Top 10 Reasons Why Sometimes Gamblers Must Go Small to Win Big

Hand Moving Chips on a Table with Win Big Written On the Right

Many gamblers will immediately think of the massive casino resorts in Las Vegas or other parts of the country when the subject is brought up. I consider Las Vegas, Biloxi, and Shreveport to be some of the premier casino destinations in the United States.

However, I started my casino career in the small casinos that once dotted the Oklahoma plains. These casinos are anything but small now.

Still, there’s something I love about the charm of a small casino. Players can get overwhelmed by the sheer size and spectacle of the mammoth casino resorts.

That’s why sometimes gamblers must go small to win big. Take these areas of opportunity to the smaller casinos and see if you can change your luck.

1 – Find a Property You’re Comfortable At

I consider being comfortable of unmeasurable importance when I’m gambling. It doesn’t matter what game I’m playing or how the session is going.

If I’m uncomfortable in a casino, I don’t enjoy the experience. That leads to a lack of focus, which makes it tough to play my best.

Some players aren’t into the crowds that come with gambling in the major casinos on a busy night. The constant distraction has a real impact on their play.

Finding a smaller casino where you’re comfortable can make a huge difference. When you are settled, your brain is free to focus solely on the task at hand.

That’s vital for advantage gamblers and the average gambler trying to rake together any wins they can grab.

2 – Break Off on Your Own

Most gamblers are making their casino trips with a group. There’s pressure to stick close together when you’re in a massive casino resort.

Nobody wants to lose sight of the party or spend hours tracking down a wayward party member. So, groups generally stay within range of each other.


The problem is that we all have different gaming preferences, and you may not be cool with spending four hours playing slot machines for real money. Yet, there you sit, spinning the reels for fear of missing out on an adventure.

Smaller casinos will offer you more freedom to branch out independently without the fear of being left behind. You can enjoy the space of playing the games you prefer without the guilt of ditching your friends.

3 – Tournaments Provide a Different Opportunity in Small Casinos

I thoroughly enjoy playing in tournaments. When I believe I have a chance to win money in a tournament setting, I’m almost always down to clown.

Smaller casinos may not offer the vast tournaments that you’ll find in the huge venues, but they have their perks. The enormous regional events will draw players looking to take advantage of the weaker players.

Instead, set your sights on the smaller daily tournaments. You’ll still bump into good players with the same intentions as you, but a majority of players will be looking to get the maximum return on investment in an entertainment sense.

Use tournaments to boost your bankroll and leave the casino with more winnings. Even the smallest casinos will have sharks circling, so pick your spots carefully.

If you assume every player in the casino is a fish, you might get swallowed whole.

4 – Keep an Eye Peeled for Sloppy Dealers

Casino dealers are highly trained at their craft. However, the smaller the casinos have, the higher chance of players catching a dealer on an off night.

It’s not that the dealers are less skilled, but it’s easier to spot the flaws with fewer tables to recon. Also, the smaller casinos may be more prone to staffing issues, which causes dealer fatigue.

Why does this matter to the player?

Spanish 21 Dealer

Because players can exploit sloppy dealers, the most evident area of the casino that sloppy dealers benefit players is the blackjack table.

When a sloppy dealer consistently flashes their hole card, the game becomes far more straightforward. You can use that information to your advantage, and the insurance bet will instantly negate any blackjack the dealer has.

You can exploit a dealer’s sloppy play to rack up some pretty significant wins. But you shouldn’t expect to find this advantage on every trip; you’re merely more likely to find this scenario in a small casino.

5 – Get a Feel for Your Competition in the Poker Room

The smaller casinos typically have a loyal customer base that returns to the casino regularly. The more you play in the smaller casinos, the more likely you are to start seeing familiar faces.

That can be advantageous for poker players. The more you see an opponent, the better you should understand their game.

You can start to separate the threats from the opportunities. You’ll also know whether a player tends to bluff often, play aggressively, slow play, and any other habits that you can exploit.

Knowing your competition is far more complicated in the massive poker rooms in the giant casino resorts. That’s why many poker players focus on smaller casinos for their play.

An unexpected benefit may be that you meet more skilled players willing to teach you the ropes. Having a poker mentor is one of the most valuable tools a poker player can utilize.

6 – Progressives Are Still Huge in Smaller Casinos

Slots players go nuts for the progressive machines. Don’t think that you won’t find the giant jackpots because you’re in a smaller casino.

Yes, often, the jackpots will be smaller. But that doesn’t mean you can’t win a life-changing amount of money in the smaller casinos.

Your chances of hitting a progressive jackpot aren’t necessarily better in a small casino, but you could leverage other areas to maximize your bankroll and have more opportunities to win.

7 – Treat the Employees Like Gold

Advantage gamblers are notoriously poor tippers. That’s because every penny counts when you’re trying to beat the casino.

It’s easier for smaller casinos to spot advantage gamblers because there are fewer players to watch. So, advantage gamblers must do everything in their power to blend into their surroundings.

That includes tipping your dealer. I believe everyone should be tipping their dealers, but it’s your money.

However, tipping in the smaller casinos will endear you to the staff and make it more difficult for them to back you off. A pit boss won’t hesitate to back a player off in the large casinos because there’s always someone to fill an empty seat.

Smaller casinos don’t have the same volume of players, and they won’t want to scare off a customer who tips well. Figure out how to make tipping a part of your routine, and you’ll get deeper into shoes without arousing suspicion.

8 – Keeping an Upbeat Positive Attitude Pays

In the smaller casinos, it’s much more common for the staff to get to know their guests. That provides an opportunity for gamblers.

Your goal is to be the upbeat guest that doesn’t let losses get to them. When you stay in this headspace, you can paint yourself in a positive light.

Silhouette of Woman Giving Thumbs Up With a Casino Background

That won’t lead directly to more wins. However, if any issues arise, the casino will be far more likely to side in your favor.

Small casinos never want to run off the upbeat, optimistic gambler that treats everyone with respect. You may even get some additional comps as a reward for your great attitude.

9 – Leverage the Casinos Against One Another

The casino industry is ruthless when getting business through the doors. Smaller casinos often struggle to fill the casino based on popularity and regional biases.

When you have two or more of these small properties nearby, you have a chance to leverage a better deal.

Casinos are willing to bend over backward to get good business in the door. Use that to your advantage by trying to get comps before you ever show up.

You’d be surprised at the smaller casinos’ willingness to comp a room for a couple of nights to get you playing their games. Don’t be afraid to leverage the casinos against each other for the best deal.

10 – Don’t Ignore the Table Rules

Smaller casinos don’t generally have better or worse rules on table games than the more prominent properties. It’s more about competition than volume for making rules.

The behemoth Las Vegas resorts on the Strip will have worse rules than the smaller casinos around town for a couple of reasons. The Strip casinos know they have a captive audience, so they can do as they please, and the floor will stay full.

Las Vegas Strip View

The smaller Vegas casinos need to do everything in their power to lure customers away from the glamorous resorts. So, they offer the best odds they can to attract business.

However, in some areas, the small casinos may have a monopoly on the gaming industry. That leads to unpredictable rules.

Please pay attention to the rules for games; it’s possible to find a better game by walking a few more yards.


Sometimes gamblers must go small to win big. Find the best small casinos in the area you plan to gamble and use these tools to maximize your success.

The Cromwell is becoming one of my favorite Las Vegas casinos. The clever boutique property proves that you don’t need to accept the enormous resorts to have an exceptional Las Vegas experience.