Casino Gaming Coming to US Airports?

Written By Janice Doughtrey

Anyone who’s ever been through the Las Vegas airport may have been late getting to their flight or missed it due to taking a trip over to the section or sections of the airport that allows gambling. With slot machines everywhere in Las Vegas, they couldn’t help but to put some in the airport, and many have stopped on their way to their next flight to try their luck. Imagine if more airports had gaming, not just the one in Las Vegas? The company OTG is now lobbying New York to get the licenses necessary to put games within the LaGuardia Airport, which is currently being expanded.

OTG currently creates concessions that are top quality for airports in the United States, but they now want the chance to offer gaming to many airports, starting with New York’s LaGuardia Airport. OTG is so serious about the possibility of adding games to the airport that they have not only been lobbying in the state of New York but also giving political contributions in the hopes that they’ll be allowed gaming rights within the airport. The S-1 filing states that OTG wants to insert games into a portion of LaGuardia Airport after the construction efforts are completed.

OTG is already working a variety of games, which include lottery style games, games of chance, casino style games, games of skill, and social gaming. Customers who are able to take part in these games will be rewarded accordingly, but awards can be food, beverages, flight upgrades, mileage and more. The offering by OTG will be exclusive, meaning no other companies will be allowed to tread on their territory to offer games, so this can be very lucrative for OTG, and that’s why they’ve lobbied so hard to get games in the airport.

Last year alone, OTG spent $90,000 lobbying the New York State government for concessions, such as racing, gaming, airport hospitality, and liquor regulation. If OTG ever was to get their wish, then they would be subject to the regulations and rules of the state of New York as well as local regulations in regards to gaming. New Yorkers know exactly where to go when they want to gamble, but since so many people pass through the LaGuardia Airport on a daily basis, gaming in the airport could prove to be very lucrative for all who are involved, including the government of New York.

Many states are currently still trying to keep gaming out of their states, such as Georgia and South Carolina. Although Georgia has a state lottery, many are lobbying for casinos, although this will be problematic to neighboring states, such as North Carolina and Alabama, which have casinos of their own. If OTG becomes successful in implementing gaming systems into the LaGuardia Airport, then perhaps one of the busiest airports in the world will be next in their sites, the Hartsfield-Jackson Airport in Atlanta, Georgia. If gaming comes to more airports, then it’s guaranteed to make more money for the airport as well as the game implementors.