Online Casinos Popularity Increases
Most casinos around the world have either closed because of regulations imposed by governments or because the hotels they are part of have ceased operations as tourism has come to a standstill.
Regional gambling markets have been profoundly affected, and all retail betting facilities have been closed in many countries for weeks now.
Many gambling software providers are taking a hard hit on their platforms on the one hand, but have seen an increasing number of sports bettors turn to poker, bingo, and online casino games such as slots and card games.
Sports betting makes up the biggest revenue for many gambling companies, and many are scrambling to offer their customers other options. They are providing bets on minor sporting events around the world and everything else from darts, politics to even the weather.
The Norwegian reality
Norway has never had land-based casinos, and therefore, closings have not affected offline gamblers.
However, the shortage of sports betting opportunities has been felt by its citizens because sport plays a significant role in their culture, especially soccer.
Even though gambling has been heavily regulated in Norway and is monopolized by two providers, its citizens are still free to use online casinos and play bingo.
Norsk Tipping is the state-owned operator, and Norsk Rikstoto is an industry run operator. All licensed gaming operators allocate 35% of their profits to Norsk Tipping, and it's also compulsory that they offer 30% to good causes.
Even though the Norwegian government keeps threatening to act against unlicensed online casinos, it has come under heavy criticism from the European Free Trade Association. Legislation was passed in 2008, making it illegal to play on foreign gambling sites. However, this legislation was never really enforced.
Even though the Norwegian government states that it is out of concern for Norwegian bettors, Norway has one of the highest rates of gambling in Europe, and it's estimated that 80% of Norwegian's gamble online.
Over the years, legislation passed by Norwegian governments have regulated various gambling activities, but none prohibit its citizens from taking part in unlicensed gambling online.
Online gambling during restrictions
Norwegians, like other bettors around the world, have turned to online casinos to ease the boredom of staying inside while also denied their favorite sporting games. Because of all the cancellations, they're unable to watch them, nor can they bet on them.
However, there are hundreds of choices available to Norwegians wanting to gamble online, and they include bingo sites and online casinos. Gambling providers operate sites in Norwegian, Swedish, Finnish, and Estonian and allow deposits and withdrawals in Norwegian krone, the local currency.
Most Norwegian's prefer to play their online games on foreign sites because they feel that they have a wider variety of games and software providers available.
Norsk Tipping has tried to attract more players by offering new casino games and progressive jackpots. Still, foreign sites make exciting offerings with bonuses, cashback, free spins, and strive to accommodate their clients by designing games that appeal to them along with intricate and rewarding loyalty programs.
Since Norway has taken no real steps to prohibit people from enjoying these online casinos, its citizens are free to enjoy the games without needing to use a VPN, which is a common scenario in other countries where gambling laws are not so lax.
The shut down of all cultural, sporting, and voluntary activities have hit the population of Norway hard, and initially, games like bingo could not be played online.
However, to curb the impact of the coronavirus, Norway's gaming authority finally decided to allow bingo draws to proceed online if they belong to land-based bingo clubs.
The aftermath of the coronavirus may bring some interesting changes to Norway and its strict gambling laws.
Will they prevail, or will the demand for more gambling options with fewer restrictions led to a rethink of the government's strategy and new legislature?
For those looking to play online in Norway, popular sites offering casino games, poker, and betting are in the Norwegian language and provide excellent customer service with safe and secure money transfers to and from their accounts.
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