7 Quick Casino Gambling Tips You Won’t Find Anywhere Else

By Paul Wilson in Casino
| May 23, 2016 12:00 am PST
Cards Being Shuffled Bridge Style

Sometimes reading casino gambling tips posts gets boring. After all, how many times do you need someone to explain to you that the Martingale System doesn’t work?

I’ve put together a list of casino gambling tips below that you probably won’t find anywhere else. The idea was to think about things in a different way.

You’ll probably realize that my tongue is planted firmly in my cheek on at least some of these.

1. Go ahead and give the Martingale System a try.

The Martingale System gets a bad rap, and maybe that’s justified. I’m not going to tell you that it’s going to make you a winner. The math on that has been demonstrated time and again.

But it’s not going to make you a loser, either.

Here’s the deal:

The house edge on a casino game doesn’t change for the worse just because you’re using the Martingale System. It’s the same regardless of whether or not you use the Martingale System to size your bets.

If you think it’s a fun betting system to use, then go for it.

Just don’t expect it to turn a negative expectation game into a winner, because it won’t.

In fact, the Martingale System used to be an effective tool when clearing casino bonuses for profit.

And for those of you who don’t already know how it works, here’s a quick rundown of the Martingale System.

You place an even money bet, usually at the roulette table. If you win, you pocket your winnings. If you lose, you place the bet again, but this time you double it. If you win, you’ve won back your loss on the previous bet, and you’re also up by one unit.

You continue this progression if you lose twice in a row, or three times in a row, or whatever. When you eventually hit a win, you’ve recovered your losses and made a profit of one unit.

This seems like a winning system at first glance, but it’s not, for 2 reasons:

  1. You’ll eventually run out of money to continue betting with, and this will happen sooner than you think.
  2. Even if you don’t run out of money to continue betting with, you’ll eventually bump into the table maximum.

Here’s an example:

You’re playing roulette at a table with a $5 minimum bet and a $500 maximum bet.

You bet $5, lose, then bet $10. You lose again, then bet $20. And so on… $40… $80… $160… $320… $640.

But wait, you can’t bet $640. The table max is $500.

It only took 8 consecutive losses to get to that point, too. That sounds like it’s impossible, but 8 losses in a row happens all the time.

Here’s what you need to understand about the Martingale System:

If you use it, you will have lots of winning sessions, but your winnings will be small.

If you continue to use it, you will eventually have a big losing session, wiping out all those previous wins.

My point is that roulette is a negative expectation game anyway. It doesn’t matter if you use the Martingale System or not. If you play long enough, you’ll eventually lose all your money.

2. Use money management techniques in spite of the experts’ advice.

Money management is a gambling technique where you set win goals and stop loss limits. The idea is to make sure you don’t lose a lot of money in a single session. It’s also a goal to stop when you’re ahead.

Here’s an example:

You have a $500 bankroll. You’re going to gamble for a few hours in the casino.

You set a win goal of $500. Once you’ve won $500 or more, you’re going to quit for the day.

You set a stop loss limit of $250. Once you’ve lost $250, you’re going to quit for the day.

Critics of this type of system argue that it does nothing to improve or lessen your chances of winning.

They are absolutely correct about this.

But it doesn’t matter.

Casino games are negative expectation games. If you play them long enough, and if you consider them one long session, as the gambling math experts advise, you will almost certainly lose all the money you put into action.

If that’s the case, what does it hurt to create some arbitrary rules for starting and stopping a gambling session?

As long as you’re not under the impression that you’re going to increase your chances of winning, you can use money management techniques to your heart’s content.

3. Play the slot machines to your heart’s content—even if you’re at the airport.

The common wisdom among experts is that you should avoid slot machines because the average hourly loss is too high. 600 spins an hour at $5 per spin is $3000 in action. With a house edge of maybe 5%, you’re looking at an hourly loss of $150, on average.

But that’s not necessarily a bad thing—as long as you’re having fun.

In fact, what most gambling experts ignore is that you’re going to lose all your money playing a negative expectation game anyway. It doesn’t matter if the house edge is 1% or 50%. That’s just how the math works.

The common advice is to play blackjack or video poker instead, in order to take advantage of the low house edge.

But what if you don’t like playing cards?

What if you don’t want to make decisions about how to play this hand or that one?

Slot machines are good for mindless action and a shot at a big win. The maximum jackpot on a slots game can be exponentially larger than on almost any of the other recommended casino games available.

Yeah, winning a slots jackpot is a long shot.

But you DID say you were a gambler, right?

4. Don’t worry about joining the slots club or the players’ club.

You’ve probably seen this advice repeated excessively:

“Always join the slots club, and always play with the card inserted into the machine.”

I’m here to tell you that it ain’t necessarily so.

The casinos have carefully analyzed how much additional play you’re going to bring them based on these incentives. If they weren’t making a profit from every perk or reward they offered you, they wouldn’t be offering it.

Sure, if you’re going to be gambling anyway, you might as well take advantage of these perks.

But at the same time, if you’re easily swayed by things like bonuses and incentives, joining the slots club might be the opposite of what you need to do.

And as I’ve pointed out in some of these earlier tips already, the expected value of these bets, even when you add back in the incentives, is still negative.

Play long enough, and you’ll lose all your money—including the value of those free buffet tickets.

5. Don’t bother learning basic strategy in blackjack.

Here’s what blackjack experts neglect to mention a lot of the time.

Even if you’re using basic strategy, the house still has an edge.

And as long as the house has an edge, if you play long enough, the casino will win all your money.

What good is basic strategy then?

It reduces the house edge from 3% or 4% to 1% or less.

That means you’ll still lose your money eventually. It will just take longer.

If memorizing basic strategy seems like a drag, forget about it. Just play by your gut instincts and have fun.

Ignore any haters at the table, too.

If you do want to get an edge over the casino, then yes, you’ll need to learn basic strategy. You’ll also need to learn how to count cards. I’ll talk more about that in tip #7.

6. Drink all the free liquor you can get your hands on while you’re gambling.

One of the perks or comps available to casino gamblers is the availability of free drinks. You still have to tip the cocktail waitress, but if you’re a drinker, this can be a good value. In fact, this is one of the only perks/comps you can get without joining the slots club.

Here’s the trick though:

If you’re going to drink while you’re gambling, decide on your gambling bankroll before you start drinking. Leave your credit cards and ATM cards in your room. Only bring the cash that you can afford to lose.

Once you start drinking, your judgment is going to falter. That happens invariably.

Protect yourself from your own bad judgment in that case in any way you can.

If you need to, give your credit cards and debit cards to someone else, and make them promise to not return them unless and until you sober up.

It’s a lot like having a designated driver.

7. Count cards if you want to, but don’t worry about whether or not the casino knows what you’re up to.

You’ll see a lot of lip service paid to the using camouflage to avoid getting barred by the casino for counting cards, but here’s the reality:

Most of the pit bosses are perfectly capable of seeing right through your camouflage.

Here’s why:

To get an edge when counting cards, you have to raise and lower your bets.

Even if the blackjack crew isn’t counting along with you, they can see your bet sizing range, and it doesn’t take long to figure out what you’re up to.

But the reality is that most aspiring card counters aren’t good enough to get an edge anyway. Casino management is aware of this.

They’re not nearly as worried about you counting cards as you probably think.

And if you do get backed off by a member of the casino staff, you’ll have a great story to tell.


Casino gambling tips posts are a mixed bag. A lot of the advice you’ll read on a lot of casino gambling sites is trite at best and ignorant at worst.

I’ve tried to offer some different perspective on some facts that everyone who gambles already knows. Sometimes thinking about things in a different way can produce a little bit of enlightenment.

One tip I didn’t mention that should always be foremost on your mind is this one:

If you think you have a gambling problem or might be addicted, get help.

Don’t let an activity that’s supposed to be entertaining ruin your life and/or your family’s life.

It’s not worth it.