Smarter Gambling

8 Tips for Going to the Casino with $100 to Gamble

New York-New York slot floor
Written by Joshua

Earlier this week I posted an article about how to make your money last longer at the casino. However, looking over recent search volume, one particular topic seems to come up more frequently: Going to the casino with $100.

$100 sounds like a lot of money, but it can go quickly at a casino. I’ve multiple times put $100 into a game like Dollar Storm, bet the minimum bet allowed ($1 a spin), and found myself out of money without a bonus to show for it in about 15 minutes.

But then there are people like my mom, who would be able to go the casino with $200 over a weekend, play all weekend and come home with money. She’s my representative sample for today’s post, and many of the things she’d do are what I’d recommend here.

Before we get into the tips, to have a good chance of having money left over after playing for four hours, it’s recommended to have a stake that’s about 500x times your average bet.

On $100, that’s a mere 20 cents a spin. So even with these tips, you may not be able to, or care to, bet that low, so expect a chance that the money could go before you’re ready to be done. That’s just the challenge of how casino games work, and so it’s best to be upfront about that possibility.

1. Play Lower Volatility Games

Lower volatility games are games that tend to pay more frequently, but pay out smaller amounts when they do pay. As a result, they don’t have the same frequency of challenging periods where you go a lengthy period of time without a good line hit or bonus as a more volatile game, where it’s designed to pay out less often, but bigger amounts.

In the past I’ve shared examples of lower volatility games. Many of them are perennial favorites on the casino floor so they shouldn’t be too hard to locate at a casino nearby.

2. Find a Lower Minimum Bet

Minimum bets have been on the rise over time, no surprise as the value of a dollar evolves, but not every game has the same minimum bet. Dollar Storm has a $1 minimum bet, but Lightning Link has 50 cents and is a similar game in structure, missing the Super Grand but otherwise having similar bonuses and the hold and spin feature.

Similarly, you may find newer versions of the same game on the same casino floor as its older counterpart, and the older version will have a lower minimum bet. So sometimes it helps to pay attention to what’s out there.

I’ve given a number of examples of lower minimum bet games to seek out if you like that bet range. Some games go as low as 20 cents to play all lines!

3. Reduce Your Lines

One thing you can do on certain games is choose how many lines you wish to play. While having less lines can make the game tougher because there’s less chances to win, you’re also betting less per spin, so you simply have more spins to get the job done.

If you play 30 lines on a 50 line game, and each line costs one credit on a one cent denomination, you’ll have lowered each bet by 40 percent, from 50 cents to 30 cents. That can give you a lot of runway as that’s going to allow nearly twice as many spins to make something happen on the same budget!

4. Play Games that Spin Slower

Over time, slot machines are completing individual spins at a faster rate than they did years ago. This is by design – the quicker a spin concludes, the quicker you’ll hit spin again. In other cases even things like big win music have been trimmed down to complete the counting up faster. So finding games that spin slower that are on the casino floor can be a great way to counteract that.

Some slot machines now give you the ability to control the speed of the spin – IGT is the most prominent of these. Setting the game to spin slower will simply space your bets out more, and similar to the line reduction technique above, will just mean more time to play.

5. Seek Out Older Games

Older games tend to have a few things going for them. They have lower minimum bets, they have less volatile game structures, and they tend to spin slower. They also frequently let you decide how many lines you wish to play.

All four things are what we covered above, so it makes sense that an older game, checking all the boxes. Older games also can potentially have a higher payback percentage than newer ones, simply because they weren’t designed with the same options way back then as they are now.

6. Play Games With Lengthy Bonuses

If you play a game that can have a longer bonus, whether because of animations, lots of picking, regular retriggers and so on, those are periods of time where you’re not wagering either. So if you’re fond of games that can give you a long bonus at times, even if not every time, that can be another nice way to slow down your betting and improve the chances of making your money last.

7. Let the Game Do Its Thing

Some players will speed stop the reels, or hit the button to race through the counting up of a bonus, which is certainly fine if that’s your thing, but keep in mind each of these actions concludes a spin more quickly, meaning you’re going to take your next spin more quickly.

If you let the spins finish on their own, and let the wins count up on their own, that delays starting the next spin, which like some of the previous tips, simply allows you to stretch your budget out that much more.

8. Walk Around More

Setting more frequent cash out points can not only be helpful to make sure you don’t burn too much of your limited budget on one machine, but the actual act of walking around also slows down your play. So use the physical space of the casino to your advantage and don’t just anchor down at one game.

Do you use other tips to make a small budget last at the casino? Share in the comments!

About the author


My name is Joshua, and I’m a slot enthusiast who works in tech as a marketer by day, and dabbles in casinos periodically during off-times. Know Your Slots will reflect my interests in understanding the various ways you can play slots, travel, casino promotions and how you can get the most out of your casino visits.

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