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Best of John G. Brokopp

Gaming Guru

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More Protocol Guidelines for Casino Play

2 August 2006

Being knowledgeable about the rules of the games in casinos doesn't always mean a player is familiar with proper protocol. Good manners can be just as important as good strategy when it comes to making a gambling outing an enjoyable experience. Today, slot and blackjack play receive the black tie treatment.

Rules of Etiquette for Slot Players:

  1. Slot machine chairs are not for resting or lounging. They're for playing. Also, refrain from using the chair next to you as a foot or leg rest.
  2. "Saving" a machine you are playing to take a restroom break can be tricky. You can ask your neighbor on either side if they'll watch your machine while you're away for a few minutes and they'll usually happily oblige. Depending on the circumstances, a slot attendant may even "close" a game for a loyal customer, especially when the floor is crowded.
  3. Before you sit down to play a machine, always make certain it's not in use by looking at the credit meter and checking to see if a player's card is inserted.
  4. Don't be a "machine hog". It's very inconsiderate of other players to reach over to your left or right playing neighboring machines, especially when it's crowded.
  5. If you hit a hand pay jackpot, always consider tipping an especially courteous, efficient and prompt slot attendant. They count on tips as much as dealers do. One percent of your jackpot is a good rule of thumb for average players.

Rules of Etiquette for Blackjack:

  1. Convey your playing decisions to the dealer clearly and decisively. If you wish to stand pat, make one pass of your hand, palm down, over the cards. If you want to "hit" (take a card), scratch the felt toward you with your index finger.
  2. Wait until you're ready to leave the table before you "color up" your chips, and always make the request during the shuffle. Interrupting the flow of the game with transaction and change requests is rude.
  3. Avoid criticizing or ridiculing the strategy of your table mates. It's always best to play the game according to basic strategy, but as the man said, "It's your money". If you don't agree with the decisions another player is making, simply remain silent or just move to another table.
  4. Don't hog the table by "guarding" your space with elbows and arms or using the vacant chair next to you as a foot rest. There should be room for everyone to play comfortably.
  5. Remember to tip a courteous, friendly dealer. You may place a chip outside of your betting circle. When you win the dealer wins. You may also opt to place the chip on top of your own bet and start a parlay for the dealer, a method called "riding the train".
John G. Brokopp

John G. Brokopp's gaming column appears in Chicago Sun Times (Chicago, Illinois), The Times (Northwest Indiana), The Quad City Times (Davenport, Iowa), The Courier News (Elgin, Illinois), The Gazette (Southwest Suburban Chicago) and Senior Wire (Denver, CO). He's also a regular contributor to The Colorado Gambler, Midwest Gaming & Travel, Casino Player and Strictly Slots. John possesses 28 years of experience as a professional handicapper, publicist, freelance writer, and casino gaming correspondent. He is also the author of two very popular books, The Insider’s Guide to Internet Gambling and Thrifty Gambling.

Books by John G. Brokopp:

> More Books By John G. Brokopp

John G. Brokopp
John G. Brokopp's gaming column appears in Chicago Sun Times (Chicago, Illinois), The Times (Northwest Indiana), The Quad City Times (Davenport, Iowa), The Courier News (Elgin, Illinois), The Gazette (Southwest Suburban Chicago) and Senior Wire (Denver, CO). He's also a regular contributor to The Colorado Gambler, Midwest Gaming & Travel, Casino Player and Strictly Slots. John possesses 28 years of experience as a professional handicapper, publicist, freelance writer, and casino gaming correspondent. He is also the author of two very popular books, The Insider’s Guide to Internet Gambling and Thrifty Gambling.

Books by John G. Brokopp:

> More Books By John G. Brokopp