The Ultimate Truth About Casino Players Cards & Slot Machines

  players-clubIt amazes me to see people sinking their money into a machine with out having a card inserted in the card reader. So, here is the Ultimate Truth About Casino Players Cards & Slot Machines. There are appropriate times to not your rewards card, but we’ll save that for a future post.

I sometimes ask people why they don’t use a card and have received several interesting answers. One day, someone was spouting off every slot myth in the book. He was trying to inform everyone around him, whether they cared or not.  However, his biggest sin was that he had taken out his card to “get a bonus” for nearly 10 minutes of big play.  His bet was over $8.00 a whack! Just think of the comps he missed due to his “Casino Paranoia.”

I Heard some rewards card myths

All of the following was either told to me or overheard. They are completely false and I provide an explanation why.  But some slot players build their play on suspicions and conspiracy theories.  Are you aware of that “switch upstairs.”  You know that switch, the one that changes the machines from hot to cold and vice versa. I hope you don’t believe in any of the following:

“I don’t play enough to earn anything.”  Rewards points can add up quickly, especially on multiplier day promotions. Take advantage of multiplier days to increase your points and tier status.

“When I use my card the machine knows and doesn’t pay off.”  There is no connection between the card reader and the slot machine. There is NO WAY that using a card will affect the way a machine pays. They are two separate systems.

download (4)“I don’t want to give out my address to the casino.”  The casino cannot send you any promotions if they don’t have your address.  Some high rollers play without their rewards card at tables so they stay anonymous.  But as face recognition software gets better, even that may become difficult.

“I take my card out and I get a bonus – explain that!” Again, there is no connection between the card reader and the slot machine. There is NO WAY that using a card will affect the way a machine pays. Two completely different systems that don’t communicate between each other.

“Playing with your slots club card decreases your chances of winning.” The theory is that the casinos want you to win less in order to recoup the perks and rebates that you receive from playing with the slot machine club. The reality is that the amount of money returned is negligible, and the casinos don’t mind paying it.  Your perks depends on your theoretical value.

Related Post –  Average Daily Theoretical.

More Crazy Talk -The Ultimate Truth About Casino Players Cards & Slot Machines

“When I use my card, I never win. The machine knows and it doesn’t pay off.” Although a very interesting and popular myth, this is absolutely false. The notion that using a casino club card lowers the odds of winning is a big misconception, and quite frankly illegal.  Remember, the players club software is a different system and does not have a connection to the Random Number Generator working in the machine.

download (5)“The slot machine can tell the difference between playing maximum and minimum.” That’s why I take out my card when I change my bet.”  The number of coins played has no effect on whether or not the winning symbols will line up. It only determines how much you will win or lose. Many players will vary the number of coins they play per spin because they believe there is a pattern that can make them winners. Some players will even cash out during their playing sessions so the machine will “think” a new player has started playing. Slot machines are computers and there is no way they “know” when a new player starts playing. The RNG is continuously running and is used only to select the next win or loss.

“Using a player card enables the casino to report my winnings to the IRS.” The fact is, it makes no difference. If you win $1,200 or more they will report it either way. If you have a net losing year, which you probably will, at least the casino will have evidence of it. Use your annual win/loss statements to declare offsetting loses to jackpot wins.

When Not to use your Rewards Card

When your amount of $$ played will be substantially less than a ‘typical’ day, don’t play with your card.  If you are rated based on average of $300/day, $25 on the last day only hurts your Average Daily Theoretical. But, only if you are a second tier player or higher.  Changes in your ADT will diminish your comps.

ADT has little to no effect on small stakes gamblers. If you are not going to be getting food comps and free shows anyhow, I’d recommend using your card all the time.

It’s Storytime

A friend of mine, with only a few years of casino experience under his belt made a huge mistake. He used to visit the local casino about 4-8 times per month. Most of the time, he stopped in only to play his free slot play and leave. Of course, he used his rewards card to access his freeplay.  Every month after that, freeplay diminished month by month. It was the worst use of a rewards club card.

Another friend of mine with years of casino experience will also stop by his local casino about 4-8 times per month. This guy doesn’t use his card during short plays. He plays a little VP or Keno, enjoys a drink, and is on his way with no record of small play. He otherwise uses his card all the time.

And, yes, I’m sure you have realized by now both of these are me.  Experience has a lot of worth in the casino world.

Beware of Chasing Comps

Please Note – One of the most-common mistakes in gambling involves chasing comps. Far too many players think that they should continue gambling just to earn a specific reward. A player may realize that they’re close to earning enough points for a free meal. Therefore, they continue spinning the reels two hours longer to reach this comp.

I have no problem with people continuing to play slot machines, but I hate to see gamblers play slots longer just for comps alone. The key thing to realize here is that the rewards are never worth the theoretical losses you’ll spend to reach them. You’ll rack up more losses when doing so. If you’re somebody who has trouble chasing losses and/or extending sessions too long, then you’ll likely have trouble with pursuing comps. Just don’t do anything that encourages you to gamble beyond your means.

Play sensible, play with knowledge, and play responsibly with your Players Card. For more information about The Ultimate Truth About Casino Players Cards & Slot Machines, click ob the link from Casino Player below.

Related Post – Players Clubs 101

Binbin

15 Ways to Improve Your Slot Machine Etiquette

As with most behavior in public spaces, behaving properly usually helps provide a better experience for you and for those around you.  No where in the casino could that be true than the winding rows of slot machines, where, at busy times, you could find yourself shoulder to shoulder with a variety of others.

Slot Machines

There’s a lot of slot machines to choose from out there!

To some, how “best to behave” is another way people try to harsh one’s happiness.  Alas, that usually is just nonsense from those who only want to do what they want at whatever expense there is to the rest of us, as if they are more important, more entitled – special.

The following also relates to playing video poker.  With either machine, while we enjoy the solitary play, one vs. machine, or want to make new friends while playing, consider the suggestions below.

Slot Machinr / Video Poker Etiquette.

  1. Slot machine etiquette teaches that you should never touch the slot machine of another player. You should also not lean on their chair or shoulder as this motion could cause them to jerk and hit the wrong button concerning denomination or number of credits.
  2. Slot machine etiquette allows a person to play two slot machines that are right next to each other as long as the casino is not overly crowded. There will be times in which people are waiting to sit down that a slot attendant might ask a player playing two slot machines to end one of their sessions.

    Territorial – “I am playing all these Machines!”

  3. Slot machine etiquette frowns on those people that pound the buttons on a slot machine rapidly for good luck. Also, many casinos will frown on this since this wears the slot machines out over time. Plus, this is just distracting to other players around.
  4. If you are going to watch a person play a slot machine, do not sit in the chair next to them unless you plan on playing yourself. This takes a seat away from someone else. Slot attendants will usually be quick to ask you to please move. This is a true no-no of slot machine etiquette.
  5. Understand the rules before you sit down. Is the slot machine progressive? Is it a community game involving other players? How do you get the bonus(es)? Take time to watch the game from afar or how about this – check the menu and actually read the game rules and pay table! Don’t be lazy and expect others to teach you on their time.
  6. If someone has leaned their stool or chair up against the slot machine, this usually means they haven’t finished playing it. Usually the person playing the slot machine has just went to the bathroom or to get a drink. Even if they haven’t got any money in the slot machine, by leaving their chair or stool leaning up against it they are stating that the machine is in use, so don’t think that you can just go up and play.
    If you’re that person, as an act of courtesy, you must not leave the slot machine reserved for several minutes. Get back to the machine immediately. (of course, casinos will favor high rollers and shut down a machine for hours)
  7. Playing multiple slot machines or video poker machines simultaneously is not encouraged whether the casino is crowded or not. But, it is more tolerated when the casino isn’t busy. Besides, it does not improve your odds to play more than one machine at a time. Give someone else a chance to play.
  8. There are times that some players have forgotten their players card within the slot machine. When you found this out, it is a practice that you must put the card on the top or to the side of the machine where the previous player can easily see and get the forgotten card.
  9. Do not watch others play over their shoulder if they do not know you, that’s just creepy !!!! In small casinos it seems to be accepted to do that once your money runs out…just wander over and watch a total stranger play. Like I said – CREEPY!!
  10. Don’t be a slob! – Ashes, spilled drinks, coughing without covering, sticky hands from food – these are just some of the things that annoy your fellow players. (Suggestion – always have hand sanitizer when playing.  It comes in handy)

    Drinks, cigarettes – what a mess!

  11. Don’t share your superstitions, myths, or ignorance of how these machines work with those around you. Denomination, rhythm, which buttons to push, whether your rewards card is used or not – these are all just ignorant nonsensical notions of those players who just want attention.  Ig
    nore their suggestions.  The random-number-generator runs the machine, period.
  12. If you need to use the restroom, put your service light on.  As long as you are not taking a 15 minute break, slot attendants are around to help you out in this area.  DON’T ASK THE PLAYER NEXT TO YOU TO WATCH YOUR MACHINE!  Let them have their fun without feeling like a hostage until you decide to come back. My response to strangers who ask is “No, thank you.  I don’t know how long I will be here.”
  13. Wash your hands frequently, especially when using the restroom facilities. (Gentlemen, and I use the term loosely, WASH YOUR HANDS!)
  14. Don’t “hover” over a machine you want to play.  Some people watch a person’s credits and watch until the player is done so they can “POUNCE!”  If I feel that kind of pressure from someone, I will use my phone, check my wallet, stand and stretch – basically anything to waste time to let them know that no kind of predatory pressure will make me succumb to their creepiness.
  15. That brings us to the last point when it comes to behaving properly at the slot machines – tipping.

    Service with a smile? – Tip!

    When to tip? While tipping is a personal decision there are certain times where it’s customary to tip. For example, when you’re receiving a jackpot payout that a floor attendee must help you with, it’s customary to tip them (Granted, if the service is lousy and the attendant is incredibly slow to pay you out or perhaps not professional, you can think twice about tipping.) The rule of thumb is usually to tip around .5 – 1% of the jackpot amount, make sure to keep this in mind when working on your bankroll management budget.  Concerning beverages, yes they are free in many casinos, but tip the staff as you would in a restaurant. Again, if the service is lousy, don’t.  But if you especially make a specific request, be sure to tip.

Unlike some table games, slot machine etiquette is pretty easy to comprehend. With a little respect towards fellow gamblers and adherence to the golden rule, you’ll be able to improve the experience of other players, as well as your own. Use common sense, and be courteous to those around you.
That basically covers it. Bottom line is have fun, stay healthy, enjoy recreational gambling – but not at somebody else’s expense.

Binbin

Slot Machines – When to Play Max Bet

The First 3 reel slot machine

The First 3 reel slot machine

One of the most debated topics regarding slot machines, and video poker, concerns max bet, specifically when should I hit that bet max button. Max Bet or Maximum Bet is the highest amount of coins or credits you can play in a single spin.

Max Bet Slot ButtonsThe answer to the question depends on the machine being played. When it comes to slots, you have to know the machine that you are playing. It’s simple, really, if you know the pay out structure of the machine.  If Max Bet gives you a higher pay out other than just the 2x, 3x, 4x, etc. of the original bet, you bet Max Bet – and if that total bet is too high for your bankroll, move on to another similar machine with a payout that suits your it.

A word of caution – many of the same type of slot machine – can include payoffs of all the kinds listed below.  Your job is to check the machine for what kind it is.  I repeat – READ THE MACHINE.

Here’s the break down of different versions of slot machines that you should, OR should not be betting Max Bet, using different machines to illustrate.

CLASSIC REELS & VIDEO SLOTS with STRAIGHT MULTIPLIER

Many slot machines, video and classic reels, pay out a straight multiplier.  In other words, playing $1 will pay the same on all other bets x (times) the number of coins. In other words, if you are playing a game where all of the jackpots are in proportion then it is totally up to you whether you bet max. NETG ADVICE: Playing Max Bet is not necessary.  Play the denomination comfy for you.

CLASSIC SLOT MACHINES with HIGHER PAY for MAX BET

Notice the three Payouts.

Notice the three Payouts.

Classic slots are the original version and are still popular today.  Some examples include Double Diamonds, Red, White & Blue, and Blazing 7’s. You might have a game that pays 1,000 for one coin, 2,000 for two coins and 5,000 for the max of three coins. In this case you get an additional 3,000 coins for just one extra coin bet. NETG ADVICE: Play Max Bet or drop down in denomination to be able to play Max according to your bankroll. 

“BUY A PAY” Slot Machines

Three different pays for 1, 2, or 3 coins.

Three different pays for 1, 2, or 3 coins.

There is one type of classic slots that require max bet. These games are known as “buy a pay.” Quite simply they have two or three different pay tables. Each coin activates an additional pay table. Mostly Classic reals have this variation, like Red, White & Blue. If you play less than max bet you cannot win any of the top prizes even if you hit the right symbols. NETG ADVICE: Play Max Bet or drop down in denomination to be able to play Max according to your bankroll. 

PROGRESSIVE SLOTS

Wheel of Fortune Slot
There is one type of slot machine that makes playing max bet an absolute must – games with a progressive jackpot. Almost all progressives require that you bet the maximum number of coins to qualify for the top jackpot. If you play less than max you cannot win the top jackpot. Probably, the most famous brand from IGT is “Wheel of Fortune.” NETG doesn’t recommend playing progressives unless you intend to play max. You are much better off going for a non progressive slot. This is because you can hit the top winning combo and in some cases get nothing because you are a few coins short, or just a fraction of the main progressive jackpot.  NETG ADVICE: Play Max Bet, period.    

Quick Hit Slot Machine

Quick Hit Slot Machine

Some progressive slots, like the many versions of “Quick Hit” slots, come in many size max bets, from $1.50 to $5.00 on a penny machine.  Again, read the machine – play to your bankroll.

BONUS FEATURE SLOT MACHINES

 

Hot Shot Slots. 5 Progressive slots within the slot machine, but must play max bet to get access to progressive Jackpots.

On bonus game slots,  like “Hot Shot,” you will be required to play max to win the jackpot and in some cases, like say “Cashman,” you will not have to. NETG ADVICE: Before playing any bonus game slot be sure to read the pay table to find out if max bet is required.Mr. Cashman Slot Machine

 

 

INCREASED PROBABILITY SLOT MACHINES

Some slot machines increase either the type or number of important bonus or wild symbols.  For example, some of Ainsworth Gaming’s slots give a better chance for matching bonus symbols for the free game bonus.  The more coins played, the more matching bonus/progressive symbols appear.  NETG ADVICE: Playing Max Bet is not necessary.  Play the denomination comfy for you.

FINAL NOTE – whatever the slot machine, always play maximum lines, whether it be 1, 3, 5……or 50.  Different from Max Bet, it optimizes your play by covering all possibilities at whatever number of coins you decide to play.

I hope this has been helpful.  The bottom line is you can’t blindly play any old slot machine.  Some machines, such as “Gazellions” by Aristocrat, continues to add the number of possible free games until hit.  If the high number of games are on the top two of four screens, playing only $.50 to get the super bonus might be your best play.Slot

Bottom Line – Read the machine’s Pay Table and Bonus features, and know if not betting MAX is going to diminish your payouts by not being eligible for the jackpot, or bonus payouts.

Hope this was helpful.

Binbin