When I first started gambling in casinos, I didn’t think about anything but having fun and hoping to win. This strategy didn’t pay too well, so I eventually started thinking about other factors before deciding to gamble.
It took a long time, but I eventually figured out that I wasn’t thinking about the right things, and that when I changed what I was thinking about I started getting better results.
Here are six things that I started thinking about instead of hoping to win and having fun.
1 – How Much You Spend Getting There and Getting Home
When you take a close look at how much money you lose in a casino, it can be painful. If you’re gambling for entertainment, the cost of playing in a casino isn’t really that different than the cost of other forms of entertainment. And the best thing about gambling in a casino for entertainment is that most other forms don’t have the possibility of paying you back more than you spend.
The problem is that your losses aren’t the only amount of money you spend when you gamble in a casino. At real money online casinos, there are a few costs that most gamblers never think about as well.
Another cost that most people ignore is the time it takes to get to the casino and to get home. While you’re going to eat every day anyway, most people spend more money eating at a casino than they spend eating at home.
The costs aren’t as high when you gamble through an online casino, but you still have the cost of internet service, a computer, tablet, or cell phone and the service for that.
2 – The True Cost of Free Drinks
When I started gambling in casinos, which has been many years ago, it seemed like every casino I visited offered free drinks to gamblers.
While it might not seem like there could be any cost associated with getting free drinks, the truth is that there are costs. And these costs can be big. The thing that’s important to remember is that casinos don’t tend to do anything that doesn’t help their profits.
How can giving away free drinks help the profits of the casino? And what are the pros and cons of drinking and gambling?
People who gamble in a casino lose more money when they’re drinking. Alcohol can make you less likely to stop gambling when you need to, and it hurts your ability to make good decisions.
Most gamblers also tip the server when they bring your free drink. Even if you just tip $1 each time, this is still $5 in expenses if you have five drinks during your playing session.
3 – The Cost of the Players Club
The first thing you need to understand is that if you play in a casino that has a players club of some sort, you should be a member. It might be called a slots club or a loyalty rewards program, but all of these clubs work basically the same way. You earn rewards of some sort when you gamble.
These clubs don’t cost anything to join, and even if you’re a low roller, you earn a free buffet meal or get a free shirt or something. And if you’re a high roller, you can earn all kinds of nice casino comps like free rooms, free flights, and other high-end products and services.
Just like getting free drinks, the question you might be asking is, “How can being a member of the players club have a cost?”
If you don’t change anything about the way you gamble, including how long you gamble and how much you risk, the players club doesn’t cost anything. But this isn’t what happens with most casino gamblers.
Most casino players who join the rewards club end up gambling longer and/or risking more so they can earn more rewards through the program. Never forget that the casino wouldn’t offer a players club if it didn’t help them earn a higher profit.
4 – How Bad Slots Hurt Your Bankroll
Every casino I’ve ever been in has had more people playing slots than every other game. If the casino had 100 people in it, over 50 of them would be playing slots. The numbers show that real money slot machines are the most popular form of gambling in casinos.
This is the main reason why casinos are so profitable. Slot machines have a lower return percentage than most games. And even though you can play for a low cost per spin, most gamblers end up risking more money on average every hour on the slots than other games because they make hundreds of spins.
For example, if you bet $2 a spin on a slot machine with a 92% return and make 550 spins every hour, you’re going to lose $88 an hour on average. While every slot machine has a unique return percentage, the 92% I use for this example is within the overall range of slot machines. And 550 spins an hour is easy to achieve on most slot machines.
The next time you think about playing slots, think about just how bad they’re hurting your bankroll.
5 – Blackjack Payouts
Blackjack is the second most popular game in many casinos, and it has a much higher return percentage than most slot machines. In fact, if you don’t know anything about any of the games in the casino, blackjack is almost always your best choice.
The problem is that not every blackjack game is the same. And the biggest difference in blackjack games is how much the game pays when you get a blackjack. Other rules also influence your return, but none of the other rules influence the return as much as what a blackjack pays.
If the only blackjack game available pays 6:5 for blackjack, you can get better returns with certain bets at the baccarat table and at the craps table. And you can often find a video poker machine that offers a higher return as well.
6 – Looking for the Poker Room
Not every casino has a poker room, but when a casino does, the best games are in there. Poker is one of the few games offered in casinos where you can use skill to make a profit. Of course, if you don’t learn how to use your skills in the right way, the poker room can be just as costly as other games.
I tend to play more poker than other casino games because of this. It’s taken me several years to build my poker skills. But now, I have a better chance to win in the poker room than anywhere else in the casino.
Take some time to study beginning poker strategy and consider looking for the poker room the next time you’re in a casino. Don’t expect to start winning right away, but if you find that you like to play, it can be a good option.
You can buy books that teach you proper strategy, and there are dozens of good online resources for poker players. And you can learn by playing with friends and practicing different techniques. Unlike most games in the casino, you can learn to play in a way that helps you win.
Casino gambling can be a costly hobby. But your losses in the casino at the slot machines and the tables aren’t your only costs. You need to start tracking every cost associated with your casino play to get a true picture of how much gambling really costs you.
You also need to be aware of how much some of the free things the casino are actually a ploy to get you to spend more money.
If you play slots, you need to understand your odds of winning, and consider looking for the poker room or a blackjack table with decent payouts instead.