Understanding Comps

Is Free Play Really Free if You Have to Deposit Money?

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Written by Joshua

A player asked on a forum I’m a part about slot free play offers, and how some casinos handle free play when you go to actually play it:

Is free play truly free if you have to put money into the machine to use it? I know each casino is different and that we had to do it when we played with free play at the Luxor.

Asked on a slot forum

There’s two main ways casinos handle freeplay:

  • Some casinos let you add it to a machine, or insert a TITO, and it works like cash. You have to play it through once before it’s completely converted. If you cash out of a machine before it is, you usually can get another TITO with the remaining balance by cashing out a second time (but not always, so always check your machine). In this way it works like cash, but can’t be actually cashed in until you play through it once.
  • You must deposit money and make a wager, and the game will reimburse you for the spin from the free play at the conclusion of the spin and any wins being paid. This model is seen in Las Vegas particularly, but casinos outside Las Vegas use it too.

It’s that latter model they’re questioning. But since it’s a reimbursement of your bet, it effectively works the same, without having to worry about free play TITOs or what’s cashable – every penny in your machine’s balance is cash, and if you don’t use all your freeplay, it remains on account for the next game.

In some ways, because it remains on account, that can be nicer than forgetting to check if you have free play left, or counting spins, because of the way the systems that let you apply it directly to a machine work.

On the other hand, the account systems can sometimes get confused if you like to bounce around. One time I was doing this at a Las Vegas casino, my account got locked, they unlocked it and showed I had more free play left over because of how it works. The person at the desk shrugged and said “you got extra free play out of the deal.”

But ultimately, regarding the question at hand, it’s still definitely free play, bust just a question of how your spin is compensated as free play.

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.


  • Question. Some locations maybe all are offering dollar for dollar tomorrow up to 1000.00. How does that work? Thanks

    • Hi Bill! Without seeing the specific promotion I’m unfortunately not sure what the offer is. I don’t have anything like that for Atlantic City but some offers aren’t for everyone. If you’re able to share more details, like the location, I can check into it and let you know.

      • FRIDAY, JULY 17

        Trade in your Reward Credits for a greater amount of Free Slot Play at any Promotional Kiosk.

        This limited time 1:1 ratio gives you even more Free Slot Play than our traditional 2:1 ratio, giving you more opportunities to win big.

        Exchange 100 Reward Credits for $1 in Free Slot Play, up to $1,000.

        • Awesome! So what’s going on here is the normal conversion rate of Reward Credits to free play is 2:1 – so every 2 reward credits is 1 cent, and you usually have to do 1,000 at a time, at least in places I’ve looked at it (which would be $5 in free play).

          For this offer, you can convert it at a 1:1, so every 1 reward credit is 1 cent. And you can do it according to this offer at 100 RCs/$1, so you have more control over how many Reward Credits you convert.

          Hope that helps!

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