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A Beginner’s Guide to Casino-Going

beginner's guide to casino going

Hollywood has been producing movies about casinos for decades. Comedies like “The Hangover,” rom-coms such as “Honeymoon in Vegas” and crime films like “Ocean’s Eleven,” “Twelve” and “Thirteen” have kept viewers entertained for endless hours. Many movie or television shows centered on a person’s first trip to a casino play the experience for laughs or feature someone getting kicked out of the place. “Vegas Vacation” is an example of a movie that portrays a casino visit that goes hysterically awry.

Although you may enjoy watching all the things that can go wrong at a casino on your television or the silver screen, you don’t want those things to happen to you in real life. It’s funny when a fictional character experiences mishaps on the casino floor, but it won’t be nearly as amusing if the same happens to you in your first time playing slot machines, for instance.

How can you avoid being the center of attention for all the wrong reasons when you visit a casino for the first time? Study our beginner’s guide to casinos and apply what you learn during your visit.

Establish a Budget for Your Casino Trip and Stick to It

Believe it or not, your casino experience will start to take shape before you set foot on the casino floor. As for any vacation, you will want to save money ahead of time for this fun experience.

Once you’ve built an ample “casino” fund, it’s time to set your budget and commit to sticking to it. Making a budget requires you to do more than simply dedicate a set amount of money to gambling. You may also have to budget for:

  • Lodging
  • Meals
  • Entertainment, including the games of chance you plan to play
  • Transportation
  • Tips
  • Souvenirs and gifts
  • Emergencies
  • Trip insurance

Not every person will have to budget for all these things. Prices can also vary depending on how far you live from your destination and whether you will need overnight accommodations. The biggest question mark you will want to address is how much money to bring to a casino to gamble. Make sure you don’t overspend.

The goal at this stage of your casino experience is to create a firm budget. Casinos make it easy for patrons to access money on site. Be mindful of your budget during your visit and only withdraw funds up to the amount you budgeted to avoid putting an avoidable strain on your finances that you may later regret.

Few things can ruin a first-time experience more in retrospect than going over your budget. With that in mind, it’s worth repeating –- you need to set a firm budget and stick to it. Take into account the other amenities available on site. You may want to enjoy spa treatments during your stay or other luxuries you don’t have time for at home. Investigate all the extras available before you finalize your budget.

Plan Your First Casino Trip

It’s helpful to have a budget in hand when you plan your first casino trip because planning and budgeting often go hand-in-hand. What kind of transportation you want to use to get to the casino, the type of accommodations you’d like to stay in and the things you intend to do will all influence your budget. In turn, your budget will have an impact on the choices that will be affordable for you.

plan your first casino trip

Make your budget and adjust your plans accordingly or change your budget as your plans evolve. Chances are you can arrange a little give and take between your plans and your budget before you’re done planning your first trip to a casino, particularly if you’re going to stay longer than just one afternoon or evening.

Transportation to Your First Casino Trip

Transportation likely will consume a large part of your budget, depending on how far away the casino you plan to visit is and other factors. Budgeting for transportation to and from the casino isn’t enough. You also need to set aside money to get from one place to another while you’re at the casino if you are not staying at an adjacent hotel. You can save money by staying on-site.

Accommodations at a Hotel for Your First Casino Trip

casino hotel lemoore

Unless you’re among the small number of U.S. residents who use a recreational vehicle when they travel, you’ll probably have to book a room if you’re going to stay overnight during your first casino visit. With casinos widely recognized as some of the most exciting entertainment venues around the world, many hotels and other kinds of accommodations are located within the immediate vicinity of a casino.

A lot of casinos also operate their own hotels. Tachi Palace has a large, renovated hotel on our property. At seven stories tall, our hotel is home to 255 smoke-free guest rooms and suites, each of which is as luxurious as the next.

Every room in our four-star hotel is designed to offer a relaxing space where you can take a break from the non-stop action in our casino. Just a few perks you can enjoy when you’re a guest at our great-looking hotel include:

  • Large HD televisions
  • Sheets with high thread counts
  • In-room Wi-Fi
  • Free valet and turn-down service 

Where should you stay if you’re going to a casino in a city other than ours? That often depends on what the casino has on its campus and how expensive a room at the casino’s hotel is compared to the prices at nearby properties. If a casino has plenty of amenities like Tachi Palace, you may want to book at the on-site hotel. By staying there, you can offset the possibly higher cost by avoiding having to pay for transportation to and from the casino every day.

Where to Go on Your First Casino Trip

Decades ago, seasoned and prospective gamblers only had one place to go if they wanted to play casino games, and that place was Las Vegas. Casinos were illegal outside of Nevada for years. But today, casinos are scattered throughout the United States, making them more accessible to experienced and new gamblers in every corner of the country.

Where you decide to go will impact your budget and your overall experience. If you travel to Las Vegas, for instance, you should expect to pay resort fees that can drive up your costs. Even if you visit casinos outside of Las Vegas, resort-like fees can force you to book a shorter trip than you’d like in order to stay within your budget.

If you want to experience casino gambling for the first time, head to our location. The moment you arrive at Tachi Palace Hotel & Casino, you’ll realize you don’t have to pay resort fees to have an upscale experience at a casino.

In addition to our action-packed casino, we boast a full-service spa on site. Our spa is the ideal place to unwind and enjoy priceless “me” time whenever you step away from the tables. We can guarantee that you’ll feel like a winner every time you visit our wonderous spa.

If you want to enjoy a show, you can check our calendar of events to see what we have planned in our spacious entertainment venue. On other nights when the blackjack table is not calling your name, you have a standing invitation to join us for Bingoply or another activity in our accommodating venue.

Food for Your First Casino Visit

Whether you want a fine-dining experience or you simply need a quick bite, you won’t have to leave our breathtaking hotel and casino to find a meal you’ll find more than satisfying. Tachi Palace Hotel & Casino has a dining option for every occasion, palate and budget. You can even order a meal and enjoy it in your room whenever you stay in our luxurious four-star hotel.

food during your casino visit

If you’re headed to a destination other than our welcoming casino, you should carefully consider the dining options that will be available to you. This is particularly important if you have any restrictions on your diet.

When you identify the casino you plan to visit, research the eateries located there. If the casino doesn’t have any restaurants on its property, search for the restaurants in the surrounding area to make sure you’ll be able to eat the way you want to during your stay. If you’re going to have to travel to multiple eateries via cab, Uber or Lyft during your trip, be sure you adjust your budget accordingly.

What Is a Players Club and Why Should I Find One on My First Casino Trip?

When you plan your trip and decide where you want to go, it’s a good idea to pick a casino that has a players club, which is a rewards program for guests. When you enroll in a players club at a given casino, you earn valuable rewards that can make your current stay even more affordable and worthwhile. Enrolling may also enable you to save on future trips because the casino may send you coupons for discounted rooms, free meals or another kind of perk as an incentive for you to return to the property.

The players club at Tachi Palace is named My Tachi. The name is appropriate because the club really is all about you. Enrolling in My Tachi is free and it allows you to accrue valuable rewards just for having fun during your stay at our location.

As a My Tachi enrollee, you’ll enjoy benefits such as getting advanced notices about upcoming events before non-club members. You’ll also receive exclusive offers and earn points you can redeem for rewards the more you play. You don’t even need to be on site to earn points because you can receive them whenever you play free games on our website.

While playing games online for free is fun, it doesn’t compare to the real thing. Visit Tachi Palace for a real-life casino experience you’ll never forget no matter how many casinos you visit after your first trip.

Casino Etiquette

You may already know the rules to some of the best casino games for beginners before you embark on your first casino trip. But do you understand casino etiquette? These unspoken rules govern the conduct of guests at any casino and ensure everyone has a fair and enjoyable experience while they game.

If you fail to follow the rules of etiquette, you risk more than just looking foolish. You run the risk of being marked as a fish, or a soft target, by more experienced gamblers who will try to exploit your weaknesses. If your behavior is too far out of line, you may even be asked to leave the casino.

Here are some rules of casino etiquette you should abide by:

  • Know the minimum age requirement: It’s imperative to know the minimum age requirement for the casino where you want to play table games or slot machines. If you’re too young to play at a given casino, you’ll be asked to leave quickly. Even if you’re not found out, you won’t be able to keep any of your winnings when you try to cash out.
  • Don’t use electronics at the table: It’s more than impolite to use your smartphone or tablet at the table. It’s also not allowed. If you have to take a call or use your tablet, step away from the table before doing so. Before you start using a mobile device to take pictures in a casino, make sure you ask if it is OK to do so and, if so, whether any areas are off limits. 
  • Learn the rules: To avoid looking like a fish, you need to learn the rules of every game you want to play before you take a seat at a table or in front of a slot machine. Playing live in a casino is very different from playing online or participating in a home game. If you’re unsure about something, ask your dealer or one of your fellow players but don’t do so during play.
  • Tip your dealer and server: It is extremely poor form not to tip your dealer or server during a playing session. You should tip your server every time they bring you something. You may tip your dealer each time you win, every few hands, at the end of your playing session or when a new dealer is about to take over the table.

casino etiquette

Make Plans to Visit Tachi Palace Hotel & Casino Today

To make your first casino experience memorable and exciting, we encourage you to visit Tachi Palace Hotel & Casino. Whether you’re located in the Central Valley, on the California coast or across the country, our property is the ideal place for a deluxe staycation where you can try your hand at live casino games for the first time. With so many amenities located right on our sprawling campus, you won’t even need to leave our hotel and casino to enjoy an unforgettable, resort-like experience without the resort fees.

We have it all, from a beautiful pool to a full-service spa to an array of restaurants. Our well-appointed guest rooms and suites make an excellent complement to our fun-filled casino. Make your first visit to a casino everything you’ve dreamed it will be. Book a stay at Tachi Palace now.

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