As many casinos in the gaming industry, Foxwoods Resort Casino offers many giveaways to their patrons at different tier levels. I must say that they offer items that are worth the drive. Some of their jewelry offers have been wonderful. So, yesterday, I drove 40 minutes out of my way home after my job to pick up a terrific giveaway – a Junior’s Cheesecake. If you have ever tasted a Junior’s cheesecake, or many of the other desserts on Junior’s menu, you know how much of a high quality, scrumptious item if is. For what it’s worth, Junior’s breakfast is considered one of the best breakfasts at a New England Casino by NETG as well.
The Junior’s Cheesecake Giveaway was obviously a great offer, because by the time I walked to where the giveaway was (4:30PM, and the giveaway was from 12 Noon – 6:00PM), they were all out! No cheesecakes left with 1 1/2 hours to go. Instead, they were offering everyone who showed up a lofty consolation offer of, ……… wait for it……….. $10 in free slot play! Wow, what a deal.
This was so wrong on so many levels, I don’t know where to begin. Let’s start here. Your Honor, I present my examination into this giveaway:
ARTICLE #1 – DON’T THEY HAVE SOMEONE IN CHARGE OF PLANNING?
It is typical of Foxwoods to run out of giveaway items – as well as many other casinos in and out of New England. Many times, Foxwoods will note on your offers page that what was once available was now sold out – a responsible way of handling offers. They are aware if the number of offered items run out because you must sign up for the offer online or call. Someone must keep track, right. Well, not for Junior’s cheesecake. How can you run out 75% into the giveaway if some is keeping track ahead of time? Obviously, incompetent planning was at the helm – or was it?
ARTICLE #2 – WAS THIS INTENTIONAL?
$10 Free Slot Play (or FSP) is a far cry towards treating Foxwoods guests with respect and does not give them the warm, fuzzy feeling of “we appreciate your play.” In the FAQ’s about the changes in the the Rewards Club (see Foxwoods Rewards – Before and After) Foxwoods states that changes are “…..to provide a better loyalty experience for our loyal and new Foxwoods Rewards Members.” Me thinks they need to look at the way their marketing managers plan these things – if they truly are interested in “….a better loyalty experience for our loyal and new Foxwoods Rewards Members.”
ARTICLE #3 – $10 FREE SLOT PLAY? REALLY?
Now, about FSP. Playing full pay Video Poker (JOB) gives you 8 hands at over 99% at $.25 denomination. But Foxwoods doesn’t have full pay VP in quarters, so an expected value of FSP would be around $8. The chance of making more than $10 is possible, but more often than not improbable. Even less when using it on slots. $10 FSP is not even close to an individual players consolation.
ARTICLE #4 – NON-GAMING DAY & ADT
ADT, or Average Daily Theoretical, is what you are worth to the casino in terms of money spent and time spent on a daily visit. The higher your ADT, the better your offers, or comps, since your worth to casino is also higher. It doesn’t take much – such as short play, or a non-gambling day – to cause your ADT to tumble down to nowhere. This isn’t just at Foxwoods, it’s every casino.
I asked two representatives at the giveaway about using the $10 FSP and leaving. Representative #1 told me that, yes, it would be considered a “non-gambling day” if I played the $10 and left. So let me get this straight – I lose out on the cheesecake, but I get a whole $10 in FSP that probably won’t add up to $10 after play, and it will also damage my ADT? Great plan to get me there, lose the offer I signed up for, and use the consolation prize to lower my Daily Theoretical. Genius!
Representative #2 had a different story. If I played the FSP and left, it wouldn’t count against me. because it was loaded as a different type of FSP. How did I know which rep was accurate? Was I going to risk killing my ADT on this information? NOPE! So, no cheesecake to give me, and Foxwoods gets to keep its $10 FSP offer. Foxwoods marketing score – Foxwoods 1, Patrons nothing.
ARTICLE #5 – THE FINE PRINT
I was told that there is always a chance that running out of the item offered might happen. I was told in an understanding tone that “It’s in the fine print of every offer.” There you go. Buyer beware. It doesn’t matter that they should be responsible in their giveaways because it’s up to us to read the fine print. So basically, it’s our fault. Would you want to gamble your money in a place where they aren’t interested in making it right, just because they point it out TO YOU that “it’s in the fine print.”
ARTICLE #6 – THE COST OF NOT PICKING UP YOUR OFFER
It is usual business practice for casinos all over to charge you out of your personal Rewards Credits if you don’t show up. I understand why, and while I’ve been bitten by this rule, I accept it. If you say you want the offer, then show up!
$10 FSP does not equal the $25 in credits I would have lost for not accepting it. If I just turned around and went home, I would have lost $25 in credits. Instead I had to accept $10 FSP that I couldn’t play. (See Article #4) But let’s take this a huge insane step forward.
To earn one credit playing slots, it takes $200 (according to VPfree2) through the slot machine. Charging anyone $25 in credits then makes the cheesecake worth a whopping $5000 in play. BTW, playing video poker? Double it!
So, to summarize so far – lose 25 credits that cost $5000 in play on slots if you don’t claim it, get $10 FSP that anyone with a decent ADT can’t use – and NO CHEESEECAKE!
Was it a well-thought out plan, knowing the draw of Junior’s Cheesecake? I am giving the benefit of the doubt and saying decisively “no.” BUT, this was not handled well at all, start to finish. Someone in marketing was not thinking of all the possible considerations for their players. It not an example of caring for their clientele. The complete misjudgment of this giveaway logistics shows a failure to understand the patrons. And if anyone at Foxwoods thinks we should all be grateful for any morsel thrown our way for spending our hard-earned money there, it won’t take much to take that money elsewhere – like 10 miles in 2017, or up to Springfield in 2018, or to Boston in 2019.
Bottom line – they’ve got to do better!