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Year-End Check Up

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Tying up your loose ends and looking ahead to 2012

By H. Scot Krause

Ask at the slot clubs if they have any special promotions going on. At year’s end, they often try to get rid of their leftover gift inventories, or they become extra-creative with their promotions to try to keep players coming in. 

 

The end of the year is always a good time to review things, get organized, and plan ahead.  So in this final column for 2011, I’ll offer some tips on year-end business you ought to take care of at the casinos, as well as advice on planning ahead for your gaming in 2012.

If you moved during the past year, or have a new e-mail address or cell phone number, now it the time to update the slot clubs with your current information.  You want to be prepared to receive year-end casino offers, special deals and room rates, as well offers for New Year’s Eve and Superbowl weekend. You’ll also want to make sure your win-loss statements get delivered on time to your correct address.  There are some slow periods in December and January, which mean the casinos will be offering great room rates and specials you might want to be aware of.

If you receive any of these offers and you’re planning to take advantage, I suggest you jump on it as soon as possible. These special events tend to fill up quickly, and if you don’t respond fast you could be left hanging.  You can always cancel the first offer if you receive a better offer later on, or can’t make the event for some reason, but do book and plan ahead.  The same goes for making dinner reservations on busy holidays.

If you’re making your last casino visit for the year, or taking a trip to your favorite casino in early 2012, I suggest you request your win-loss statement from your slot club. Don’t wait until tax time is here. You’ll be ahead of the game and prepared.  Review your gambling log as well, and make sure you’ve entered everything correctly and updated your figures.

Go through your old casino offers and coupons.  Many offers expire at the end of the year—so use them, share them with a friend, or trade them in if possible. If you can’t do any of those things, toss them, so that they don’t get mixed in with new offers and coupons for 2012.

Ask at the slot clubs if they have any special promotions going on. At year’s end, they often try to get rid of their leftover gift inventories, or they become extra-creative with their promotions to try to keep players coming in.  You will often see “12 days of Christmas”-themed promotions that will tempt you to come back daily.  Some may be worthwhile.

Before the year concludes, you might also want to take out any slot club cash back money you have coming to you. You might want to increase your gambling bankroll for 2012, and put this cash towards it. Also, plans change, and you may not make it back in time before your cash back expires. Keep in mind that players clubs change, and not all of these changes are going to be beneficial to you. For example, you might see your cash back get converted to freeplay only.

I want to wish you good luck in 2012. (Though as the old quote reminds us, “I’d rather be lucky than good.”) I suggest you purchase a calendar book and set up your gaming log/diary for the coming year.  Plan to play the promotions and on the bonus point days. Use coupons. Set yourself up with a winning attitude, which includes the discipline to manage your money properly.

As I’ve mentioned in the past, slot players need to remember to take a win now and then! If you’re constantly getting beat up at the slots, try something new. Learn a new game, like video poker or try video keno. Or, mix your slot play with a good game of blackjack.

Best wishes to all for a happy, safe, healthy and prosperous “winning” New Year.  If 11-11-11 didn’t work out for you at the casinos, we have 12-12-12 to look forward!

 

H. Scot Krause is a freelance writer, gaming industry analyst and researcher, originally from Cleveland, Ohio.  Scot specializes in researching and writing about casino games, events, attractions and promotions. He is a former entertainment director and a 16-year resident of Las Vegas.  His work is regularly featured in gaming publications and the annual American Casino Guide Book. Questions or comments for Scot may be addressed to: krauseinvegas@cox.net 

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