15 Tricky Tactics Casinos Use to Take More of Your Cash

Roulette Wheel on Left Man Counting Money on Right

Casinos are purpose-driven to take money from guests. The arrangement is straightforward, and most gamblers either learn to accept the inevitable or turn the tables.

Still, many gamblers leave the casino wondering how they lost their entire bankroll. Casino sessions will often have players feeling like they have the upper hand until it all vanishes.

How do casinos pull this off?

The answer is complicated. There are obvious answers like the house advantage and player greed, but there are dozens of tricks the casinos use on players that contribute.

Let’s look at 15 tricky tactics casinos use to take more of your cash.

1 – Casinos Take Your Cash Immediately

If you’ve ever been to a casino, you probably didn’t pay much attention to the first transaction that takes place. Casinos immediately separate you from your cash in exchange for casino chips.

The problem is that you have no emotional connection to the chips. Even those who don’t covet money have some investment in our capital.

By taking our cash upfront, the casinos know we’re more likely to lose it all before we quit. Remember that your chips represent an actual cash value.

2 – Casinos Create an Amazing Social Atmosphere

One of the more recent ways casinos have dug deeper into our pockets is the vast social gaming platforms. Many gamblers never consider the implications of playing online for play money can affect their outlook on real-world gambling.

However, these games lure players into buying more chips anytime they run low. That allows players to continue the fun, but it has a price.

When these players enter casinos where they play for real money, they are conditioned to get more chips when they go broke.

Pile of Poker Chips

3 – High Paying Sucker Bets

The sucker bets are attractive because they typically offer some of the highest payouts in a game. Unfortunately, they also have the worst odds.

Still, when things aren’t going the player’s way, a bet that can recoup several losses in one play seems like a clever play. Yet, this mentality only leads to more significant losses compacted into a shorter time.

4 – The Casino Comps Aren’t Necessarily Free

It’s critical that you sign up for the casinos’ loyalty programs and earn your comps. But you must understand that the freebies should come naturally.

I see many gamblers fall into the trap of chasing comps, which leads to tons of unnecessary losses. My Nana was the queen of chasing comps.

She had the disposable income to sit down at a slot machine and chase comps for hours after she should have been off the casino floor. She once expressed that she was leaving the casino with something and didn’t care if it was money or a coffee cup.

She always had to stick it to the casino. Sometimes that meant losing $1000 on a slot machine to get a free sandwich.

5 – Casinos Post Previous Results

The results boards put up by casinos on games like baccarat and roulette are horrible for players. These boards play directly into the gambler’s fallacy that because one result is more prominent short term, it’s either more or less likely to happen again.

The truth is that each result in a game is entirely independent of any past and all future outcomes. Don’t put any stock in looking at the results board to formulate a strategy.

6 – Lead with Skewed Payout Numbers

Several of the tricks casinos use center around the payouts of various games. One of the most effective is advertising the payout percentage or a dollar amount rather than the house edge.

Casino Gaming Floor

If the casinos advertise to players that their games have a 4% house edge, that will not generate much excitement. Focusing on how much money players are winning via jackpots changes the narrative.

Suddenly, players are excited about the prospect of winning the money offered by the casino.

7 – Partial Wins Make Slots Players Feel Like They’re Winning

Partial wins are nothing more than more minor losses. I call them losses disguised as wins.

These partial wins plague slots players, and it’s easy to see how players get caught up in the buzz. Sadly, hitting one pay line and triggering the machine to go crazy is by design.

You feel like you’re winning because the machine is giving you every indication, other players think you’re winning, but in reality, you’re merely losing less.

8 – Creating a Full Party Atmosphere Mixed with Games

Casinos create a ton of hype anywhere they deem essential. The electric atmosphere is the perfect way to get excited gamblers to shell over a few more dollars.

That’s a big part of why you’ll see party floors filled with casino games throughout a casino. The idea is to get the guests who are more interested in the party scene to spend a bit more time on the games.

The poolside blackjack tables fall under the same umbrella. For the record, these games typically have the worst rules and a higher house advantage.

9 – Bonuses Make it Feel Like You’re Playing with House Money

Casino bonuses and free play are great incentives for players. This house money can help players make their bankrolls go beyond previous limitations.

The free money comes at a price for players that don’t pay attention to where the casino’s cash ends and theirs begins. Most players will burn through the free play and immediately pull out their wallet or credit card.

Casino Floor

Since players have enjoyed playing on the casino’s dime, they are more inclined to spend more money because the entertainment value to this point is incredible.

10 – Casinos Don’t Want You to Know the Time

If you walk into a casino without a watch or smartphone, you may be there for days. Well, maybe not days, but you’ll lose track of time.

Casinos count on players losing themselves in the energy of the casino. That’s why the casinos make it such a challenge to know what time it is when you’re gambling.

Set a timer or alarm to keep yourself apprised of the hour. You’ll lose less money because you are less likely to stay in the casino until sunrise.

11 – Slot Machine Shell Game

Slot machines are notoriously bad for the players. Yet, they remain the most popular games in the casino.

One trick the casinos use is the slot machine shell game. Since the highest RTP a casino can pay on a game and still make money is 99.99%, let’s use that as an example.

A casino will advertise that a slot machine will pay up to that amount. However, as long as a single game is set to pay 99.99%, the casino is in the clear.

What you don’t realize is that every other game could pay 90%, and it’s on you to find the game at the higher payout. Good luck with that.

12 – Free Spins Will Cost You

Free spins fall under the same category as bonuses and free play. Players get their free spins, find a game, and spin away for free.

However, once those few spins are gone, out comes the cash. Few players have the discipline to take the free spins and get out.

So, the casinos lure players into spending a few dollars the player never intended.

13 – Oh, So Close

Almost winning is not any closer to a win than missing entirely. But coming close to a huge success has a definite psychological impact on gamblers.

Excited and Frustrated Casino Gamblers

When a player is only one symbol away from hitting a massive jackpot, they believe they are somehow closer to winning the enormous pile of cash.

They’ll chase the huge win well beyond their previous limits. Rarely will their gamble ever pay off.

14 – The Free Booze Draws Untold Millions

Alcohol is a big selling point to a lot of gamblers. They consider the free booze to offset the money being lost to the casino.

They fail to consider how that free alcohol contributes to more significant losses. Don’t mistake the free drinks for anything but a way for the casinos to get into your pocket.

15 – Casinos Make Players Believe They Have a Chance

The number one way casinos take more of your cash is by making you believe you’ve got a chance to control your winning or losing.

The casinos create the illusion that the average gambler may somehow outsmart the casino and win by offering players choices. The problem is that the casinos rely on math to make a profit, and you can’t change the math.

You’re only legitimate shot at flipping the odds on the casino is becoming a card counter. Outside of that, the house edge will work on you the way it’s designed.


The casinos shouldn’t be faulted for wanting to dip a bit deeper into gamblers’ pockets. They are businesses that exist to entertain but also to make money.

The 15 tricky tactics casinos use to take more of your cash is meant to inform you rather than alarm you. Casinos are fantastic entertainment venues but pay attention, and you could leave the casino with more money in your wallet.