Casino Smoking Ban Bad for Business, Harrah’s New Orleans

The implementation of smoking bans has been a topic of controversy in the casino industry, affecting not only players but also casinos themselves. Harrah’s New Orleans Casino is one such establishment that recently underwent a smoking ban. To some, this ban may seem like a positive step towards a healthier environment, but others argue that it could have devastating consequences. In this article, we will explore the impact of the casino smoking ban on Harrah’s New Orleans Casino’s business, delve into customer experiences, and examine the economic consequences. Before we get into the details, let’s first understand what exactly the smoking ban entails and have a brief overview of Harrah’s New Orleans Casino.

The Impact of the Smoking Ban on Harrah’s New Orleans Casino Revenue

Smoking has been a long-standing tradition in the casino industry, providing an indulgent atmosphere for its customers. The smell of cigarette smoke is often associated with the thrill of gambling and socializing. However, the recent smoking ban in casinos has caused a significant impact on Harrah’s New Orleans Casino and its revenue.

The smoking ban, which prohibits smoking in all indoor areas of Louisiana, has caused a significant decline in the number of customers visiting the casino. The ban has disrupted the traditional atmosphere and customer experience that many expect from a casino.

As a result, Harrah’s New Orleans Casino has experienced considerable revenue losses since the smoking ban has taken effect. In 2015, the year after the ban was implemented, the casino reported a 22% decline in revenue compared to the previous year. The trends continued, as the casino experienced a 13% decrease in revenue in 2016 and a 6% decline in 2017.

The smoking ban has been a significant factor in these financial losses, as many customers have opted to visit other casinos outside of Louisiana that still allows smoking. The impact of the smoking ban has been detrimental to the overall success of Harrah’s New Orleans Casino.

The Effects of the Smoking Ban on Customers

The smoking ban implemented in Harrah’s New Orleans Casino has had a notable impact on customer experience. Prior to the ban, smoking was a common sight in casinos, with both employees and visitors smoking throughout the premises. However, since the implementation of the ban, customers can no longer smoke indoors, including common areas and gaming floors. While non-smokers witnessed a marked improvement in their surroundings, the experience for smokers was notably different.

Many customers who are used to smoking while gambling expressed displeasure at the ban and its enforcement. Some have resorted to taking smoke breaks outside the casino premises, leading to longer waits in lines and frustration with the time lost. Customer feedback and reviews indicate that this change has impacted visits and reduced the frequency of return visits to Harrah’s New Orleans Casino. In contrast, others have praised the smoking ban for the cleaner air quality, especially non-smokers, who had to endure secondhand smoke before.

Overall, it’s clear that the smoking ban has altered customer experience notably, and this change is reflected in feedback and reviews. Before the smoking ban was implemented, many customers were accustomed to smoking and gambling, but now, they have to adjust to limitations that take away some of the fun of casino trips.

The Economic Consequences of the Smoking Ban

The smoking ban in Harrah’s New Orleans Casino has had some significant economic consequences. The casino is one of the most significant employers in the region, providing employment to thousands directly and indirectly. The smoking ban has led to a significant reduction in the casino’s revenue, which has, in turn, affected its ability to sustain its employees and suppliers.

The impact on the New Orleans economy is not limited to the casino itself. The lost revenue has a ripple effect throughout the community, affecting the tax base and the community’s overall economic health. Local businesses that rely on tourist traffic from the casino have also felt the effects of the smoking ban.

However, there are some glimmers of hope. Some casinos have been able to mitigate the effects of smoking bans by expanding their non-smoking sections or investing in new amenities and marketing strategies. These adaptation strategies are essential to Harrah’s New Orleans Casino if it intends to remain an important contributor to the economy.

The implications for employees and suppliers are significant, given the casino’s importance in the region. However, the impact may be temporary, as casinos and local governments work together to identify strategies that compensate for the reduced casino revenue.

Overcoming the Effects of the Smoking Ban

Now that we’ve seen the impact of the smoking ban on Harrah’s New Orleans Casino, let’s explore some alternative strategies for casinos to maintain revenue despite the smoking ban. Here are a few adaptation tips and successful case studies:

Offer outdoor smoking areas: Many casinos have created smoking areas outside their establishments to accommodate customers who want to smoke. By providing an area for smokers to enjoy their cigarettes, customers are still able to gamble and enjoy the casino experience without having to leave the property.

Promote non-smoking gaming areas: Another strategy adopted by casinos in response to smoking bans is to provide non-smoking gaming areas. This creates a space for customers who don’t smoke and prefer not to be around smoke. Also promotes a healthy culture for the customers and the casino employees.

Diversify revenue streams: Beyond gambling, casinos are also generating revenue through entertainment and hotel rooms. Furthermore, HNOC is known for hosting concerts and live performances. This kind of diversification can help the casinos and resorts sustain their revenue streams despite the smoking bans.

These are just a few successful strategies employed by casinos in different regions. By adopting these alternative strategies, and coming up with new innovation in this line casinos can maintain their revenue amidst regulatory policies.


Throughout the article, we have explored the effects of the smoking ban implemented at Harrah’s New Orleans Casino. We’ve examined the economic impact on the casino, its customers, and the wider New Orleans economy. We have analyzed the negative consequences of the ban on revenue and customer experiences and looked at alternative strategies to avoid the economic consequences.

In conclusion, the smoking ban had severe consequences on the Harrah’s New Orleans Casino, leading to significant revenue losses and negative effects on the customer experience. However, as our research shows, the casino industry has adapted to smoke-free environments, and there are ways to overcome the economic challenges and maintain revenue levels. It is essential to weigh the public health benefits of smoking bans against their potential economic repercussions. In the end, the casino industry must continue to evolve and adapt to changing customer expectations and government regulations.

We hope that this article has provided valuable insights into the impact of smoking bans on the casino industry and the case of Harrah’s New Orleans Casino, and we look forward to watching how the industry adapts to these evolving challenges in the future.


  1. What is the smoking ban in casinos?

    The smoking ban in casinos refers to a law or a policy that prohibits smoking in indoor spaces where gambling activities take place.

  2. How has the smoking ban affected Harrah’s New Orleans Casino’s revenue?

    Harrah’s New Orleans Casino has experienced a decline in revenue since the smoking ban was enforced. The casino had to reduce the number of slot machines and table games to accommodate non-smoking areas, leading to a decrease in revenue.

  3. What are the economic consequences of the smoking ban?

    The smoking ban affects employees, suppliers, and the local economy. For instance, employees who rely on tips may experience a reduction in earnings due to fewer customers. Suppliers that provide tobacco-related products may also experience a decline in sales.

  4. How can casinos maintain revenue despite the smoking ban?

    Casinos can adapt to the smoking ban by implementing alternative revenue-generating strategies such as offering non-gambling entertainment options, improving customer service, and providing loyalty programs and incentives.

  5. What is the outlook for the casino industry with the smoking ban in place?

    The casino industry is facing a new reality of adapting to the smoking ban. While some casinos may suffer losses, others may explore and implement alternative revenue streams to keep their businesses afloat.

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Doug I. Jones

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