Fern icon

New Zealand’s Casino Gaming Community: Playing Behaviour at NZ Online Casinos 2023

  1. Online Casinos
  2. New Zealand’s Casino Gaming Community: Playing Behaviour at NZ Online Casinos 2023

We here at BestNewZealandCasinos.com recently conducted a survey targeting almost 700 Kiwi casino players, where we explored online gaming preferences in New Zealand. The results of this survey give us a comprehensive view of the preferences, habits, and expectations of New Zealand’s casino gaming community, which we are excited to share with our readers below.

Infographic showing the responses of nearly 700 people to the survey

Key Insights

  • The dominance of Pokies: A vast majority of players favour online pokies, highlighting their cultural significance in New Zealand’s gaming landscape.
  • Exclusive Players: A significant proportion of players are devoted exclusively to pokies, indicating deep-rooted loyalty.
  • Diverse Playing Time: Players show a range of engagement levels, from casual to dedicated gaming habits.
  • Varied Betting Preferences: Betting habits show a mix of risk appetites and financial capabilities among players.
  • Selection Factors: Visual aesthetics and jackpot potential are key factors in game choice.
  • Regional Player Distribution: Auckland leads in player concentration, followed by other regions, showing varied regional preferences.

# 1. Popular Games: Kiwis’ Love for Pokies

  • Pokies: 98.99% of players favour online pokies.
  • Table Games and Live Casino: Only a small fraction of players is interested in these.

Key Takeaway: This preference for pokies could be influenced by factors like instant gratification, wide availability and themes, and the minimal skill needed for players to enjoy the game. The low interest in table games and live casino experiences might suggest a generational shift (from live casinos to online gaming) or a broader trend toward more solitary and quick gaming experiences, as opposed to communal and slower-paced traditional games.

# 2. Exclusive Pokies Players: Kiwis’ Devotion to the Reels

  • 67% exclusively play online pokies.

Key Takeaway: This strong loyalty towards pokies suggests a deeper connection, possibly rooted in the enjoyment derived from tried and tested games, familiar themes, and the ease of playing a game a player has experience with. The exclusive preference for pokies over other types of games could also indicate comfort with the familiar format these games offer.

# 3. Playing Time Preferences: Diverse Gaming Habits

  • Varied Playtime: Half of the players spend between 1 to 5 hours weekly, while a significant portion plays even more.
  • Longer Sessions: Few players limit their gaming to less than an hour per week.

Key Takeaway: This range in playing time reflects the flexibility and accessibility of online gaming, accommodating different lifestyles and commitments. It is interesting to note the high number of players putting in 5 or more hours a week. The tendency for longer gaming sessions shows a high level of engagement and satisfaction with the gaming experience.

# 4. Wager Amounts

  • Preferred Bets: The majority of players bet with low deposit amounts (48% prefer to wager under $1).
  • Diverse Betting: There’s a significant spread in the size of bets placed.

Key Takeaway: The betting habits of Kiwi players reveal a diverse culture around gaming. While nearly half of the players prefer low bets, many are either more conservative or willing to wager higher amounts above $5. This range reflects the varied financial backgrounds and risk appetites of the players. For online casinos, this diversity of deposits presents an opportunity to cater to a wide spectrum of players, offering low-stake games for casual players and higher-stake options for more serious gamblers, thereby enhancing the appeal and accessibility of their platforms.

# 5. Factors for Selection: What Makes a Game Appealing to a Kiwi?

  • Visual Appeal: The game’s look is vital, with 60.69% favouring it as a selection factor.
  • Jackpots: 38.73% actively seek games with the potential for huge prizes.

Key Takeaway: For players to be drawn towards the visual looks of games and jackpot potential, this reflects players’ desire for immersive and rewarding gaming experiences.

A visually appealing game with captivating graphics and animations can draw players in, while the prospect of winning large jackpots adds to the excitement and allure of playing. This shows that players are looking for an all-rounder experience, combining both aesthetics and the thrill of potential financial rewards, guiding online casinos in designing and promoting their games.

# 6. Loyalty to Pokies: A Personal Connection

  • Favourable Attachment: Many players have a strong preference for specific pokie games.

Key Takeaway: The personal connection that players develop with specific pokies reveals a more emotional aspect of online gaming. This loyalty could be influenced by a range of factors, such as memorable wins, the appeal of the game’s theme, the overall user experience, or simply familiarity and nostalgia. The strong attachment to certain games indicates that players value familiarity and enjoyment, which are key considerations for game developers and online casinos when creating and marketing new titles.

# 7. Favourite Providers: Microgaming and NetEnt Take the Lead

  • Provider Preferences: A significant number of players favour games from specific providers.
  • Unconcerned Players: Many players are indifferent to the providers.

Key Takeaway: The preference for certain game providers like Microgaming and NetEnt may be driven by their reputation for high-quality pokies – a factor we know is important in New Zealand. But the indifference of the majority towards providers suggests that the pokie experience itself is more important than the brand behind it.

This presents an opportunity for emerging game developers to gain a foothold in the market by focusing on creating high-quality, engaging games that meet player expectations.

# 8. Player Ratings: Kiwis Rate Casino Games Highly

  • Satisfaction Levels: A large majority rate their gaming experience highly.

Key Takeaway: The high player satisfaction ratings in New Zealand’s online casino market prove the success of these platforms in providing enjoyable and engaging gaming experiences. This level of contentment suggests that players feel their needs and preferences are being well met, from the diversity of games available to the overall user experience. For online casinos, maintaining this high level of player satisfaction is crucial for continued success and growth in the market.

# 9. Desired Improvements: Meeting Kiwis’ Expectations

  • Appetite for More: Players express a desire for more games and features.
  • Specific Improvements: Suggestions include new games, more bonuses, and faster payouts.

Key Takeaway: The feedback from players on desired improvements provides valuable insights for online casinos. The demand for more games and features, along with better bonuses and faster payouts, highlights areas where players seek enhancements. By focusing on these aspects, online casinos can not only meet but exceed player expectations, fostering loyalty and attracting new users. This feedback is essential for guiding the development and marketing strategies of online gaming platforms.

# 10. Top Casino Gamer Regions: The Kiwi Gaming Landscape

  • Auckland: The city is the top region for casino gamers.

Key Takeaway: The regional distribution of players offers insights into local preferences and gaming trends, which can be invaluable for targeted marketing and customization of services.

The dominance of Auckland in the gaming landscape suggests a concentrated market with specific preferences and habits. Catering to these regional trends can help online casinos to more effectively engage with their audience, offering pokies and promotions that resonate with local players.


Our analysis reveals a vibrant online casino gaming scene in New Zealand, dominated by pokies. Players show a strong preference for visually appealing pokies with the potential for big jackpots, and many exhibit deep loyalty to specific games, but not necessarily specific providers. The diverse gaming habits, from time spent to betting amounts, reflect a broad range of player types within New Zealand. High satisfaction ratings suggest the market is meeting players’ needs, yet there’s a clear demand for more innovative and varied gaming experiences. Understanding regional preferences, like Auckland’s leading role, is vital for targeted engagement. Overall, the key to success in New Zealand’s online casino market lies in catering to these varied preferences and continually adapting to player expectations for quality and (not to mention) fun and memorable online casino gaming.