From the moment the Coronavirus, also known as the COVID-19 virus, began to spread outside of China, it was clear the gambling industry will undergo some massive changes.
However, no one could even imagine the magnitude of those changes and how quickly people will ditch land-based casinos in favour of online poker promotions. At first, gamblers believed the situation would have resolved itself rather quickly. However, now it is clear that the virus – and all the restrictions it brings with it- are here to stay.
That caused the cancellation of all live poker events, even the highly-anticipated WSOP, and all competitions moved to online platforms instead. In Italy, where the social distancing requirements are quite restrictive, the number of people playing poker online games in the middle of the week increased by 5,000 – practically double of the regular casino traffic.
The same rise in the number of players was seen in other countries as well, including Pennsylvania, where online gambling seems to be on the rise again.
Once casinos picked up on the fact that people are flocking to the online platforms, they immediately reacted by offering a bigger selection of promotions, special events, and exciting tournaments for the players to enjoy.
Coronavirus Effects: Legalizing Online Poker in the US?
The current online gambling trends bring people to question when the US government will realize legalizing online poker nationally is the way to go. Due to the lack of an official stance regarding the legal status of online poker, only a handful of states will enjoy the boost in revenue seen by the iGaming industry.
Many experts believe that the current state of events should serve as a wake-up call to the US government, as it is a shame to miss out on a great opportunity to serve both the public and the state.
Poker pro, Daniel Negreanu, explained the rationale behind the idea: as people are bound to stay at home this summer, due to restrictions associated with the COVID-19 virus, they will need to have something to do. He urges the government to legalize online poker all over the country, rather than on a state to state basis.
As people all over the world are now homebound, it comes as no surprise that they are drawn to playing online casino games more often. Will this gambling trend stay on the rise in future months? Let’s wait and see.