With the start of 2021, numerous land-based casinos throughout the nation are getting ready to resume operations following their closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In March 2020, as a measure to combat COVID-19, nearly every state implemented lockdowns, initiating the first wave of closures. Consequently, businesses across various industries were compelled to shut down, and among the hardest hit were casinos.

In April, a small number of casinos managed to resume operations before the second wave struck in November 2020. Nevertheless, unlike the unified response witnessed in March, numerous states adopted varying approaches, with governors implementing distinct restrictions based on individual state circumstances.

Throughout the pandemic, certain casinos have successfully remained operational, whereas others never had the opportunity to resume their operations following the initial lockdown.

Closure of Casinos in New Jersey

During the initial lockdown, Atlantic City casinos experienced significant losses and nearly faced another closure in December.

Currently, the governor of New Jersey, Phil Murphy, has mandated the closure of retail sportsbooks, while allowing casinos in Atlantic City to continue operating under stringent health and safety protocols.

Due to the closure of brick and mortar casinos, players in NJ have been exceptionally fortunate compared to gamers in other states. This is primarily due to the extensive online casino market that has been accessible to them.

NJ online casinos have achieved unprecedented levels of revenue amid the pandemic, setting new records.

Closure of Casinos in Pennsylvania

Casinos in Pennsylvania seemed to be thriving until November 30th, when an order was issued for Rivers Casino to cease operations. Just a few weeks later, on December 12th, Pennsylvania became one of the few states to mandate a second closure for all casinos.

On January 4th, 2021, the government granted permission for casinos to resume operations, and all except one casino chose to open their doors.

Similar to New Jersey, players in Pennsylvania also have a wide range of online casinos to choose from.

Additional Casino Shutdowns in the United States

Currently, during the second wave of COVID-19, all casinos in the state of Illinois have been closed. It is anticipated that these casinos will remain closed until mid-January.

The COVID-19 Casino Tracker by the American Gaming Association (AGA) reports that there are presently 900 operational casinos in the United States, while 96 casinos remain closed. This encompasses various types of casinos, such as commercial venues, riverboats, and tribal establishments.

Approximately 22 states have reopened all of their casinos.

  • Pennsylvania
  • New Jersey is being rewritten.
  • Iowa
  • Minnesota
  • Missouri
  • Oklahoma
  • The city of New York.
  • Florida

Some states continue to enforce stringent measures and have only permitted a few casinos to resume operations. States that remain partially under lockdown include:

  • Montana
  • Washington
  • Oregon
  • Arizona
  • Nevada
  • Wisconsin
  • Michigan

More states in the United States seem to be easing restrictions rather than tightening them as the distribution of the new vaccine progresses.

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