A Traveller’s Gamble – Why Do Backpackers Bet During Trips

Gambling is a favoured form of entertainment for some travellers.

Source: Pexels

Indeed, Travel Daily News has found that the average tourist will spend close to £1,000 per visit to a land-based casino abroad. As a result, it’s not unusual for establishments to make more than £1 million a month from non-locals, depending on the size of the house’s edge.

With forty-million people visiting Las Vegas alone and the same amount of gambling accounts worldwide, the profit for betting organisations is apparent. It may lead one to wonder what the appeal is for the travellers who give their patronage to these casinos, both in-person and online. What do people with wanderlust gain? We decided to find out.


Travelling is about embracing the culture of your destination and doing things you wouldn’t normally do at home by getting involved in the area’s customs. Engaging in activities that are known worldwide but have distinctive cultural nuances, such as gambling, can be a fun and accessible way to learn. For example, pachinko, a pinball-type game with multiple balls, has been a Japanese favourite pastime since the 1920s, with parlours dotted around cities and towns throughout the islands.

In Australia, lotteries and scratch-offs are the most popular forms of betting among the 70% of Australian adults who gamble. Therefore, online scratchcards at Betfair Bingo could provide an opportunity for tourists who prefer to use mobile devices as their wagering medium, rather than visiting land-based establishments, to get involved.

Lastly, Macau in China is an institution much like Las Vegas in the US. Since 2010, the district’s gambling revenues have surpassed that of Vegas, making Macau the world’s casino capital and a must-visit attraction for visitors who leave the mainland.

Source: Pixabay


Every traveller is different and has a separate approach, some simply make wagers because they enjoy doing so at home and would like to continue the activity abroad. However, we all have varying means. Where some will gladly pay for a phone contract they can use overseas, others prefer to save the money. Thankfully for the latter, it doesn’t impact their ability to access betting platforms because infrastructure around the world is improving.

Wi-Fi in places on traveller trails is almost as good, if not better than what backpackers are used to at home. For example, speed test data from Fastmetrics shows 62.8% of users in South Korea and Japan received average speeds of 10Mbps and higher. In the USA, the percentage is 52.9%. Whether it’s in hotels, hostels or public squares, the superior infrastructure makes using betting services a piece of cake regardless of location. Naturally, travellers are taking advantage of this.

Source: Pexels 


Security is a big deal, which is why the majority of sports betting and online casinos are safe to use. Still, using public Wi-Fi adds risks that leave travellers vulnerable and unprotected. Previously, it would be insecure to gamble, but the availability of VPNs provides an extra layer of security to the 100,000 unsecured public Wi-Fi hotspots worldwide. Considering Secure List reports 24.7% of hotspots don’t use encryption, a private network is essential for any online activity. Plus, there are accessibility benefits, too, as VPNs help bypass local restrictions that normally present challenging obstacles.

Improved infrastructure and security are two of the main reasons travellers like to use gambling websites during trips. However, betting is also a way to soak in the culture of the destination because it is ingrained in societies and cultures worldwide. Therefore, to avoid it would be to miss out on what makes some places special.

Team JST

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