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In Australia, Pokies are everywhere

Last update: May, 2024

Written by: Ferry de Groot Content specialist
In Australia, Pokies are everywhere

Pokies, as how the casino slots are called in Australia, can be found everywhere. Whereas, in most other countries, these pokies can be found only in casino´s. In Australia pokies can be found at hotels, pubs and sports clubs.

The pokies were legalised for the first time in Australia in 1956. The state of New South Wales was the first Australian state to legalise these machine slots. The Australian Capital Territory followed in 1976. In the 90´s of the lost century the states of Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania and the Northern Territory followed. In Western Australia pokies are only allowed in casino´s. In total there are 196,900 pokies in Australia. Which means there is one pokie for every 114 Australian citizens. In Neighbouring county New Zealand there are only 16.440 pokies, which means there is about one pokie for every 304 citizens.

Poker machines

The average Australian adult loses 700 Australian dollars per year. Australians also love to play video poker at poker machines. On average these poker machines make $56,000 profit when they are placed in clubs and hotels. However, pokies can be more profitable than these poker machines. Pokies can make more than $200,000 a year. Therefore, 70% of the Australians think gambling should be limited and more controlled. In the meantime, more and more ads about online casino´s are shown on television and other (social) media.

However, plans are there to phase out pokies over the next five years. The government is trying to form a transition package of 7 billion dollar to compensate clubs and hotels for the loss of income.

One important question that you might be wondering after reading this article: Why are slots called “Pokies” in Australia? The term pokie is an abbreviation from poker machine. Nowadays, every slot is called a pokie, not just the poker machines.

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