Rate of players experiencing gambling issues remains steady at 0.2% in the UK

The UK Gambling Commission reported a 3% increase in the overall share of gambling activity between Q1 2021 and 2022, while the problem gambling rate reached 0.2%.

The quarterly telephone survey conducted by consultancy Yonder found that out of a sample of 4,018 adults aged 16 and over, there was an overall increase in gambling activity in the UK.

Of all respondents, 43.3% had participated in at least one form of gambling in the last four weeks, with men aged 45-54 being the group most likely to gamble.

By March 2022, the attendance rate for in-person games had increased to 26%, up from 23% in the previous year. The Gambling Commission noted that the increase in participation appears to be driven by the return of in-person gambling activities following the period of restrictions due to the pandemic.

Participation rates for in-person activities still, however, remain below pre-2020 levels. Meanwhile, 25.7% of people said they played online, continuing long-term growth.

Analyzing participation by game type, 5.2% participated in betting, while 27.2% participated in National Lottery draws and 7.2% used scratch cards. 13.3% played another lottery and 3.4% played online slots.

Problem gambling rate is statistically stable at 0.2%, while moderate and low risk rates are also stable at 0.9% and 1.4%, respectively. While this number for problem gambling was lower than in the previous edition of the survey, the Commission said the difference was not statistically significant.

However, the study indicated that there was a statistically significant decline in the problem of gambling among men, as this rate reached only 0.3%.

Gambling Commission notes shift in perception towards gaming

Furthermore, the Gambling Commission noted that 2021 was the first year to show a shift towards more positive perceptions of the gambling market, demonstrated by the proportion of respondents who agreed that ‘gambling is dangerous to family life’ falling by 5%.