A couple of weeks ago I did something I haven’t done for some time. I visited a casino, and I didn’t use my players card.
I spend a lot of time here on the site sharing why it’s so important to use your players card, to the point where I say you should almost always use it.
This trip was one of those ones that underscore why I say almost.
For this trip, the primary purpose was to visit family for dinner to celebrate a birthday. It was the midpoint between their location and ours, and so it made sense to go there for a good meal.
We arrived at the casino about a half hour before dinner, and weren’t sure what we were going to do after dinner. While I had free play available, swiping my card at the kiosk, playing the free play, or even using my card at a machine would trigger a gaming day.
I didn’t know if we were going to stay and play after dinner, and with things so open ended I decided not to do anything that would indicate I’m on property.
While we waited, I put a few dollars into a slot, but nothing significant, and definitely nothing worth registering my play, which on a normal visit would be thousands of dollars of coin-in.
Why would this matter? It would dilute my average at that casino, and diluting my average could yield smaller offers that would impact me for months on end.
Would using my card to earn a few cents in comps on that $20 in play be worth losing money on every offer for awhile at the casino? Absolutely not. And that’s why in this case I opted not to use it.
Sometimes you need to evaluate whether a casino trip will be unusually soft or play or time, and if either is true, it may be worth skipping the card for that one visit to avoid diluting everything you’ve worked so hard to earn over time.