Gambling Motives and Offshore Gambling: A Finnish Population Study
Rise of online gambling has drawn attention towards offshore gambling. Currently there is lack of evidence on reasons and motivations to gamble on offshore gambling sites. This study investigated the general gambling motives of onshore and offshore gamblers, and the reasons to gamble on offshore gambling sites.
The study used binary logistic regression model to analyze the data from Finnish Gambling 2019 population survey including adult past-year online gamblers (n = 1,422). The validated measure for problem gambling severity (PGSI, Problem Gambling Severity Index) was used. Furthermore, data-thriven qualitative analysis was used to form categories for the reasons to gamble on offshore gambling sites.
Offshore gambling was more common among men (OR = 2.49, CI95% 1.65‒3.76) and younger age groups (OR = 2.99-17.33, CI95% 1.55-33.48) than among women or older age groups. Offshore gamblers gambled rarely for money (OR = 0.54, CI95% 0.34-0.87) or worthy causes (OR = 0.24, CI95% 0.10-0.55) than onshore gamblers. Furthermore, offshore gamblers had more different types of motives to gamble (OR = 6.35, CI95% 2.39-16.87), they gambled more frequently (OR = 2.48-2.93, CI95% 1.53-4.81) and had higher PGSI scores (OR = 1.46, CI95% 1.28-1.66) than onshore gamblers. Finally, the most common reasons to gamble offshore were: 1) larger game supply and game features, 2) benefits, bonuses, and the usability of the website, and 3) inner motivation.
Offshore gambling is characterized with intensity and diversity of gambling behavior and motives, and it poses a risk especially for young men which should be acknowledged in the prevention and treatment of problem gambling.