How heavy is the impact of coronavirus on the gambling industry?
UPDATE: Due to the recent guidelines published by ASA and MGA about COVID-19, we want to highlight that this article have a pure informational intent, do not promote any sort of brand, nor incites to antisocial behaviors.
Having seen the effect that the coronavirus has had on other industries like sports, it's almost definite that the impact will also be felt in the gambling industry. Most sports events, seminars, conferences have been canceled in fear of spreading the virus. Sports contribute directly to the gambling industry and canceling the events means a negative effect. However, there are more other ways that the outbreak will impact, and it may lead to other measures or options to keep players satisfied.
Land Casinos are Closing Down
Several land casinos have closed down businesses. A casino in Oregon has closed down after one of its employees tested positive for the coronavirus. Casinos in Macau have also closed down. The land casinos will be significantly affected as the gatherings could provide a platform for the virus to spread more.
Players are Switching Online Casinos
Online casinos offer players the advantage of playing in the comfort of their homes without having to interact with others. There are also benefits like the casino bonus that online casinos offer. With the current situation, online betting will be the most preferred option among players. This could help cushion the blow a bit on the industry. The online gambling market was estimated to be $48.52 billion in 2018 and could potentially rise higher.
An estimated , and the number could rise. Gambling rakes in billions of revenue every year. Provinces such as Alberta, Ontario and British Columbia launched their gambling sites to tap this revenue. Read more on Casinomatcher.
Also, in areas where financial institutions are closed down, payments can be made in cryptocurrency, which does not involve financial institutions.
Cancellation of Gaming Events
Some sports and gaming events have already been canceled or postponed, and others will possibly be canceled. The Gaming Developer Conference for this year has been delayed to summer. F1 world championship has been postponed to summer; others like NBA, Champions League, and Europa League have been canceled as well. This could affect the growth of the gaming industry negatively in the future.
Price Drops in the Stock Market for Gambling Companies
As the world's economy continues to deteriorate, gambling companies have also had their share of the blow. Toronto Stock Exchange has had its due to the coronavirus.
Stocks are falling for almost all companies, . The market could take a massive dip if the situation worsens for a few more months. Investors are withdrawing their money for fear of hard times ahead.
Even with the crisis, there are other betting opportunities that require taking more risks. With the markets falling and odds fluctuating, you can make prospects on some bets.
You can bet on major events like the Premier League, or London Marathon will take place or get canceled. Political betting can be another betting option.
How to Gamble Safely During the Coronavirus Outbreak
Amid the outbreak, staying safe is a priority to avoid getting infected. Avoiding crowded places will minimize the risk as well as maintaining sanitation.
However, if you will still want to go out to gamble, here are the safety tips.
If you go to a land-based casino, do not touch your mouth and face with your hands as they may have collected the virus. Wearing a face mask and disposable gloves is a good idea.
Avoid handling money as they may have passed through thousands of potentially infected persons. If possible, place bets with your card.
If you must handle money, maybe through collecting your winnings, carry a hand sanitizer with you and use it regularly. Door handles, bathrooms and gaming machines may also carry the virus on them so ensure you sanitize your hands now and then.
If possible, gamble at the online casinos (only those regulated and with valid license). They pose fewer risks of contracting the virus, provided you are not using a public computer or betting with your mobile in a public place. This does not mean that you necessarily have to isolate yourself; there are many social games you can get involved in. Always remember that if you are a , with the introduction to the gamstop program, you can easily submit an auto exclusion to a multitude of gambling sites.
The virus will be a blow to the industry and the economy at large. If the virus continues, the gaming industry might suffer withdrawal or reduction of funding as the money is directed towards fighting the virus.
The canceling and postponing of events and games may also cause a financial strain as people will have fewer options to bet on. However, if the continued efforts to come up with a virus bear fruit, things might get better.