Travel Fanboy

Gambling as a Team

I’m always looking for ways to make gambling more interesting and enjoyable. After years and years of trips, this can be difficult to do. That’s why I appreciate emails like the one below from listener/reader, James. James explains how he and some friends try to limit volatility and protect their bankroll when playing higher limits:

Thought I would share this experience that I had on a recent guys trip to Vegas.  Some of your listeners may find it as an interesting “low roller” technique when you are visiting Vegas with friends.  We particularly like to gamble on sports and video poker. 

During a December trip we decided to split all of our sports bets and video poker sessions buy-ins 50/50.  We would then split any corresponding winnings 50/50.  On Video Poker we would play at machines sitting next to one another so that we both had the ability to play but had action going on both machines.  We would typically buy in for $50 each on both machines for a total of $100 buy in on both machines.  This allowed us to play higher limits with better payables and offset volatility between 2 games (for example one player would play jacks or better (low volatility) while the other played double double bonus (higher volatility). 

The beauty of this is when one of us won (which we did often) both of us won.  Same thing on sports bets, we were rooting for the same results which made our overall experience more enjoyable.  As luck would have it we did very good on both our sports betting and video poker (highlighted by hitting a royal flush at Main Street station).  We also entered a poker tourney as a team, which my buddy ended up winning, and split the profit.  If you are going to do this there are a couple key things to know going in…

  1.  Have agreed upon win/loss limits before you start a session.  This eliminates any disagreements about when to cash out.  If things are going well you can always adjust as you go but it’s good to have a limit going in.
    2.   Play an agreed upon strategy.  For example for video poker, play basic strategy and don’t deviate.  If you are both playing correct strategy there should be no questions about what cards to hold.
    3.  You got to have trust.  Kind of a no-brainer but there could be opportunities for one person to take advantage of the situation so be sure to partner with someone you fully trust.
    4.   Doesn’t work for certain games.   We also played a lot of craps on the trip and b/c of varying styles, craps is a more difficult game to pull off the team approach

It definitely can be done especially if you can’t find a low limit table and you need to stake each other to bump up to a $10 or $25 minimum bet table.  You would just need to have an agreed upon betting strategy going in.

Would be interested to know your thoughts on this approach and if you have had other listeners try anything similar.  As we look back on the trip the decision for us to team up was the best decision we made and made the trip so much more fun and profitable. 

Thanks for sharing, James! I agree, craps would be tough to pull off if betting styles are the same. I’d likely only trust other, experienced gamblers with this approach. Granted, I do lose a lot, so I’m sure others would be hesitant to include me as well. I would really like to use this with VP. Then I could actually be rooting for the players around me, instead of just being nice and faking it.

What do you think? Ever give this a try?


Travel Fanboy

Adam is the editor of and Beyond being the world's most famous travel influencer, he's passionate about reckless points and miles pursuits. Formerly of Vegas Fanboy fame.

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