Casino players have been peddling a line for far too long. The house always wins. The time has come to set things straight. What you're about to learn in the next 15 casino tips and tricks will completely change the way you think about playing casino games online and at land-based casinos. It's hard to change a mindset, but it's easy to adopt winning ways once you are receptive to change.
This casino tips guide is designed for the winner in every one of us. Believe it or not, there are many casino tricks, tips and strategies you can employ to dramatically change the odds in your favour. How, pray tell? Buckle up folks, this is the real deal.
You’re going to discover exactly what the casinos don't want you to know about beating the house. You've probably heard that the odds are stacked against you, or that the casino always wins in the long term, or that the house edge guarantees that you will lose. Banish those thoughts. The next 15 tips will transform your game for the better. Let’s’ get started!
THE BEST CASINO TIPS ARE:
- Learn the basic rules of blackjack
- Get to know the popular roulette betting systems
- Be aware of the time
- Don't drink too much
- Get to know the basics at slots
- Learn about the casino house edge
- Be aware of playing long-term & short-term
- Payback percentages & table rules
- Always get comps, bonuses or freebies
- Look for flaky dealers
- Demo mode before you play for real
- Check out the goods
- Stay on point
- Never chase your losses
- Pick games with a low house edge
CASINO TIP 1: LEARN THE BASIC RULES OF BLACKJACK
Do you like playing blackjack? This is one of the few casino card games where skill and strategy can actually give you an edge. How? All blackjack games have a set number of cards in play. Every time a card is dealt, it is effectively removed from the deck thereby changing the odds of all other cards remaining in the deck.
Blackjack card counters typically assign a value of +1, -1, or 0 to low cards, high cards, and neutral cards respectively. This is a tough first tip to digest, but it's an important one. Low-value cards include 2-3-4-5-6. High-value cards include 10-Jack-King-Queen-King-Ace. Neutral cards include 7-8-9.
At the start of every hand, the running count is 0. Why? Because an equal number of high cards and low cards are in the deck. When there are plenty of low cards on the table, this means they are not in the shoe and the card count will be high.
This is great news for the player since it means the probability of the dealer busting is higher and there is a greater chance of hitting a blackjack. A positive running counting blackjack indicates that there are more 10-value cards to be dealt with while a negative running count indicates that there are more low-value cards to be dealt.
While you learn to master the running count in blackjack, don't forget to keep an eye out on the rules of the table. Many players get caught with the payouts on blackjack. Check to see whether you're playing at a 6:5 table or a 3:2 table. What's the difference?
At a 6:5 table, you win $6 for every $5 that you bet.
For a $100 bet, you would win $120. But if you were playing at a traditional 3:2 table, your blackjack would pay out $150 for every $100 bet. It's a pretty significant difference and it's really important to carefully select blackjack tables based on the right ratios.
CASINO TIP 2: GET TO KNOW THE POPULAR ROULETTE BETTING SYSTEMS
Seasoned roulette players are well familiar with what we are about to tell you. As a novice, you may not know it, but different roulette games have different odds. There are 3 broad categories of roulette games, including European Roulette, French Roulette, and American Roulette. At first glance, they all feature a roulette wheel and a racetrack.
The devil is in the details (no pun intended even though the numbers on the roulette wheel add up to 666). European Roulette features a single green 0 and numbers 1-36. There are 37 numbers on the wheel and a house edge of 2.70%. That means the return to player is 97.30% on average. For every $100 you wager, you can expect to theoretically win back $97.30. That doesn't really happen in practice, but it makes this game appealing.
American Roulette is incredibly popular all over the world. It's a little bit surprising that so many players choose this over other variants, given that there are more numbers to bet on and less favorable player odds.On an American Roulette wheel, players have the option to bet on 0, 00, and numbers 1-36. With 38 numbers on the board, the house edge ramps up to 5.26%. Any single number still pays 35:1, even though there are 38 numbers on the board. Savvy?
A little high school math quickly indicates that this is the least favourable game for roulette fans. On the plus side, American Roulette offers you additional betting options with an extra 00. Since gambling games are the perfect fusion of bankroll management, strategy, and lots of good fortune, you may find your 4-leaf clover with this game.
With French Roulette, you’re dealing with a different game. For starters, the French design, layout, and wording make for a unique experience. This game differs from all others in that there are 2 specific rules in play. En Prison and La Partage. Let's say you placed an even money bet with a payout of 1:1 and the green 0 lands. In European Roulette and American Roulette, you would lose your bet completely.
In French Roulette, the En Prison rule means that your bet will be imprisoned until the next spin. If your even-money bet lands, you will receive a payout. With La Partage, you will forfeit 50% of your bet to the house and get to keep 50% if you've placed an even money bet and the green 0 lands. This reduces the house edge to as little as 1.35%.
CASINO TIP 3: BE AWARE OF THE TIME
Ever visited an Atlantic City casino? Perhaps a Las Vegas casino? Chances are you've never seen a clock anywhere at the casino. It's ingenious really. Casino designers don't want players to know what time it is. Why? You would think that with all the restaurants, cabarets, extravaganzas, comedy shows, and performances taking place that players would benefit from having clocks posted at strategic locations around the casino.
But no, land-based casinos have no desire to keep you in the loop. If you knew what time it was, you would likely curtail your game playing and rush off to dinner, to a show, or to the swimming pool. But it's not only the absence of clocks that you will observe; there are no windows to the outside world. Casinos are self-contained entities that defy time, space, and reality.
Next time you visit a land-based casino, be sure to take your smartphone with you to keep track of the time. All of your gambling activity must have time constraints on it. The longer you sit at a casino table game, slot machine game, or card game, the bigger your losses. There is a clear correlation between time spent gambling and player losses. You always want to minimize your gambling sessions to set intervals of 15 minutes, 30 minutes, or 45 minutes and then walk away.
Provided you manage your bankroll effectively, the only way to mitigate losses is time management. Expert gamblers routinely advise newbies to limit their sessions to set time periods. This tip will always serve you well, whether you're an amateur or a pro.
CASINO TIP 4: DON'T DRINK TOO MUCH
One of the first things novice players tend to promote casinos is the abundance of free drinks on the floor. If this is the first time you've heard about this, congratulations! But let’s backtrack for a second.
Are you familiar with TANSTAAFL? It’s an accounting term that means there ain't no such thing as a free lunch. It's true in economics and it's certainly true at the casinos. If they are prepared to give you free drinks while you are sitting at a roulette game, there's a reason for it.
Players who drink lose their inhibitions. This means they bet more and lose more. As a player, you may be encouraged by the prospect of free drinks while you are gambling. It's a great deal, right? Only for the casino. If you are going to go for the free drinks option, be sure that you are gambling at low stakes tables. Stick to your limits with drinks and chips, and you'll be just fine.
CASINO TIP 5: GET TO KNOW THE BASICS AT SLOTS
Slots machine games are the stars of the show at every single casino. There is no doubt players love them, and for good reason. With slot games, you don't have to learn any complicated betting systems, rules, or gambling strategies. You simply deposit your cash, coins, or card and click the button to get started. What the casinos don't tell you about slot machine games is that they are notoriously bad payers.
Around 50% – 60% of all games at a casino are slot games. They are the money spinners par excellence. Whether you're playing penny slots or quarter slots, chances are you’re going to lose a bundle in the long term. The return to player percentage on many slot machine games is unpublished, but casino insiders know that these games have a highly undesirable house edge for players.
This means that for every $100 that you bet on slot games, you can expect to win back $93.42 on the best paying games and just $85.02 on the worst paying slots. Again, this is just for illustrative purposes; most people will lose the entire $100 since they are playing in the short term.
You may be tempted to try your luck at progressive jackpot slot machine games. These are the money spinners. Jackpot prize totals routinely hit stratospheric numbers, with multi-million-dollar payouts awarded to winners.
But there's just one problem with progressive slot games – your odds. To get these mega-money payouts, scores of players must compete for the prize pool. With these games, a small percentage of every real-money bet goes towards the progressive jackpot.
As more players compete, so the jackpot grows bigger. Let's assume there are 500 people playing one slot machine game (non-progressive) and 10,000 people playing another slot machine game (progressive jackpot game). What are your chances of winning in each game?
CASINO TIP 6: LEARN ABOUT THE HOUSE EDGE
UNLV Center for Gaming Research studies clearly show that casino mathematics is important for many reasons. The house edge will vary from one game to the next. This indicates a player's chance of winning in a casino game. The higher the house edge, the lower the chance the player will win.
The opposite of a house edge is the return to player percentage. Take American Roulette as a case in point. The formula used to determine the house advantage is the following: EV = (+5) (18/38) + (-5) (20/38) = -0.263. The house advantage in this game is 5.26%. This formula applies to the odds of placing a bet on red or black in roulette when there is an equal number of red and black options in addition to the green 0 and green 00.
When it comes to single number betting in American Roulette, the formula indicates the following percentages and house advantage: EV = (+35)(1/38) + (-1)(37/38) = -0.053. The house edge, in this case, is 5.3%. On European Roulette wheels, the odds differ significantly.
The formula used for determining the house edge is as follows: EV = (+35)(1/37) + (-1)(36/37) = -0.027. The house advantage, in this case, is 2.70%. You certainly don't have to study these mathematical formulae; simply understand that there is a valid reason why players pick certain roulette variants over others.
CASINO TIP 7: BE AWARE OF PLAYING LONG-TERM & SHORT-TERM
All the numbers you are bombarded with from casinos are applicable to long-term averages. This means that the casino odds are calculated over tens of thousands of spins, deals, and draws. While mention is often made of return to player and house edge, the most important aspects of casino game mathematics are hardly ever popularized in the media.
These include things like the differences between odds and probability, risk and volatility, player value, etcetera. Many of these concepts are beyond the scope of this article and require an in-depth understanding of standard deviations, variance, number of trials, and so forth.
Suffice it to say, your chances of success at a casino are always much greater in the short term. First of all, nobody has an infinite bankroll and even if you did the casino would win in the long term. The house edge that is built into every single casino game ensures that the casino will win in the long term.
However, no house edge can beat lady luck at blackjack tables, roulette tables, slot machine games, or video poker terminals. Picture this; you've got a $100 bankroll and you decide to play 5 different numbers in 5 games of roulette with $20 on each round. If just one of your numbers comes up in those 5 games, you will multiply your bankroll by 35 X $20. That means you can walk away a winner in the short term.
The same is true of slot machine games. Nobody says you can't win big within your first couple of spins. It's possible to generate outsized returns in the short term on any slot machine game, since these games are based on chance – nothing else. The longer you play, the more money you burn through.
Players on a winning streak wrongly believe that that streak will continue unabated. So instead of walking away with their winnings, they plough their money back into the casino games and lose everything. If you are looking to walk away from the casino with cash in hand, always stick to the rules listed above. Limit your gaming sessions to preset intervals of play, and pick games with higher payback percentages.
Here's another fact that theorists don't publicize: Very few players are long-term players. Even if you play 1000 games of roulette in your lifetime, you’re still considered a short-term player. That's good news because the percentages don't necessarily apply to you. Be an informed bettor and make the right selections.
CASINO TIP 8: PAYBACK PERCENTAGES & TABLE RULES
Every casino game has a different RTP. Keno, for example, has a house edge between 10% and 40%. Games like Big Six have a house edge of 11.11%, American Roulette 5.26%, European Roulette 2.70%, Craps bets on don't come and don't pass line 1.36%, French Roulette as low as 1.35%, Bacarrat 1.06% on Banker Bet, Blackjack as low as 0.5% – 2.0% depending on the rules of the table.
CASINO TIP 9: ALWAYS GET COMPS, BONUSES OR FREEBIES
Whether you're playing at a land-based casino or an online casino, be sure to get as many freebies as you can. Online casinos offer many value-added extras such as welcome bonuses, returning player bonuses, free spin offers, no deposit bonuses, game-specific promotional offers, and bonuses for using certain payment processing options. At land-based casinos, you will often get comped with free drinks, free parking, meal vouchers, gaming credits and the like. Use these bonuses to offset the costs of playing casino games.
CASINO TIP 10: LOOK FOR FLAKY DEALERS
There are many different types of casino dealers. Some of them are picture-perfect professionals, while others are less attentive to players and what they're doing. The only way you'll know the difference is by spending time at a casino and watching the dealers as they play.
If a blackjack dealer is a little sloppy with respect to his/her hole card, you may be able to capitalize off this information. Remember, your actions at a blackjack table depend on the two cards that you are dealt initially and the dealer’s up card. If you happen to see the dealers face-down card, more power to you. That information is worth a fortune at the table – exploit it if you can.
CASINO TIP 11: DEMO MODE BEFORE YOU PLAY FOR REAL
Almost every casino game you will ever play is available in demo play mode online. You may have to register at a reputable online casino to practice these games in demo mode before you can put your skills to the test in real money mode.
There are many benefits to this strategy. For starters, you don't have to waste your precious bankroll on games that you know nothing about and perhaps may not even enjoy. Demo play also gives you the option to understand the game mechanics better so that you are ready to make the switch to real-money gaming. This means you don't have to pay for your learning curve. A big win for you!
CASINO TIP 12: CHECK OUT THE GOODS
If roulette is your game of choice, congrats! Believe it or not, roulette wheels are complex mechanical machines which endure lots of wear and tear over time. If you happen to be at the right place, at the right time, you may stumble upon a biased roulette wheel. Now, remember casinos have no intention of providing players with a biased roulette wheel under any circumstances. These things happen gradually and unexpectedly.
A biased wheel will tend towards certain numbers or quadrants of the roulette wheel. It happens when things like the frets between numbers on the wheel get worn away through constant use.
If a fret is lower or higher than surrounding frets, this will impact where the ball will land. By keeping a watch on the roulette results board, you may start to uncover patterns of results. This can be an indicator of a biased roulette wheel.
Recall the story of legendary gambler Joseph Jagger in 1873? He scooped up a fortune by carefully documenting the results of roulette spins and placing wagers on biased wheels. His technique involved bringing multiple players to the casino in Monte Carlo and taking advantage of imperfections on the roulette wheel. They found a sequence of numbers that frequently occurred. At the time, he racked up £60,000+. This is an example of an effective short-term betting strategy.
CASINO TIP 13: STAY ON POINT
Drinking and driving is a no-no. Apply that same reasoning to real money betting at a casino. You're always at your sharpest when you're sober. This means things like drugs, alcohol, stimulants, sedatives, and even laxatives should probably be avoided. You want to be able to focus on nothing else but the game..
CASINO TIP 14: NEVER CHASE YOUR LOSSES
Your gambling budget is there for a reason. Once you have exhausted your budget, walk away. Try your luck another day!
CASINO TIP 15: PICK GAMES WITH A LOW HOUSE EDGE
Pick poker games with a low house edge like Caribbean Stud Poker 5.22%, Let it Ride 3.51%, and Pai Gow Poker 1.46%. Video Poker has one of the most player-friendly odds of all at 0.46% when you’re playing 9/6 Jacks or Better. These games allow players to hold or fold up to 5 cards. After the first draw, you’ll have an opportunity to draw the second round of cards. The computer instantly determines winning hands.
*Note that these percentages may fluctuate depending on the rules of the game, and the casino in question.