Are online casinos a threat to the “real” thing?

With the advent of online casino gaming as a mass-appeal pastime, there are no doubt plenty of questions to be asked about the results of this change. Some of these questions would take a college-level thesis to explore, but perhaps one of the broader queries would be one of the simplest: are online betting sites a competitive threat to land-based options, and if so, why?

On one level, there may seem to be an obvious answer to this: online casinos are more convenient than the land-based version. That alone, though, is not enough information on which to make a deeper conclusion. The following factors, however, might well be considered quite conclusive…

It’s cheaper to run an online casino

Many of the companies that run land-based casinos also run online versions, and this suggests that they are aware of the potential for online casinos to outstrip brick and mortar. The online options you’ll find on the likes of Wish cost so much less to run, as any casino owner will know. All of those casinos on the Vegas strip need hundreds, even thousands of staff. They need to be cleaned, catered, maintained and their land taxes paid. With an online casino, sure, you need to pay for hosting and servers, but the costs don’t even compare – and this saving means they can pay out more and give better offers to players.

You can play online casino games for free 

If you wandered into a resort casino and walked up to the roulette table, and just helped yourself to some playing chips, you’d be manhandled out of there before you could even place a bet. These places have dealers to pay and machines to maintain, and there’s no way they’d consider offering you free entertainment. In online casinos, meanwhile, you can try most of the games out for free before you put down any cash. By the time you make your first bet, you’ll be comfortable with the rules and the way games run. That’s an attractive offer for a first-time casino player.

Now, finally, for the key question: are online casinos a threat to land-based versions. That much is not so clear, interestingly. Aside from the pandemic and lockdown, brick-and-mortar casinos have continued to attract customers even in the era of online casino gaming. The reason for this may be that the two options offer something different. People like getting dressed up to go to a casino, just the same as they’ll still go to the cinema in the age of online streaming. There is room for both in this world – and that’s part of why the big casinos don’t really fight online gaming.