Sneeze Guards Attached to Poker Tables at Margaritaville Resort Casino

  • Video footage shows a sneeze guard attached to a poker table on the player’s side
  • Purpose of the sneeze guard is to create a barrier between players and the dealer
  • Barriers have also been installed to separate each player at the table
  • One dealer may handle the cards and chips, another may play the hand for the player
top view of men and women playing poker in casino
Sneeze guards have been attached to poker tables at the Margaritaville Resort Casino in Louisiana to protect players and dealers once the facility reopens. [Image: Shutterstock.com]

Protection at the poker tables

Sneeze guards have reportedly been added to poker tables at the Margaritaville Resort Casino in Louisiana. Gaming professional Joe Bunevith posted video footage he received from a friend via Twitter showing the guard attached to a poker table at the gaming venue.

The sneeze guard is one way that United States casinos may change when casinos reopen amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The guards have been designed to protect players and the dealer from catching the highly contagious virus.

New gaming experience

First installed in grocery stores and gas stations, plexiglass shields, also known as sneeze guards, are being installed at all kinds of facilities. At the Margaritaville Resort Casino, sneeze guards have been installed closest to the players.

The sneeze guards create a barrier between employees and patrons to try and stop the spread of COVID-19. People can have the virus and be asymptomatic, spreading it unknowingly. With barriers like the plexiglass shields in place, it can stop a carrier from spreading the virus to someone else.

The sneeze guard is circular in shape and spreads along the shape of the table. As players take a seat, they will find the poker table sneeze guards act as a barrier between themselves and the dealer. A small opening is located at the bottom of the shield. The shield also includes a section between each player at the table.

On the shield installation, Bunevith said: “Will it stop the virus? I mean no I think that’s obvious to everyone. Will it stop a direct sneeze on someone? Yeah, very likely so.”

Players concerned about cheating

In the tweet posted by Bunevith, several people asked about how the guards might help cheaters due to the reflection in the glass. Others were curious about spreading the virus by handling poker chips.

several people asked about how the guards might help cheaters due to the reflection in the glass

According to Bunevith, the theory is that there will be one dealer who deals the cards and chips and then another to play the hand for you. If this is the case, then it would mean only the dealers at the table would touch the cards and chips.

Bunevith expects an instant flood of players to casinos when they eventually reopen. Things must be done to get moving again and innovative ideas like the plexiglass shield come in to play to help during the pandemic.