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Gambling participation in 2019: behaviour, awareness and attitudes

A report providing an overview of consumer gambling behaviour in Great Britain in 2019

How people gamble

This section reports on gambling participation in the year to December 2019, using data collected via the Gambling Commission’s quarterly telephone survey, which is conducted with people in Great Britain aged 16+

These questions ask respondents about their gambling participation in the past four weeks.

For each activity undertaken that can be accessed through different methods, respondents are asked whether they participated in person only, online only, or both in person and online13.

Table 2 displays in person and online participation in the previous four weeks by those activities that can be accessed through multiple methods. The table shows that individuals playing bingo (81%) and National Lottery draws (73%) were most likely to participate in these activities in person. There has, however, been an increase in gamblers choosing to participate in National Lottery draws online (36%; a 5 percentage point increase from 2018). Those participating in football betting (83%), other sports betting (80%), and sports betting overall (81%) were most likely to have participated in these activities online.

Table 2: Online & in person participation in the past four weeks by activity (Telephone Survey; n=4,003)14

Online & in person participation in the past four weeks by activity
Year to December 2019
Online percentageIn person percentage
National Lottery draws36%73%
Another lottery50%53%
Football pools55%50%
Horse races61%49%
Sports betting81%27%
Football betting83%26%
Other sports betting80%22%
Betting on other events58%53%
Casino games74%47%

Since 2018, there has been an increase in the proportion of individuals betting on sports online (81%; a 9 percentage point increase from 2018), and a decrease in in person participation (27%; a 13 percentage point decrease from 2018). Similar findings have also been observed amongst those betting on football: an increase in online participation (83%; a 16 percentage point increase) and a decrease in in person participation (26%; a 13 percentage point decrease).

A decrease for in person participation has been seen for betting on horse races (49%; a 15 percentage point decrease).


13 Table 2 below includes respondents who have participated both in person and online, therefore combined percentages may add up to more than 100%.

14 Individual bases vary depending on participation for each activity. Individual bases can be found in the accompanying ‘Survey data on gambling participation’ document.

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How often people gamble
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