New Research Sheds Light On Gamblers Returning To Casinos

Written By Marc Meltzer on May 13, 2020
reopening casinos

Recently, GameCo announced the successful completion of the Field Trial for its Video Game Gambling platform in Nevada. The reopening of casinos could be a boon for GameCo and other gaming machine manufacturers.

New research shows that when customers return to casinos the majority of guests will look to gaming machines like video poker, slots, video game gambling machines, and electronic table games.

Returning To Nevada Casinos

We don’t know when Nevada casinos will reopen but we do know they’re making plans. Last week Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak started Phase 1 of the Roadmap To Recovery For Nevada. Reopening casinos isn’t included in this order but they’re expected to be in an upcoming phase. We’ll have details on that when they’re released.

The research commissioned by Synergy Blue says that 51% of gamblers will return to casinos again once they reopen. More than 1/3rd (34%) of those who plan to return to casinos say they will do so as soon as stay-at-home orders end and casinos re-open. Only 19% of the gamblers surveyed said that they will wait until there’s a COVID-19 vaccine available.

Almost a third (35%) of respondents will return to their favorite casinos. Meanwhile, 29% will visit a casino based on the rewards, discounts, or specials they receive from a property. Only a quarter of the respondents to the survey said that improved health and safety standards would draw them to a particular casino.

Machine Games vs. Table Games

More than half (56%) of the gamblers that are planning to return to casinos say it’s for the excitement of the casino experience. Slot and video gambling devices will be played by 60% of the gamblers returning to casinos. Meanwhile, only 35% of the gamblers will play table games like blackjack and craps.

Machine games dominate the casino floors so it isn’t too much of a surprise that more players will head back to play their favorite games. Casino operators aren’t using valuable space for machines because the bright lights look pretty. Coincidentally, machine games might be easier for casino staff to keep clean.

Table games have chips and cards that may be touched by other people playing. Meanwhile, a player can wipe down the surface of a machine and wash up right after playing a game. There’s no human contact necessary to play the machine games so keeping them clean from germs may not be as difficult as table games. There’s even new technology in the works to alert maintenance when they should clean gaming machines.

Just about half (48%) of the gamblers said they’ll have the same budget when they return to casinos. Thanks to high levels of unemployment it’s surprising that only 29% of those who took part in this survey will decrease their gambling budget when returning to casinos. Meanwhile, 23% will actually increase their gaming budget when casinos are open once again.

Cross Section Of Returning Visitors Might Lead To Interest In New Machine Games

Anyone that has visited a casino can see that the older guests are traditionally slot machine players. This research confirms what the eyes have seen. A whopping 73% of respondents that said slot games would draw them back to casinos are over 60 years of age. Meanwhile, only 47% answering the same question were between 21 and 29 years old.

On the other side of the spectrum, more of the younger gamblers surveyed say they’ll be the first to return to casinos. Only 40% of gamblers 60 years or older will visit casinos once they reopen while 62% of gamblers 29 and under will return to casinos.

Research shows that younger gamblers are more interested in playing new casino games. This convergence of younger gamblers returning to casinos quickly could give video game gambling machine manufacturers a good opportunity to introduce new games to casino floors.

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Marc Meltzer

Marc grew up on the mean streets of the South Bronx. He's the rare combination of Yankees and Jets fan which explains his often contrarian point of view. Marc is a freelance writer and social media consultant. Writing about steak, booze, gambling and Las Vegas is a tough job but somebody has to do it.

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