Casinos can be imposing, overwhelming places. Other, more experienced players can often make a newcomer feel intimidated and unwelcome. These situations can easily be avoided by knowing the basics of casino etiquette.
For many new players, the slot machines are the most familiar and least threatening of all the games in a casino. It’s easy to plop in a coin, or buy a stack of coins and sit for hours in front of one machine spinning reels or playing cartoon bonus rounds. Virtually all modern slot machines now take notes, and an increasing number payout in tickets that can either be cashed at the cage or simply taken to another machine and used like cash. In many casinos, this new type of gambling has made any contact with a cashier completely obsolete.
The note machines will take any denomination from £1 upwards. After the note is inserted, the machines will most likely register credits on the machine rather than spit out the corresponding number of coins or tokens. If you prefer to play with coins, however, it’s simply a matter of hitting the cash button that will spill the coins into the pay-out tray of the slot machine. Of course, with the increasing number of ticket-printing machines in modern casinos, even this tried-and-true practice may be on its way to becoming obsolete.
Choosing which slot machine to play is generally as simple as deciding what denomination you want to use. Remember two things: the larger the denomination, the larger the payout; and slot machines are programmed to win.
Casino executives love slot machines, which is a good reason why you should not. In the past 20 years, the percentage of casino revenue taken by slot machines has changed places with that of table games. It used to be that the table games accounted for over 60 per cent of casino revenue. Slot machines were provided for their entertainment value and aimed at the wives of the table game players.
Things began to change as table game players got older, and began to disappear. Newer casino customers weren’t comfortable with table games, but responded to the more modem and recognizable slot machines. With credit- or debit-card machines, computers and televisions now ingrained in our culture, slot machines became the choice of many of the casinos’ younger customers.
Today, slot machines account for over 70 per cent of casino revenue. In some places, it’s even higher. Table games, meanwhile, have undergone a dramatic decline in interest. Players continue to disappear, and attracting new table-game players is costly for the casinos.
Because most table games offer a house edge that is significantly less than most slot machines, casino executives don’t lose any sleep over players moving from those games to slot machines.
Even slot machines that have good payout percentages (the ratio of money returned to the player to the money played) generally pay back far less than a player can achieve by playing intelligently at a craps table, blackjack or in the baccarat pit. Even American roulette tables pay back more than the average slot machine payout.
Yes, slot machines are fun and non-intimidating, but they also take your money faster than any major table game. And, by sitting in front of a slot machine the entire day, you miss out on the social interaction that can be so rewarding in the casino. Break down the barriers and give table games a try.