Slot machines are popular, which means most gamblers have tried them at least once. With so many people playing the slots, there are bound to be questions come up from time to time.
Here are answers for nine of the top slot machine questions. These are questions that I tend to get asked by slots players on a regular basis, so the odds are that you have some of the same questions.
1 – Can You Really Play Slots for a Penny?
One of the best marketing strategies in gambling history was the invention of penny slot machines. The name implies that you can play slots for a penny and have a chance to win a big prize. This single marketing strategy might have brought more people to casinos than every other strategy in history.
The problem is that it’s a lie. While there might be a slot machine somewhere online that you can play for a penny a spin, I’ve never seen one. The truth is that the name penny slot machines simply mean the minimum bet per line is a penny.
And on most of these machines you have to bet more than one penny per line to unlock the top payouts. So, the answer is no. You can’t really play slots for a penny.
2 – Can You Beat the Slots in the Long Run?
A few players make money playing slots. The first way to make money playing slots is to get lucky enough to hit a huge jackpot and stop playing before you lose it all back to the casino. Some jackpot winners take a long time giving their winnings back, but over time you’re going to lose it back unless you stop playing.
The other way to make money playing slots is to chase progressive jackpots when they climb high enough to overcome the house edge. You still have to get lucky enough to hit a jackpot eventually, but this is possible.
This means that sadly the answer for almost everyone is you can’t beat the slots in the long run. Any strategy that involves so much hope and luck is a bad strategy.
3 – Should I Always Bet Max Coins?
This is an interesting question, because either possible answer can be correct. If your goal is to lose as little as possible, you should always bet the minimum amount. But if your goal is to have a chance to win a huge jackpot, you should always bet the maximum coin amount.
The reason why you need to bet max coins is because most slot machines require a max bet to unlock the top prizes. Can you imagine a worse feeling than hitting the winning combination for a huge jackpot and not receive it because you didn’t bet max coins?
4 – What’s the Difference between Jackpots and Progressives?
Some slot machines have jackpots and some have progressive jackpots. The name jackpot is used for the top paying combination on most slot machines. Some slot machines have a main jackpot and one or more smaller jackpots.
A progressive is a jackpot, but not all jackpots are progressives. A progressive jackpot grows with each bet until a lucky player hits it. Then the progressive resets to a lower amount and starts growing again.
5 – Are Online Slots Bonuses As Good As They Sound?
Online slots bonuses for the most part are good. Most of the times you make a deposit and play online slots you’re going to keep playing until you lose all of your deposit. So anything you can do to increase your bankroll is a good thing because a larger bankroll allows you to play longer before you run out of money.
The problem is that some bonuses have terms and conditions that make it hard to cash out when you get lucky and hit a big jackpot.
Some of the worst slots bonuses limit the amount you can withdraw on a weekly or monthly basis. This isn’t an issue for most slots players, but if you hit a big jackpot it can be a problem.
The good news is that most reputable online casinos like the ones we recommend on this site have fair slots bonus terms and conditions. The important thing to know is that you need to read all of the terms and conditions before accepting any slots bonus offer. This is the only way to make sure the bonus is as good as it sounds.
6 – Do I Have to Pay Taxes on My Slot Machine Winnings?
Before I answer this question you need to understand that I’m not an accountant and I don’t offer legal or financial advice. The owners of this web site also don’t offer legal or financial advice. Now that you know this, here is some general information you need to know.
The tax laws vary by state in the United States, and by country outside the US. The best way to get an answer to your question is to talk to an accountant or tax professional where you live.
For the most part, if you make more than you lose in a year playing slots, you’re required to pay taxes on your win. The casino is also usually required to keep a percentage of a big win, like a jackpot, in some states.
The best advice I can offer is to track all of your wins and losses closely when you play slots. Most players don’t track their losses, and then when they get lucky and hit a big win they can’t prove their losses to reduce their taxes.
Ask the player’s club where you play slots if they track your play and can provide a statement every year for tax purposes.
7 – Can the Casinos Change the House Edge on Slot Machines?
I get this question often, and it’s usually after someone has a losing slots session. Some gamblers are convinced the casinos are out to get them and that the casinos cheat.
The truth is that the casinos are out to get your money, and they don’t have to cheat to get it. The casino simply has to offer gambling opportunities following the rules set down by whoever licenses the casino, and they automatically make money. Every casino game, including slots, is designed to make a profit for the casino.
The casinos have options for the house edge on their slot machines.
But casinos don’t have a master control that allows them to change the house edge on slot machines while you’re playing. And even if they did have a master control, they don’t need to use it because you’re already playing a machine that locks in a long term profit for the casino.
If you’re worries that the casino is cheating you, you should stop playing. This is the only way you’re going to stop losing money.
8 – Are Online Slots or Land Based Slots Better?
This is 100% a matter of what you like. I like the convenience of online slots because I don’t have to travel to the casino, but I also like the atmosphere of live slots play in a land based casino. At the end of the day, real money online slots and land based slots are basically the same. For this reason, I don’t think one is better than the other.
9 – I Like Table Games But All My Friends Play Slots. Am I Missing Something?
No, you’re not missing anything. I also have friends who only play slots, and I usually stick with table games. You should play whatever you want to play, and let your friends stick with the slot machines.
I don’t play slots often because I don’t like not knowing the house edge of the game I’m playing. Most slot machines don’t have publicly available house edge numbers. I also like to play games where I can use strategy to improve my chances to win. You can’t use strategy to improve your chances of winning playing slots.
But these are personal issues and choices and I don’t try to push them on others. I do play slots from time to time; usually chasing a big progressive jackpot. It’s about the same as buying a lottery ticket for a big jackpot draw. I know the odds of winning are extremely small, but I’m willing to invest a few bucks for the chance at a huge win.
Now that you know the answer to these nine slot machine strategy questions, you can get back to spinning the reels. If you have a slot machine question that isn’t included on this page, leave a comment below and I’ll try to get your question answered in a future column.