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Best of Jerry Stickman

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Planning and Preparation Pay Off

9 May 2008

Casino gaming can be fun and exciting. It can be a relaxing getaway from hum-drum everyday life. Casinos work hard to present themselves as a fantasy world where you can forget all your cares. They want you to totally escape from your normal life and spend time (and money) trying to capture the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.

Forgetting your cares and relaxing for a few days is fine. It is good for mental health. Just make sure that while forgetting your cares, you don't forget other basics. Here are several tips to help you keep in control and make your gambling trip a more enjoyable one.

  1. Have a separate gambling fund. Keep it in a separate account, or at least keep it separate from other money. You do not want to gamble away money that you need for a house payment or heart surgery.
  2. Make a plan before you even leave for the casino. Decide beforehand how much you will play and how much money you can afford to lose. Plan your sessions. How many sessions will you play per day? How many in the morning? How many in the afternoon? How many at night? Which games will you play? How long will you play at each game and each session? Only you can answer these questions, but deciding beforehand can help you keep on top of your play. While you may not stick to your plan, if you don't have one, there is no chance of sticking to it.
  3. Bring only as much money as you can afford to lose. Vow to stay away from the ATMs. If you need to get more money for gambling, you have lost control. Don't do it.
  4. When you arrive at the casino, go to your room and relax a while before you head to the gaming floor. Give yourself time to acclimate. The games will be there a few hours after you arrive. You don't need to play them immediately.
  5. Before you head to the casino, divide your total bankroll into daily bankrolls. If you are at the casino for three days, split your bankroll into three equal amounts. These are your daily bankrolls. Put all but today's share into the safe.
  6. Each day's bankroll is then split into session bankrolls. If you are planning to play four sessions, divide your daily bankroll into four envelopes. Take only one session bankroll envelope with you to the casino for each session. Keep the rest in the safe.

So far it has been fairly easy. You have not actually been in the casino yet. You have not been subjected to the myriad siren calls to put more and more of your money at risk. Now is when planning and preparation becomes really important.

  1. Once in the casino for a session, only play as long as you originally planned - or until your session bankroll is depleted. Sometimes you will find that you are ahead after your planned session time is over. Great! Put your winnings in a separate "winnings" envelope. Do not dip into this envelope. This money will go home with you along with money added from other winning sessions. If you happen to lose your session bankroll before your time is up, your session is still done. Sometimes this may happen very fast and you will be tempted to get some more money to play out the time you planned. Don't do it. It is better to have a short session or two than to lose all your trip bankroll in the first session. What will you do for the rest of the three days then?

Play smart when you play and your bankroll will last longer.

  1. If blackjack is your game, only play the games with the best rules. Avoid any games that only pay 6-to-5 for a blackjack. You will lose your money up to eight times faster than a game that pays 3-to-2. Play basic strategy. Avoid 8-deck games.
  2. If craps is more to your liking, stick to pass line and come bets with odds, or possibly place the 6 and 8. These bets keep the house edge around 1.5 percent or less. Avoid the bets in the center of the table as these carry hefty house edges as high as 16.7%
  3. Play only the best video poker if that is your game. The pay tables are displayed on each game. Buy strategy cards to understand the best games and the proper way to play.
  4. If slots are what you enjoy, make sure you bet only what you need to get the most out of the machine you are playing. Pick only the best slots to play. Did you know that some machines can have a positive expectation if certain conditions are true?

If you follow this advice, you will notice that your bankroll is lasting longer. You will go home with a win more often. While you may not be happy with your losses, at least you haven't taken food off the table. Plan, prepare and enjoy your casino trips more.

May all your wins be swift and large and all your losses slow and tiny.

Recent Articles
Best of Jerry Stickman
Jerry Stickman

Jerry "Stickman" is an expert in dice control at craps, blackjack, advantage slots and video poker. He is a regular contributor to top gaming magazines. The "Stickman" is also a certified instructor for Golden Touch Craps dice control classes and Golden Touch Blackjack's advantage classes. He also teaches a course in advantage-play slots and video poker. For more information visit www.goldentouchcraps.com or www.goldentouchblackjack.com or call 1-800-944-0406 for a free brochure. You can contact Jerry "Stickman" at stickmanGTC@aol.com.

Jerry Stickman Websites:

www.goldentouchcraps.com
www.goldentouchblackjack.com
Jerry Stickman
Jerry "Stickman" is an expert in dice control at craps, blackjack, advantage slots and video poker. He is a regular contributor to top gaming magazines. The "Stickman" is also a certified instructor for Golden Touch Craps dice control classes and Golden Touch Blackjack's advantage classes. He also teaches a course in advantage-play slots and video poker. For more information visit www.goldentouchcraps.com or www.goldentouchblackjack.com or call 1-800-944-0406 for a free brochure. You can contact Jerry "Stickman" at stickmanGTC@aol.com.

Jerry Stickman Websites:

www.goldentouchcraps.com
www.goldentouchblackjack.com