, like no deposit bonus, welcome bonus, free spins and so on, however after applying to some of these houses, gamblers may face wagering requirements.  Currently, there are even no wagering casino websites that take the excitement a notch higher by allowing you to play with no worry about high wagering requirements which usually make the way of withdrawal money much more difficult.

Despite being widespread, European gambling has been associated with a fair share of peculiarities and problems. Actually, the huge gambling population has complicated the matter since more people are impacted by it. In this article,  you will find an elaborate overview of the main issues.

Addiction

Gambling addiction is perhaps the most pertinent problem associated with European gambling. Betting often begins as a fun and harmless activity that gradually mutates into a pathological vice that has ruined the lives of many individuals. How does it arise?

Initially, gambling is perceived as a leisure activity. It leads to a certain high associated with the buzz of winning or losing cash that can be quite irresistible. However, some people begin to look at it as a source of income. It forces them to go to extreme lengths to get cash for gambling. The resultant effect is usually very dire to the individual, the family, the society, and the nation at large.

Gambling begins to be pathological when the individual is unable to control it. They fail to meet other financial obligations like rent and school fees because of this vice. As a result, their families begin to suffer and this leads to separation, divorce, and even domestic abuse. The victims may even commit fraud leading to the loss of their jobs and even imprisonment. Eventually, the problem escalates to the entire society and the governments are forced to use millions or even billions of Euros to treat the victims.

The Gambling Situation in Europe?

Recent reports have shown how dire the European gambling problem is. It is estimated that there are over 400,000 known gambling addicts in the UK and over 1.8 million are at risk of developing the problem. The biggest concern is that more than half of the people above the age of 16 make a bet every year. Spain is reported to have the highest rates of teenage gambling addicts while Ireland also reported an alarming number of people who are being treated for this.

Sweden also presents a unique case scenario where over 60% of problem gamblers are women. This number is reported to have risen drastically over the past decade and this could be attributed to the rapid growth of the online gambling industry. Germany has also reported a peculiar case where addiction to drugs like alcohol and tobacco has reduced while the addiction to gambling has increased. Europe is reported to have a problem gambling rate of between 0.5 and 3%. This is not a rosy picture since huge amounts of cash are required to treat and curb the problem. The gambling industry in the region is worth billions of Euros. Nevertheless, such figures are not very attractive if the number of problem gamblers keeps increasing. There needs to be deliberate efforts to deal with it. Here is how Europe compares to other regions:

ContinentPrevalence
Europe0.5 to 3%
North America0.6 to 2.3%
Australia0.5% to 1%

Even though the data is not very accurate and some continents do not have data available, the data shows that Europe is not performing so well in this aspect.

Measures to Curb the Vice

The governments of Europe are aware of the gambling problems and they have tried to implement measures to help curb it. The online casinos and land-based establishments have also taken responsibility and developed ways of alleviating it. However, the problem usually starts with the individual so the faster he/she acknowledges that they have it, the sooner they get help. The main signs of problem gambling are:

  • Inability to control gambling urges;
  • Playing with more and more cash to get some excitement;
  • Gambling when it is supposed to be working;
  • Gambling more to cover the losses gotten;
  • Borrowing money to gamble.

Once you realize that you are suffering from such a problem, then you can proceed to use the measures that have been put in place. Further you will read an overview of the main measures in Europe.

Government Measures

European governments have, in recent times, taken a proactive approach in the regulation of gambling. They try hard to ensure that there is player protection. The UK, for instance, created a law that prohibits its citizens from depositing money in casinos. This is meant to prevent people from going into debt due to this problem. The online gambling is also regulated through the UK Gambling Commission. Hence, the casinos that operate there must obtain a license from it.

Some jurisdictions have taken the bolder step of illegalizing some elements of gambling. Selected ones have even gone ahead to illegalize it altogether because of the menace that it seems to be causing. The governments have also created facilities that are centered on dealing with gambling addictions. They have budgeted more money into dealing with the vice and are engaging more partners into managing it. The officials have also demanded accountability from the casinos and this has forced them to implement measures that are aimed to curb it. The European governments have certainly taken a pivotal role in dealing with problem gambling. Some of them are becoming more alive to the issue so we look forward to more measures and legislation.

Online Casinos

The rapid growth of the online gambling realm has made gambling services more accessible to a huge population of people. Even the closet gamblers who were too shy to openly walk into casinos can easily access these services through their computers, mobile phones, or tablets. Online gambling faced a lot of skepticism in its early days and some countries are yet to legalize them because of various reasons. Nevertheless, it has gradually been accepted across the European continent.

Online gambling presented a unique challenge to the curbing of problem gambling. Since it exposed more people to the activity, it led to a consequent increase in the problem. The issue of teenage gamblers is also as a result of the rise of online gambling. The measures that have been used to curb it include:

  • Rigorous sign up process;
  • Self-Exclusion;
  • Deposit Limits;
  • Loss Limits;
  • Time Limits;
  • Free Games.

The registration process has been tightened to ensure that only the adults are able to gamble in these platforms. They require gamers to provide their identification documents during the sign-up process or while withdrawing their cash. These measures have been effective in preventing underage gambling.

The other measures are applicable to individuals who have diagnosed the problem and deliberately chosen to deal with it. They assist them to keep their urges at bay. Self-exclusion is a tool that allows the gamer to take a break from the casino for a specified amount of time. The platform prevents the player from playing before this time elapses. Unfortunately, it is possible for a gamer to simply sign up in another casino and satisfy his or her urges. For this reason, it is important for the initiative to originate from the sufferer.

The deposit limit, loss limit, and time limit are self-explanatory. They allow gamers to limit the amount of cash they deposit or lose within a specified period of time to enable them to stay within their budgets. The time limit, on the other hand, locks you out of the account after you exceed the preset amount of time. All these are effective ways of controlling problem gambling.

Finally, some platforms provide gamblers with casino bonus no wagering that allow gamers to satisfy their gambling needs using bonuses with no need to worry if there will be difficulties to withdraw. They help players to stay at bay even when they have any money problems. You can find valuable information on responsible gambling at most casinos.

Land-Based Casinos

The land-based casinos in Europe take a more direct approach in dealing with problem gambling. They employ trained personnel who monitor gamblers and flag the ones that show potential of developing problem gambling. These people usually inform the management who can take measures like banning them. These casinos have also illegalized drugs like alcohol that could alter the judgment of their clients. However it has helped to ensure that they remain sober.

The Conclusion

These are the main gambling problems and peculiarities in Europe. Even though they remain rampant, measures have been taken to curb them. The governments and the casinos have been in the forefront of acknowledging and dealing with them. The fight is still on and the measures will definitely bear fruit soon. Though, the gambler is adult enough to take all the responsibility of the process have no addiction problems, gambling is a cool way of entertaining and getting additional income.