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How the casinos get you to keep playing

How the casinos get you to keep playing

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Two AC casinos in Top 50

Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa ranked No. 41 and Caesars Atlantic City ranked No. 49 among the Top 50 casinos in the United States. compiled the list based on the number of TripAdvisor five-star reviews the casinos received from 360,781 contributors.

To view the complete list, go to

Stay and play

Also from Business, Steven John reveals seven things casinos do to get us to spend more time and money in their facilities:

• Table games — blackjack, roulette, etc. — use chips for bets. That way it doesn’t seem like you’re playing with “real” money.

• There are no clocks. Management wants you to lose track of time so you just keep trying your luck.

• Interiors are lit about the same day and night — again, so it’s difficult to keep track of time. And, while there are exceptions — like Ocean Casino Resort, rarely do you find a casino with windows.

• Where allowed, casinos provide players with complimentary alcoholic beverages, knowing that alcohol can lower inhibitions and cloud judgment.

• They design casinos with no straight aisles leading to exits or clear pathways throughout the floor, hoping you’ll try a round of roulette or throw a few dollars into a poker machine when originally you were on your way to the restroom or looking for the exit.

• Casinos take the sting out of losses by offering programs that reward you with complimentary rooms and meals — even when you lose. No leaving the premises to eat or sleep. (Plus, you just might gamble a little more the next morning before you leave.)

• Whenever someone hits a big win on a slot machine, lights flash and loud music plays. At table games, fellow players applaud and cheer loudly, creating a false sense of probability that anyone can hit it big.

Ask Mr. AC Casino

I saw a woman playing a machine called Volcanic Rock Fire. Periodically she would stand up and swipe the graphic above the reels. I assume she thought this would influence the outcome of her spin. Is this some sort of “secret” technique I should try?

If swiping a screen, inserting and withdrawing your player card every couple of spins, or alternatively hitting the Play button and pulling the handle (assuming the machine even has one) had any influence, don’t you think everyone would do it? We’d put the casinos out of business. No, none of these tricks — including hitting every button on the machine in some specific order before playing — makes any difference. It just makes you look a little silly to other players who know that slot machine wins are totally random.

Recreational gambler Darryl D. McEwen, a former professional journalist, is president of his own consulting firm that manages several small national and international trade associations, and provides public relations and fundraising services for several charitable organizations. Have a comment on this or a question specifically related to an Atlantic City casino, players club or other promotion? Email Darryl at and he’ll try to respond to you personally. Your questionwithout your namemay appear in a future column. Visit his website,, and follow him on Twitter @MrACCasino. Your question – without your name – may appear in a future column.


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