If you were asked to name the most likely group of people to play bingo, or describe the ‘average’ bingo player, what would you say? Most would probably talk about the older generation. Not necessarily elderly people (although, yes, they definitely play bingo) but our grandparents, even parents, perhaps. Those people who grew up with the game, and for whom it has always been part of their lives. A family tradition, if you will.
Yet the truth is a little different. Absolutely, if you wandered into any bingo hall in the country, you would see older people quite happily enjoying a game of bingo. But you would also see plenty of younger people. The numbers would be rivalling each other because these days there really is no difference; bingo, even online at Barbadosbingo.com, has become known as a game everyone can play. Why is this? Is bingo really becoming a trend amongst young people?
One of the reasons why bingo is gaining popularity with younger people is due to the fact that it’s fun to play. Finances might be tight right now, so going out to a nightclub or a bar with pricey drinks isn’t always something that is possible, and neither is it something that the younger generation seem to want anymore (nightclub attendance is in decline).
Yet bingo offers a whole evening of entertainment for a relatively small amount of money. The drinks at a bingo hall are often cheaper too, so you can have just as good a time out as you would anywhere else, and save yourself some cash doing it.
And then there is online bingo. This is even less expensive since you don’t have to pay for a taxi or public transport, or fuel if you’re driving. Plus, you can still have your friends over to play with you. Ask them to bring a bottle and order a takeaway and you’ve got the perfect night in.
Bingo might not be something you think about and decide you’re going to give it a go just like that. At least, not traditionally. However, thanks to apps and online casino websites that offer bingo, young people might do just that. That’s partly down to advertising. If they are playing online anyway, or even if they’re searching for something else entirely in some cases, they might see an ad for bingo. It could even be on TV. If that ad is as entertaining and bright and vibrant as most are, it will certainly capture their imagination.
Add to that the fact that many online casinos and bingo sites offer a free trial so people can give the game a go before spending any money, and you’ve got the perfect storm. Those who might never have considered bingo in the past are now immersed in it, and happy to pay to play once their trial is over.
Our younger generation has grown up with social media and texting and a variety of apps that mean we can interact with one another digitally and virtually as much as we want. Online bingo offers that same social interaction – there are forums and chat room, there are social media pages to join, there are even in game discussions to be had. And let’s not forget traditional bingo in a bingo hall, which the youngsters are happy to play as well; here they can talk to people in the flesh and have a great time out and about. Whatever suits you best when it comes to interacting with others (even if you prefer not to) will be an option that is open to you.
Not everyone is able to get out to a bingo hall at the same time every week. Many young people work shifts, or perhaps are studying at university, or they work long hours and just don’t have the energy to go out. Although you might think that this would lead to a decline in people playing bingo, this is not the case.
The truth is that those people who might want to play bingo but who can’t due to not having the time or being too tired or busy can play in other ways. They may not be able to attend a bingo hall and play ‘in real life’, but they can easily download an app to their phone or tablet, or they can play online. You don’t have to have many hours spare to play bingo these days; you can do it in five minutes on your lunch break or on the bus home. You can do it in the bath when you’re relaxing, or when you’re eating breakfast. Essentially, those who might not have been able to play in the past due to other commitments are now finding that they can, and this is boosting numbers (and lowering the average age).
When bingo halls started to close up and down the country, those in charge realised that they needed to attract the younger generation to the game – that way, they could keep playing for longer and revive something that was, if truth be told, starting to decline rapidly in popularity.
To do this, a variety of measures were put in place. Online bingo was certainly one, but others include mixing up the games so that there are more or fewer lines and numbers, and even making the prizes something that would be impossible to resist; hundreds of thousands of pounds in some cases.
These and many other new ways of playing have done what they were meant to do and opened up bingo to a great many more people. So if a new spin on an old game is what it takes to keep it alive, it makes sense to do that. Don’t worry though; for those who love their traditional game of bingo as it always used to be played, there are still venues that offer it. They might be fewer and further between, but they are out there somewhere.