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There are a few well guarded secrets among casino staff and players alike. Namely because the casino want your cash, and other players make it some kind of rivalry to see who can win the most (and they are willing to play dirty!).

Firstly, promo play, such as free slot play that is linked to your comp card and comp scheme is about as clear as mud sometimes when it comes to the small print, and is sometimes so full of contradictory requirements that you’d think you were signing a mortgage for £100 million, not playing off £300 of free play. Also it doesn’t help that the small print is actually that small you need a magnifying glass to read it!

On our recent trip to Vegas, we have done pretty well. Firstly due to good timing, secondly due to having a good playing history with the Stratosphere. We booked our trip with an ‘overlay’, where 2 $400 free slot play rewards fell within one trip. Now this isn’t always possible, but where you can, it would be advisable (travel costs included) to take advantage of these offers.

Side note: ALWAYS play with your comp card as win or lose, you’re racking up points which can be exchanged for cash or free play.

What a lot of people don’t actually tell you, is that after a 100% play through, anything left in your bank can be withdrawn as hard cold cash. We recommend that you play with this formula to suit you:

  • Play with up to 20.00 credits at your preferred stakes and lines
  • Keep your eye on the points meter on the card interface (as soon as your points accumlated are of the same level or higher you can collect the remainder)
  • Withdraw and either repeat on the same game or move onto the next to take your fancy

It’s pretty simple really, but you aren’t really told this is an option and a lot of people throw their entire bank into one slot thinking that they have to use all of it all at once and there is no option to withdraw.

I won $100 in free gameplay from a slot tournament, and the guy sat next to me on the Keno had won $200 in the same tournament. He honestly thought he had to throw it all in and play it all off win or lose and that he couldn’t cash out his winnings. He ended up leaving the Keno (Keno of all things!) with $800 cash, which he would have kept gambling with had I not told him as soon as his point meter hit 200 (his initial cash input) he could collect the rest as cash.

Something else you may find of interest, is that points you accumulate in a casino can be used to offset the price of drinks, food and other things within the casino. Although it is a bit like Monopoly Money, the points you accumulate can really add up, from free pizzas, beers or even show tickets, to discounts off tours, hair and beauty treatments and even souvenirs. Be sure to check out your comp clubs terms and conditions as these will give you all the information you need.

If you are a top tier Comp Card holder (or VIP) a lot of the casinos also offer free drinks at the bars (no one tells you that do they?!). They’ll normally take your photo and print it on the back, and this then entitles you to a couple of free drinks every hour or so. Simply give the bar staff your card and they’ll add it to the comps. Not a bad little perk!

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Sara O'Connell
A passionate photographer from Arizona, Sara enjoys art and culture.