Camelot announces best-ever first-time pass rate for mystery shopper age checks
National Lottery retailers have been praised by Camelot for correctly asking for ID as proof of age at the first time of asking, with an almost 100% success rate.
Camelot said it demonstrated Lottery retailers’ ongoing commitment to selling National Lottery games responsibly.
Camelot made over 11,600 retailer visits as part of its 2022/2023 ‘Operation 18′ mystery shopper programme, with the final results showing that 92% of retailers correctly asked for ID as proof of age on their first visit.
The record-breaking results are particularly impressive given that the age to play the Lottery only changed from 16 to 18 years of age in 2021.
Complementing the ‘Operation 18’ programme were a range of other ‘Responsible Retailing’ training initiatives that Camelot ran during 2022/23 as part of its commitment to healthy play. For example, Camelot’s Retail Team made over 160,000 contacts to National Lottery retailers – via phone calls, face-to-face visits and emails – to offer advice on preventing underage play and how best to support healthy play in store.
Elsewhere, Camelot’s ‘Healthy Play’ mystery shopping initiative involved over 4,000 additional store visits, helping to educate retailers on the signs of potential unhealthy play among their customers.
As a direct result of these initiatives, 94% of National Lottery retailers visited in 2022/23 successfully passed a healthy play knowledge check – demonstrating just how effective regular communication with retailers is on this important aspect of their role as the face of The National Lottery.
‘This incredible result is testament to the hard work that both retailers and the team at Camelot have put in over these past two years’
Capping off all of this was a strong end to the year – with over 88% of retailers saying that they were satisfied with the level of service they received via Camelot’s dedicated retailer hotline in Q4.
Camelot’s Retail Director, Alex Green, said: “I’d like to say a huge thank you and congratulations to National Lottery retailers for continuing to prioritise healthy play in retail and selling National Lottery games responsibly.
“Only a year after the age to play changed from 16 to 18, retailers have achieved their best-ever pass rate for our ‘Operation 18’ mystery shopper programme. This incredible result is testament to the hard work that both retailers and the team at Camelot have put in over these past two years.
“Of course, although integral, age checks form only one branch of our overall player protection strategy in retail. We also topped up retailers’ knowledge on underage play and healthy play through our responsible retailing contact programme and delivered thousands of ‘Healthy Play’ mystery shopper visits – all of which was tested through our special knowledge checks. We couldn’t be happier with the outstanding results.”
The new ‘Operation 18’ mystery shopping programme uses people who are over 18, but who look younger – this is to avoid retailers inadvertently breaking the law during a test visit. If a retailer fails a mystery shopping visit on three occasions, their National Lottery terminal will be suspended and is likely to be removed.
In 2022/23, over 11,600 test visits were carried out with a 92% first visit pass rate. ‘Operation 18’ replaced ‘Operation Child’ in 2021 after the age to play The National Lottery changed from 16 to 18.