7 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Heading to the Casino

Thinking Man With Question Marks and Casino Image

There are several things that can make or break a gambling trip.  For example, the casino you decide to gamble at and the people you bring along often directly influence how entertaining the trip turns out to be.

But something just as significant is often overlooked: when you plan to gamble.

Both the day and time window can dramatically impact the nature of the visit. While there might not be a universally agreed-upon time that’s optimal for gambling, there are some things worth considering.

Here are seven questions that gamblers should ask themselves when planning to gamble for real money.

1 ‒ What’s the Goal of Your Visit?

The first thing a gambler should consider is what they hope to get out of their visit.

Casino trips can be informative, profitable, and entertaining. If you’re hoping to get something specific out of the gambling experience, the time in which you choose to visit is crucial.

For those hoping to maximize the entertainment value, weekends and nights are best. Casinos are often more lively and busy during these peak hours.

However, more people typically means more chaos and fewer open seats at tables. Those who aspire to make money at the tables might find it more challenging to do so.

Beginners and gamblers with little experience might also find weekend nights to be unproductive. Learning to gamble at a table in the middle of a casino that’s full of distractions is next to impossible.

Instead, consider visiting during slower periods, like the early afternoon of a weekday. The casino will likely be less entertaining, but it will be easier to focus on gambling.

2 ‒ Who Are You Going With?

The second thing to think about when picking out a time is the people you’ll be gambling with.

Casinos are prime spots for groups of friends, families, and coworkers to visit. Once again, it’s worth considering what the group is expecting from the trip.

For the more raucous groups of people, casinos at their prime hours are a must-see. Big groups will likely fit right in with masses of people hoping to enjoy their night out on the town.

Group of People and Casino Dealer at Blackjack Table, Dealer Hand Placing Chips on Blackjack Table

More subdued crowds might not appreciate the late-night casino scene as much as others. Additionally, certain casinos might not be the best place for families with younger children to walk through.

If you plan to visit a casino by yourself, the choice is much less complicated. Solo gamblers can more easily find open seats at tables as they don’t have to concern themselves with accommodating others.

3 ‒ Where Are You Gambling?

In many cases, casinos can look completely different during the day than at night.

During a weekday, a casino might be laid-back, the perfect spot to camp out at a blackjack table. But if you came back on a Friday night, the once nearly-empty gambling establishment would be virtually unrecognizable.

This is often the case in certain gambling cities like Las Vegas. If you’re planning a gambling vacation, the time you choose to visit these cities is crucial.

Slower times will be both less expensive and potentially less entertaining. Airfare, room and board, and even gambling is cheaper when the casino sees less foot traffic.

Sometimes, it’s possible to cut your expenses in half if you push a weekend trip forward a few days. But there’s nothing quite like walking along the Vegas Strip on a Friday night.

The decision ultimately comes down to whether or not the spectacle is worth increasing your vacation budget. In truth, there isn’t a wrong answer, as both weekday and weekend gambling trips each have their pros and cons.

4 ‒ What Games Do You Want to Play?

Most casino veterans prefer certain games over others. As it turns out, some games are more enjoyable in the day than at night and vice versa.

Take a game of blackjack, for example. Some might prefer playing with one or two tablemates to ensure a quick tempo and a maximum number of hands played per hour.

Others might enjoy sitting at a full table as the casino hums along around them. It all comes down to personal preference.

Bobby's Poker Room at the Bellagio Casino, Poker Cards Spread

If you want to play live dealer table games and enjoy a more laid-back gambling experience, then weekday gambling is your best bet. The casino won’t be as lively, and you’ll be more likely to find an open table.

On the other hand, social butterflies should try to gamble at night or on the weekend. Casinos are at their best or worst, depending on who you ask after the sun sets.

For those of you who tend to gravitate towards slots or video poker machines, any time of the day should work for you. It’s typically quite easy to find a secluded machine away from all of the action.

5 ‒ How Long Do You Plan on Gambling?

It can be difficult to manage your time with complete efficiency when gambling at a casino. You might think you’ll be able to keep track of time, but it’s often harder than you think.

Despite that fact, it’s a good idea to establish how long you would like to gamble. That way, you can budget responsibly and not set yourself up to fail at the casino tables.

If you plan to spend a fair amount of time gambling, you might just see both sides of life inside a casino. When funding and time management aren’t an issue, it’s entertaining to arrive early enough to watch a casino spring into action.

Sometimes, though, people prefer to gamble without a tremendous number of distractions. If that’s the case, the earlier you arrive at the casino, the better.

Once things start getting a bit more chaotic and tables start to fill up, you can simply cash out and call it a day.

6 ‒ How Much Money Do You Want to Spend?

Before you set off for the casino, you need to set a gambling budget (or bankroll). Doing so will limit any catastrophic mistakes that can put you in financial peril.

If you come up with an amount of money you’re comfortable gambling with, then you’ll remove any potential stress and set yourself up for success. Once you establish that amount, there are a few things to consider:

  • Which games you plan to play
  • The cost casinos charge per hand/spin
  • How to stretch your budget
  • Creating a backup plan if you lose money early

Accurately predicting a gambler’s success is next to impossible. While skill level, game odds, and a player’s strategic approach can provide some clarity, it’s still tough to predict.

If your budget is somewhat lower than you’d like, then it’s worth visiting casinos earlier in the day. Gambling is often cheaper during the day than it is at night.

However, some games might not be as profitable for you if you choose to go during the slower portions of the day. Additionally, some table games tend to move at a faster pace because there are fewer gamblers.

For example, blackjack players will likely find that they play more hands per hour during the day than at night. If your bankroll is $50 and a table minimum is $5, that won’t get you very far if you get off to a slow start.

7 ‒ There Truly Isn’t a Right or Wrong Answer

After reading this article, you might be leaning one way or another when it comes to your gambling preferences. The truth is, you won’t know until you experience both sides of a casino.

You might consider yourself an extrovert but find that you despise how rambunctious and wild casinos are at night. Introverts might discover that they can’t stand how quiet and dull certain casinos are in the early afternoon.

It’s worth getting out of your comfort zone to find what works for you. Gambling is more pleasurable, and sometimes even profitable, when you’re content with the environment around you.

Wrap Up

It’s hard to say when the best time to gamble might be. More than likely, the answer depends on the person asking the question in the first place.

To help you decide on the best time, always consider a few things:

  • What you’re trying to accomplish
  • Who you’re going to be gambling with
  • The casino you plan on visiting
  • The types of games you want to play
  • How long you’ll gamble for
  • How much money you’re comfortable spending

By answering these questions, you should easily come to a decision. But you won’t know when the best time to gamble is until you find out for yourself.