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Las Vegas: Casino and Slot Machine Strategies that Work! 
by Nancy A. Meadows-Galloway June 21, 2005

Would you like to go into a casino and walk away with more money than you started with? This could happen if you use smart strategies and proven methods.

Would you like to go into a casino and walk away with more money than you started with? This could happen if you use smart strategies and proven methods.

Slot Clubs, Players Clubs, and Comps

The first thing you should do when you enter a casino is to go to the Players Club (a.k.a. Slot Club) counter and sign up. This is free, and you will earn comps and points towards different perks the casino offers. The casino’s awards are based on the amount you play, and they are:

  • Free dinners or a percentage off your bill
  • Invitations to free private slot tournaments
  • Show tickets
  • Cash back
  • Free hotel rooms
  • Free merchandise
  • Mailings that will contain special Players Club member only offers

Just remember that as with everything in ‘Vegas, it is based on your amount of play on the machines.

Play Smart!

Most players do not lose because they never win but instead they lose because they do not know when to walk away.

Important Rules to Remember:

  • Set a limit- Either set a time limit or an amount of money that you will spend on that machine and stick to it.
  • Set a modest goal- This is what you will take if you start to win then walk away once you have reached this goal. Being greedy is what gets most of us into trouble.
  • Know the machine- If you have never played this type of machine take the time to read the instructions well. Many times a player does not understand what they are suppose to do on the machine and they lose valuable credits trying to figure this out. So cut your losses in the beginning.
  • Play the maximum- If you hit a jackpot you will not get the entire amount unless you are playing the maximum. On some machines you will also lose out on a bonus that the game offers which can mean losing credits or possibly a jackpot.

98% Pay Back!!!

Do not be fooled..

Do not be fooled by signs above machines that state a high pay back percentage. Most of the time the pay back percentage is calculated over a long-term period which in a lot of cases is the entire life span of the machine. If a machine is programmed to pay back 95 percent then it will pay 950,000 out of every one million that it takes in. The large payouts will be random and very few. A few lucky players will hit a jackpot but most will lose on the machine.

To find a machine that truly pays back 98 percent or around that percentage (they vary from 80% and up) ask a slot attendant or a change person. They can point you in the right direction because most legitimate high payout machines will not be advertised.

Get to Know the Local’s

Making a new friend in Las Vegas can also be a beneficial tool for the smart gambler. Most of the locals know where the loosest slot machines are because they play them often. Frequently these machines are found at casinos not located on the strip. Try playing at some of the lesser known casinos. They may not be as flashy, fancy or have on-site shopping but if you want to leave with more money than you came with, it is defiantly worth the sacrifice. Here are some of the lesser known casinos in ‘Vegas:

  • The Orleans: Has the look of New Orleans and offers 1886 rooms, big pools, penny and higher slots, table games, ten restaurants plus numerous fast food places, FREE BEADS, a movie theater, a bowling alley, a concert arena, showroom, and several lounges. Room rates are 70.00 /day for a weekday and 100.00 /day for a weekend.
  • The Silverton Casino: Offers 300 rooms, an RV park, table games, and four restaurants, all denominations of slots, Bass Pro Shop, a concert showroom and a lounge. Also offers Azure, which is a huge salt water tank with over 4000 fish in it and an hourly mermaid show. Room rates are 60.00-90.00/day for a weekday and 120.00-160.00/day for a weekend.
  • Sam’s Town: Wonderful old west style ambiance. Offers 650 rooms, a beautiful RV park, five restaurants, numerous fast food establishments, a pool, penny and higher slots, table games, a bowling alley, a movie theater, the Sunset Stampede- an animatronics show offered at 2, 6, 8, and 10pm each day in the atrium. Wolves howl, along with a laser light and water show while the story of the pioneer’s trip west is recounted. Room rates are 70.00-90.00/day for a weekday and 100.00-140.00/day for a weekend.
  • The Palace Station: offers 1030 rooms, a comedy club, two pubs, two pools, Jacuzzis, penny to twenty-five dollar slots, six restaurants and cafes. The slot club offers a fun book which contains numerous useful coupons. Room rates are 70.00-100.00/day weekend and 60.00-80.00/day weekday. The Palace Station is not in walking distance to anything so you will need a rental car or taxi.

Progressive Jackpots

When you find a machine that has a progressive jackpot sign above it this simply means that the more people play the machine the more the jackpot grows until eventually one lucky player hits the jackpot combination and wins the amount. These can range from a few hundred dollars to several hundred thousands and up. The amount will usually be flashing above the machines changing as it grows. In order to win a progressive jackpot on these machines you have to play the maximum coins allowed. If you are not playing the maximum coins and you hit the progressive jackpot you will not win it. No Exceptions…

Be Credit Savvy

So you are finally on a machine that is hitting. The wise thing to do at this point is to leave the credits that you have won in the machine and let them accumulate as you play. This is a very good way to keep track of how much you have played and how much you have won. If you play back the credits then you will have no idea of the amount you have won or played, it will become too impossible to keep track. Be sure not to walk off from a machine with out collecting your credits first, if you do it is your word against the next person who sits down at the machine you were on.

To Stay on a Machine or To Leave a Machine-That is the Question!

You have finally found the right machine to play, you think. You sit down and start to spin the reel or reels, which ever applies. After a few minutes it is apparent that the machine is cold. A good rule to go by that will help you judge if a machine is cold before you lose more credits is the 4 spin rule.

  • If a machine does not hit anything (even a 2 credit win) in 4 spins then it is probably a cold machine and you might want to try a different machine.
  • If the machine hits small amounts off and on you might want to give it a little more time and see what happens.

The Double Your Money Strategy

When using this strategy there are certain rules that you need to follow in order to be successful:

  • Look for single pay line, two-coin machines with a modest jackpot and a pay table that has a good range of medium-sized amounts. (ex. 800-80-60-40-30-20-10-5-2, from largest to smallest) Machines with this type of pay table will have small to medium jackpots hit more frequent because most of the money does not have to go to funding a huge jackpot.
  • Remember – Larger jackpots mean fewer smaller payouts.
  • Try playing a two-coin quarter machine with a single pay line and a jackpot of 800 coins for one-coin play and a 1600 coin jackpot for two-coin play (ex. Double Diamond quarter machine or Wild Cherry quarter machine) You still have the chance to win a nice jackpot of 800 coins even if you play only one coin and you will also make your money go further.

Gambling Facts

  • Someone hits a large jackpot on the machine you just left. Would you have hit the jackpot if you had stayed on it? No-The Random number Generator determines the winning combination at that exact millisecond. It is highly unlikely that you would have stopped the RNG at the exact microsecond as the person who played the machine after you.
  • A slot machine has not been paying for a long time. Is it due to hit? No- Each spin is a random occurrence and is not affected by what has taken place before that spin.
  • Once a machine pays out a large jackpot, should you quit playing because it will not hit again for a long time? No- Slot machines have no memory and they do not keep track of what has happened before. The results are totally random.
  • If you play maximum coins you will produce more winning combinations? No-The number of coins you play has no bearing on the frequency of payoffs but if you do hit a jackpot it will be considerably less if you did not play maximum coins.
  • A machine will pay more if the player plays from the credit meter instead of inserting coins by hand? No- the Random Number Generator does not discern between a coin drop or a credit played. This has no bearing on where the reels stop.

Final Tips for Success

  • Dollar and higher denomination machines will usually pay out better than the lower denomination machines, the reason being that these machines generate a profit for the casinos quicker than the lower denomination machines.
  • Machines close to high traffic areas or where people congregate will usually be looser because the casinos have found that if players see lots of payouts it will entice them to keep playing for a longer period.
  • As with gambling nothing is full proof but using some of these strategies will work to your advantage and will also give you a slight edge over the average person who visits Las Vegas to gamble.


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