Online casinos are a fast-growing market. For several years, it seemed as if online casinos linked with established land-based casino brands would dominate the market. It would have made sense since there was already brand loyalty and recognition.
In recent years, however, it has become apparent that some of the up and coming online casinos are independent businesses with no affiliations to established brands. These new casinos are able to build on the experience of earlier ones and employ all the newest technology.
With so many new casinos popping up, it can be hard to tell which are the best. Online casino directories show the highest rated casino sites in the UK. They also provide reviews, details of the bonuses and incentives offered, and information on the security and licensing measures taken by each casino.
This article will examine why the UK has emerged as a leader in the online casino industry. It will then look at some of the current leading casinos licensed to operate in the country.
UK As A Global Leader
For many, the UK might not seem like a country that would be a global leader in the online casino industry. A combination of legislation and innovation, as well as initiatives to protect gamblers and limit problem gambling, have secured this position as a leader.
Unlike many countries that have blanket licensing for online casinos, the UK has adopted a sensible system with four different licenses. Online casinos can apply for licenses in any of these subcategories: casino, bingo, general betting on real events, and general betting on virtual events.
This allows online gambling companies to focus on one specific area. This in turn results in better experiences because operators are not forced into diluting their resources to take full advantage of the license, and effectively compete.
Conversely, the UK's position as a leader in the world of sports betting is pretty well known. Betting on sports has a long history in the UK. Betting on greyhound racing, horse racing and football are particularly common and popular.
Part of the success of the sports betting industry is due to the relaxation of gambling laws under the Betting and Gaming Act of 1960 (later replaced with the Gambling Act 2005). This act legalised betting shops and gambling in games of skill, like bridge and associated card games.
By creating a legalised form of sports betting, it erased the need for underground betting shops and street gambling. Both of these had led to more anti-social behaviours, so legalisation was actually supported by even the more conservative members of government.
Today, online sports betting is a major phenomenon in the UK. Betting on the Premier League, especially big games like those between title contenders, is particularly popular. As much enjoyment as it brings, it has also raised concerns over problem gambling habits.
The fact that the British government and independent agencies have worked hard to address these concerns helps to explain why online gambling is a successful industry and not a problematic one. Taking action helps keep British citizens informed and able to enjoy their hobby.
Initiatives like the recent Safer Gambling Week and the Take Time to Think advertising campaign don't try to stop people from gambling — that would be an impossible and pointless effort. Instead, they educate people on the potential risks and encourage a healthy relationship with online gambling.
The popularity and success of gambling in the UK has inspired other countries to follow suit. France has recently passed laws allowing online sports betting in a move that was obviously based on how the UK legislates the industry.
Some countries have looked at the UK model and decided they would like to take baby steps towards adopting it. The Netherlands is one of those countries. In October of this year, the Netherlands legalised online gambling, but only for 10 companies.
This essentially makes it a trial run for online gambling. With so few companies licensed, there is not much actual competition. It does, however, allow the government to closely monitor these companies and how society is affected by legalised gambling.
Highest Ranked Casinos In The UK Today
Three of the top-ranked online casinos operating in the UK today are Double Bubble, Casimba and Plaza Royal Casino. All three of these casinos offer welcome bonuses that make them appealing to new customers. They also all have features that set them apart from the crowd.
Double Bubble has made a name for itself by offering both regular casino games and bingo. There is a wholesome appeal to a bingo hall and Double Bubble embraces that image. They also understand that not everyone wants to be a high roller, so most games accept bets as low as 10p.
Casimba, like the name and lion logo suggests, has a jungle theme. It has a VIP program that is open to all users but rewards users based on how much they play. This ensures that everyone has the same access to rewards, which is a nice touch.
For people who enjoy gambling but worry about it becoming a bad habit, Plaza Royal Casino provides a number of responsible gambling tools. These include the ability to set deposit limits, have cooling-off periods and session time limits. This commitment to player safety reflects very well on the brand.
The fact that three of the most popular online casinos in the UK all have measures in place to keep customers from making unhealthy choices says a lot about how new online casinos are changing the gambling landscape for the better.