The holiday season has finally arrived, and with it, ample opportunity to lavish your loved ones with gifts. Choosing that perfect present to leave under the tree for your special someone can be tough, but if they love casino gambling, this list should make the task a little easier.
Below you’ll find 12 great gift ideas for gambling enthusiasts – one for each day of Christmas, Hannukah, or whatever tradition you celebrate during December. Even better though, these are all gambling-centric gifts that can be handed out at anytime of the year, so start shopping whenever the time is right. And when you’re done with the first six gifts featured on this Part I page, be sure to check out Part II to find six more bundles under the tree.
An All Expenses Paid Trip to Their Favorite Casino Resort
Given the unusual circumstances affecting the casino industry in 2020 and beyond, this one may not be for everybody. So if staying home suits you best, the next entry on our list should have you covered in spades.
But if touching down in Sin City and seeing the iconic neon Strip skyline is just what your giftee needs after a tough year, you’ll never find Las Vegas gifts at a price like this again. At the moment, faced with depleted visitation rates that have damaged the local economy and corporate bottom lines alike, casino resorts are rolling out the red carpet for their guests.
You’ll find all sorts of special deals and offers out there, especially if you sign up for the major casino chains’ email newsletters. Every day it seems I’m invited to take advantage of priority pricing on suites at the Venetian, or bottom barrel rates at beautiful properties like Bellagio.
And these discounts are the real deal too… I’m talking upwards of 75 percent off the usual rate at most major Las Vegas gambling halls.
As far as stocking stuffers go, you simply can’t beat a cheap flight and a three-day weekend at your loved one’s favorite casino.
A New Computer Outfitted for Online Gambling
On the other hand, staying in and avoiding the crowds is an option embraced by millions of folks – hence the depleted visitation mentioned above.
All of which is to say, finding a reputable online casino is a breeze these days…
You can leave it up to the recipient to decide where to play, but by purchasing a brand new desktop or laptop computer, they’ll always be playing in style. The latest computer models by the big-name brands – all designed to prioritize processing speed, visual display via high-resolution screens, and secure internet connections – are perfect for online casino fans.
When visiting the brick and mortar casino isn’t on the table, bring the tables home with you by grabbing a sleek and speedy online gambling computer.
The Shot Glass Roulette Drinking Game
After starting with a pair of presents which require a pretty penny, let’s scale things back a notch to more affordable alternatives.
I found the clever Shot Glass Roulette drinking game online a few years back, and sufficed to say, it’s become a staple in our dinner party scene ever since. The game itself replicates your standard roulette wheel to a tee, using a single green “0” space and alternating red and black spaces using numbers 1 through 36.
You’ll also see 16 cutouts where shot glasses can be fit snugly in place. From there, you simply pour your favorite liquor or spirits in each glass, each of which comes with two or three numbers emblazoned in either red or black.
Next up, assign everybody in the game with a handful of numbers as evenly distributed as you can. Finally, you’ll shoot the signature silver ball around the wheel and wait to see where it winds up.
If your number comes up, well then, it’s bottoms up as you take your assigned shot.
This popular gambling-based gift can also be given to kids in candy form thanks to the Bean Boozled Jelly Bean kit.
Comfortable Shoes for Long Walks Around the Casino Floor
I once wore one of those step counting devices on my hip while I toured Downtown Las Vegas, and the results were shocking to say the least. Even though my crew and I never left the few blocks comprising the Fremont Street Experience, I somehow managed to clock in at over 10 miles walked in just a single evening.
With that in mind, I like to give my gambling pals a comfortable pair of padded sneakers, loafers or another shoe style that matches their casino wardrobe. I’m not beholden to any particular brands, mind you, so feel free to search online reviews for the most snug, soft, and form fitting shoes you can find.
Just make sure they’re durable enough to handle Sin City’s scorching sidewalks during the summer season…
A Lockable Backpack, Purse, or Other Accessory
The inspiration for this gift-giving tip occurred when my brother and law lost his wallet, cell phone, and room key in one fell swoop.
Even though he had everything stashed safely away in his backpack, one of Las Vegas’ notorious casino pickpockets still sized him up as an easy mark (sorry Jeff!). That’s because his old-school Jansport backpack only put a measly zipper between the valuables and the thief.
Pickpockets can utilize distraction and diversion to take your mind off things for only a moment, but it only takes a moment for them to ruin your casino holiday vacation. Deft fingers trained to feel as light as air can easily flick open a zipper, reach inside, and palm the stuff you value most.
To avoid Jeff’s awful fate from that day – just try getting back into your hotel room with no ID, credit cards, or room key – gift the gambler in your life a secure, lockable backpack or bag. They literally have bags on the market today designed to withstand bear attacks, so a lowly pickpocket should be deterred at every turn.
The lockable trend for storage isn’t limited to backpacks by any means either. Women who carry every little necessity in their purse or clutch also suffer from pickpockets while gambling. Online shopping sites like Etsy have an abundance of lockable storage options fit for ladies looking for a little added security.
Gambling Strategy Books or Subscriptions to Instruction Sites
Every gambler knows that the best gift of all is beating the house.
After all, the odds are literally stacked against players at every turn, so walking away as a winner is the gift that just keeps on giving. Unfortunately, those winning ways will arrive few and far between for most players – unless they’re armed with strategy and instruction material.
In my day as a young gambler cutting his teeth, classic books like Edward O. Thorp’s “Beat the Dealer” (1962) and Stanford Wong’s “Professional Blackjack” (1975) were passed around like precious tomes. Most of that material has become outdated due to casino-led changes to blackjack’s structure – changes prompted directly by authors like Thorp and Wong for that matter.
Nonetheless, gambling strategists like David Sklansky, Dan Harrington, Bob Dancer, Michael Shackleford, and Peter Svoboda continue to publish groundbreaking research into gambling theory.
If you want to give your loved one the gift of increased knowledge, skillful play, and sustainable success, gambling strategy and poker books are perfect stocking stuffers.
And if your recipient isn’t big on the written word, you can find a wealth of subscription-based strategy material made available by several reputable sites.
Crossing items off your holiday gift list can be almost as satisfying as opening your own presents. Knowing somebody well enough to find that special something that makes them smile is an unbeatable feeling.
To that end, if you’re close to gambling enthusiasts and want to make their day, during holiday season or year round, I hope this list finds you well. If you would like more great casino gift ideas check out part two of this series here.