The Truth Behind Pulling Your Players Card Out of Your Slot Machine

card slot

Ever take your rewards card out while playing a slot machine?  or playing video poker?

This week, I visited a CT casino.  And while I was playing, the woman next to me hit a bonus and immediately took her players card out.  If you have read previous posts about the myths of gamblers, especially slot players, I just thought to my self “most likely just another superstitious slot player with a crazy irrational thought of casino espionage.”  But then she put it back, and the next bonus, took it out systematically.  So I asked her why she did it.  She replied that she didn’t want the casino to know when she was making money because of tax purposes. By stopping the machine from reporting her bonus win money, “it can’t possibly report what it doesn’t know is coming in the bonus round,” she said.”  Theoretically, she can show LOTS of money going in the machines and much less than actually won coming out… ahh, the tax man can’t take what he doesn’t know you won… (assuming she uses a win/loss statement for taxes).

no card – no report…   interesting, but is her strategy true?

So, I did some studying, and here’s what I found….

When card readers were initially added to slots, players were able to do this successfully.  For example, if someone was dealt a royal flush on a video poker machine, before holding and pressing the deal button, a player would pull out the players card, thus not signaling the win.  When a player put a card in, the values of certain meters in the slot (e.g., coin-in, coin-out) were sent to the players club software to be used as the starting point for the player’s session. When the player pulled out the card, the current values of the meters were sent to the club software and the differences between the ending values and the starting values were used to calculate the player’s action and the amount won or lost.

But, as years went by, and players club systems became more integrated as part of the machine and slot manufacturers became savvy. As reported by John Robinson of the Casino City Times, slot manufacturers have added ways to delay the pulling of the cards information to the casino until after the action of that particular transaction has been finished.

So, tax-wise, it is much less of a positive strategy on today’s slots.

Besides, as I told her, the casino’s interest is really concerned with her money in.  Comps are strictly controlled on slots & VP by casino marketing concerned with money in, not money (or lack of) money out.  In other words, to the casino, slot players losing is not as important as your wagering bet. The machine instantly communicates the credit wins to the slot system and the time it takes crediting your machine and making noise is for your entertainment only.

If it makes you feel better, go ahead, I guess.  But just know their is no logical, scientific reason to pull your card out of it’s slot.

That’s all for now.





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