As the world continues to deal with the ongoing coronavirus crisis, many eyes are looking toward the best way to secure an economic recovery at a time where many businesses are still struggling – one of the latest to make a move in this area can be seen with sin city itself as Vegas officially reopened the doors to its casinos, hotels, and restaurants – but is this too soon?
It’s a welcome relief to punters – changes to regulation such as a recent credit card ban in the UK for online gambling, this comes alongside a change in an initiative called Gamstop which had been aimed at reducing participation from problem gamblers which was now made mandatory – there are those which have registered outside of this initiative such as these ones, but has also led to an increasing demand for a traditional brick and mortar experience.
There have already been videos emerging of the packed floors for casinos in Vegas just days after the reopening – the issue comes with the methods employed to reopen. For the state of Nevada, whilst employees are required to wear face masks for safety, there are no such restrictions on guests as social distancing, protection in personal uses and protection for guests as a whole aren’t in place – which brings into question whether or not it’s too soon for such a wide scale opening to be in place.
It’s also worth noting that the US is still dealing with the impacts of the coronavirus as the worst hit region in the world, given that the country is still in damage control there is a risk that reopening will cause a second spread of the virus and make an already tough situation much worse – there is already news coming through that there are spikes in cases just two weeks after reopening which may lead to a u-turn causing many locations to close once again, just at a time where recovery was a primary concern.
It does provide a learning opportunity for other countries around the world however – many have been easing measures but not dropping them completely, whilst slowly accelerating reopening methods, but given the current situation in Vegas it may cause some leadership to rethink strategies – if numbers continue to rise within the US it may cause other countries such as those in Europe to rethink their strategies for allowing travel and businesses opening once again.
It’s certain that many will be monitoring the ongoing situation in Vegas closely now that numbers are increasing, but this was something quite expected too which the footage that came out showing just how lax the safety measures were. Some have been readdressed, particularly the requirements for masks inside these locations, so it’s yet to be seen if these changes have any impact, but for now the answer is that it does seem it has been far too soon for the reopening to happen in the way it has, and the approach for an economic recovery has backfired in this instance.