Study in the Netherlands reveals: Too many underage players

The Dutch gambling authority Kansspelautoriteit (KSA) announced that more should be done to verify the age of the gambling participants.

This applies above all to scratch cards, slot machines, lottery games and sports betting. But online bingo is also a topic that has to be addressed in the Netherlands.

In a study it was shown that around 11% of minors took part in games of chance in the past year. Slot machines and scratch cards seemed to have been particularly interesting. Some 16 to 17-year-olds were also involved in sports betting, which is also against the law.

Also exciting: Most of the study participants agreed that they had not been prevented from playing. Only 1% had problems playing slot machines. In the case of scratch cards, it was only 5%.

Controls need to be tightened

In the course of the discussion it became apparent that there are many adults who buy scratch cards for minors, for example. When it comes to slot machines, you often don't seem to look too closely. Especially in restaurants or pubs it is easy to gamble on the machines. On the other hand, it is a little more difficult in gaming benches, but here too minors often have access to the games.

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How is the situation in Germany?

In Germany, too, gambling is of course only allowed from the age of majority.

We also keep hearing of cases in which minors were able to take part in games without any problems. With us, too, it is especially easy when you are in restaurants or bars, the controls are stricter in amusement arcades.

The same laws apply online, but if you want to play games of chance illegally, you will find a way here too. Online casinos require proof of identity, but if you have older siblings, for example, who make their account available, you can still play without any problems. The danger is and remains that minors are encouraged to play at an early age and lose the distance to gambling.

The theory goes that anyone who has no respect for games at a young age is more likely to slip into gambling addiction. If you are also already familiar with the subject, it is easy to fall back on games of chance again and again - for example, if something needs to be helped with the income.

Combine fun and safety

Gambling is supposed to be fun, but player protection is just as important. Using the example of the Netherlands and the ongoing discussion in Germany, it is becoming clear again and again that the current developments may provide easier access to games of chance (in the online industry) and promise more variety, but all of this also harbors many dangers. In Germany, too, there are underage players who easily manage to gain access to games of chance. This can probably never be completely prevented, but: Education must be carried out in order to warn even more strongly about the dangers. When gambling outside of online business, even more attention must be paid to complying with the age limits. This is aimed at bar and restaurant owners as well as providers of sports betting and scratch cards.

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Joel Moore

I have over 12 years of journalism experience - including reviews of the best casinos. For the past few years. I've been interested in human psychology and behavioral factors. This knowledge now helps to better understand casino players.