A casino is a place where people play games of chance for money. The casino industry is dominated by Las Vegas, but it is also a major economic force in cities such as Atlantic City, New Jersey and Chicago. Casinos make their money by charging patrons a percentage of the total bets made on their machines. This income, called a house edge, can be very small—less than two percent in the case of slot machines and video poker. Casinos also gain income by selling tickets to concerts and other events, and from hotel rooms, food and drinks.
In table games, players sit around a table designed for the game and a croupier (dealer) enables the gaming and manages payments. In table games, gamblers place bets on particular outcomes, and a successful bet pays according to the odds.
Most gambling is illegal, but casinos attract millions of visitors every year from all over the world. Casinos are a popular destination for vacationers and business travelers, and they generate large amounts of revenue that can be used to build hotels, restaurants, theaters and other attractions. However, casinos often have a negative impact on local employment. Although they attract higher skilled workers from other areas, they usually replace less skilled jobs in the community and increase unemployment among the original residents of the area. This can lead to social problems such as drugs, crime and family discord. Moreover, gambling can cause psychological distress and depression in some individuals.