Casino Etiquette

What is casino etiquette? While you were growing up, you probably learned about the rules of etiquette from your parents before learning how to spell it. (If you ever learned how to spell it.) Remember the drill? “Be polite, have good manners, be courteous and considerate to others, say excuse me.”

Rules of casino etiquette also apply while gambling in a casino. Especially during peak times when you find yourself bobbing and weaving through the crowds while trying to get to your favorite slot machine or table game. But courtesy doesn’t end there. There are also rules of casino etiquette to follow while playing. Here are some:

Casino Etiquette When Playing the Machines

Whether you’re playing slots, video poker, or video keno never play more than one machine at a time, especially when it’s crowded. Always give others a chance to play. Sometimes you’ll see players hogging two or three. When it is very crowded, the casinos may post signs throughout the slot floor requesting one machine per player.

If you need a break, you can step away and reserve your machine for a short period of time. In the old days an empty coin bucket over the handle reserved your machine. Today the coin buckets and most handles are gone. Leave a personal item such as a jacket or sweater on the seat. Players will get the message that it is taken. NEVER leave anything valuable and ALWAYS collect your credit ticket before leaving.

Sometimes players will accidentally leave their players’ club card in the machine. If you find one remove it and leave it visible at the machine where the previous player can easily find it.

Tipping is always at the discretion of the player but if you’re lucky enough to hit a jackpot that requires a hand payout by a slot attendant, it’s customary to give them a small tip. About 1% is the norm. For example, a $10 tip for a hand payout of $1,200 jackpot is fine. You will be paid in the following denominations: Eleven $100 bills, four $20’s, one $10 and two $5’s. (hint hint)

 When Playing the Tables

All table games have a small poster listing the minimum and maximum bets allowed. Usually the minimum increments are: $5, $10 $15, $25, and $100. Higher minimums are normally found at the high limit areas. To avoid embarrassment, always check before taking a seat.

If you see an empty seat at a table, check with the dealer first to see if the spot is open. A player could be on a bathroom break or another player may be playing more than one hand at a time. This is common in blackjack. Unlike slots, a Pit Boss is not so eager to restrict play to single hands only. Especially if the multi-bettors are wagering high amounts.

Once you are seated wait until a round is finished before making a buy in. Never hand your money to the dealer. Just place it in front of you on the table along with your player’s card and specify the denomination of chips (checks) you want.

During play never try to give advice to other players, even if they make an obvious mistake. If a player asks you how to make a certain numbers wager as in roulette, it’s permissible to explain how. Sometimes during blackjack novice players will hit when they should stand and vice versa. This is frustrating to a seasoned player but it’s best to keep mum.

Following these simple rules of etiquette should make your visit to the casino more enjoyable. Good Luck!

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