Roulette is one of the most appealing games in a casino. The gleaming, spinning wheel. The variety of bets. The relatively simple rules. The camaraderie. The repeated leaning forward of well-endowed patrons to place their bets, if you know what we’re saying.
An interesting aspect of roulette is how the game’s chips work. Unlike other table games in the casino, roulette chips have no inherent denomination or value. What you “buy-in” for is what a given chip is worth. Your chip could be worth $1 or $100. Your dealer keeps track of your chip value, and different players at a table could be playing with chips of different values, all at the same time.
So, say you leave the casino after playing roulette, and you take a chip with you. When you return a day or week or month later, what’s that chip worth?
For the most part, your chip is worth the minimum roulette chip value for that casino. In the case of, say, Caesars Palace, that’s $1. You won’t be able to take your chip to the casino cashier, but at the roulette table, you’d probably receive a $1 chip for your roulette chip.
So, what if you were playing with chips valued at $100 each? For the most part, the casino can’t keep track of what your chip value was in the past, so the policy is to pay the minimum amount the chip could have been worth. The lesson here: Always cash in your roulette chips before you leave the table!
Here’s another tip we got from a pit boss (a casino floor manager): Always buy-in at roulette using your player loyalty card (such as Total Rewards, the loyalty club of hotels in the Caesars Entertainment family). Why? If your play history is in the loyalty program’s computer system, a manager might be able to confirm you were playing at a higher level consistently and exchange your chip for an amount that’s more than the table minimum.
This is less likely to work if your chip denomination varies, but if you always play with, say, $5 value chips, and your play is tracked, you might swing the higher amount when you try and cash in that stray chip.
Thanks for the tip, random casino pit boss we forgot to write down the name of, definitely not because we were enjoying a free casino cocktail at the time. You know who you are, and consider yourself thanked.