Much like the rest of the world, Nigeria has been impacted greatly by the coronavirus pandemic. In the spring, the Nigerian government put restrictions in place that limited international and domestic travel, closed businesses and imposed an overnight curfew starting at 8 p.m.
Compared to some other countries in the world, Nigeria hasn’t experienced the extreme outbreak that many people expected for Africa’s most populous nation. As of mid-October, there have been roughly 62,000 confirmed coronavirus cases in Nigeria, with a little more than 1,100 COVID-19 deaths.
Part of the reason could be the Nigerian government’s quick lockdown of the country in order to curb the spread before it got too bad. The country was also slow to re-open, as plans for an early May re-opening were delayed, especially in parts of the country that were hard hit.
The pandemic has affected just about every aspect of life in Nigeria. And, much like it has in other parts of the world, it has changed the way people in the country gamble.
While online gambling has experienced an uptick in recent years throughout the world as technology has progressed, it received a big boost during the pandemic.
More People Forced Inside
One of the biggest reasons why online casinos experienced such an uptick in activity is people were forced indoors by local lockdowns. Some industry experts estimate that activity at online casinos around the world experienced a 10-15% increase in March alone. That was the largest increase recorded over the last three years.
Two of the ways the Nigerian government sought to stop the spread of coronavirus was to shut down non-essential businesses and impose an overnight curfew.
In the gambling world, Nigeria’s land-based casinos located in Lagos and Kano were forced to shutter due to the pandemic. People in Nigeria who wanted to still gamble had no choice, then, but to turn to online resources.
The Nigerian Lottery Commission regulates online gambling in the country. Operators who wish to offer online gambling services in the country must obtain a license from the commission.
Like many other countries, though, Nigerian law doesn’t have laws in place that ban people from playing at online casinos based off-shore. Not only does this give Nigerians a wider selection of online casinos, but also allows them to play more casino games. That’s because games of chance such as non-skilled card games, dice games and roulette are all illegal in the country.
This choice is a great thing for Nigerians. However, it can also make it difficult to find the best Nigerian casino sites, which is why it’s best to check them all out as compared by bestonlinecasino.com.
The Benefits of Online Casinos
There are many benefits that online casinos provide over traditional land-based casinos. Even if people weren’t forced inside their homes as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, there would still be many reasons why they might prefer to play at an online casino.
The most obvious advantage online casinos provide is convenience. As long as you have a desktop/laptop computer or a mobile device such as a smartphone or tablet with an internet connection, you can enjoy gambling at an online casino.
You can do it not only from anywhere you may be, but also at any time. This was of particular benefit to Nigerians who were forced to abide by the country’s overnight curfew, which started at 8 p.m.
This is also a great benefit even when there isn’t a pandemic in Nigeria that restricts people’s lives, though. Many people like to gamble at night demo slot when either land-based casinos are closed, or when it would be difficult for them to travel there. If they are also located far from a legal land-based casino, online casinos could be the preferable option.
In addition to convenience, online casinos give players excellent choice. As mentioned before, because Nigerians aren’t banned from playing at off-shore online casinos, they can play games such as roulette that are illegal at both land-based and online casinos run in the country.
There are also many different games, and game features, that are available on online platforms that simply can’t be offered at a land-based casino. This is prominent in casino table games, where there are a variety of different versions of roulette and blackjack people can play.
But, the biggest variety of games and features comes with online slot games. The technology of online platforms allows Nigerian players to experience video slot games with many exciting features that aren’t available in land-based casinos.
The video slots allow development companies to create games that have a variety of different themes as well as exciting features such as wild symbols and scatter symbols that can trigger bonus features in the game. Some of these include free spins rounds or bonus storyline rounds where your winnings will be doubled, tripled or even more.
Perhaps the best feature related to online slot games, though, is the progressive jackpot. While these are possible in land-based casinos, the jackpots can’t rise as high because of the number of people playing. Online casinos don’t have that problem, as people from all over the world can play the same game. This means the payout for these progressive jackpots can grow really big.
How to Choose an Online Casino
Some Nigerians haven’t played at an online casino before, though. Those who haven’t may be wondering how they should choose the best online casino to play at. This can be a difficult choice at times, simply because there are so many different options.
There are some general things to keep in mind when you’re searching for an online casino. These categories and tips apply no matter what games you like to play, what device you’re going to play them on, or where the online casino itself is based.
- Security: One of the most important aspects of any online casino is whether it provides significant security to you as a player. There are a lot of potential scams and hackers on the internet nowadays. So, it’s vital that when you are choosing an online casino, you select one that has your best interests in mind. You need to make sure they are using good encryption technology to keep your personal information and your financial information safe.
- Fairness: Along the same lines, you want to make sure that the online casino you play at provides games that are fair to players. It’s easy for an online casino to rig games to make it next to impossible for the players to win. What you should look for here is an online casino that has a license from, and is regulated by, a reputable gambling organization. The UK Gambling Commission and the Malta Gaming Authority are two examples. Also make sure that the online casino uses a good Random Number Generator for their games, and features games from respectable iGaming companies.
- Bonuses: A great part about online casinos is they offer players various bonuses just for signing up, trying specific games and putting money into their account. When looking for an online casino, select one that has a good Welcome Bonus. Many online casinos will often match your deposit 100% up to a certain amount of money. So, whatever amount you deposit for the first time on their site, they’ll give you that same amount to double your total.
- Variety of games: Of course, an online casino isn’t worth playing at if it doesn’t feature the games you want to play. Even if you only play blackjack, for example, you should also look for an online casino that offers a variety of games. This will give you the chance to try out some new games you may not have played before.
- Customer service: If you need help from the casino operator, it’s important they provide great customer service. Make sure you can at least reach someone via email or live chat. A phone number to contact would be good, too.
- Payment options: None of this is relevant, though, if the online casino you want to play at doesn’t accept your form of payment. Make sure that you can make deposits and withdrawals using whatever method you want — whether that be credit card, debit card, bank transfer or cryptocurrency.
These are just a few tips to pay attention to as you’re searching for an online casino in Nigeria to play at.