Bankroll Allocation

It’s not uncommon for gambling gurus (people like me, Tony) to tell you that a key to good money management in a casino is to allocate a certain amount of your bankroll. The typical rule of thumb is to take the number of days you’ll be gambling and divide that into your overall bankroll for a daily amount of gambling money.

I disagree, for the most part.

This completely ignores the fact that most casinos track your average daily theoretical numbers. If you use a player’s card (you are, right?) in the casinos in which you gamble, the player’s club will track your gambling information. Things like amount wagered per bet, denomination of table/machine, game played, total amount of money run through the table/machine, how long you gambled (and other mystical aspects we don’t know). When you throw all those numbers into the pot, it comes up with what you’re worth to the casino each time you come through their door. If you were to take a $2,000 bankroll, divide it by the 4 days you’re going to be in the casino, you’re worth $500 to the casino each day. However, if you were to save your gambling (on your card) to just two days of play, then you’re worth $1,000 a day to the casino. As dumb as it may seem, even through you’re there for 4 days, the bean counters think you’re MORE valuable to the casino by concentrating your play to just two.

Now, if you don’t use a player’s club card to track your play (which is really stupid of you, why do you follow VLO?) then the gambling philosophy of dividing the number of days into your bankroll for a daily loss limit, makes sense to do.

But remember, you get your comps based on your average daily theoretical, so keep it nice and high for those perks. My recommendation: Decide how many days you want to gamble when you’re at the casino and play for as long as you can! A minimum of 4 hours but realistically 8 hours would be smarter. One or two days of play at 8 hours a day will ensure you show up on the casinos radar. Radar is good for free stuff (hotels, meals, cash incentives). See why we concentrate our gambling to just a few days? If you’re going to gamble for 8 hours a day, you’re losing a large percentage of your day. So why not gamble hard in the middle of your trip and then bookend your trip by relaxing at the pool/spa/attractions!!

2 thoughts on “Bankroll Allocation

  1. AccessVegas Reply

    Excellent advice. Devote the off days to doing all of the “I want to do but never get around to” stuff. Rent a car for the day and hit all those locals casinos you’ve heard about. (Obviously, you’ll dump a few bucks along the way, but not like a hardcore gambling day on The Strip). Take that helicopter tour to the Grand Canyon (worth every penny of the $400-plus bucks.

    Spend the night boozing your way from Fremont East to The Plaza and back. Trust me, you can have a blast downtown without gambling (or keeping it to a minimum). You can go to and see what free bands are playing on what days and what stages. (Hint: Use YouTube to look them up and find out if they are your glass of scotch).

    Go down to Laughlin for the day just to check it out. Very different vibe, everything is a bargain, and the casinos are located along a very cool river walk. If you get board, go see Oatman, AZ and historic route 66.

    Plenty of things to do on your non-playing days!

    • Tony Snyder Reply

      These are all great ideas! I completely agree and, indeed, want to cross a few of those items off my bucket list. Thanks for the heads up on where NOT to miss. If we’re going to take time off from gambling, might as well go hit up some fun locations. Thanks again for the suggestions.

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