Top 10 Ways to Get Under a Dealer’s Skin

Casino Dealer Sitting Behind a Table With Casino Chips

Casino dealers are on the frontline of customer interactions for the casino. These highly trained professionals are wizards at keeping the games moving, which is the casino’s chief concern.

Dealers can also provide value and service to the players. A friendly dealer can help pass the time with great conversation and guide beginners along as they learn the games.

Most casino dealers are happy-go-lucky personalities who seem to enjoy the experience as much as expected. However, get on the wrong side of the dealer, and you may be headed towards a confrontation.

Here are your top 10 ways to get under a dealer’s skin.

Poor Table Manners

One thing that can rub dealers the wrong way is generally having poor table manners of gambling etiquette. Players who don’t know how to behave in a casino make a dealer’s life more difficult because their lack of basic decency turns them into babysitters.

You don’t want to add to a demanding workload by being utterly clueless. If a dealer constantly has to remind you not to put your drink on the table, they aren’t going to be inclined to advocate for you should an issue arise.

There are several ways you can get up to par on your table manners before you ever get to the casino, but asking the dealer for advice and counsel can have an endearing effect.

Casino dealers will be far more lenient with players who make an effort to practice proper table manners.

Stiff the Dealer

If you’ve ever gambled in a casino, you’ve probably noticed players tipping the dealers. Hopefully, you’re tipping the dealers yourself.

Casinos are designed around the hospitality and entertainment industry. Typically, that means the frontline employees depend on tips to enhance their income.

That looks differently depending on the game, the player, and the dealer’s own preferences. Poker players usually toss the dealer a tip after winning a pot or every hour to show appreciation.

Blackjack dealers will sometimes ask players to make a bet for them. It allows them to get a little action and possibly double their tip.

Casino Dealer at Blackjack Table, Blackjack Cards Spread Out, Icon of White Playing Cards

Tipping is personal, which makes it unique. The only rule you really need is to not stiff the dealer.

Show the dealer your appreciation for their hard work, but move tables if you have a terrible dealer. Anytime I have to ask myself if a dealer deserves a tip, it’s time to move tables.

Note that you shouldn’t predicate whether or not the dealer gets a tip based on your wins or losses. Most players lose a majority of the time, and they should still tip the dealer.

Start Blaming Others for Your Losses

Players lose in casinos for a number of reasons. The house edge is the primary factor causing you to consistently fail, but other forces are in play.

Not understanding how to play the games correctly will quickly burn through your gambling bankroll. Other players will not be causing you to lose casino games.

Start blaming fellow casino guests for your losses, and you’ll look like a donkey. This brand of patent self-delusion will make you universally disliked by players and dealers alike.

An even more egregious act is to begin blaming your losses on the dealer. Dealers don’t make things personal, and most would have you winning if they had a choice.

Start blaming the dealer for your losses, and you’ll look like an idiot; things may also get personal.

Drink Yourself into Oblivion

Nobody wants to corral a drunk for any length of time. Casino dealers are particularly annoyed by the heavily intoxicated guest because it can add a tremendous headache to their workload.

Casino’s task dealers with keeping the games moving effectively. That means all rules are followed, payouts are accurate, and guests are entertained.

Person With Mixed Drink on a Casino Table

However, the casino’s main concern is that the games move along at as high of a rate as possible. The casinos enjoy a house edge on every play, so the faster hands progress, the more money the casino makes.

Adding a drunk player to the mix throws a wrench into the entire operation as dealers are forced into a babysitter role. Drink yourself into oblivion, and the pit boss may send you on your way.

Develop a Gambling Addiction

Gambling addiction is a real and grave concern. Dealers will sometimes come into contact with players that have developed a gaming addiction, and it pains them.

Nobody wants to watch someone compulsively lose money day after day. Frequently it’s money the player can’t afford to lose or doesn’t have to begin with.

Yet, their job is to facilitate a game, not help players get their lives in order. It’s like a relationship between a bartender and an alcoholic.

The dealer doesn’t want players to lose their homes, careers, or families. Unfortunately, they aren’t sure how to help.

Even if they tried, the player might lash out, causing another uncomfortable scene. I’ve spoken with many dealers that have expressed how heartbreaking it is to watch gambling addicts slowly lose everything.

Act Like a Jerk or a Big Shot

Dealers sometimes feel sorry for players, especially losing players. Act like a jerk or head into the casino thinking you’re a big shot and you won’t gain any sympathy from the table.

Nobody, especially not the dealer, will be impressed by your big-shot attitude. This can include complaining that the table limits are too low, trying to big-time the cocktail server, or acting as a high roller while you’re playing the small stakes games.

Blackjack Players Seated at a Blackjack Table

Sit down at the table with a grumpy or terrible attitude, and dealers won’t go out of their way to make each guests’ experience enjoyable. Start verbally berating the other guests or the dealer, and you’ll have a short stay at the tables.

Dealers and pit bosses won’t waste any time removing you from the casino if you can’t behave in a civilized manner.

Continually Blow Smoke

Many casinos have shifted to specific areas of the casino for players who smoke. However, most areas remain a free-for-all when it comes to smoking at the games.

This policy leaves dealers at the mercy of the players. In my experience, dealers don’t have much of an issue with players smoking at the tables but may have an aversion to the smoke itself.

Whenever you are smoking at a casino game, you should blow your smoke straight above your head. That keeps the smoke above the other players and out of their faces.

Continually blow smoke directly at the dealer, and you’re going to get under their skin. Even if the dealer smokes, they aren’t going to appreciate the constant secondhand smoke.

Treat the Casino Game Like Your Personal Party

Casinos are geared to be welcoming to all types of players and their bankrolls. The social aspect of gambling is a significant draw for a ton of casino guests.

Sadly, some players take this invitation to socialize as an invitation to throw their own party at the tables. Some of this will be tolerated because the casino is happy to take your money.

People Playing Poker Badly

Still, there are limits to the casino’s hospitality, and the dealer doesn’t necessarily have to agree. Take a table over like you’re a VIP, and the dealer may not appreciate the incursion.

Start running off good tippers, and the dealer will begin looking for every reason to have you removed from the table. On the flip side, tip generously, and the dealer may join the party.

Keep Touching the Table

In most U.S. casinos, touching anything on the table is considered a major faux pas. The cards, chips, dice, and even the felt itself are strictly off-limits.

Ignoring these simple rules makes things more difficult for the dealer as they try to ensure that you’re on the up and up. Cheating is a genuine concern for casinos as crooks are constantly posing as legitimate players and trying to pull a fast one on casinos or other gamblers.

For players coming to U.S. casinos from other regions, this can be challenging. In the casino gambling mecca of the world, Macau, players will touch the cards on almost every hand. Often the players will even destroy cards after a hand is done.

I suggest that you wholly avoid this in all U.S. casinos.

Be Overly Flirtatious

It may seem like a sound plan to shoot your shot with an attractive dealer. After all, they’re being incredibly friendly, making conversation, smiling at your jokes, and maintaining eye contact.

So, they must be into you, right?

Probably not. Remember that dealers work in the hospitality industry and must be extremely friendly.

Dealers may even seem to be doing a little flirting of their own. Don’t misread the room; things can become uncomfortable in a hurry.

Whether the dealer is a man or woman, they most likely want to complete their shift and head home. If you’re never going to forgive yourself for not trying, take a shot. However, if your advances are halted in their tracks, let it go and enjoy the game.


Casino dealers have a fun job, but it can also be a tremendous grind. Constantly dealing with drunks, rude guests, and combatting cheaters takes a toll.

Don’t add to the dealer’s stress by being combative or aggravating. The top 10 ways to get under a dealer’s skin are also great ways to ruin your own casino experience.