Economic Impact: How Casinos Measure up Against Amusement Parks and Tourist Attractions

During the economic decline that ravaged the world between 2020 and 2022 due to the Coronavirus pandemic, the gambling, hospitality, and tourism sectors were the most affected. The decline was driven by government shutdowns imposed on non-essential businesses to try and control the spread of the highly contagious COVID-19 virus.

Fortunately, thanks to online gambling, players could still participate in their favorite games by logging on to top-tier lobbies like, where thousands of casino titles are available. Owing to the existence of iGaming sites, the gambling sector thrived even during the lockdowns, a feat that attracted government attention as a tax-generating vehicle. So, over the past three years, different jurisdictions worldwide, including Hungary, have been expanding their gambling regulations in a bid to welcome new players into the market and generate significant revenue for tax coffers.

However, observers have questioned how beneficial casinos are compared to other elements of the hospitality and tourism scenes, such as amusement parks and tourist attractions. For a better understanding of this question, here’s a closer look at how the economic impact of casinos measures up against amusement parks and tourist attractions on three main fronts:

  • Employment opportunities;
  • Profitability;
  • Involvement of other linked businesses.

Employment Opportunities

Themed parks will hire staff to tend to different responsibilities, from collecting and selling tickets to food stands, security, and other critical jobs within the park. The same can be said for tourist attractions requiring rivers to ferry tourists to different destinations, tour guides, and even translators. This means that these two types of businesses have a notable economic impact on their surrounding environment because of the following reasons:

  • They hire lots of people and utilize a great number of resources to run their establishments;
  • More businesses in the area benefit from visitors coming to carnivals and attractions;
  • There’s increased circulation of money in economies where the venues are available;
  • Areas where the said attractions are located often flourish because of the positive impact these facilities bring to the locals.

In comparison, a casino doesn’t hire as many staff members to run its operations. Yes, the technical aspect of casinos, such as those in Las Vegas, Macau, and Budapest, is that they construct resorts, hotels, and restaurants to accommodate their guests, but these are usually self-sufficient.

Additionally, casinos are mainly located in town areas where there is already a large population boom. As such, its economic impact on its surroundings will be less pronounced than amusement parks and tourist attractions. Also, casinos require fewer staff members for the main business as the job opportunities will be restricted to security and cash tellers.


There is no doubt that a casino is much more profitable than a themed park and tourist sights. For one, the operating expenses of a casino are negligible because the main expenditure will involve the initial cost of starting the business, employee salaries, and rent for the buildings it occupies.

The same cannot be said for amusement parks and tourist attractions that sometimes require millions of dollars just for refurbishments and introducing new attractions for their customers. So, the expenses of a casino are considerably less and thus making them a much more profitable venture.

Involvement of Other Businesses

Unlike funfairs and places of interest, casinos don’t necessarily work or depend on other businesses to enhance their operations. Customers who visit casinos bring their cash and engage in different legal gambling activities that rarely require the intervention of third parties, thus making them stand-alone businesses. As such, the economy-related influence of casinos is not likely to be felt as strongly because of two main reasons:

  • Casino owners mainly focus on getting as many customers as possible through their doors daily;
  • The economic impact will mainly favor the owners of a gaming facility much more than it will their surrounding economic environment.

Nonetheless, it is fair to point out that casino businesses also foster the development of auxiliary enterprises, especially regarding accommodation and dining.

By comparison, tourist attractions and themed parks have a more significant economic impact on their surroundings because they will require various goods and services from other businesses for their operations. Thus, they will involve more companies, whether large corporations or small businesses, to enhance their operations and keep their customers happy. From supplying food, transportation facilities, and other forms of entertainment, these two businesses will have a more substantial economy-related influence as they will rely on other companies to attain success.

Final Verdict

Generally, casinos are much more profitable because they can almost be classified as stand-alone businesses with a small impact on their economic environment. Meanwhile, tourist attractions and funfairs have a more pronounced effect on their surroundings because they hire more employees, use different resources, and involve more businesses.

So, an enterprise incorporating the surrounding economic environment will have a more significant economic impact in a particular region than a stand-alone business. A casino, however, will be a more attractive venture for an investor and perhaps the government by virtue of taxation. Nonetheless, we shouldn’t forget that when governments rake in more tax income, it trickles down to the local economy.