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The synergy between tourism and gambling will be restored after Ukraine’s victory

The devastating influence of war is felt everywhere, even in places with no active hostilities. In particular, it results in the decline in ordinary citizens’ standard of living due to rising prices, the national currency devaluation, falling incomes, or even the job loss.

And the decline in employees’ income and rising unemployment stem from the loss of business because of war. These losses do not always result from the destruction of production or storage facilities due to bombing or rocket attacks by the russian air force or artillery shells.

Business problems in the rear are caused to a large extent by the destruction of supply chains, problems faced by business partners, and a massive reduction in demand due to the loss of consumers, as many Ukrainians went abroad or became internally displaced persons.

It means that all entrepreneurs operating in the domestic market suffered significant losses since it was the domestic market that was the first to suffer and decline during the war.

Economy sectors focused on creating foreign demand to exist and develop suffered even more.
First of all, this applies to the sphere of entertainment, particularly tourism developing in synergy with the gambling market due to the external tourist flow.

The land-based gambling sector took the biggest hit since its lion’s share of visitors were foreigners (50-60%). By the way, casinos and slot machine halls were located in four-star and five-star hotels.

During the war, foreign tourist flow to Ukraine stopped. That is why 80-90% of legal land-based gambling establishments do not operate even in cities with no active hostilities or damaged infrastructure.

We should not expect a dramatic change in the situation and the reorientation of the gambling market towards the domestic consumer while the war continues.

First, it is because Ukrainians have no time for entertainment, they are trying to survive. Second, Ukrainian citizens are not a gambling nation and are unlikely to change their habits once the war is over.

This is evidenced by a sociological study “Ukrainians’ attitudes towards gambling” carried out by Info Sapiens in partnership with the Ukrainian Gambling Council a few weeks before the outbreak of war.

According to this study, the vast majority of Ukrainians, namely 92.8%, had no personal experience of gambling over the past 12 months. And only 8.2% of respondents would like to play at least one type of gambling in the future. Recall that in October 2021, only 7.2% of Ukrainians would like to play at least one type of gambling. We see a clear non-gambling trend within Ukrainian society.

What does it mean? Without the tourist flow, it will be difficult for the land-based gambling business to survive. And the flow of tourists to Ukraine will be restored only once the war is over. That is why the time factor, State assistance, and the popularization of Ukraine across the world will play a key role in the gambling revival.

That is when, after the victory, the synergy of tourism and gambling will be restored, and the entertainment sector will again find its foreign consumers.
Viktoriya Zakrevskaya