Although the restrictions put in place during the Covid-19 pandemic are just beginning to be lifted in many cities across the world, this does not mean things are starting to return to ‘normal’. In fact, if the recent expert reports are anything to believed, it might be quite some time before we return to how things were before the pandemic hit.
The effects of social distancing and the lockdown of cities and public spaces were not felt equally across all economic sectors, with many businesses simply switching to an online business model. Restaurants and cafes, for example, were able to make up for the shortfall in customers by providing take-out and delivery food services. Similarly, many retailers were able to add e-commerce capabilities to their websites as a way of adapting to the lockdown restrictions.
Unfortunately, not every industry or business type was able to adapt so easily. Amongst the hardest hit by the lockdown were businesses where they either couldn’t switch to an online model or where the social distancing requirements couldn’t be fully implemented. Pubs, bars, and land-based casinos are examples of businesses that are faced with the prospect of a longer lockdown — given they can’t fully adhere to social distancing measures. Implementing these changes has been incredibly difficult for some businesses, with the added costs associated with facilitating social distancing proving to be a crushing burden given the decrease in customer footfall.
Despite this, casinos across gambling hotspots like Las Vegas in Nevada and Atlantic City in New Jersey are beginning to open up, albeit it in a format radically different to what many might be used to. After being closed for several weeks, a number of Las Vegas casinos have re-opened with strict social distancing measures in place. Casino staples like the buffet table will remain closed until further notice, and casino floor plans have been re-designed to accommodate more distance between machines, players, and tables. Many casinos are also implementing limits on how many people can be on the casino floor at one time, with the familiar buzz of the casino floor now a distant memory. But with restrictions still placed on our ability to travel both locally and longer distances by plane, it might be some time before we can get close to a real casino.
However, the harsh effects of the Covid-19 pandemic haven’t been felt by all, with a number of online businesses reporting increases in both player-counts and total revenue. Online casino affiliate sites like superlenny.com have reported a massive surge in the number of players signing up to online gambling platforms. With so many of us stuck at home either because of lockdown restrictions or due to our own fear of catching the virus out in the open, online services like these have become more important than ever, providing a way for us to take our minds off the chaos of the pandemic. With no end in sight for when might return to the old ‘normal’, it looks like this might be something we have to deal with for quite some time.