1. In many casinos, the denomination of your machine does not matter in earning comps, IF they are based exclusively on the total dollar amount of coin in. A nickel player who plays five timesJean Scott is known as the "Queen of Comps" and encourages smarter casino gambling. She appears on network and cable TV, especially on the Travel Channel. Her down-to-earth practical suggestions will save you both time and money in your quest to make your trip to the casino more fun and more profitable. Jean's website is www.queenofcomps.com as long as a quarter player will get the same comps. A quarter player can achieve dollar-player status by playing four times as long. Check at the slot club to be sure of specific casino rules: some give more comps to dollar players than to quarter ones.
2. It used to be that almost all casinos based comps for machine players strictly on coin-in. High-tech tracking systems now allow casinos to add other factors to the formula. This can include such things as frequency of play, length of sessions, win/loss figures, denomination, and type of machine. Therefore it is often hard to determine how much play you must do to get the comps you wish to earn.
3. Some casinos comp rooms for out-of-towners more readily than for locals—even if both play at the same level. They assume, rightly or wrongly, that tourists will have a larger per-day bankroll. On the other hand, some casinos cater to locals and emphasize food comps more than free or discounted rooms.
4. Many casinos base your comps on a daily point average, spread over your whole visit. This works to your advantage, for example, if you play heavily some days and want to spend some days sightseeing with no play at all. Other casinos may penalize you for no-action days. Some casinos will lower your player rating (and thus the comp level) if you stop in and play just a short time on a day in between longer visits. In fact, I know of one casino that will count it as one whole day (a zero-play one) in your daily average if all you do is insert your card into a slot card reader to check your points. It pays to check on specific casino rules.
5. Some slot clubs do not give as many points to a player for video poker as they do for slot machines, so you will not earn as many comps for the same amount of coin-in.
6. If you want a food comp to one of a casino's better restaurants but your playing level is just under the qualification point, ask for a limited-dollar comp and/or one that is for food only, no alcoholic drinks. Your host may be more willing to issue it since you cannot run up a sky-high bill as you could on an "open" comp.
7. You don't always have to be a high roller to get a comped suite. Some casinos take into consideration lifetime play. We've been elevated to suite status after a few years of frequent quarter play, especially during the slow season between Thanksgiving and Christmas.
8. My husband, Brad, likes meal comps not just because he can eat free, but because they mean he usually does not have to wait in a long line.
9. Never gamble with money you cannot afford to lose, just to get comps. It is wiser in the long run to plan to pay for your meals and room. Then, if the comps come, they'll be gravy.
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