Online Bingo in Germany?

Although bingo is not as popular in Germany as in other European countries the Germans were the first to adapt the game of bingo for educational purposes. In Germany bingo was used to teach a wide variety of school subjects including math, foreign languages, grammar and many common school subjects. Bingo had a largely educational role in Germany until the 1930’s when it began to be played as an adult diversion. The game of bingo never achieved widespread popularity in Germany and even today it is rare to find bingo halls in Germany.

Internet bingo is not played very much in modern day Germany and the nation’s online gambling laws are extremely strict. Recently the European Union has put pressure on Germany to open German online gaming markets to foreign gaming sites. Recently politicians and gaming interests met in Kiel Germany to exchange thoughts which may lead to a new State Treaty which may allow existing lottery monopolies to benefit from a liberalized online gambling atmosphere. The 80 delegates at the meeting represent political interests, lottery and betting companies, sports associations, and media and advertising companies.

Despite rigid regulations Germans continue to gamble at foreign websites and it has been estimated that the money spent at foreign gaming websites accounts for a quarter of all German gaming revenue amounting to over 1.5 billion Euros annually. One German lottery executive, Norman Faber, said that if the current monopolistic system continues tens of thousands of jobs will be put at risk. Although the German government says that current laws are designed to protect the German public from the ‘perils’ of online gambling, in reality they are designed to protect the state monopoly.

At the present time, there are no operators of internet bingo games targeting Germany. Should the EU prevail Germany would be forced to allow foreign websites to offer their services to German residents. Online bingo providers are always searching for new markets and Germany may be the new target. It will probably take an extensive marketing campaign to attract Germans to online bingo given the small number of bingo players in the country. Internet bingo has been successful in every market it has expanded into. Online bingo has been a big hit in Sweden, Denmark, Spain and other European countries. Once German regulations are sorted out the country will be ripe for bingo operators to enter what could be a lucrative bingo market.