London land casinos in 2019 are still big business despite the huge impact that online casinos have had on them.
While droves of London-based casino fans have made switched over to virtual gaming sites for their 24/7 convenience and flexibility, thousands still prefer the vibrant, noisy and tactile atmosphere of land casinos alongside other gambling fans – for now.
Land casinos in London have high overheads
That said casinos in London and other parts of the UK have their work cut out for them in terms of remaining sustainable in the long term. One of the biggest reasons for this is that unlike their virtual counterparts, land casinos have extremely high overheads.
For instance, they must cover rent, lease or mortgage costs; utility costs like water, electricity and gas; salaries, wages and contractor payments; gaming equipment and supplies; equipment maintenance, repair and replacement; legal fees; advertising, comps and marketing costs; and more.
London casinos must compete with online casinos
Successful land casinos generate enormous profits that overshadow their expenses. However, even the most successful London land casinos have to contend with rising inflation, increasing expenses and the never-ending onslaught of virtual casinos that continue to eat away at their player numbers.
Said, Emma David, the editor from NDE (world leader in no deposit bonuses), “Online casinos are giving London casinos a serious run for their money. We predict that unless they become fully sustainable, land casinos could be a thing of the past by 2025.”
So the big question is what London-based casinos are doing to keep their expenses as low as possible, attract new players and keep their existing players from jumping ship to desktop and mobile casinos? In other words what are London casinos doing in 2019 and beyond to remain sustainable and relevant in the UK gambling landscape?
The answer is as much as they can to stay competitive, attractive to players and as cost-effective to operate as possible. With this in mind, many of London’s top land casinos have busied themselves with many cost-saving measures including:
Converting to LED lighting
It’s no secret land casinos use a lot of electricity especially on lighting. This is to ensure that their games, tables and facilities are (literally) always shown in the best light and stand out at all times. They’re also widely used to create safe, comfortable and soothing atmospheres that are more conducive to gambling.
Where traditional lighting dramatically ramped up casino costs in the past, now most of London’s land casinos use more cost-effective and energy-saving LED lighting. LED light bulbs are not only brighter than traditional halogen or incandescent bulbs of identical wattage, but use up to five times less electricity.
Energy-saving LED lights have also greatly reduced the carbon footprint of London-based casinos from an environmental standpoint.
Better use of natural light
Although dependant on their respective layout and architecture, where possible many London casino venues have reduced their carbon footprint even more by making better use of natural light. They’ve achieved this through the increased use of skylights and the eradication of previously blacked out / opaque windows.
Land casinos are famous for keeping the outside world at bay. This is why most have no windows or clocks, and play the same music around the clock to keep the atmosphere constant and ‘cocoon-like.’ However, in their quest for sustainability many have opted for more natural light sources.
This has not only reduced their electricity bills, but let a little London into their venues.
Improved recycling programmes
Taking a leaf out of the book of their far larger Las Vegas cousins across the Atlantic Ocean, many London-based brick and mortar casinos have introduced much improved food recycling programmes and protocols. These are in place to ensure that any waste is recycled / repurposed in as environmentally-friendly manner as possible.
While nowhere near on the scale of their US counterparts, every little helps. By better recycling their waste, London casinos are helping to reduce their carbon footprint in aid of the environment. Some casinos with hotels attached even repurpose used bars of soap. Many also discourage guests from washing their sheets and towels daily.
Some environmentally-aware London casinos also switch off the lights, water heaters and air conditioning units in their unused hotel rooms, and other parts of the casino not in use. Others have done away with environmentally unfriendly ‘single use’ items like plastic straws.
Effective responsible gambling programmes
Another crucial aspect in the ongoing sustainability of London casinos is their effective implementation and enforcement of responsible gambling programmes. Even though the UK has one of the most successful regulated land and online gambling industries in the world, it, like all developed nations, also battles problem gambling.
This is spearheaded by the Gambling Commission, a public non-departmental body of the government that regulates and supervises all gambling activities and gambling law in Great Britain. It caters to the general public, licensed gambling businesses and local licensing and regulatory authorities, law enforcement agencies and the police.
London casinos have self-exclusion programmes
Most London land casinos have a comprehensive self-exclusion programme in place known as SENSE (Self-Enrolment National Self-Exclusion). As part of this they have personnel trained to be both professional and sensitive in dealing with problem players that actively seek help. In serious cases they recommend ‘self-exclusion.’ Find out more here.
This is where players with a gambling problem or who may be developing a problem agree to exclude themselves for at least 6 months i.e. they give a casino permission to ban them from entering and/or playing casino games on the premises. In 6 months players can apply to the casino to have their self-exclusion status cancelled.
The onus is on the player to cancel this, however, as it’s not an automatic option.
There will always be a desire for land casinos in London. However, they need to operate as cost effectively as possible and keep players from switching to online casinos or they will cease to be financially feasible and thus risk dying out completely.