The recent Budget released by the UK Government contained a nasty surprise for online bingo players. We are of course referring to the added taxation of free bonuses given out by UK Bingo rooms.
Free Bingo Bonuses Tax
Free Bonuses include Bingo Sign Up Bonuses, weekly and monthly promotions and free spins on slot games. This new bingo tax does not take effect until August 2017.
It will mean a radical shake-up in the most competitive Online Bingo space in the world. UK Bingo rooms engage in a lot of bingo bonus promotional activity to try to acquire and keep players.
This bingo bonus activity extends to ongoing promotions to enable bingo rooms to keep players. The UK Government will argue that it is simply bringing this new bingo tax into line with other forms of taxation on gambling betting.
Why The Additional Bingo Tax
Sports Betting companies are charged a tax on free bets that are claimed by players, we feel that the Government has simply identified an opportunity to tax bingo in a different way.
This new Bingo Tax will affect bingo players more as August 2017 draws nearer. Any UK Bingo room worth its salt is already planning for a massive reduction in bingo bonuses on all fronts.
That means bingo players will have much less choice in terms of generous bingo bonuses to choose from. It also means that we will see further mergers in the world of online bingo.
Smaller boutique bingo rooms will either merge with larger more established rooms or simply close their doors. We predict this on the evidence of the recent point of consumption tax.
This places an increased 15% tax on all bingo rooms taking the play from UK Bingo players.
The new 5% bingo bonus tax is not as large, it will though have a significant impact on both behaviour of bingo rooms and bingo players in the United Kingdom.
The Tables are Turned – From Land to Online Bingo
The wheel has definitely turned full circle, initially it was land based bingo that paid unreasonable amounts of tax. We campaigned against these unfair taxes, ironically this tax was implemented by a Labour Government.
The game of the working class taxed to the hilt by the party of the working class. It took a coalition government to undo these damaging bingo taxes. There has since been a revival in the land-based bingo market.
The current government has adopted a tougher stance with online gambling operators, we do think that the Point of Consumption Tax is fair. It means that offshore gambling companies have to pay tax on UK gambling.
This new UK Bingo tax though is in our opinion a classic case of over taxation, once again the game of the people is being used to make up budgetary shortfalls.
It will also be interesting to see what this will mean for certain operators who have based their entire business on the dishing out of bingo bonuses to players. We are of thinking about Cozy Bingo operators.
Let us know what you think about this new bingo tax in the comments below. We love to hear from bingo player and this is a tax that is going to have major implications on your bingo game play in the future.