Lately I’ve had a lot of time to think about what I miss the most. Sure, going to bars, restaurants, and movie theaters are some of my favorite things.
More than anything, I realize casinos are genuinely where I enjoy myself the most. While everything is still in a sort of flux, casinos are open for business, albeit with certain restrictions.
For those readers who have yet to grace a casino with your presence, or if you’re a former gambler who is considering revisiting your old ways, it’s important to recall the best and worst aspects of casinos. In my mind, the good outweighs the bad, but here’s my take on the pros and cons of casinos.
Best: Potential to Win Money
Is there anything much better than walking out of the casino with a big grin across face and a wallet full of money you just won? If you’ve gone gambling before and won, you know the feeling is incredibly satisfying for several reasons.
Winning money from a casino, regardless of the game you play is the best part of gambling. It’s perfectly fine to enjoy yourself, but winning makes everything better.
The most gratifying part of winning money gambling is that it typically takes diligence and even skill. This is especially true if your game of choice is blackjack or poker; games require extended time at the table to grind out wins. If you’ve never left a casino as a winner, it’s time to get back to gambling and win some money.
Worst: Losing Money
While winning money is one of the best things about gambling at the casino, losing is the worst aspect, bar none. As I said, you should be aware that you’re projected to lose money when gambling, but it stings just the same when your casino bankroll is demolished. Even the best gamblers sustain losses because it’s the nature of the business.
In my experience dealing with losses, I’ve made the long drive home from the casino in silence, bemoaning my terrible luck and questioning my skills and strategy. I swear I’ll never go back and tell myself that gambling isn’t for me.
Obviously, this pity party I routinely hold for myself doesn’t last long, and I’ll find myself back at the casino in a matter of days. Even if you suffer losses at the casino, it’s no reason to quit going.
Gambling has its peaks and valleys, and neither lasts long. The best way to limit the losses is by sticking to a basic strategy and managing your bankroll better, so the losses aren’t impossible to come back from.
Best: Meeting New People
As a young man, I was terrified to go to the casino due to my inexperience and naivete. I would tell myself that I didn’t belong at the casino and would just make myself look foolish. However, I got over that anxiety and found out I couldn’t have been more wrong.
Casinos are a great way to socialize. If you’re a serious gambler or aspire to be, learn new tricks and strategies for certain games.
My first time in Vegas, I sat down next to someone who was born and raised in the same neighborhood, and we ended up going to the same high school a few grades apart. If I chose to be a recluse at the table, I would never have made that connection. There’s nothing wrong with staying focused on the game; breaks in the action are a great time to get to know your tablemates.
Worst: Getting Stuck at a Bad Table
On the rarest of occasions, I have found myself sitting next to some of the worst gamblers imaginable. These types of folks seem to wake up in the morning with the sole purpose of ruining people’s times at the casino.
If you share experiences like this, you know precisely the type of person I’m talking about. If you’ve never come across someone who makes you want to slam your head into the table, consider yourself lucky.
Gambling at a casino can be hit or miss, in terms of the possibility of profitability, and the types of people you encounter. Most people I interact with at casinos are pleasant and kind, and crossing paths with rotten eggs is rare. When it does occur, I make a point to get away from these people by any means necessary.
Best: Gaining Valuable Experience
The only way to improve as a gambler is by learning how to play casino games, and there’s no better place to learn than at an actual casino. Unless you’re struggling with bankroll management or sustaining consistent losses, casinos give you the best opportunity to hone your skills. You can practice all you want, but until you apply what you learn, you stand to simply maintain your skill level.
Some gamblers can find themselves consistently playing the same game, regardless of their level of success. At casinos, you have the chance to branch out a little bit and try your hand at other games.
Any half-decent casino will have most, if not all, of the popular games. You won’t know what you’re good at or prefer until you actually play the game.
Worst: Developing a Potential Gambling Addiction
On a more serious note, one of the worst things about casinos, especially for newer gamblers, is the possibility of developing an addiction to gambling. As a recent college graduate, I have witnessed several former friends become addicted to gambling and lose an incredible amount of money.
Some gamblers brush off this reality and claim that a lack of self-control leads to younger players developing a gambling addiction. However, like any other activity or hobby, it can be very for gambling to start to consume your life. Other hobbies and activities are a bit more innocuous than gambling and don’t have the power to jeopardize your financial well-being and mental health.
For those of you who think you might have a problem, there are several resources available. I know from experience that problems with gambling can get out of hand quickly, and the earlier you take care of it, the better you’ll end up in the long run.
Best: Gambling at a Casino is a Blast
When done responsibly, gambling for real money is an excellent form of entertainment that can also be profitable. If you’re on the fence about going to the casinos for the first time, it’s always a great time to give it a try. Before you go, remember to manage your money well and prepare for the games you intend to play.
If you find that you’re not enjoying yourself at a casino, then it might not be the best fit for you. There’s no purpose in continuing to gamble if you aren’t enjoying yourself.
However, don’t make a knee-jerk decision after playing just one game or visiting a casino for the first time. In theory, the more you gamble, the better you’ll play, and the potential for winning money will increase.
Speaking from experience, casinos are a lot more enjoyable if you’re with some of your friends, especially if you’re new to gambling. Consider planning a trip to the casinos with friends if you are feeling unsure of yourself.
Going with people you know will take some stress out of the situation and potentially increase the likelihood that you’ll enjoy yourself as much as I do.
All in all, casinos are a great place to spend some of your free time and extra money. The potential to win some extra cash is always on the table, but be aware that losing money is looming.
Casinos offer an environment to meet new people who could impart some gambling wisdom or exciting stories. On the off chance you’re stuck with a gambler who is bringing down the table’s mood, don’t let it ruin your opinion of gambling. Most people at casinos are average, everyday gamblers, who are just trying to do some gambling.
Gambling is an excellent form of entertainment, but if you find yourself developing a gambling problem, be sure to seek help. There’s no harm in admitting you have an issue, and it’s always best to take care of it earlier rather than later.