Saturday, February 12, 2011

The Best Kept Secret in Las Vegas

Slot machines are the bread and butter of a casino. This is where they make most of their money. It is no wonder that most of the floor space in a casino is occupied by slot machines. The best kept secret in Vegas is how much they pay. Gaming laws in Nevada set limits on how much of your money a slot machine can keep. The minimum payback in Nevada is 75%. That means that if you run $100 in a machine you should get back $75. It doesn't actually work that way on a short term survey. But if you put money in this slot machine for year you should have 75% of your money left.

The worst slot machines are at places like the Airport. They are set to keep a greater portion of your bets. It is alleged that there are slot machines that pay back 98% of the money that is played. I once went into a casino that had a sign out side that said 98% payback slots. I found out that this only applied to a certain bank of slots and was not every slot machine in the casino.

I have done some searching and can not find a survey or report that discloses which casino has what return. You see advertisements around Vegas that describe the loosest slots in Vegas. The best advise that I can give at this point is that the big hotels on the Strip have the worst payback. Downtown at Fremont Street is looser on average than the strip, and the outlying local casinos are the best place to play. Finally if you have some money that you haven't yet lost and you are at the Airport, play the slots.