I guess that some people have all the luck, but when it comes to Atlantic City, if they didn’t have bad luck they wouldn’t have any luck. On Wednesday August 15, 2018 Resorts Casino will be opening their onsite Sportsbook. This will be available online as well and should be a welcome source of income for Atlantic City and Resorts. If you are not familiar with Atlantic City’s location, it’s about and hours’ drive South East from Philadelphia on the famous Atlantic City Expressway, as well as a popular train route. The driving route is popular for those heading to the South Jersey beaches both North and South of Atlantic City. As more casinos vie for sports betting, there should be an increase in both online and land-based traffic.
What bad luck will affect Atlantic City Gambling?
For those who do not have cars or would rather not drive to Atlantic City (AC) from Philadelphia, there is the option to take the train. Gamblers, Casino Workers, and Tourists can jump on the train at 30th St. Station in Philadelphia and arrive in AC 90 minutes later. A hassle-free experience, this route has been providing service in one form or another for over 100 years.
So, what could possibly go wrong? On September 5th the route to from Philly to AC will be shut down to install the PTC (Positive Train Control), a federally mandated system which controls and monitors a train’s movements. This safety device is a requirement which must be installed on time to thwart any fines or penalties. Obviously, the NJ Transit System will want to install this ASAP, and restart the service in early 2019, which they claim to be the timeframe.
Atlantic City has relied heavily on this service and any suspension will not only affect gamblers, but those who work at the casino and commute from Philadelphia. To compensate for the route suspension, buses will be used which in some estimates will double to the travel time. For anyone associated with the AC Casino Industry and travels from Philadelphia, this could be a job killer.
For gamblers, a 3 hour trip each way to the casinos could also be a deal breaker. Many of the gamblers who use the train are day trip players, who head down in the morning as a large group and return in the late afternoon. Although not exactly an “Ocean’s Eleven” type crowd, these groups spend a lot of money at the slots and contribute to the casinos’ bottom line.
For the sports betters who want to head to Resorts Casino in the Fall for some Sunday football betting, the 3-hour trip might just be too much. As a huge sports town, Philadelphia is filled with die-hard Hockey, Baseball, Basketball and Football fans, as well as many college sports. The legal sports betting in Atlantic City will be a perfect setting for even a weekend trip to spend some time at the tables and betting on your favorite team.
The suspension of the service could not have come at a worse time for AC. The claimed early 2019 reopening date is highly questionable as we are all too aware of any Federal Project and it’s best guestimates. There are even those that believe the route might be closed permanently. Either way, the highly competitive business of gambling both online and land-based in Atlantic City is taking a hard hit which could not have come at a more disastrous time. We hope the affects will be limited for all parties involved and that the early 2019 resumption of services will be accurate.