Gambling in Australia Statistics


Over the past few years, gambling in Australia has developed into more than just a pleasant pastime activity. Instead, we need to be talking about an activity that is deeply integrated into the cultural fabric of the country. With the emergence and development of online gambling, the numbers are staggering. So, here, we will examine the critical statistics on gambling in Australia.

The Legal Landscape

You need to know that no single piece of legislation covers the entire gambling market in the country, as it is regulated at both the state and federal levels.

Australia’s eight states have the power to regulate gambling activities with each of their respective jurisdictions separately.

Nonetheless, the Australian Constitution empowers the federal government to regulate interactive gambling, anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing.

As such, the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) is responsible for all media and communications regulation in the country, including monitoring the gambling regulation.

In that line, The Interactive Gambling Act 2001 (the Act) is a national legislation that does not allow online casinos to offer services to Australian residents. Still, land-based gambling is allowed at both state and territory levels. Only licensed land-based casinos are allowed to provide table game and pokie services.

Even though ACMA prohibits online gambling in Australia, there is no mechanism in place to stop Aussie punters from playing their favourite casino games on offshore gambling sites. Many international casinos happily accept players from the country, and you can find here the complete list of world-class operators!

Gambling Participation by Product

A jaw-dropping stat is that about 73% of Australian adults gambled at least once in the past year. Out of all available services in the country, here is how the bets are diversified among them:

  • Lotteries/scratch cards – 64%
  • Horse racing/greyhound/harness – 39%
  • Sports betting 34%
  •  Pokies – 33%

The very same research that came up with these numbers reported that the average number of products Aussies gambled on was two, but about 23% of respondents in the survey said that they gambled on up to six different products.

Betting Platforms

It is no surprise that online gambling has slowly but surely become a prevalent activity among Australian punters. Most sports betting and race betting were done online, with mobile users making up 42% of the bettors online.

An interesting stat is that, on average, participants who wager online have two accounts, but around 19% of the same respondents have at least three accounts.

ACMA did official research a couple of years ago that stated that more than 11% of Australian adults gambled online in the past six months.

Nonetheless, those figures have risen dramatically ever since. By the end of 2024, the total user penetration in online gambling will be about 24%, with the revenue reaching A$15.4 billion.

As for individual users, the average revenue per user in the online gambling segment in Australia will reach A$2,400 in 2024. By 2029, the number of online gamblers in Australia will reach 8.3 million users.

This means that sites such as Bingo Village Casino will continue to flourish, even if the Aussie government does not fully legalise online gambling in the next few years.

Men or Women – Who Gambles More?

As you would expect, gambling in Australia differs much by gender. Unsurprisingly, men participate more frequently in gambling than women:

  • About 48% of Australian men gamble weekly.
  • Around 28% of Australian women place bets at least once a week.

These numbers get a significant bump to the abovementioned total of about 73% of Australian adults who gamble at least once a year. Most men in Australia gamble on several markets, including:

  • Horse racing
  • Pokie machines
  • Sports betting

Since men gamble more than women, it is not rocket science to figure out that their losses are higher in all gambling categories in Australia.

Contributions to the Economy

Aside from direct revenue, the gambling business contributes to the Australian economy through employment, tourism, and community sponsorship. Casinos and other gaming establishments are significant employers, providing thousands of jobs throughout the country, from urban areas to rural towns. These enterprises also attract travellers, which benefits the hospitality and tourism industries. Furthermore, some gaming proceeds are directed to community funds, which support a wide range of sports, arts, and social services.

Australian Gamblers Compared to Other Countries in the World

Even though we all identify Las Vegas with gambling, you will be surprised to hear that Australians are the leaders in the world when it comes to the rate of their losses.

Aussies have the highest rates of losses per capita, with the average being A$1,400 per year — A$300 more than second-placed Hong Kong and A$700 more than the USA!

What Do Australians Think of Gambling?

It comes as no surprise to see that a big portion of Australian adults say that gambling is too prevalent in the country. Some participants noted that there are just too many gambling opportunities in Australia at the moment and that the government should do more to discourage that activity.

However, there was a shift when a more direct question of whether gambling should be banned altogether arose. Participants in the survey broadly agreed that people in Australia should have the right to gamble whenever they want, with 47% providing that answer.

Why Is Gambling So Rampant in Australia?

Although all the stats above may seem a bit shocking, they make a lot more sense when you examine them closely. Culturally, politically and socially, gambling is very much accepted in Australia. For example, it is almost impossible to watch anything on TV without being misled by sports betting and gambling ads.

Moreover, plenty of well-developed countries in the world only allow gambling in casinos, but that is not the case in Australia.

Pokies are available in the country in various pubs and sports clubs. New South Wales is the leader in pokie machines, with about 91,000, which is nearly half (48%) of the entire country’s supply.

What Does the Future Hold?

Well, one thing is sure – gambling will always remain ubiquitous in Australia. As technology develops, Aussies nowadays have more options to satisfy their gambling appetite than ever, with online and mobile gambling seemingly taking over the entire scene.

One problem inevitably looms – Australia hasn’t legalised online casinos as of now. The way forward should be a total liberation of the sector, as that way, the government, and the states individually can control and monitor players’ online gambling activities, and minimise the risk of gambling-related problems.