Penny Slots are NOT Your Friend

As I’ve mentioned before, the lower the denomination on a slot machine the worse the payout.  Todays Press of Atlantic City goes a little deeper into that subject.  Here are some nuggets from the article.

  • Penny machines outperformed all other slot machines in 2008.
  • While Atlantic City’s casino revenue has plummeted overall, the take from penny slot machines and their 2-cent counterparts rose 8.4 percent last year, compared with 2007, to nearly $698 million.
  • Every property in town except for Showboat Casino-Hotel added more penny machines last year. There are currently 7,584 penny slots, a nearly 20 percent increase from 2007, New Jersey Casino Control Commission statistics show.
  • They represent 22 percent of Atlantic City’s 34,000 total slot machines.
  • Borgata boosted its penny slots inventory last year by 32 percent and trails only Bally’s Atlantic City and Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort in the number of 1-cent machines. At the end of 2008, Bally’s had 991, the Taj Mahal 946 and Borgata 927 of those slots

Casinos will only add a game if it makes them money.  Clearly there are of these machines and they are making casinos money.  It’s humnan nature to think anything that costs a penny will allow your dollar to go farther.  When it comes to gambling, that is counter-intuative.  

I’ve noticed more slot machines in casinos, but never consciously thought about it.  Now that I think about it, I’ve definitely been drawn into some of these penny slots over the past year.  For me, they are little more than entertainment.  I enjoy playing slots with bonus games like Top Gun or Golden Monkey.  If I win, it’s a bonus.  I know going in that I shouldn’t expect to win.  With that mindset I can happily enjoy these games for what they’re worth.