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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


The Gambling Commission

The Gambling Commission was set up under the Gambling Act 2005 (opens in new tab) (the Act) to regulate commercial gambling in Great Britain in partnership with licensing authorities. We also regulate the National Lottery under the National Lottery etc. Act 1993 (opens in new tab). Further details can be found on our website.


This report summarises data collected by the Commission during 2019 and covers gambling participation and consumer behaviour. The data has been gathered via a combination of telephone and online surveys, as indicated in the table below and throughout this report. In addition, the report also draws upon data from the Health Survey England5 from 2018.

Topics and surveys

Topic area: Gambling participation - Perceptions of and attitudes towards gambling Survey: Telephone (2019)

Topic area: Online gambling behaviour – Consumer interest and awareness Survey: Online (2019)

Topic area: Problem gambling, moderate-risk and low-risk rates Survey: Health Survey England (2018)

Telephone survey

The telephone survey provides the Commission’s main measure of past four week gambling participation, with waves conducted on a quarterly basis in March, June, September and December of each year. Approximately 1,000 interviews are conducted each quarter with people aged 16+ in a standalone survey administered by Populus.

The sample used is nationally representative of the population of Great Britain and the findings presented in this report are weighted in terms of demographic and socio-economic indicators. The data reported in this publication cover the year to December 2019, with trend data taken from the same period in the four years previous. Further details can be found in the Appendix.

Online survey

The online survey is used to monitor online gambling behaviour and was launched following the introduction of regulation of overseas gambling companies transacting with GB customers (in line with the Gambling (Licensing and Advertising) Act 2014) (opens in new tab). The surveys are conducted quarterly in March, June, September and December by Populus. Approximately 2,000 interviews with people aged 18+ are collected each quarter and the survey sample is drawn from Populus online panel members. Once again, the data reported are weighted in terms of demographic and socio-economic indicators and are calculated using all four quarters of data covering the year to December 2019, with trend data taken from the same period in previous years. Further details can be found in the Appendix.

Health Survey England

The Health Survey England is commissioned by NHS Digital, and the Commission includes questions on gambling participation and rates of problem gambling within the survey. The Health Survey England data included within this report relates to 2018 in which the survey interviewed over 8,000 adults aged 16+.

Report conventions

Year on year (2018-2019) trends displaying percentage point changes are significant at the 95% confidence level (unless otherwise stated). Where results are described as stable, there is not a significant difference from the previous year at the 95% confidence level.

Within each chart title, the source survey and the unweighted sample size is included (the number of respondents to each question during 2019).

For the telephone and online surveys, significance testing has been applied on the basis of quota samples and should therefore be viewed with some caution. Where statistical significance has been noted, this is on the basis that it would be significant, if the data were generated from a probability sample. Further information on use of quota samples can be found on the UK Statistics Authority website (PDF) (opens in new tab).

Figures on each chart and or graph may not add to 100% due to rounding.


5 The Health Survey England is commissioned by NHS Digital. For further detail on the methodology please visit (opens in new tab)

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Gambling participation in 2019: Executive summary
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Gambling participation in 2019: Gambling participation
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