Las Vegas is well known for rolling out the red carpet for special VIPs. Casinos hosts are integral to this red-carpet treatment.
A host can either work for a specific casino or independently. In either case, their goal is to generate money for casinos and keep gamblers happy.
Regarding the latter, they enable you to customize comps. If you want a steak dinner, for example, then you can speak to your host about it.
Being hosted signifies that you’re an important gambler. But how do you earn this honor? Below, you can see nine tips for grabbing a casino host’s attention.
1 – Join the Players Club
The easiest way to start on the path towards being hosted is to join the casino’s loyalty program. These VIP programs ensure that your bets are tracked and eligible for rewards.
You merely need to insert your players club card into a slot or video poker machine to begin generating points. Assuming you offer enough play, a host will eventually speak to you about the array of comps they can offer.
The dealer will then give your card to the pit boss. The latter will stop by your table every now and then to record your bet sizes.
As you can see, both slot machines and table games offer rewards. You just need to go about qualifying for comps through different means with each type of gaming.
2 – Know That Your VIP Level Doesn’t Mean Much
Casino loyalty programs feature different tiers. For example, a VIP plan might offer bronze, silver, gold, and platinum levels.
You’ll feel more special when moving up the tiers. However, casinos hosts couldn’t care less about your status.
These levels merely indicate that, at some point, you gambled enough to move into a different class. They don’t, however, ultimately determine whether you’ll be hosted or not.
3 – Understand How Rewards Are Calculated
If your VIP status isn’t the deciding characteristic to getting hosted, then what is? Casinos look at your theoretical loss (THEO) to determine how valuable you are to them.
Assuming you make big bets and play games with high house edges, then you’re going to be more worthy of a host’s time.
Here’s an example:
- You play Caribbean Stud Poker (5.23% house edge)
- You bet $50 per hand
- The table sees 60 hands per hour
- 50 x 60 x 0.0523 = $156.90 in hourly theoretical losses
On the other hand, casino hosts won’t see you as a very big player if you’re betting $5 per hand in baccarat.
Here’s an example of your theoretical losses in this situation:
- You play mini baccarat (1.06% house edge on banker bet)
- You bet $10 per hand
- The table sees 120 hands per hour
- 10 x 120 x 0.016 = $19.20 in hourly theoretical losses
I’m not suggesting that you place large bets with poor odds just to get the casino host’s attention. However, gambling establishments mainly care about your theoretical losses above all when it comes to rewards.
4 – Gamble Locally
Hosts are willing to work with any gambler who wagers and theoretically loses enough. However, they especially like locals.
A local player may visit the casino two to three times per week. Assuming they average five hours per visit, they’ll spend 10 to 15 hours gambling throughout the week. Stretched over the course of the year, they may play for between 520 and 780 hours.
Contrast this to the average tourist. Out of towners may gamble for 20 to 30 hours during a weeklong stay.
Assuming that they visit the casino twice per year, they’ll be playing for between 40 and 60 hours. However, this gambling volume is nowhere near what the typical local offers.
5 – Visit Less Prominent Casinos
Mega-resorts on the Las Vegas strip see countless gamblers come through their doors on a regular basis. Here, hosts are less likely to spot your play, especially if you’re not a high roller.
Casinos located in less-heralded areas, such as Downtown Las Vegas, pay closer attention to each gambler. You have a higher chance of being treated like a VIP at these establishments.
Of course, you still must bet enough to draw a host’s attention. But wagering $25 per blackjack hand at downtown Vegas’ El Cortez will net you more comps than at the MGM Grand.
6 – Lose More Money (Not on Purpose)
You should never consider increasing your theoretical losses just to get rewards. After all, the comps you earn won’t equal or exceed what you theoretically stand to lose.
However, suffering a bad day at the tables or slot machines can gain you more sympathy from the pit boss. They sometimes give you more rewards than you deserve after a rough session.
Hosts are given bonuses for bringing more and more money into the casino. Therefore, they typically just base rewards on your THEO.
On the other hand, they don’t want you losing badly and never coming back. Therefore, they might give you more comps to lighten your losses.
7 – Bet More per Hand/Spin
If you’re only making spins worth $0.25 on slot machines or placing $5 roulette wagers, you’re not going to draw much attention. The casino host will assuredly overlook you in these situations.
Again, everything goes back to THEO. But you won’t attain higher THEO without making large-enough wagers.
8 – Bet Big in Front of the Pit Boss
Your play rating on table games can be another factor that draws a host. As mentioned above, though, your THEO will also rise as you make bigger bets.
However, you can fool the pit boss into rating you higher without taking on additional losses. You simply need to raise your bets when you see them coming around.
Here’s an example:
- You’re normally a $10 blackjack player
- You increase your bets to $100 when the pit boss nears
- They rate you as a $100 player
- You’re now eligible for 10x the comps as a typical $10 gambler
Pit bosses are experienced casino employees who are fully aware of this ruse. Therefore, you might not be able to trick them into giving you a higher rating.
But if you’re experienced with table games, then you should still consider placing perfectly timed big bets. A host will take more interest if they see that you’re rated as a $100 or $200 gambler.
9 – Ask the Player’s Club Rep
One more way to learn about getting hosted is to simply ask. When you sign up for the player’s club, you can inquire about hosting with the front desk.
You can also visit a casino’s website and send them an email on the matter. This option is perfect for when you’re not sure about gambling at a certain venue and want to know about hosting beforehand.
In some cases, you won’t get much information on the subject. However, it never hurts to ask or email. The latter measure is especially nice, because it saves you the time of visiting a casino.
You can go about getting hosted in a variety of ways. But everything starts with joining the player’s club either online or in person.
Using your card on slot machines and at tables ensures that your play is always rated. In turn, you always have a chance to interest a host. Of course, being rated alone doesn’t guarantee you rewards. You must pay attention to your bet sizes and theoretical losses.
You don’t have to wager $100 per hand just to draw hosting. However, you’ll likely have to bet at least $25 on table games or $1 on slots.
Playing games with higher house edges will help you attract a casino host. I certainly don’t suggest that you play slot machines just to woo a host. But if you’re already going to spin the reels, then these cash-eating games will help.
You may consider gambling at local casinos too. Hosts see you as a valuable player when you’re closer and can gamble with them more often. You’ll gain more attention if you play at lowkey gambling establishments. Hosts at less-heralded casinos may offer you more comp value on your betting action.
Gambling big around the pit boss is yet another avenue towards getting the VIP treatment. Pit bosses will rate you higher if they see you betting $200 per hand versus $20.
If all else fails, you can simply ask the player’s club rep about hosting. They’ll likely give you the necessary details or even put you in contact with a host.