Will Online Casinos Prevail the Land-Based in 2022?

Updated Updated: January 26, 2023

With more than 25 million Canadians engaging in gambling activities, which is around 70% of adults – the Canadian gambling market is massive and doesn’t show any signs of stopping. Research shows that the gambling sector makes for about CA$18 billion annually and sees an increase of about 5% every year.

Compared to the ’90s, when the annual revenue was about CA$3 billion – this is a massive increase. In recent years, Canada has seen a steady rise in the popularity of online gambling.

So, the question is, especially in the midst of this global health crisis – is there a future for land-based casinos? We did a short analysis of the gambling sector; we examined the best online casinos in Canada and pitted them against brick-and-mortar giants. Let’s see what the gambling future has in store for Canadians!

Land-based Casinos

For many years, gambling has been one of the favorite pastimes of Canadians. Currently, there are around 100 land-based casinos in Canada, with an estimated 25-30 thousand visitors daily. The global health situation has definitely affected the number of visitors, but with the numbers in mind, the end of land-based casinos is still far out of sight.

Our research of the gambling sector showed that aside from adults and senior citizens, about 50% of young Canadians had visited a casino at least once a year. 20% of Millennials visit casinos a minimum of once every other month. A small percentage, but still a high figure nonetheless.

Regulation for gambling differs from one province to the other, with the most popular casinos located in the provinces of Alberta, Quebec, and Ontario – being the home to the exclusive Niagara and Caesars Windsor casinos. However, you will not find any of them in Labrador, Newfoundland, Prince Edward Island, and New Brunswick.

Land-based casinos are still quite profitable, with annual revenue of about CA$150 million from the 100 casinos combined.

online casinos vs land based casinos

Online Casinos

Canada ranks at 8th place in the list of online gambling, as it becomes more and more popular by the hour. Note that the gambling regulations in Canada’s provinces also refer to online casinos.

Because of these regulations, a few provinces got a “taste” of the industry by setting up their own online casinos and gambling sites. There are approximately 2,000 online casinos available to Canadians. As of this date, Ontario, British Columbia, Alberta, and Saskatchewan have launched their own gambling websites.

There is a huge shift towards online casinos, as much as Canadians love to visit the brick-and-mortar ones. And this does not come only because of the global health situation – it’s an ongoing trend even before 2020.

One factor is that players engaged in online gambling have reported over 95% in winnings, with 60% being the win rate in real-life ones. These numbers would make even the old-school gambler reach for their phone and give online gambling a try.

The greatest prize claimed online by a Canadian came from a slot game named Mega Moolah. The happy victor brought home a whopping CA$7.5 million.

Land-Based or Online Casinos?

Both land-based and online casinos are preferred by Canadians. However, a recent survey by a market research service – Research and Market – revealed a gradual shift in Canada from real-life gambling to online gambling.

In the meantime, as profitable as they are, land-based casinos’ profits are decreasing slowly each year. Not fast enough to see them disappear from the market, but it’s a decrease nevertheless.

Besides the restrictions due to the global health problem lately, the shift is on account of the convenience of the online casinos, easier access, and higher return on investment. These factors combined result in the quick popularity increase of online gambling, both in Canada and worldwide.

Who is leading this shift towards online casinos? The younger generation.

As virtually any young individual is using a smartphone, computer, and other technologies – there will be an even higher shift towards online gambling in the years to come. There will always be uncertainty as to whether brick-and-mortar casinos will survive the rise of online gambling – but we’re positive they will, albeit making smaller profits.

However, it’s doubtful that a casino such as the world-famous Caesars Windsor will close its doors any time soon. There are still many people who enjoy visiting land-based casinos and enjoying the glamour on display.