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Why gambling is so popular in the UK with the high rollers

By LLM Reporters  |  April 23, 2021
Online betting rising in popularity

Gambling has been big business in the UK since it was legalised in 1960, when betting shops were finally given the green light to open their doors to coincide with the introduction of the new Betting and Gaming Act, waving goodbye to the archaic laws that had restricted such kinds of gaming for years prior. 

The government hoped that, in doing so, it would take clandestine gambling rings off the streets, ending the practice of bookmakers sending ‘runners’ to collect from punters and bringing the entire operation above board.

As new betting shops began to open, offering slot games at astronomical rates, it wasn’t long before, the same year, George Alfred James opened the UK’s very first casino – a move that has paved the way for a plethora of glittering bricks-and-mortar casinos since that brings in an eye-watering revenue each and every year.

Online gaming on phone with cards, chips and dices
Online casinos have never been more accessible

Initially popular amongst the rich and famous, serving as places to see and be seen, they traditionally enforced a strict, glamorous dress code, and were the epitome of a lavish night out – but over the years, they have become somewhat more relaxed, with casinos now accessible by the masses.

Fast forward to today, and the accessibility of casino gambling is now at its greatest ever level, with numerous online offerings – such as –  popping up over recent years and allowing people to play anywhere, anytime. The ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, which has seen land-based casinos across the nation forced to close their doors indefinitely during the repeated lockdowns we’ve endured over the past year, has served as a further catalyst for the move towards gambling online, with some of the UK’s most iconic names in the casino world pivoting to introduce their own online offerings in a bid to retain their clients.

Battle for the high-rollers

Stack of poker chips and tablet with slot machine on screen
Due to low cost of operation, online casinos often pay out considerably higher wins than their land-based counterparts

Retaining the biggest high-rollers has been at the front and centre of their efforts, with such players bringing them a huge amount of revenue on their own. With almost all businesses suffering as the result of the pandemic, casinos are pulling out all the stops to keep ‘whales’ happy – and from showering them with gifts and free trips to offering them an elite level of customer service, they are leaving no stone unturned in their bid to win them over.

It’s little wonder, then, those high-rollers adore gambling away their fortunes – and often, winning a sizable amount back – in the UK. As valued customers, they can expect to receive an opulent experience even when playing online from the comfort of their own home, or perhaps on a sun lounger in the Caribbean. And, when bricks-and-mortar casinos throw open the doors once again, they can enjoy a similar experience in person – and let’s face it; who doesn’t love to be spoiled, or made to feel like the most important person on the planet?

Cards, chips and dices on a keyboard
Online casinos even offer VIP service, ensuring the best possible customer experience

Add to that the fact that British casinos typically offer up some impressive payouts to lucky winners, and some of the best selections of the table and slot games – both virtually and in real life – in the world, and it’s little wonder that gambling – particularly at the casino – has become so immensely popular in the UK.

Online casinos have certainly upped the ante when it comes to welcome bonuses and promotions, with VIP services ensuring the best possible customer experience – and due to their low cost of operation, can often pay out considerably higher wins than their land-based counterparts. Not only that, but many also offer an increased chance of winning in the first place – with an industry-standard RTP of 94 per cent or more when compared with the stationary slot machines found at brick-and-mortar casinos, which sit at somewhere between 70 and 90 per cent.

Of course, the real reason for the immense popularity of gambling in the UK is somewhat obvious; the adrenaline and excitement that comes with placing a bet at the roulette table or on a game of blackjack are quite simply unmatched, and for high-rollers who aren’t afraid to lose huge amounts of money, even more so. The bigger the bet, the bigger the potential win – and there is nothing quite as thrilling as scooping the jackpot.