A new report from the Las Vegas-based C3 Gaming company examined how the coronavirus pandemic has changed gamblers' habits. The report comes during a time when multiple states are considering banning smoking in casinos.
The research group stated that this report was done independently and was not financed by any outside party. The report suggests that changes such as buffet closures have begun to be accepted and a smoking ban is next up.
In the report, the three authors wrote: "The pandemic altered consumer expectations and consumer behavior in virtually every industry, including retail, entertainment, lodging, dining and casino gaming. One of those changes (is) in attitudes toward smoking in casinos."
The statement continued: "Data from multiple jurisdictions clearly indicates that banning smoking no longer causes a dramatic drop in gaming revenue. In fact, non-smoking properties appear to be performing better than their counterparts that continue to allow smoking."
The report also examined casinos' performance in multiple states since the start of the coronavirus pandemic in early 2020. The findings were that "those casinos that implemented smoking prohibitions did not experience any drop in revenues or lost market share to nearby casinos that continued to offer smoking environments."
The authors also interviewed tribal casino executives. These executives stated that profitability was starting to increase due to lower maintenance costs. The report also showed that 157 tribes were able to end smoking in their casinos "without economic cost."
Linda Quinn of Montvale, New Jersey was interviewed by The Associated Press in regards to a smoking ban and how it would affect gamblers. Quinn said: "Smokers will say that they aren’t going to go gamble anymore if they ban smoking."
She continued: "They said this when they made restaurants and bars non-smoking and it didn’t affect them at all. I honestly believe it will not have an effect, and smokers say that because they don’t want the law changed."
Las Vegas is the nation's largest gambling market but bans smoking in only one casino, the Park MGM.