Lessons I Learned From Losing in Casinos

Man Thinking and Upset Man at a Roulette Table

Let’s face it. Most gamblers are losing gamblers, and that’s because of the house edge. How else would casinos run their business?

Personally, I’ve lost a lot of money in casinos over the years. But over the past five years, I’ve turned my losses into wins. The problem is that I probably spent decades losing at casino games just to get to this point.

This article doesn’t include every mistake that I’ve made, but it includes the worst mistakes a person could make while gambling. And now, you can learn the same lessons I learned and it’s not going to cost you as much money as it cost me.

Here are seven lessons I learned from years of losing in the casino. Don’t make the same mistakes that I did!

Every Casino Game Is Different

It took me a long time to realize that some casino games cost me more to play than others. I’m not talking about the minimum bet amount. What I’m talking about is how much I lost playing different casino games.

After playing in casinos for many years, I learned that each game has a return to player percentage. This number is based on how the game is designed and, in some cases, it’s based on how you play the game.

I’ve played just about every casino game that’s been available over the past 30 years. Many of them are fun to play, but some of them simply cost too much to play.

Eventually, I learned which games I could play and how to play them if I wanted to have a decent chance to win. You’re going to learn more about the best games in the casino and how to play them before you reach the end of this article.

I recommend looking at a list of return percentages for popular casino games. If you have trouble finding a list, look for a house edge list. You can get the return percentage for any casino game by subtracting the house edge from 100%.

Size of Wager and Speed of Play

The amount of money you lose when you play casino games is based on the return or casino house edge, how much you risk when you play, and how fast you play.

I like the action of gambling as much as anyone and this used to lead me to games that played fast. But I learned that the faster I play casino games, the more I risk. I also learned that the more I bet on each hand or spin, the more I was putting at risk.

Row of Slot Machines

Now, when I play casino games, I look for games that have a high return that also offer low wager limits and play slow. Or I look for games that let me control how fast I play. Games where you control the speed of play include video poker machines and slot machines.

These areas are where online casinos offer an advantage over land-based casinos. Online and mobile casinos offer lower wager amounts, and you have complete control over the speed of play.

Casino Comps the Right Way

I didn’t sign up for the players club in casinos for years. I didn’t want my play to be tracked, and I didn’t want the casinos to have my personal information. But this was a mistake.

When you become a member of the players club, or whatever the casino where you play calls it, you can get special offers, discounts, and earn casino comps when you gamble in the casino.

I always use the players club because I want to get something back for my play. But you still need to be careful when you join the players club. You won’t find many downsides to being a member, but if you’re not mindful of your playtime, being a member is likely going to make you gamble more.

Most players clubs in casinos have levels or tiers. The more you gamble, the higher your level or tier. This is fine, as long as you only gamble as much as you originally planned to. If you find that you’re gambling more than you planned just to reach the next level or tier, then you need to stop playing for a while and set some limits.

Gambling Strategy Is the Best Thing You Can Use

When you’re playing in a casino, the best thing you can do is use winning gambling strategies. If a game doesn’t have a strategy that you can use, the odds are good that it’s a bad game to play.

The worst games in the casino don’t have a way to use strategy whatsoever. For example, what can you do to improve your chances of winning when you play slots? The answer is that there’s nothing you can do. You can’t use strategy when you play slots, and they have a low return.

Games like video poker and blackjack have strategies that you can use. With the right strategy and good rules, these games offer a high rate of return.

Learn which casino games have strategy and learn how to use the correct strategies. This will instantly improve your returns in the casino.

Beating Blackjack Games

Blackjack is the best casino game for many reasons. It has a high return, you can use strategy to make the return even better, and you can learn how to count cards to win.

Even if you don’t count cards, you can play blackjack with the highest return available in most casinos. It’s as much as 10 to 20 times better than some other casino games like keno and slots.

Player View of a Blackjack Game

Learn all about the blackjack rules and how they change the return and get a strategy card. Once you learn how to find good rules and use strategy, investigate blackjack card counting to learn how to gamble with an advantage.

Profit From Bad Poker Players

Many casinos offer poker rooms. And the poker room is one of the best places to make profit. But it’s not easy to learn how to be a profitable poker player.

Real money poker has many layers of strategy, and a single mistake can cost you a great deal of money. But once you get good at poker strategy, you can make a profit in the short and long run. This is much better than almost every other game in the casino.

A quick strategy that you can use to make money playing poker is to find as many bad poker players as you can. When you play against bad poker players, it’s easier to win.

Just like blackjack, learn all of the rules for the poker games you want to play first. Then, learn as much about poker strategy as you can. It’s not fast and easy to learn good poker strategy, but once you learn it, you’re going to profit from it every time you play.

Sports Gambling With an Edge

Many casinos also have places where you can gamble on sports. These are usually called sportsbooks. Gambling on sports is like everything else the casino offers in that you’re gambling against a house edge.

But smart gamblers can learn how to pick sporting events to gamble on that can make a long-term profit. This is probably at least as hard as learning good poker strategy, and it’s harder than learning how to beat blackjack.

Man at Sports Betting Window

If you’re a sports fan, gambling on sporting events is something you might want to consider. You need to learn how to evaluate games and look at lines offered by the sportsbooks to find value based wagers.

You also need to watch a lot of sporting events to help you evaluate teams and players. But you need to start watching them for information instead of watching them like a fan. If you want to be a winning sports gambler, you can’t afford to let your feelings as a fan get in the way of effective game and player evaluation.


When you learn how to avoid mistakes that other gambler make, it’s smart. It doesn’t cost as much money to learn from my mistakes as it costs to make the same mistakes when you’re gambling.

It’s not easy to make money gambling, but the first step is learning how to avoid making too many mistakes. Now, you know how to avoid the same mistakes that I used to make.

You can be a winning casino gambler, but your choices are limited when it comes to games you can play. Learn how to beat the best games, and you can start making a profit when you gamble.