It has often been said that those casinos are so large because the house always wins, but actually that’s not true. Actually, it’s just that the house USUALLY wins. Face it, you’re gambling. By definition of the word, you’re taking a risk, the percentages are against you. But maybe, just maybe, there are some ways to improve your odds, dear reader.
1. Join the players’ club
Newcomers are especially coveted by casinos, to the point that many offer you an incentive to join the player’s club. For example, Casino Miami gives you up to $100 in free slot play just by getting one of its cards. But there’s also value afterward, too. Inserting your card into slots each time accrues points. And points mean perks and sometimes a buck or two discount at the buffet. Besides, you can then tell your friends: HEY, I’M A PLAYA!
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2. Always max bet
Some slot machines post their payout structure directly on their machines – don’t you wish your company did that? — and you’ll see the math is weighted. For example, if you play the minimum at a 25-cent video poker machine and hit a royal flush, you’ll get $62.50. But make the max bet of $1.25 and the jackpot is not five times as large, it’s 16 times larger: $1,000. So follow this rule: Play the machine with the denomination that you’re comfortable max-betting, and remember that betting the minimum is a sucker’s bet. You gotta spend it to make it.
3. Forget about free drinks
This isn’t Las Vegas. State law says so. It’s against the Florida law to offer patrons free drinks. So if you’re looking to pound ‘em down, pregame at the bar, or at home (then take an Uber to the casino).
4. Don’t disrespect Bingo
Long before we had one-armed bandits in South Florida, we had daubers, blackout games and disposable paper cards. The game still thrives at the Miccosukee Resort & Gaming in west Miami-Dade and at Seminole Classic in Hollywood, where if you time it right you could be playing for a five-figure jackpot. Just remember the classic shout-out when O-69 hits: “DINING FOR TWO!”
5. Try video poker or roulette.
Slot machines pay back on average 92 percent on the dollar, over time. Video poker, played with correct strategy, is more like a 97 percent game, as is video roulette. Practice your video poker strategy at WizardofOdds.com. Embrace your inner nerd, and think of it an as investment in your future.
6. Don’t play 6-5 blackjack.
Seminole casinos sometimes offer $5 minimum bet blackjack during off-peak hours, but there’s a catch: Receiving a two-card 21 yields only $6 for a win, instead of the usual $7.50 (3-to-2). That payout change tilts the casino house edge far in their favor. Just sit down and play at a $10 table instead.
7. Take a shot at the progressives.
Want to win life-changing money? Slot machines with a rolling dollar amount at the top are called “progressives.” They pull a couple of pennies from each spin to create a large jackpot. Sure, your everyday return is going to be lower. But to make a big score, this is the way to go. But when I call you for a quote, just don’t say “Now I can afford health insurance.” #NoSympathy.
Get daily gambling news at SouthFloridaGambling.com