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Best of Gayle Mitchell

Gaming Guru

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Building and Streeeeeeetching your Slots Bankroll

1 October 2001

Money, coinage, wealth, riches, jackpots, slots and a fun casino experience--now there's the ticket!

Before you enter the slots competition and win this ticket; you must qualify with some wager management basics. Let's explore these qualifications that will build and stretch your slots bankroll. A pre-determined dollar amount to fit your slots budget is the best start. Does your favorite casino advertise slots with at least a 98% payback-- the better, looser slots? You will notice that the key words are "up to 98% payback." Most of the casino's slots do not pay back that much. Also, this will never mean that for each $1 you put in, you will get back 98 cents. A lot of first time players make this mistake. What this really means is that over the fiscal year life cycle of that particular slot machine, it will average payoffs equal to 98% of all monies put through. Some casinos now offer "Certified" slots that are guaranteed to payback 100%. Usually dollars, these are a good play if all machines are 100%. Did you know that even the loosest slots-those 98-plus-percenters-still average only an 80% payout to the players? That's because players don't play maximum coins or they don't make sure all their coins register before they spin. Slots make up to 70% of a casino's revenues. Let's stop giving the casinos what we can rightfully claim for ourselves! Avoid the tight (low-paying) slots in restaurants, bars, airports and supermarkets. After you have done your research and located a loose machine, read all the posted information before you play. Take your time; there is no need to hurry. Don't rush while you play, either so you can make sure you have received all the money due you when you win. Check for unused credits, money in the holder and cash-outs before you leave the machine. Remember, too, that one of the principles of wager management is knowing when to quit. Never, never stay too long at a machine. The casino advantage kicks in if you overstay your welcome. After three, four or five pulls with no return, get out of there. Be a hit-and-run winner. If you are tempted to stay at a machine, keep this in mind: most jackpot wins happen in the first five to ten minutes of play with a small cash outlay. So, if a slot doesn't produce for you in fairly short order, get upward and onward, looking for another slot.

Table game players will argue loud and long at me for this, but I submit that you can make just as much money or more on an hourly basis playing slots.

Cost per hour to play slots:

Denomination 1 coin 2 coins 3 coins
Nickel $30 $60 $90
Quarter 150 300 450
Dollar 600 1200 1800


I rest my case for playing 2-coin basic slots. With quarter machines (the most played slots), I would have an extra $150 to play with; 300 extra spins at 2-coin machines-stretching those slot bucks. Of all the basic slots offered in casinos today, these specific machines will provide you with the most play, the best pays, and the best odds of hitting a top jackpot.

You should always test a slot machine before you commit yourself to continued play. (Testing applies to basic slot machines, not to progressives, where your aim is to hit the top jackpot with less concern for smaller wins along the way.) Here is a method for testing straight quarter slots:

1. With a buy-in of $10-40 quarters-in hand, play through all $10 and leave all winnings in the tray (or allow the credits to accumulate).

2. If your winnings total less than 65% of your test amount ($6.50 in this example), get up and find yourself another slot machine. If your winnings total at least 65%, the slot may be in or near an "up" cycle. Try three more coins and, based on any payouts from that, decide if you want to stay. Of course, if you get back more than your original $10, you have found a sizzling slot! As you continue to play it, stash half your winnings. This is now your money-not the casino's!

Of course, all good things must end, and you know that even a sizzling slot in an up cycle will eventually have a down cycle. The informed gambler knows the signs of an impending down cycle. One sign is that the machine just hit the top jackpot. Another sign is when the machine starts hitting a lot of near-misses-symbol combinations that are almost winners but not quite. Don't be deceived. In both of these cases, the slot is turning from sizzling to sputtering. So find yourself another slot pronto, and repeat your test. Practicing sound wager management not only stretches your gambling dollars but places you in the finals to win the BIG TICKET.
Gayle Mitchell

Gayle Mitchell, one of the first women to break through the “felt ceiling” of the previously male-dominated world of casino gambling gurus, is now regarded as one of North America’s leading experts on casino gambling.

Gayle’s commitment to educating the gambling public began almost 20 years ago, when she walked into a Las Vegas casino and experienced for the first time the thrill that comes with winning even a small bet. She made up her mind then and there to learn every game in the casino, and a short time later resolved to make a career out of sharing her insights with other gamblers. She had always considered herself to be a good teacher – she believes in keeping things simple – and decided that she would commit herself to showing newbies how to become knowledgeable, intelligent gamblers.

Gayle started her own publishing company, and her first book came out in 1997. Today she is the author of seven books, seven EBooks, and a set of five Tips booklets, and has presented many seminars on casino gambling. Currently she teaches Learn to Win Programs with other leading experts at GamblingTeachers.com. The site is a player-friendly Free Gambling Learning Center offering 300+ online lessons for popular casino games plus Gambling Teachers Blog. Gayle also operates www.gamerisms.com, which is a games glossary site for sport, casino, skill and video game players.

“It’s a fact that less than 2 percent of casino players know the profitable, correct strategies and/or rules for most casino games,” Gayle says. “Our group of career teachers and writers are working to improve that statistic.”

Gayle Mitchell Websites:

www.gamblingteachers.com
www.gamerisms.com
Gayle Mitchell
Gayle Mitchell, one of the first women to break through the “felt ceiling” of the previously male-dominated world of casino gambling gurus, is now regarded as one of North America’s leading experts on casino gambling.

Gayle’s commitment to educating the gambling public began almost 20 years ago, when she walked into a Las Vegas casino and experienced for the first time the thrill that comes with winning even a small bet. She made up her mind then and there to learn every game in the casino, and a short time later resolved to make a career out of sharing her insights with other gamblers. She had always considered herself to be a good teacher – she believes in keeping things simple – and decided that she would commit herself to showing newbies how to become knowledgeable, intelligent gamblers.

Gayle started her own publishing company, and her first book came out in 1997. Today she is the author of seven books, seven EBooks, and a set of five Tips booklets, and has presented many seminars on casino gambling. Currently she teaches Learn to Win Programs with other leading experts at GamblingTeachers.com. The site is a player-friendly Free Gambling Learning Center offering 300+ online lessons for popular casino games plus Gambling Teachers Blog. Gayle also operates www.gamerisms.com, which is a games glossary site for sport, casino, skill and video game players.

“It’s a fact that less than 2 percent of casino players know the profitable, correct strategies and/or rules for most casino games,” Gayle says. “Our group of career teachers and writers are working to improve that statistic.”

Gayle Mitchell Websites:

www.gamblingteachers.com
www.gamerisms.com