Some of the biggest casino-resorts in Las Vegas have been open since June 4th. Since that time, tourism has been gradually increasing as people flock to the city for a fun vacation. This week, members of the Nevada Gaming Control Board ordered a new rule in Las Vegas casinos and some are worried this will result in a major dip in tourism.
This state regulatory group is now requiring that masks be worn inside casinos. Many felt that Las Vegas was seeing its tourism increase due to the relaxed regulations here. Today, we’re going to talk about how this new rule might affect the city.
Let’s get into it!
More Casinos in Nevada Announce Reopening Dates
Nevada is home to an incredible number of casinos. In certain parts of the state, the gambling industry is responsible for keeping the local economy on track. That includes Las Vegas, where many of the world’s most expensive gambling venues are located.
Everything shut down in this state back in March. Obviously, shutting down casinos here resulted in an incredible amount of revenue and job loss. Hundreds of thousands of individuals in this state are employed by the gambling industry.
On June 14th, several of the top casino-resorts in this city started to reopen. Tourism started to slowly increase. Many people from around the country began flocking to this city to enjoy the relaxed atmosphere and fun gambling options.
The Las Vegas Strip is starting to get back to normal. More of the casino-resorts here are scheduled to reopen to the public over the next couple of weeks. Revenue is also starting to increase, albeit at a much lower level than it was prior to March.
Just a few days ago, members of the Nevada Gaming Control Board met to discuss future regulations for these reopened casinos. Members of this group claimed it was unlikely that masks would be required inside these venues. That appears to be changing, though.
Control Board Approves New Rule in Las Vegas Casinos
Opening the casinos in Las Vegas proved to be incredibly difficult. Safety is always a major concern in the middle of a global pandemic. Some health officials felt the regulations set in place at these gambling venues were not strict enough.
Over the past few weeks, rates of Covid-19 have begun to surge around the country. Lawmakers in Nevada have started to take notice. Many have fears that this will spill into the state and things could return to how they were back in March.
This week, the Nevada Gaming Control Board met to discuss the current regulations set in place. This group ordered a major new rule in Las Vegas casinos. Moving forward, casinos here will require all guests to wear masks while playing at table games.
Sandra Morgan, a chairwoman for the board, spoke to the media about implementing this new rule.
“In the first week (after the June 4 reopening of casinos), we wanted to take an approach of communicating and encouraging compliance and talk to licensees about what our expectations were, but in the second week, it became abundantly clear based on our agents’ observations that patrons’ usage of masks was significantly declining,” she said.
Morgan went on to clarify exactly what will be required on the casino floor.
“Licensees must require patrons to wear face coverings at table and card games if there is no barrier, partition or shield between the dealer and each player. This requirement applies to table and card game players, spectators and any other person within 6 feet of any table or card game.”
What does this mean for the city moving forward?
Requiring Masks May Result in a Decrease in Tourism
Casino companies can’t be pleased to hear this new rule. For many of these companies, it’s been a tremendous struggle to attract tourists. The main strategy they were using was to promote Las Vegas as a carefree, fun vacation destination.
If masks are required on the casino floor, this perception could change. Many are going to be unwilling to play inside these venues if the same regulations that are being implemented in their own states are applied in Las Vegas. Lawmakers are attempting to balance public safety and a tourism industry.
It’s an extremely difficult situation. Despite the casinos being reopened, revenue in Las Vegas is still incredibly low. Many casino companies are finding it difficult to remain functional. The new rule in Las Vegas casinos recently approved is likely to make things even harder.
Many felt the current regulations were strange enough. Plexiglass barriers on the tables and limit occupancy felt unusual for many gamblers. We’ll need to wait and see how the new mask rule affects tourism over the next few weeks.
No one really knows what to expect over the next few weeks. Casinos are still doing everything that can attract new visitors. More travel deals are likely to become available soon. Stay tuned for updates!
Do you agree with this new rule in Las Vegas casinos? Do you think it will affect tourism? Let us know in the comments section below.