It’s been more than half a year since the casino industry in Las Vegas began operating again. Everyone hoped that things would be nearly back to normal in this city by now. That has not turned out to be the case. New reports show that Las Vegas tourism rates are still much lower this year than they were in 2019.
Casino companies in this city are doing everything they can to attract new players. That has proven to be much easier said than done. Today, we’re going to take a look at how many visitors the world’s top entertainment destination is pulling in right now.
Let’s get into it!
More Casino-Resorts Continue to Reopen in Las Vegas
Many are surprised to hear that some of the casinos on the Las Vegas Strip still have not reopened. These venues were all forced to shut down back in March. Since that time, they’ve been slowly opening up again to the public.
Not long ago, ParkMGM announced it was set to reopen in October. This property has grown hugely popular over the past decade, yet its owners have been relatively slow reopening. When its doors open, smoking will be completely prohibited.
Many properties near the Strip have reopened, as well. That includes the OYO Hotel-Casino. This venue finally opened its doors on September 16th. Like almost all other hotels in the city, room rates are considerably cheaper right now than they were last year.
Things are far from normal in Las Vegas, though. Intense safety measures are set inside each hotel-casino that’s opened. That includes limiting the number of players at table games, requiring masks at all times, and separating slot machines on the casino floor.
Casinos seem determined to make things as safe as possible while remaining open. Most people around the country are still unwilling to visit a crowded gambling venue, though. It’s now clear that tourism into Las Vegas is slow right now.
Let’s take a look at how many visitors this city is bringing in right now.
Reports on Las Vegas Tourism Rates Are Out!
It’s been extremely difficult trying to predict how much tourism will increase in Las Vegas each month. As we’ve already mentioned, most of the casinos here are now open. People around the country are choosing to avoid travel, though.
This week, reports surfaced that show Las Vegas tourism rates are down 55% when compared to 2019. Interestingly, there’s been a huge uptick in visitors driving into Las Vegas, rather than flying. It’s clear that many people around the country are still wary of boarding a crowded aircraft.
Things are down here. Visitor volume and hotel occupancy remains low. Fortunately, the charts show that things are improving. Nelson-Kraft, the Senior Vice President of Communications at the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, expressed his excitement with this trend to the media this week.
“Each step is really a testament to the good work the entire community is doing to reduce the spread of the virus,” he said. “News like the tri-state area back east changing its travel advisory, or travel to Nevada that doesn’t require quarantining afterward is a great positive step. Our taverns getting to reopen late Sunday night is another step in the right direction. We need to remain really diligent on social distancing, wearing masks, doing all those things, those easy things that we’ve been asked to do for the good of our industry.”
Some fear the positive trend will soon come to an end. Many analysts predict that colder weather will lead to a major increase in Covid-19 cases. By the time winter rolls around, we may see a massive increase in infections around the country.
Las Vegas is hurting right now. Casino revenue and tourism rates remain low. We’ll need to wait and see how things unfold over the next four months. Stay tuned for updates!
US Casino Companies Try to Adapt to New Regulations
Over the past few years, land-based casino revenue in the US has been increasing. The country’s casino industry had been surging and many states presented plans to increase their number of gambling venues. That includes Illinois, which is set to open several new casinos over the next few years.
Casino companies are now being forced to adapt to the situation the world now finds itself in. All casinos must implement intense safety regulations. Even with these set in place, the majority of people around the country aren’t willing to visit and play inside a crowded casino.
Some states have regulated online casino industries set in place. This is proving to be hugely successful. Many now feel that states like Nevada should introduce online casino legislation to help make up for the massive loss in land-based gambling revenue.
Many different states around the country now have regulated online sports betting options, as well. Perhaps the most successful is New Jersey. In August, this state set a new US record with $668 million in sports gambling revenue.
US casino operators may soon be forced to focus more on their online gambling platforms. We’re already seeing this take place in many parts of the country. Hopefully, it helps to protect some of the best casino destinations.
Are you surprised to hear that Las Vegas tourism rates are still low? When do you expect things to get back to normal? Let us know in the comments section below.