The two problem generations go head to head in this battle to see who are the better gamblers within both online casinos and traditional casinos. The hippies from the 60’s and 70’s versus the snowflake kids as their predecessors have so kindly named them. We plan on comparing the two generations to see what casino habits they have and see who comes out on top so to speak.
Who are the better gamblers? Millennials verses Babyboomers
One place we can look to for comparisons of the two generations’ gambling habits is Las Vegas aka Sin City. We can compare the days of each generations primes by comparing 1985 to 2015 where we can see a difference in how much of visitors time to this city was spent purely on gambling during their stay. For the older generation, 58% of them focused all their time on gambling alone. While on the other hand, 2015 found only a total of 35% 20-30-year-olds entering the casinos to bet their luck on the tables.
In a research study conducted taken out by a New Jersey casino operations company, a mere 8.5 percent of a millennial’s vacation budget was spent on gambling, compared to 23.5 percent spent by non-millennials. On the flip side, it seems that millennials spent both their time and money going to both Las Vegas and Atlantic City for activities such as shopping, dining, famous acts and DJ’s as well as clubbing.
So from a superficial view, it would seem that millennials are choosing over activities over gambling in comparison to their predecessors, but why is this? Let’s look deeper into the reason that the data is coming to be such a way and the external factors which may be influencing this outcome.
Take for example, the changes in gambling revenue noted in the New Jersey study we mentioned earlier. Millennial and their lack of gambling within bricks and mortar casinos is the simply ease-of-access. When baby boomers wanted to gamble, they had two options, Las Vegas or New Jersey. With the Internet and tribal casinos, this is no longer the case, plus it must be noted that there the majority of major DJ’s are likely to be in these hot spots over any other places in the world so therefore, people are travelling to sin city to get what they cant elsewhere the same way baby boomers may have done so for casinos.
What are the generations getting up to in the casino capital of the world, Las Vegas
When a baby boomer would plan a vacation to Las Vegas, it was a rare opportunity to play games of chance in a real state of the art casino. Like most things in life, you want what you can’t have. Therefore with no real casinos around which compare to those in Sin City, Baby boomer travellers would tend to budget more of their vacation money for gambling as their source of entertainment in these tourist cities.
In response to this fact, Las Vegas catered to a public that was looking to gamble. More slot machines, more tables, fewer distractions from these profitable activities. Everything was designed to keep a player on the floor gambling and spending their money.
However, for millennials, access to gambling is pretty easy to find, in fact, anyone who fancies changing their luck, they can do so with the click of a button on their smartphone and get to play instantly. There are tribal casinos in forty states, and everyone has online casinos in the palm of their hands. They grew up with the online poker craze and the availability of online poker for free or for real money. Furthermore, they have things like Daily Fantasy Sports to wager on.
By offering experiences you couldn’t otherwise get from your local casino, the casino owners in Las Vegas give players an unmissable gaming package that they could not say no to. Hence the fine dining, the incredible shopping malls and mega clubs touting world famous DJ residencies all over the strip, every night of the week, Sin city knows that their customer wants and is more than willing to give it.
Access to More casino related Information
If there is one thing that really separates the millennial generation from any other, it is access to information. Not to mention the fact that millennials have access to more information at their fingertips in relation to the odds and which games are best to play for their skill set and needs.
A millennial that has done their research over the last few years will be in the know of what games are worth their time and money and while games are simply not. Take, for example, nowadays the younger generation can learn about any game they want to by searching the web. Millennials are now in the know that slots are not as easy to win as they would have been once upon a time. It is known that the steep house edge is ever increasing and making it harder to win than ever before.
know that slots aren’t worth playing, as the house advantage has been increasing by the year.
Furthermore, Babyboomers didn’t have their heads stuck in smartphones and computers every minute of their lives like millennials now do, which makes it easier than ever to get and keep their attention. Games of chance used to hold a certain allure which they no longer do among the younger generation of gamers.
Skill-Based Casino Games
One thing which we have noticed is coming in conjunction with the ever-changing casino environment is the move to a much more skill based game.
One of the changes to the casino environment that is coming is the move towards more skill-based games. This tactic came from casinos in order to get millennial gamers back in the seats of casino’s and spending their cash.
this approach came about as casino owners seen a niche of skilled video gamers who prefer showing their skill over chancing their luck. overall this displays evidence that millennials what more control over their gaming experience than their parents ever did.
One way to see if this is true is to look at the rising levels of poker across this generation of millennials. This is due to the fact that poker allows players to develop a level of skill while still gambling, poker incentivizes the player to develop a level of skill in order to perform well. The millennial generation was around for the enormous poker explosion in the mid-2000’s, and have had access to free poker games online for over a decade now. They’ve been able to play thousands of hands before having to risk any real money. Check out the final table of the World Series of Poker any given year nowadays and you will mostly find millennials.
The Economy now -v- then
Outside of all the behavioural reasons for the differences in generations gambling habits, the main difference is the economy that each group inherited. The baby boomers inherited one of the strongest economies the United States has ever seen in The Greatest Generation: their parents. Like a swarm of locusts, they devoured every bit of it, leaving very little for their children’s generation.
Millennials are the first generation in U.S. history that will enter adulthood with a worse economy than their parents. Rising student debt, the loss of manufacturing jobs overseas and high unemployment rates have left the generation with much less of a disposable income to spend on vacations and gambling. This plays into the reasons that games of skill are so much more alluring to the millennials.
They can’t risk just throwing money into a machine for a random hope that it will produce a jackpot.
They need to see it as an investment, something they can control; otherwise, it’s just not worth it.
While gambling destinations thrived when the baby boomers were coming of age, millennials are presenting a challenge to the gaming industry. They do not respond to the same external stimuli as their parents before them. They also do not possess the same means to risk money on simple games of chance and table games.
Issues with the economy will not be solvable by the gaming industry, so they will have to find another way to bring in those millennial dollars. The casinos built for their parents must renovate and give up slot floor space to attractions that offer more than just gambling. Games of skill, esports and more technology-abled solutions are being looked into as the gaming industry tries to solve the “millennial problem.”
Whatever the solution is, it is evident these two generations could not be more different as it applies to gamble. It will be interesting to see if the gaming industry is able to adapt and bring in the dollars like the baby boomers experienced back in the good old days.