Tag: Survival Strategies

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Five Useful Vegas Valet Hacks

December 19, 2014 at 4:18 PM | by | Comments (2)

Not all Vegas hotel porte cocheres are created equally. Sometimes, you can leave your car with valet, grab your bags and quickly get where you need to go. Sometimes valet is on the opposite side of the property and entirely inconvenient for your visit. It's not fun lugging yourself through the casino until you get to whichever part of the property you want to be in. Here are some valet tips for visitors who prefer to drive themselves, but don't know Vegas quite as well as they'd like to yet:

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The Higher The Denomination Of The Slot Machine...

December 19, 2014 at 3:15 PM | by | Comments (4)

It isn’t a secret that slot machines are some of the worst bets in the casino. Unfortunately for some gamblers, like this writer, they’re also the most fun bets in the casino. The penny slots with the mainstream entertainment themes are the biggest winners for casinos in Las Vegas. Here’s a look at how much casinos won from different denomination slot machines in 2013.


1 cent - 11.90%
5 cent - 9.03%
25 cent - 8.63%
$1 - 6.70%
$5 - 5.26%
$25 - 4.80%
$100 - 3.74%

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Beware The Five Dollar Catch At Circus Circus

Where: 2880 Las Vegas Boulevard South [map], 89109
December 11, 2014 at 3:25 PM | by | Comments (16)

In Vegas, guest rooms can vary widely within a single hotel. We’ve looked at the differences between the towers at Rio. And, we’ve explored the best and worst that Caesars Palace has to offer. Choosing the wrong room type before your trip to Vegas can be a huge mistake. The consequences are most severe at a place we expect few would guess, Circus Circus. Even more surprising, the fact that five dollars is often all it takes to avoid such a disaster.

What are we talking about? The monstrosity that is the Manor Motor Lodge.

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How To Play, And Win, The Vegas Timeshare Game

December 4, 2014 at 2:55 PM | by | Comments (16)

Timeshares are all over Vegas, often hidden in plain sight among and around the massive towers owned by the casinos. Places like Elara, Desert Rose, Flamingo Hilton, Tahiti Village, and Club de Soleil go largely unnoticed by most, all while making a sizable contribution to the annual number of visitors to the city.

Timeshares get a bad rap for good reason, but that will never stop people from buying in. Offers for freebies bring them in the door. High pressure sales tactics close the deal. Those that don’t commit walk away with complimentary tickets, meals or cash. If you have a few hours to spare and you’re strong enough to resist the most hardened sales pros in Vegas, you, too, can beat the timeshare game.

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Not All Games Award Players Club Points Equally, Or At All

November 20, 2014 at 2:34 PM | by | Comment (1)

We read the players club websites and brochures and usually have a good idea of how to earn points with a players club card. The information is spelled out in black and white. Unfortunately, things are always changing in the casino world and don’t make it online or into the brochures.

Take the video roulette game pictured above, for example. In some casinos, you may be able to earn players club points for the money you load into this game. In most casinos, including Boyd Gaming properties, you won’t. When this video roulette game was introduced, some players decided to try and game the comp system. Casinos pay attention and change the rules on the fly to counteract any weaknesses. Since these protective moves can be seen negatively by customers, they may not promote something like this prominently on their website or brochures. They’ll just leave stickers on the machine.

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Don't Just Shrug Off A Misplaced Players Club Card

November 6, 2014 at 3:16 PM | by | Comments (10)

Players cards are more popular than ever, and for good reason. If you’re gambling, using a card is a must if you want comps or room offers. Even for non-gamblers, carrying a card makes sense. Most casinos now offer comps based on dining and entertainment purchases. Many restaurants, especially those in properties owned by Caesars, even discount their menus for cardholders. And, some resorts go so far as to combine room keys and players cards into one. As cards continue to do more and become increasingly valuable, it’s important to consider what’s at risk when one is lost or, even worse, stolen.

Slots seem to be the biggest culprits when it comes to misplaced cards. Despite the bright lights that surround card readers, it’s easy to walk away after cashing a big win without remembering to pull your card. Slot attendants are tasked with removing and discarding cards that are left behind, but there’s no guarantee that someone else won’t get to it first.

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Play (Nearly) Even With The House At Craps

November 4, 2014 at 2:35 PM | by | Comments (3)

If you like to roll them bones, you’re better off frequenting some Vegas casinos than others.

That’s because only a handful offer the best pass line odds bets at the craps table – one of the rare instances where you’re playing even with the house. In a land where high rises are built on the backs of tourists with a jones for gambling, that’s one bet we’re happy to take.

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More Ways To Earn Total Rewards Credits Without Visiting A Casino

October 28, 2014 at 12:36 PM | by | Comments (4)

There are a couple of new ways to earn Total Rewards credits without stepping foot in a casino. Earning points without visiting a casino is a useful way to keep existing points from expiring, especially if you only make one trip a year to Las Vegas. If you're new to Total Rewards, you might not know that points expire after six months of inactivity.

House of Fun on Facebook

Did you know you can earn Total Rewards credits when playing House of Fun on Facebook? You earn them whenever you purchase chips to play the game. Unfortunately, you cannot earn credits when playing with free coins. Also note that these are Reward Credits, the kind of credits you can use for hotel rooms, food, entertainment, etc. These aren’t Tier Credits which allow you to earn better status like Platinum, Diamond or Seven Stars.

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Avoid The Bag Drag: How To Handle Luggage In Vegas

October 23, 2014 at 12:59 AM | by | Comments (10)

One of the most frustrating parts of traveling is dealing with luggage. Navigating airline limitations, deciphering security restrictions, and fighting for overhead space is no way to start a vacation. Those traveling by ground don’t have quite the number of challenges in their way, but we’re increasingly seeing questions about what to do with luggage after arriving in Vegas. Fortunately, Vegas makes it easy.

A locked hotel room is the obvious choice for storing your belongings. But, what do you do if you arrive before check-in time? Where do you put your bags if your flight isn’t until late at night, well after check-out? Many visitors resort to hauling their bags around all day. Don’t do this! Vegas is huge and the walk from one casino to another is long enough as it is. Dragging a suitcase behind you as you travel up and down The Strip or in between rows of slot machines will get old in a hurry and is completely unnecessary.

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Beware The Penny Slots

October 22, 2014 at 9:15 PM | by | Comments (21)

Things have settled down since we spent a few days looking at the newest slot machines at the Global Gaming Expo (G2E). If you noticed most -- if not, all -- of the slot machines we highlighted this year were themed. These slot machines are usually penny slots when they hit casino floors. Penny slots aren’t what they used to be. You can now wager upwards of $5 per spin on a slot machine that, by name, makes you think you're only going to risk a penny or so. That’s just one of the dirty little secrets about our favorite penny slots in the casino.

The bright lights and loud music from these slot machines are great fun, but the real dirty secret of the uber popular penny slots is that they are some of the worst bets in the casino. Casinos win almost twice as often when you play penny slots as they do when you play any other denomination of machine.

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VegasChatter Questions: What Is A Host And What Can They Do For Me?

October 13, 2014 at 4:59 PM | by | Comments (14)

We’re always here to help when you have a question. VegasChatter reader Rob R. was just assigned a casino host for the first time and turned to us on Facebook for clarity and advice:

So I have a question that maybe someone can help me with... I'm a Diamond member with Total Rewards. I have been assigned a "Casino Host". What exactly is he/she and what kinds of things can they do for me? Am I supposed to tip him/her? I rarely even see him but I do have his cell phone number." -- Rob

Let’s first look at what exactly a casino host’s job entails and that's to create a relationship with players so that they become loyal to the casino (or casinos) they work for. In other words, the host works for a casino with the purpose of making customers happy during and in-between visits.

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How To Keep Your Money At The Poker Table

October 8, 2014 at 1:28 PM | by | Comments (14)

So, you’re cleaning up at the $1-$3 no-limit Hold’em cash game on a Saturday night at Bellagio or plowing through the $2-$5 pot-limit Omaha game at Aria. When should you pick up and leave?

There are few feelings worse in poker than getting up by a large amount in a cash game and losing it all back; or, even worse, losing it back and then losing your entire buy-in. (You've got to save some for that late night steak dinner, right?) The adage “quit while you’re ahead” certainly comes to mind in these situations. So what’s a poker player to do to prevent this?

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