Gaming Demographics

Contrary to popular belief, not all gamblers in Canada are the source of violence, financial crimes, and general tomfoolery. We examine the demographics prevalent in today’s Canadian gaming market.

Decima Research, who we called upon to assist, studies behaviors, localities and general gaming growths around every Canadian province.  Although the majority of the demographics will prove that many of Canadian gamblers have problems, it stands to reason that many gamblers are actually loyal to the game as opposed to being problematic. Let’s take a look into today’s age, province and overall scope of the gambler’s choice games played in Canada.


According to recent studies, it appears that the majority of today’s gambling population falls into the range of 35 to 50.  Surprisingly enough, those between the ages of 55 and 64 are prone to play slot machines more than all age ranges combined. The smallest population of gamers fall into the 18 to 24 age range, which comes as no surprise considering many of them are playing Xbox’s and PlayStation’s. The numbers are quite similar in the bingo market, although many of the bingo players are well above the 40 year age range which again isn’t surprising.


As you’ll often see at blackjack, Baccarat, and other casino tables across Canada, the general population comprises of males. When you look at machine games, you’ll find a 50% split between males and females. The older card players, both online and in real-life gaming, are beginning to gravitate more towards the female gambler according to demographics we’ve researched; this especially holds true for the last 10 years in Canada. Bingo, of course, has always leaned towards the female population and will probably continue to do so for many years to come.

General characteristics of gamers

Just in bingo alone, 33% of players will be at least casual drinkers and regular smokers. Approximately 50% of poker players and online gambling professionals will at least be regular drinkers, although research is not clear as to whether they were regular smokers. Many of Canadian gamblers are often social gamblers, although a growing number of people are searching for that large jackpot – a testament to the financial hiatus Canadians often experience after retirement.

Approximately 32% of bingo players, on the other hand, will normally play when the opportunity arises as opposed to 37% who normally gamble on social occasions exclusively. Of all the bingo games Canada offers, approximately 92% reported playing 649 or Super Seven on a semi regular basis. Surprisingly, only 5% report playing sports related lottery games; this fact squashes recent news that sports betting was in the clear.


As expected, a growing number of people are capitalizing in online gambling’s growth spurt. Casino gambling still frequent numerous Canadians annually, with 80% playing both online and off-line games such as keno, baccarat, blackjack and slot machines. With the growing amount of online casino openings, expect that number to heavily favor online gambling solely within 10 years. Imagining physical casinos closing within the next 15 years seems awkward, but it is unfortunately coming.

Provincial concentration

You’d assume the greatest number of gamblers in Canada would come from Ontario, however that is perhaps the furthest from the truth you could get. A growing number of gamblers actually hail from British Columbia, Québec, and Alberta. Vancouver, Toronto, Montréal, and Calgary are perhaps the larger markets in Canada with more lavish casinos than most other smaller provinces.

Newfoundland is starting to make a name for itself in the physical gaming industry, although there remain many decades behind in terms of fully developing Internet gambling.

In terms of popularity, Québec and Ontario easily have the most visited casinos across Canada. Niagara Falls will always be a place where both Americans and Canadians can enjoy a weekend of gambling fun regardless of what side they choose to vacation in.


Too many people concentrate on the demographics of problem gamblers, refusing to shed any positivity into what is actually a primary funding source for many Canadian government programs. While it seems many of the gamblers we researched were smokers between the ages of 30 and 65, many more are starting to fall into the 40 to 55 demographic, and do not smoke or drink, yet turned to gamble alone.

Stay tuned as we provide more intriguing facts about the Canadian gambling market as the months go by.

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