CasinoCityTimes.com

Gurus
News
Newsletter
Author Home Author Archives Author Books Send to a Friend Search Articles Subscribe
Stay informed with the
NEW Casino City Times newsletter!
Newsletter Signup
Stay informed with the
NEW Casino City Times newsletter!
Recent Articles
Best of John G. Brokopp

Gaming Guru

author's picture
 

Thrifty Tips for Getting the Most out of Casino Comps

1 June 2005

1. Don't be afraid to ask. Casino guest services representatives are in business to please and accommodate people, not alienate them. In most gaming markets, they are aware that people can take their business elsewhere. They are out to make friends, not enemies. Besides, food comps actually cost the casino a fraction of their face value. Comps are the best marketing tools a casino has. They don't want to say "no" to your request for a comp if they can at all help it. But they're not mind-readers, either. As the squeaky wheel gets the grease, so does the outgoing casino player. If you've been warming the seat at a blackjack table for a while or playing at a slot carousel for a period of time, find a representative and inquire about a comp. Just make your request in a polite demeanor and maybe even make some small talk. Don't be a pest or act demanding as if you've got it coming to you. Be nice and friendly and you may be in for a surprise.

2. Develop a personal relationship with a casino host, shift manager, or pit supervisor. Name and face recognition can go a lot further than just being a number in a data base. If you're visiting a casino for the first time, call in advance and ask to speak to someone in player development. Tell them you'll be coming in and that you're looking forward to the visit. Get the person's name and when you check in, stop by the office with a small gift or token of appreciation, such as a souvenir from your home town or a specialty item from your locality. When you're out on the casino floor, don't be shy about introducing yourself to the shift manager or slot or pit supervisor. Just a friendly "hi" along with some chat about the property and in all likelihood the person will offer you his or her card, and you've made a new friend.

3. Always use your player tracking card. Separate and aside from the personal contacts you make in a casino is being a member of the player's club. All casinos have them now. Cold, statistical dollars-and-cents decisions regarding comps are based upon the player profile that pops up when the host or other casino representative brings up your information on the computer screen. It's kind of like a casino player's "box score". By using a card you develop equity in the property and are eligible for cash back or comps as the case may be. Player's clubs encourage brand loyalty. The more often you attend, the longer you play, and the more money you "churn" through the machines or tables, the more valuable you are to the casino.

4. Take advantage of "first time visitor" privileges. If you're a veteran player making a first-time visit to a property in your own jurisdiction or out of state, always make a personal contact before you play. Explain to a host that you've been playing elsewhere but that you've heard a lot of nice things about this particular casino and you'd like to give them a try. Alluding to your games of choice or your level of play won't hurt, either, such as mentioning the playing tier you are at another property. Casinos are always trying to win over new customers, influence people, and attract new and potential premium players. The casino industry is very competitive in this respect. Manipulate the system, if you will, and see what kind of "welcome wagon" comps you may be offered.

5. Go for "true comps" first before using your point equity. Every casino uses basically the same formula for determining a player's worth. The "theo" on a player (theoretical loss) is computed using the amount wagered, the length of playing time, and the win/loss ledger. The result is the value of comps the player is entitled to in dollars and cents. On the other hand, every casino uses a different formula for comps based on points accumulated using a player's card. A player may redeem his or her points for comps and have them deducted from their account. "True comps", however, may be a buffet or dinner offered to a player without the loss of points. It's based on individual session play and even property loyalty. Always go for true comps first before you tap into the equity that you've already earned and you're already entitled to receive. It's kind of like going for a bonus.

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