4 Gambling Mistakes to Avoid

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Image via Flickr by Hakan Dahlstrom

Americans love the thrill of gambling. Eighty-five percent of adults in the United States have tried it at least once, and three in five have gambled in the last year. Games of chance can be a great form of entertainment, so long as you don’t make these common mistakes.

1. Not Knowing the Rules

Gambling might involve games of chance, but that doesn’t mean you should leave your fortune all up to fate. The most successful gamblers are the ones who know the rules of the games they play and the odds of the bets they make. Failing to do so could see you making silly, costly errors. Talk to a friend familiar with the games you’re interested in, or consult one of the many online gaming guides to sharpen your knowledge.
If you prefer to gamble from home, it’s worth noting that rules can vary from site to site. Some websites use American playing rules while others follow European guidelines. Online customer service staff can offer assistance if you’re unsure of a gaming site’s playing rules.

2. Chasing Losses

A wise man once said “You win some, you lose some.” The most successful gamblers make peace with this philosophy instead of chasing any losses they incur. It’s tempting to bet more money in the hopes of winning it all back, but you might just find yourself with a greater deficit.
Before you start to play, it’s a good idea to decide how much you feel you can afford to lose. Once you reach the limit you’ve set for yourself, stop. This simple strategy makes sure you continue to enjoy the games and finish with a smile on your face, no matter what the outcome.

3. Playing with Your Heart

If you want the best chance of winning, you need to play with your head and not your heart. If hunches were reliable, then psychics would clean up at the casinos. You’re much better trusting in the odds than any gut instincts you have. Games of chance remain games of chance whether you believe fortune’s smiling favorably on you or not. Playing with your heart also puts you at risk of making mistake number two.

4. Playing Drunk

Most casinos are happy to let the free alcoholic drinks flow while you’re gambling, but indulging in too many beverages can be a big mistake. Alcohol affects a range of regions in the brain, but few are impacted as dramatically as the prefrontal cortex, the area responsible for rational thought and decision-making. When you drink there’s much less activity in this area, which explains why excessive alcohol tends to make us act first and ask questions later.

If you’re seeing the game through beer goggles, you might fail to notice when the odds aren’t in your favor. You’ll likely to have much more success if you pace your drinks, and save the real celebrating for after you’ve won big.
Gambling can be a real rush, but don’t lose your head. Keeping your wits about you is one of the best ways to avoid making these gambling mistakes.

5 Ways to Keep Your Information Safe When Gambling Online

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There are a lot of perks to online gambling like ease of access, playing from the comfort of your own home, and the ability to play games for free. Unfortunately, there are a few things you need to be careful with, like keeping your personal information safe from thieves. Here are a few ways to keep your information safe when you gamble online.

Check the Fine Print First

There are a lot of online casino gaming sites available, but not all of them are safe or even legal. When you find a site you’re interested in, make sure there is a terms and conditions page to look at. It may take some time to read through it all, but it could save you a lot of trouble in the long run.

If the site doesn’t have a terms and conditions page, that’s a red flag. Another thing to look for is a license. Not only are licensed sites more reliable than the others, they can usually offer you a bigger payout as well.

When checking the credentials of a site, be sure you understand their payout system as well. Money is usually transferred via PayPal, bank transactions, or money transfers. If a site charges you for these transactions or limits the amount you can withdrawal, it’s best to avoid them all together.

Be Careful With What You Say

If you’re playing in a room with people you’ve never met, small talk is likely to happen. In the heat of the game you may not notice what information, or how much of it you’re giving out. Try to avoid talking about anything too personal, this includes your full name, where you live, or where you work.

There are a lot of very clever thieves out there who can gain access to your credit cards, bank information, and personal information from a few minor details about your life.

Never Connect to Unknown Wi-Fi Hotspots

One of the best parts of online gambling is the freedom to play anywhere with your phone or mobile device. But if you’re going to play in public, be sure your connection is secure. If you’re in a caf

café, ask an employee for the Wi-Fi name. People can sometimes set up fake hotspots with a variation on the name of the café you’re in and get into your information once you connect.

Make sure your firewall and virus protection software are up to date before venturing out with your mobile device. And if you want to be extremely secure, invest in a personal Wi-Fi hotspot, or get a hot spot app for your phone.

Don’t Give Out Your Digits

Before you enter any personal information like a credit card or bank account number, be sure the site you’re on is a legitimately licensed site. If you’ve read the terms and conditions page but you’re still not sure, do a quick Google search about the site and see if they’ve had any reports of misconduct. If someone has been scammed in the past, you’ll probably be able to find something about it.

Gambling online can be a really relaxing and fun experience as long as you do it safely. Take the extra time to be a bit more cautious, and you’ll have a safer and more enjoyable gaming experience.


4 Things You Didn’t Know About Online Gambling

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Image via Flickr by Elvert Barnes

Online gambling may seem a little strange if you’re already used to the thrill of a casino, however, the experience may surprise you. There’s a slew of things you might not know about spinning slots and placing bets online. Read on to learn four things you likely don’t know, but should, about online gambling.

1. It’s (Mostly) a Solitary Experience

Unlike gambling in a casino, online gambling is typically a private experience, which isn’t always a bad thing. Games, such as video slots, while solitary, are still played amidst a bustling crowd or gamblers with the familiar clinking of returned coins inside of a live casino. Online gamblers, however, experience different sounds. As an online gambler, you may be more attuned to gameplay since you’ll be better able to hone in on the visuals and audio.

Poker and blackjack, however, are a less solitary experience. Depending on the online casino, you may be able to interact with other players through a chat feature, in real-time.

2. Each Online Casino Plays by Its Own Rules

Online casinos can make their own rules per site and per game. Furthermore, an online casino’s rules may vary by state. All games and available bonuses are not created equal. Be sure you fully agree with the rules of the game before you get started. Just because you’re not within the walls of an actual Vegas casino, doesn’t mean you’re not accountable for your bets.

Online casinos deal with real money. Additionally, each website has its own rules for payouts. Read all the fine print in the terms and conditions.

3. You Still Need to Learn the Game

The same way you need to know the rules of a casino, you must also know the ins-and-outs of an online game. Sure, it’s possible to have a positive experience while learning – some online casinos offer no-risk trial play; however, if you truly want to get the most for your money, learning the lingo and standard gameplay practices are key.

For starters, check out our casino terms. Once you know what game you’re interested in playing online, search for jargon associated specifically with that game, as well as the general rules.

4. Gameplay is Visually Exciting

Video slots are especially stimulating when played online. Many of these games feature exciting themes with stories and enticing visuals. These games are web-based and not inside a physical machine; therefore, more resources can be dedicated to creating a unique gaming experience.
If you still like the authentic look and feel of classic casino play, then you’ll be surprised and delighted to find that many table style games feature an in-casino aesthetic.

Any true gambler or hardcore hobbyist will find joy in online gambling. The experience may be slightly different from that of a live casino, but in some ways it’s even better. If you’re thinking about getting started with online gambling, then what are you waiting for? There’s a whole world of games waiting to be played right on your screen.

How do you feel about online gambling now that you know a little more? What more do you wish you knew about online gambling? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

7 of the Best Casino Resorts in the World

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Avid gamers don’t have to stay confined to stateside casinos and gaming resorts. Every continent offers opportunities to play new and interesting games in exotic and luxurious surroundings. Break your habit of gaming in the mundane hotspots and delve into new venues for fun and excitement.

1. Trump Taj Mahal in Atlantic City, New Jersey

Donald Trump isn’t known for doing anything halfway, and that’s certainly clear at his Taj Mahal in Atlantic City. Standing 51 stories tall, it offers both low stakes and high stakes gaming rooms, including smoke-free poker salons for sensitive noses. The venue also boasts one of the most luxurious spas in the city, as well as a variety of gourmet restaurants and exclusive shopping boutiques.

2. Ibiza Gran Hotel in Ibiza Town, Spain

One of Europe’s premier gaming spots, Ibiza features a variety of swimming pools and hosts tournaments for a number of its most popular games. Ibiza Gran also has spectacular views, a well equipped fitness facility, and a variety of night clubs. Of 198 reviewers, 134 gave the Ibiza Gran a rating of Excellent.

3. The Palazzo Resort Hotel Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada

Back in the States, the Palazzo features all suite hotel rooms and a variety of betting opportunities outside slot machines and table games, including booking for racing events and sporting events. You can also take advantage of the high stakes poker salon and a full-time butler service. Hand painted ceilings lend to the luxurious look and feel of this grand Vegas hotel.

4. Marina Bay Sands in Singapore

One of Asia’s gaming hubs is Singapore, where the Marina Bay Sands stands out for its elegant design by acclaimed Israeli architect Modshe Safdie. The casino boasts 2,300 gaming machines, nearly 500 table games, and a premier spa, the Banyan Tree. It is also home to a grand museum, and features top-notch theater productions such as Phantom of the Opera.

5. The Venetian Macao Resort Hotel in Macau, China

Not to be outdone, China’s version of Las Vegas’s Venetian offers 374,000 square feet of gaming space, with 500 table games and 2,000 gaming machines. Almost two-thirds of guests granted the resort a rating of Excellent, citing the wow-inducing shows, shopping venues, and food as the primary attractions. The resort is known for its hip Asian-Vegas vibe.

6. Sun City Resort in Sun City, South Africa

Striving to establish itself as a fun-filled vacation spot, South Africa offers top of the line gaming facilities at Sun City Resort. Two separate casinos filled with American style games like slot machines, poker, blackjack, and roulette, Sun City provides high stakes games in The Salon Prive. It also hosts a gaming school for newbies, teaching table etiquette as well as the best techniques for winning. The school is entirely free for guests.

7. Park Hyatt Mendoza in Mendoza, Argentina

Refusing to be left out, South America has an up and coming gambling scene, most notably at the Park Hyatt Mendoza. Park Hyatt offers a two-story Regency casino, in addition to all the table games and gaming machines American gamblers expect. But you can also enjoy local versions of favorite games, such as punto banco, a native version of the popular game baccarat.

Take your gaming experience to new heights by straying outside the norm. You never know what treasures await.

Gambling for Beginners

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If you are new to gambling, you’ll need to learn some basic information about the games. When you know the rules, winning hands, and odds, you’ll automatically have an easier time winning games. With some practice, you might even become good at playing online.


Blackjack has deceptively easy rules:

  1. The dealer gives a face down to each player, including herself
  2. The dealer gives a face up player to each player, including herself
  3. Players can decide to take more cards or stick with the two that they have
  4. The players who come closer to 21 without going over, than the dealer, win

That sounds easy, right? Some advanced strategies make the game more complicated. For instance, you can double down after getting your first face up card. This lets you double your bet, thus increasing the amount you win.

Also, you can split your hand into two separate hands if your first two cards are a pair. In blackjack, you don’t compete against the other players, instead you play against the dealer. It’s possible for everyone at the table to win.


There are many different types of poker. Always make sure you know which version you are playing. Even slight variations in the rules could change how you play the game. Let’s keep things as simple as possible by starting with a pure form of poker: five-card stud.

In five-card stud, each player receives one face down card and one face up card. Each player can look at his or her own card. Players who want to stay in the game place bets and receive another card. This happens two more times until the remaining players place their final bets. After this, the player with the best hand wins.

Top hands in poker, in order from highest to lowest, include:

  • royal flush (ten of hearts through ace of hearts)
  • straight flush (a straight in the same suit)
  • four of a kind
  • full house (three of a kind and a pair)
  • flush (five cards of the same suit
  • straight (five cards in order, mixed suits)
  • three of a kind
  • two pair
  • one pair

Don’t assume that you need a royal flush to win. Also, don’t assume that you need two pair. Plenty of players win with one pair. You can even win just because you have the highest card of anyone else still in the game, but that doesn’t happen often.

Video Slots

It doesn’t get easier than video slots. Since the game tells you when you win, you don’t even really need to know the rules. That’s a good thing since rules differ between games. What holds true on one slot machine might not mean a thing elsewhere. However, typically, you win in video slots by lining up certain characters on the screen. A corresponding chart should tell you how much money you win for lining up the characters.

Video slots is one of the most random games of chance you can find because it doesn’t require any skills. You just have to get lucky.
What are your favorite games to play at casinos and online? Do you have any tips for newcomers?

5 Things Every Casino Virgin Should Know

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Gambling is an adrenaline filled rush for those seeking excitement and fun. If you’ve never been to a casino before, there are some things you can do to walk in like a pro and leave as a winner. Here are five things every casino virgin should know.

1. Drinks

When entering a casino for the first time, most people’s thoughts go straight to drinks. Instead of going to the bar to order, let the servers come to you. Casinos can mix just about anything so don’t worry about a drink list and just order what you like.

Always tip the server every time they bring you a drink, and it’s a good idea to tip high for your first order, around five dollars. If you tip a little high on the first round, they will make an effort to come back and take care of you. After your first drink it’s acceptable to tip a dollar for every additional drink.

2. Dealers

Tipping the dealer is also good casino etiquette. By tipping the dealer a dollar every time you win a hand is not only very good manners, but it’s a sign of respect. If you don’t win, you should still tip dealers about five dollars for every hour you’re at their table. Always wait until after the action, it’s rude to tip during a hand. Just wait until the game is complete, and do it before the next round starts.

3. Dress Codes

Generally there are no dress codes and you can wear whatever you’re comfortable in, but it’s never a bad idea to jazz it up. Sleek black suits or cocktail dresses, killer shoes, and a touch of jewelry will give you confidence and make an impression, especially in the evenings. Try to keep it sexy and not sleazy for a bit of an edge at tables and slots. If it’s early in the morning it’s more acceptable to wear casual clothes such as a blouse or dress shirt and slacks.

4. Game Rules

Since it’s your first time, nobody expects you to know the ins and outs like a pro, but it’s always a good idea to learn the basic terminology and game rules. Playing online casinos for free is a good way to get acquainted with rules and basic game play, as well as figuring out what you like best.

5. Keeping your Head

There’s nothing wrong with having a good time and taking some risks, but it’s a good idea to leave credit cards at home. Have a budget of what you’re willing to spend will keep you from running into trouble later. Have drinks, but don’t get drunk if you’re wanting to play. Serious game players will see you as sloppy and obnoxious for getting too drunk.

The most important thing is to have fun. You’re losing your casino virginity, so you should make it a pleasant and memorable experience. Go by yourself or bring a crowd to celebrate because pretty soon, you’ll be a high roller.

5 Casino Games That Are Fun and Entertaining

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Are you skilled or lucky? Do you crave fast-paced action, or slow, methodical thinking games? Whatever your preference, there is a casino game just for you. Don’t be deterred if you haven’t mastered the ins and outs — tables and games are open to all skill levels. Here are some of the most popular selections, and why gamers flock to these particular choices.

1. Poker

This card game originated in Europe in the 1500s, and remains one of the most popular casino attractions today. The sheer variety of poker (and their delightful names) is enough to keep one entertained: 5 card stud, 5 card draw, 7 card stud, Texas Hold ‘Em, Omaha Hold ‘Em, Razz, and Pineapple are just a few. Once players have their hands dealt, they mightbe able to switch a few of their cards for new cards. Hands win according to the highest card, followed by pair, two pair, three of a kind, flush, full house, four of a kind, straight flush, and royal flush, in that order.

2. Blackjack

So old that nobody is sure when it started, Blackjack’s origins likely began France or Italy. The goal of Blackjack (or 21) is to get cards totaling 21, or as close as possible without going over. Players play against the house, not each other. The dealer deals each player two cards, one face-up and one face-down. Players peek at their hidden card and decide to get “hit” (dealer gives them another card) or “stand” (no more cards). Dealers must hit their own hands at 16 and stand at 17. Number cards are counted at face value, face cards equal 10, and Aces can count as 1 or 11. Upon a tie, the dealer wins.

3. Roulette

Roulette is fast-paced and complex, so it draws large, excited crowds at the casinos. Dating back to 17th century France, this game involves players placing their bets on a board. The board features numbers and colors (black and red) that correspond to the numbers and colors on the wheel. Players can bet on the numbers, color, or whether the ball will land on an odd or even number. The dealer spins the wheel clockwise and tosses the ball counterclockwise. Wherever the ball lands, all improves with correct placement on the board.

4. Craps

Another French innovation, Craps, has been around since at least the 1700s. This is also a thrilling game that draws almost as many spectators as it does players. This game of dice allows players to bet on a number of lines and particular numbers within those lines. On some lines, 7 and 11 are lucky and on others, the magic happens for 2, 3, 12, and other numbers. As the game progresses, more opportunities to win emerge as the roll of the dice garners points.

5. Slot Machines

Many gamers prefer solo play, and something less mind-bending. Slot machines are ideal because players can sit for a few minutes or a few hours, spinning the wheels and cashing in on luck. Most modern slot machines are electronic and feature three or five wheels. Wheels are spun by a handle or button, and the machine instantly alerts when the numbers hit.

So, take your pick: you can join the parties at roulette or craps, get intense with thoughtful hands of poker or blackjack, or let lady luck have her leisurely way in a solo game of slots. Better yet — try them all!

5 Tips to Remember When Gambling

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Each time a player walks into the casino, the lure of a big win is there. Unfortunately, losing a lot of money is also a possibility. However, with these few simple tips, all players can make sure they have an enjoyable time at the casino.

Have a Plan

Before visiting the casino, players need to decide how much money they’re willing to spend. Bring your set amount in cash, and leave the credit cards at home. Next, players should decide how much they want to spend at each game. If the plan is to bring $50 to the casino to play the slots, once that $50 is gone, it’s time to get up and do something else.

Use a Loyalty Card

Loyalty cards, also know as comp cards, can offer some nice complimentary rewards every time a player uses them. At one time, only table game players received casino loyalty cards. However, casinos are now interested in ensuring that all their guests keep coming back. Using a loyalty card while playing can mean free rewards such as meals, rooms, shows, and even cash. A loyalty card is just another way players can stretch their dollar a little further at the casino.

Don’t Drink and Gamble

There’s one simple reason casinos will offer free cocktails to players: it impairs their judgment. Don’t assume these drinks are truly free. Casinos know that the more their players start to drink, the more loosely they’ll play with their money. Since alcohol dulls the senses and impairs critical thinking, players who start drinking are more likely to take big risks and could chance losing a lot more than they were originally intending to spend.

Understand the Game

Each game has a set of rules players must follow. Online games offer an opportunity to learn these rules ahead of time. Additionally, each table game has a minimum and maximum bet required to play at that table. Every table should have a placard that states what these table limits are. If the placard isn’t visible, ask the dealer. Players should always make sure they’re not playing at a table with limits higher than what they can afford.

Know When to Stop

The biggest rule of all in gambling is that players should know when to stop. Remember, this rule goes both ways. If the luck just isn’t there, and there are no winnings, then it’s time to walk away and enjoy some other form of entertainment. On the other hand, a player must also know it’s time to walk away when they’ve won some money. Never get greedy and allow the casino to get all the money back.

Much like shopping or going to the movies, playing at casinos is a form of entertainment, and the money used to play is the price of that entertainment. The big difference is that players have chances at winning their money back. However, players must keep their expenses under control to guarantee they actually have a good time and can come back again. Everyone can have a great time at the casino or online if they remember these simple rules.

4 Mind-Blowing Casino Heists

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Ocean’s Eleven, Ocean’s Twelve — well you know the drill, casino heists are made for the big screen. For years, many movies have revolved around the thrill of theft. However, sometimes life is more interesting than art. Occasionally, a real robbery comes along that’s so grand, it tops even the adventure of a feature film. Read on to learn about four mind-blowing casino heists; some are comical, others are just plain crazy.

1. Two-Timing Shoes

Affectionately known as the shoe robbers, these casino criminals did everything but try to steal sneakers. The crafty crooks used 1970s technology to rig signals to their shoes. The transmissions from the shoes interacted with nearby roulette machines to reveal winning numbers. Southern California Public Radio reports, “Apparently these devices literally shocked their socks off, too. They pulled this rouse off for a few months before being caught.”

2. A Heist with Heavy Lifting

Arizona Central News states that several men attempted to rob an Arizona casino of $2 million. However, the legendary heisters had quite an imaginative plan for how they would pull it off – and apparently they didn’t have the muscles to do it. “[one of the men] made fake manhole covers so they would be lighter and easier to lift, and then switched them with two others the day before the robbery. The men placed ladders and ropes in the manholes and parked an all-terrain vehicle in the sewer system so they could race the money from one manhole to the other.”

Turns out even the fake manhole cover was too much to lift. The men were busted soon after fleeing the scene.

3. StarBust

The Las Vegas Sun remembers a casino crook who was actually a casino employee. The Stardust Casino’s crazy cashier, “[…] walked out the door of the now-demolished casino in September 1992 with an estimated $500,000 worth of cash and chips. The suspect, William John Brennan, has not been seen since.” Nothing is known about Brennan’s robbery motives. Despite several warrants for his arrest, he’s still at large. Hopefully it was money well stolen since he’s bet everything on staying hidden.

4. Bahamas and the Big Top

In 1993, Heather Catherine Tallchief robbed an armored car outside of Circus Circus Casino on the Las Vegas strip. While the activity didn’t take place inside the casino, she still made off with $2.5 million in cold hard cash. According to the Los Angeles Times, the woman and her partner wore a disguise and might have never been found, but eventually the guilt got to her. In 2005 Tallchief turned herself in.

These four mind-blowing casino heists are some of the best in history. Whether these criminals made it away green handed, confessed, or simply got caught, the fact remains: their heists were legendary.
Do you think you could get away with a casino heist? How would you pull it off? What would you do with the money? Share your casino heist fantasies in the comments below.

Top 9 U.S. Gambling Events for 2014

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If you missed the Master Millions Slot Tournament at the Bellagio in Vegas, don’t worry. 2014 can still be an amazing year for you with a wide array of gambling events no matter what your game. Where ever you call home, there’s an exciting event near you. Check out the following tournaments. One of them could be your ticket to riches.


Slot tournaments occur regularly at most casinos. If you’re interested in participating in one, check to see whether it’s an open tournament or one you have to qualify for. Either way, they are a fun way to experience your favorite game.

$500,000 High Stakes Challenge, Bellagio/Aria/MGM Grand – Las Vegas, Nev.

April 25-26

These three casinos are teaming up for some of the hottest, high stakes play on The Strip. The event is invitation only.

National TournEvent of Champions(R), Las Vegas, Nev.


This is a qualifying tournament, comprised of winners of semi-annual events at participating casinos across the country. It’s big, it’s loud, it’s not like any other slot tournament with $500,000 guaranteed cash and prizes. It features a leaderboard and plenty of interactivity during the tournament.

$80,000 EZ Money Slot Tournament, Island View Casino – Gulfport, Miss.

Sundays in March

Open to anyone who earns 20 points. The top 50 scorers get a share of the Slot View Play.

Spring Clean Up Slot Tournament, San Manuel Indian Bingo & Casino – Highland, Calif.

March 12

This exciting $30,000 slot tournament in southern California awards the top 50 scorers cash for a $50 buy-in.
Black Jack

$150,000 Black Jack Tournament, Paris – Las Vegas, Nev.

May 2-4

This is a free entry, invitation-only event with elimination format.

Black Jack Blowout, Kewadin Casino – St. Ignace, Mich.

July 25-27

The entry fee is $275 and includes your hotel stay. The prize pool is $30,000. The entry fee for those not requiring a room is $200. This event is held several times throughout the year.

$100,000, Tropicana – Las Vegas, Nev.

April 11-13

This open event with elimination format has an entry fee of $499, which includes three-nights lodging. A guest will be compensated on his/her lodging (in the same room) and entry into the event.


2014 World Championship Bingo Tournament & Gaming Cruise – Seattle, Wash. – Alaska

September 13-20

One of the most scenic tournaments around, this event marries a cruise vacation with beloved bingo play. When the ship is at sea, tournament play occurs. When it docks you can explore the natural beauty of Juneau, Skagway, Ketchikan and Victoria, B.C.

Palace Station $75,000 Big Game Bingo Event – Las Vegas, Nev.

April 21-22

Entry fee is $99 and includes two complimentary daubers and buffet tickets. Specials are also available for hotel stays during that time. Each day of the tournament, Palace Station pays $37,500 to winners.
While Lady Luck is always the best travelling companion to events like these, practicing your online gambling skills before you leave home is a great idea. The competition at these events is fierce so take some time to practice online first.