One great thing about gambling online is that you don’t have to worry about tipping the dealer. After all, you came to the game ready to make money, not spend it! But if you want to enjoy the glitz and glamour of live casino gambling, you should be prepared to tip the casino employees. Many of them depend on tips to make a livable wage.
Casino tipping isn’t just about how much you should throw the dealer. Other employees such as bellhops and valets deserve tips as well. If you’re staying at the hotel and making use of their services, tip them just as you would at any fine establishment. A dollar or two per bag works for the bellhop, and most people agree that five dollars is a good tip for the valet.
Servers and Hosts
Eating dinner in Las Vegas can be almost as enjoyable as playing the games. Tip your food servers just as you would at any restaurant. 20 percent is considered standard for table hosts and cocktail girls. At a buffet, you can save your money, but leave a dollar for the bussers who clear the table. A good rule of thumb for cocktail waitresses is a dollar or two per drink. If you want to give them $5 or $10 right off the bat, you may find that the service and frequency of drinks improves.
Dealers – A Common Misconception
Avoid the common belief that you should only tip your dealer if you’re winning. You may reasonably tip more generously if you’re swimming in cash, but the dealer has nothing to do with the luck of the draw. Tip according to your means and how happy you are with the dealer’s professionalism.
Dealers – How to Tip
If you agree that you should tip your dealer regardless of whether or not you’re winning, you can more easily develop your own personal gratuity guide. As a starting point, here are some guidelines many gamblers follow.
Poker: A common method of tipping is to pass the dealer a small blind every time you win a hand. If you want to be more equitable, you can simply tip out a big blind at the end of the dealer’s session.
Poker Tournament: More often than not, tournament dealers are automatically awarded a gratuity out of the prize pool. If that’s the case, you needn’t provide an additional tip. If not, somewhere between one and five percent of your winnings should be adequate.
Blackjack: A good rule of thumb is to tip your blackjack dealer about $5 an hour. If you’re feeling generous, you can go up to $10. When you want to give the dealer a “toke,” just place a chip on the felt whenever you want, and tell the dealer it’s for them. Another option is to make a bet for the dealer instead, although if the bet doesn’t win, you really didn’t tip, did you? Still, many dealers appreciate the excitement.
Craps: Tip your craps dealer the same way you would your blackjack dealer.
Roulette: This game favors the house in a big way, so the “make a bet for the dealer” method of tipping is not as acceptable. Instead, follow the $5 an hour rule and tip directly.
Slots: For sizeable slot machine jackpots, you’ll have to fill out paperwork and deal with an attendant to get your winnings. It’s appropriate to tip the attendant one percent of your jackpot.
A Personal Choice
Once again, there are no hard-and-fast rules for casino tipping. But it is a fact of life that those who tip generously often get better service. It might not change your luck, but it can certainly have an effect on how enjoyable your evening is. Look at it as a social responsibility, set aside money for tipping beforehand, and avoid becoming “that guy” that the dealers grumble about after work.