Best Ways to Take Advantage of Casino Players Clubs

A pile of assorted players club cards from throughout the years.A pile of assorted players club cards from throughout the years. (Kristina Mehaffey/Advantage Media)

There is misinformation floating around Las Vegas related to the best ways to take advantage of casino players clubs. A self-declared Las Vegas casino expert who isn’t one suggests players sign up for all loyalty clubs and run $100 through slot machines under each program and the comp offers will roll in. If followed, this advice may cost you thousands of dollars in comps.

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Concentrate on one casino

Most casinos rate players based on average daily theoretical (ADT), which is how much the casino expects to win off the player in a day. It has little to do with the actual results of a gambling session. The casino’s players club creates offers based on this value.

Initial offers tend to be better than ones given later in a player’s cycle. If a casino’s marketing department likes what it sees from a first visit, room, food, and free play offers can be generous. This is especially true when a player does not stay on the property. The belief is that an invited guest who spends a few nights in the hotel has a higher value than one who drops by for a couple of hours. 

The advice to sign up for all the players cards at once and play $100 on a slot prevents the more profitable scenario described above from happening. Playing $100 in coin-in creates a $5 or $10 ADT. It is tough to grow this to a level that will get you more than a small amount of free play or discounted room. It certainly won’t get comped rooms, as the people pushing this bad information alleged. Even if the hotel rate is $0, a small amount of play won’t get a player into a tier that also comps resort fees.

Find out the players club day before playing

Some players prefer to hit the casino floor during overnight hours. There is less smoke. Table game minimums are lower. Most machines are empty. There is a potential problem with this plan. 

A casino day tends to start and end in the middle of the night as opposed to 12am. Make sure to keep a single day of action within those hours. This keeps your ADT higher than when it splits over two days. If you plan to play over multiple days, this does not matter, until departure time. If you must play before getting on the plane or driving home, you should avoid using your loyalty club card unless you plan to give multiple hours of action.

Slots are usually better than table games for points

Slot players usually have better returns for the players club than table games. However, that is not enough of a reason to choose slots over other games. The main reason for this is the house edge of slots, which often hold about 10% of the coin-in. Compare that to video poker where the worst games only have a 4% house edge, and table games, which run between about 0.5% and 5%. 

If you are inclined to play slots, players clubs can add significant value to help you overcome some of the massive house edge. Points are usually earned faster at slots than video poker and other games. This gives you more instant food and free play comps. 

The theoretical house edge is taken into consideration when casinos send mailers that include free play, hotel rooms, and food. A player’s value is also part of the equation for when a host is considered.

Use your players club comps before leaving

As tempting as it may be to save up slot points for an expensive dinner during a future visit, this can turn into a regrettable situation. Casinos have been known to change the value of points without notice, even in the middle of a year. This could cut the value of your slot points by 50% or more. You may also find that your favorite restaurant has changed its slot point redemption policy. Free play conversion rates can also change without warning. 

Casinos may become unhappy with winning players. This may cause the players club to remove points and comps from an account. All these problems can be avoided by redeeming slot points before going home.

Use your status at one casino for upgrades at another

Giving all your play to a single operator instead of spreading it out among many will help you gain a higher status. This gives you more perks like free parking, no resort fees, and line passes at your home casino. If your status is high enough, other casinos may match your tier. This can help you turn your perks at your home casino into ones at other properties. 

If you receive a tier match, it is often for a limited time. Fontainebleau is an example of a Las Vegas casino doing that right now. You can see those perks here: 

Fontainebleau offers this promotion through September 2, 2024. Players keep the new status and its perks through the end of the year. The 2025 status level is determined by the level of action during 2024.

It is important to give play to the casino offering tier matching. This allows you to compare its offers with your home casino. Now, you have two casino companies to consider for your next Las Vegas trip.

Your status can be earned in markets outside Las Vegas. In the Fontainebleau example, Caesars, MGM, and Hard Rock are regional operators that Fontainebleau tier matches. This allows players to build status at home and transfer it to a high-end Las Vegas property. 

Some tier matches are only for players who never joined the loyalty program. Signing up to run $100 through a slot machine could prevent a future tier match.

Leave if your comps fall below expectations

Another benefit of the tier match is that it opens the door for you if your home casino changes the rules or comp formula in a way that negatively affects your returns. Caesars Rewards is an example of a players club that does not maintain consistency and changes the perks without notice, like closing Laurel Lounges and taking food and drink comps away. 

However, this does not mean you should spread your play too thinly. It is important to maintain a high status at one casino company if you are a small player. This ensures you will at least get offers for discounted hotel rooms.

author avatar
John Mehaffey
John, a founding member of Advantage Media LLC, got his start in gaming as a prop player at online poker sites. He played online poker from 2001 to 2005. In 2004, he created a site that served as a directory for an online poker promotional method known as rakeback. He sold that site in 2006 and moved his family from Atlanta to Rapid City, SD to work for a similar company. They later moved to Las Vegas in 2010. John’s favorite game is full-pay video poker. His favorite table game is Ultimate Texas Hold’em, though he would rather play it in video form. Currently, John is best known for compiling blackjack and table game data including all Las Vegas and Clark County casinos.