A casino is an establishment where different types of gambling activities are carried out. Often, casinos are combined with hotels, resorts, restaurants, retail shops, and cruise ships. Some casinos also offer live entertainment and other tourist attractions.

Modern casinos are designed around noise, light, and excitement. Patrons shout out encouragement to fellow players and waiters circulating throughout the casino provide drinks (alcoholic and nonalcoholic). Unlike many other forms of gambling, casino gambling has a social component; patrons are either interacting with others at their table or are surrounded by people as they play slot machines. Casinos are heavily guarded and have multiple security personnel working at once. Security begins on the casino floor, where employees watch over games and patrons to spot cheating or suspicious behavior. Pit bosses and table managers have a broader view of the casino and can look out for suspicious betting patterns. Elaborate surveillance systems give a high-tech “eye in the sky” that allows security workers to see everything on the casino floor at once.

The casino industry is highly profitable; it is estimated that the average casino patron gambles about $23 per visit. However, this figure does not take into account the large number of people who simply lose money. According to Harrah’s Entertainment, the typical American casino gambler is a forty-six-year-old woman from a household with an above-average income. The percentage of people who participate in casino gambling decreases with decreasing income, and only about 20% of Americans who earn less than $35,000 a year attend casinos.