Like many other Western countries, Canada is not only home to hockey but to many gambling fans too. Gambling has become a popular past-time, and over recent years, has only continued to increase in popularity.
Gambling is legal in Canada as long as it is regulated and “managed by a provincial government”.
The country has different types of casinos and gambling venues. Some of them are known as “tribal casinos”. But what exactly are they?
This article will explore what tribal casinos are. It will also dive deeper into the origin and history of these casinos, their location within Canada, and the future of these gambling venues.
Before exploring tribal casinos in particular, this article will present the different gambling options available in Canada.
The gambling options available in Canada
There are several gambling options available to Canadian gamers. For example, individuals can choose between playing in a land-based casino or an online casino.
Of course, land-based casinos are historically older and therefore more traditional and established. Online casinos only appeared after the invention of the internet.
The World Wide Web (WWW) was invented in 1989 by British scientist Tim Berners-Lee. After its invention, many casinos transitioned to the virtual world.
Nowadays, due to modern lifestyles, individuals tend to prefer virtual casinos and online gambling rather than land-based casinos and in-person gambling.
This is linked to the convenience and ease of access provided by online casinos. They give players the opportunity to play whenever and wherever.
This allows for players to have more time to play and spend less time commuting to a gambling venue.
However, physical casinos do remain popular as they offer the opportunity to meet people in person and play in a nice gaming environment. Although they may not be as popular as online casinos, gamers still like visiting them for a nice and enjoyable gaming experience.
Then, within casinos themselves, there are different types of casinos some of which specialize in a certain type of casino games. Selecting a gambling venue will therefore depend on the player’s preferences.
What are tribal casinos?
Tribal casinos are casinos owned and run by Native Canadians. To some extent, they are a reflection of the country’s rich history.
These types of casinos are popular gambling venues with distinct identities and traditions. They also carry real historical meaning and can even help raise awareness by bringing attention to the Native Canadian community.
Tribal casinos can be found on “First Nation reserves”. And there are 17 of these venues, which are based in Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, Saskatchewan, and British Columbia, with the first one opening its doors in the middle of the 1990s.
This came shortly after the first laws were passed that authorized the opening of casinos on reservation lands. However, for Canadian Indians to open their casinos, they had to wait until the laws and legislations were “signed into tribal law”.
In 1995, around the time the first tribal casino opened, the “First Nations Gaming Act was signed into tribal law”.
The introduction of these laws permitted Canadian Indians to open their casinos which quickly led to the growth of the Indian casino industry.
These casinos are important and essential to the Canadian Indian tribes because they help them raise funds and, therefore, give them more control over their economic development.
Nowadays, tribal casinos in Canada are still very successful and popular. They make up a large part of Canada’s gambling market and help Canadian Indians look after their reserves.
However, as mentioned before, online casinos are becoming increasingly popular due to their convenience and ease of access. The laws and regulations are also more relaxed for online casinos as they do not necessarily have to adhere to land-based legal regulations.
These aspects are encouraging casino proprietors to turn towards online casinos. But will tribal casinos also go virtual?
Will land-based tribal casinos cease to exist? This is difficult to predict but considering the growth and expansion of the virtual world, it seems that online casinos are here to stay.
Physical casinos will not necessarily disappear but in order to survive, casino owners might need to offer both options to their clients: a virtual and a physical casino. They could even use their virtual casino to promote their land-based one.
Tribal casinos are famous for their atmosphere and strong cultural identity. Although it might be difficult to reproduce that virtually, tribal casinos could also offer both gaming options while encouraging players to seek the ‘real’, physical, gaming experience.
This article has introduced tribal casinos and discussed their origin, their historical and economic significance, and their role in Canada’s gambling industry.
This article has also addressed the growth of the online gambling world within the internet and the increasing popularity of online casinos over physical casinos. Despite the popularity of these new virtual venues, land-based casinos can also continue to exist in partnership with virtual ones.
In other words, tribal casino proprietors and stakeholders can preserve their physical casinos by providing an online gaming option. They can use their virtual casino to promote their land-based one and can even use the revenues obtained from their online casino to improve their physical venue.
Both gaming options are not necessarily mutually exclusive.