Today, even the gold standard of gambling destinations, Las Vegas, is increasingly known for its restaurants, shows, and other non-gambling entertainment. For many people, it’s possible to enjoy a vacation here without ever stepping foot on the casino floor. Indeed, in 2014, while hotels in the city saw increased occupancy, gaming revenue fell $200 million dollars over the previous year. Nevertheless, many people still flock to Vegas, Atlantic City, and other gambling meccas to try their luck at slot machines, card tables, and other games of chance. Gamblers should consider the following tips for responsible gaming.
First, it helps to do a bit of research before setting down a chip. While most casinos offer free lessons on their games, researching the more complicated variants of popular games or the intricate tables like baccarat or craps can go a long way toward saving some money. It can also be enormously helpful to read about game strategy and to look up the house advantage; while standard blackjack, for example, can be a relatively “safe” bet using an optimal strategy, games like keno are often designed to be a huge money sink. Finally, before arriving, be sure to set a strict monetary limit. Ideally, you should set aside money for each day you plan to gamble, and spend no more when it’s gone.
Once you’ve arrived, avoid the temptation to gulp down cheap drinks; intoxicated players make poor decisions. In addition, while casinos are often designed to be difficult to navigate, be sure to take frequent breaks to clear your mind and avoid chasing a win. Consistent betting is a surefire way to avoid the fallacy of believing that you’re “due” to hit it big; if you’ve been putting down $1 chips, don’t start betting $10 at a time in order to regain your losses. It can also be a good idea to avoid betting with your winnings. This makes it far easier to track daily winnings (or losings, as the case may be). Finally, be aware that gambling can be addictive; if you or someone you are traveling with shows signs of having a problem, seek out assistance as soon as possible.