There’s a long-standing rumor that casinos pump oxygen into the air to keep players alert and gambling longer. But, is this true, or is it a myth? Let’s take a closer look.
Do casinos pump oxygen? Casinos do not pump oxygen. Many casinos will pump in chilled air using their commercial air systems to keep patrons alert, but pure oxygen is not used. An increased concentration of oxygen in the air would quickly create a fire hazard.
Casinos don’t pump oxygen, but some of them do have oxygen bars. Plus, many casinos have additional methods of keeping players gambling as long as possible. I’ll walk you through a few of them in this article.
Do They Pump Oxygen into Las Vegas Casinos?
Casinos do not pump oxygen to keep people awake and gambling. However, after over 20 years, the rumor continues to spread. Some people even swear that casinos do it, albeit, without any proof.
These people claim that the casino wants to make as much money as possible, and they do that by keeping gamblers awake and on the casino floor. While it’s true that casinos want to keep people at the slots longer, they accomplish their goal using other methods.
There are many reasons why it doesn’t make any sense for a casino to pump oxygen. First, it doesn’t make financial sense. Casinos are huge, and oxygen is expensive. It could cost millions of dollars per day to keep the entire gambling floor full of oxygen.
Keeping players on the floor slightly longer isn’t going to offset the costs of the expensive commercial oxygen plant needed to supply that much oxygen. Even if pumping oxygen did equate to more revenue, it still wouldn’t be profitable for the casino (even for the giant casinos in Las Vegas). Also, pumping oxygen may even be illegal.
Pumping Oxygen into the Air is an Increased Fire Hazard
Oxygen is a flame accelerant, so pumping in oxygen would create a fire hazard for the casino. It’s an especially bad idea to pump oxygen if you have people smoking on the casino floor. Since it dramatically increases the risk of fire, pumping oxygen isn’t only expensive, but it may actually be illegal.
Most casinos are heavily regulated, so it would be difficult to get away with pumping in oxygen without anyone noticing. It’s simply not worth the risk for a casino. However, there are a few things that casinos can do to the air that are completely legal.
What a Casino Can do the Air – Legally
What many people claim to be oxygen being pumped in, may actually be something else. It seems that most casinos pump in chilly air, which essentially produces the same effect as oxygen. When people are slightly cold, they are usually more alert and less likely to get tired.
In addition to powerful air conditioners, a casino may also utilize air filtration systems to make the air in the building cleaner. The purpose of air filtration is to rid the air of the musky smell of smoke that plagues most gambling properties. Players may be mistaking the cleaner air for oxygen being pumped in.
There are also rumors that casinos will pump in scented air, however, this is much less common and isn’t a health or safety concern. It may even be preferable, depending on the scent.
Oxygen Bars in Las Vegas
You can find several oxygen bar kiosks in the casinos and malls on the Las Vegas Strip. These bars use tanks of colored water to distill oxygen. They then deliver you a personal supply of 90% oxygen using small tubes that you put in your nose. The air that you typically breathe only contains about 21% oxygen, so supposedly, pure oxygen should give you a nice boost.
Although oxygen supplementation is common practice in the medical field, the effects of pure oxygen on the average person have yet to really be studied. Some of these oxygen bars claim to increase alertness, reduce stress, and even help cure hangovers, but these effects haven’t been proven. And neither have any of the potential risks.
Oxygen bars in Vegas typically cost about $40 for a 20-minute session. You can also purchase small portable oxygen supplement cans for about $10.
Related: Best Oxygen Bar Las Vegas
How Casinos Get You to Keep Gambling for Longer
Although Las Vegas casinos don’t pump oxygen, they do utilize other tactics to keep players on the casino floor as long as possible. We already talked about how chilled air keeps gamblers more alert, but in Las Vegas, the air conditioning is also a nice break from the oppressive heat of the Mohave Desert outside.
In addition to that, there are a number of things casinos do to keep you playing. Some of them include:
- Serving free drinks
- Hiding cashier cages
- Designing casino floors like mazes
- Adding stimulating lights and noises to slot machines
- Installing ugly carpets to keep you from looking down and getting sleepy
- Not installing any clocks or windows to prevent you from seeing what time it is
- Offering free rooms
- Playing mesmerizing music
Many casinos also don’t have clocks or windows on the gambling floor. The casino wants to keep gamblers focuses on their games and away from distractions. Without reference to how much time has elapsed, players are more likely to play for longer.
Casinos pumping oxygen is not a real thing. If a casino pumps oxygen, it loses money. Also, if casinos pump oxygen, they would be causing some serious fire hazards. What’s more likely, is that casinos pump in cold and filtered air, and people mistaken that for oxygen being pumped in.