English casinos are ready and willing to open their doors as early as July 4, according to reports. Australian casinos could follow suit if the reopening of English casinos goes without a hitch.
Every casino in England has had its door firmly shut since March 23. The British government took the unprecedented step of locking down the country in an attempt to curtail the spread of the deadly COVID-19 virus. Those lockdown measures are gradually being relaxed and English casinos have made it known they’re ready to resume business.
The Betting and Gambling and Gaming Council (BGC) is a standards body representing betting shops and casinos in the UK. The champion safer gambling and speak on behalf of operators.
Michael Dugher is the Chief Executive of the BGC. He had this to say.
“English casinos make a significant contribution to the economy, including through taxation and employment, as part of the leisure, hospitality, entertainment and tourism sectors. They have also played a hugely important role, not just in the national effort to combat COVID-19 by keeping their doors shut since March, but also through their support for communities – for example with the provision of food from their kitchens and the use of their venues.”
“It is welcome that they are in line to reopen again from July 4, but the message to government now is that they are ready, willing, and able to open safely.”
English Casinos Following Strict Guidelines
Strict guidelines are still in place in the UK despite the easing of lockdown measures. English casinos have put in place several social distancing and hygiene measures to allow them to reopen.
These special measures include:
- Staff and customers using hand sanitiser before entering the casino
- Using hand sanitiser when joining or leaving a gaming table
- Ensuring customers are at least two-meters apart when queuing to enter the casino
- Deploy one-way systems within the casino
- Reduce table capacities where possible
- Clean gaming machines after each play session
- Sanitise ATMs at least hourly
Not all English casinos will reopen if given the green light on July 4. Some of the higher-end English casinos have a client base that’s made up primarily of overseas tourists. These casinos rely on well-heeled visitors to keep their businesses running. Travel restrictions are still in place in the UK, with new arrivals needing to self-quarantine for 14-days. These casinos will likely remain closed until those restrictions are lifted.
English Casinos Reopening a Month After Las Vegas
Las Vegas reopened its casinos on June 4 after being closed for more than two months. Sin City’s have been open 24-hours a day, seven days a week from the second they first opened. The famous Las Vegas strip last full closed for President JF Kennedy’s funeral in 1963.
Most casinos Las Vegas casinos reopened on June 4, a month before American Independence Day. Conferences, nightclubs, and shows are still unavailable, but gambling has returned.
The American Gaming Association’s interactive map shows 519 casinos are open around the USA with 470 remaining closed.
English casinos will watch what happens in Las Vegas with the utmost interest.
When Will Australian Casinos Open Their Doors Again?
Plans are already underway to reopen Australian casinos, as revealed on pokies.com in May. A special think-tank created by the Department of Justice has met regularly to discuss reopening.
The task force heard reopening in June is “extremely unlikely” and an unconfirmed date in late July is touted. The Australian government will, no doubt, make its decision in the coming weeks. This decision will be heavily influenced by anything that happens in Las Vegas or with English casinos.