Newsletter Signup
Stay informed with the
NEW Casino City Times newsletter!
Henry Tamburin Archives
More Strategy Experts

Gaming Guru

author's picture

Handling Money in the Casinos

9 August 2014

By Henry Tamburin
What’s the one thing you positively must have if you want to gamble? Of course, c-a-s-h. Most folks just use folding money. Nothing wrong with that, but there are other options, some better, some worse.

And what about managing that cash when you gamble on the tables or machines? Do you have a plan for what you are going to do if you start losing? What about winning? And what would you do if you won some serious money? How would you get it home, safely? The point is that how you get, use, access, and manage your money when you gamble is just as important as which games you play and how you play them.

Every player –-- high roller, low roller, table, or machine player –-- must do the following if they want to partake in the casino action.

1. Convert money into a playing bankroll.
2. Manage that bankroll when they play.
3. Convert what’s left of the bankroll into cash and head home.

Step 1. Converting “Money” into a Bankroll.

This is a fact – you can’t gamble in a casino without a bankroll. Therefore, some way, some how, you must put together a bankroll before making your first table bet or dropping a coin into a slot machine. You’ve probably heard this a hundred times but it’s worth repeating. The funds you use to create that gambling bankroll shouldn’t come from money you need to pay rent, buy food, or pay for your kid’s college education. The money you earmark for gambling should come from your discretionary income that you’ve smartly saved for activities that you enjoy like gambling. Assuming you’ve done this, these are your options to convert that money into a gambling bankroll.


This is a no brainer and what most players do - they simply use good old American Greenbacks to create their bankroll. It’s uncomplicated and gives the player flexibility in the sense they can use the cash at any casino and it costs nothing to use it. Moreover, you can’t lose more than you brought so you have a built in stop loss.

Using cash also offers you privacy, which some players prefer (use cash and you don’t even have to give the casino your name if you don’t want to). However, there are some negatives. You could lose it or worse get robbed of it. And nowadays, if you carry a lot of cash through airports you’ve got to be concerned it could be confiscated as part of the government’s crack down on money laundering (slim chance but still a possibility). If you decide on using cash, here are some common sense tips on how to protect it.

1. Don’t flash wads of cash around in a casino. That might impress the pit boss but you never know whom else might also get a glimpse of it, if you get my drift.
2. Men should always carry cash in their front pants pocket. That minimizes the chance that a professional pick-pocket could wind up with it.
3. Ladies, keep that cash in your handbag that you securely hold at all times.
4. Consider putting your cash in a money belt, which you can purchase in airport stores or any luggage store for that matter.
5. Use the free safety-deposit box provided by most casino hotels to store your cash. Some hotels have in-room safes (some might charge a fee to use them). Never stash cash in a secret hiding place in your hotel room.

Travelers Checks

For years, this was and still is my personal favorite way to bring cash into a casino. You can get Traveler’s Checks free if you are a member of the American Automobile Association. Many banks and some credit unions also offer free Travelers Checks if you have an account with them (I always get mine at my local bank – for free). Traveler’s Checks are universally accepted and you have piece of mind knowing if they are lost or stolen you can get always get them replaced (not so with cash).

Front Money

This is cash that you deposit with the casino and then draw from when you play. You can either wire the cash ahead to the casino (so you don’t have to travel with it) or simply deposit it with the casino when you get there. Front Money offers you privacy. You only have to sign a signature verification card and you don’t have to give the casino your bank account number and other private information. Secondly, you have a built in stop loss-if you lose it that’s it. Thirdly, it gives the perception to the casino that you plan to gamble with all that money that you deposited with them a plus when it comes time to ask for comps.

ATM Machine

Don’t even think of this. Yea I know it beats carrying around a lot of cash but wait till you see the fees that casinos charge to access your own money when you use their ATM machines. An ATM card also gives players down on their luck an easy way to get more cash. My advice - leave your ATM card at home.

Credit card

This is another bad way to bankroll your playing session. Fees are exorbitant – you’ll get charged an upfront fee based on the amount of money being advanced to you and, of course, you are going to have to pay interest on that cash advance. This is not a smart way to get funds for your bankroll so forgetaboudit.

Henry Tamburin is the editor of the Blackjack Insider newsletter.

This article is provided by the Frank Scoblete Network. Melissa A. Kaplan is the network's managing editor. If you would like to use this article on your website, please contact Casino City Press, the exclusive web syndication outlet for the Frank Scoblete Network. To contact Frank, please e-mail him at


Playing 18 in Blackjack

26 July 2014
There are several ways to get an 18 when you play blackjack. The 18 could be “hard,” meaning the hand either doesn’t contain an ace, or if it does, the ace is counted as one. (Examples are 10-8, 8-5-5, and ace-4-10-3.) Or you can get a “soft 18,” meaning a hand containing an ace that is counted as 11. ... (read more)

How to Hold on to VP Profits

12 July 2014
Have you ever talked with a friend on the telephone and gotten the feeling that something is wrong with them, but they aren’t telling you? This happened to me recently. I finally asked my friend point blank, “Is something wrong?” That’s when he opened up and told me what happened when he’d played video poker recently. ... (read more)

Perfect Video Poker Strategy

29 March 2014
How to Play Every Video Poker Hand Perfectly By Henry Tamburin You can play every hand dealt to you on a video poker machine perfectly by brining along a strategy card. It’s unfortunate that so few video poker players carry video poker strategy cards with them when they play. In fact, the next time you go ... (read more)

Next 10 Articles >

  • Featured Articles

Blackjack Training Tools

Some players find it difficult to learn the basic blackjack playing strategy. Ditto for card counting. I know when I first learned blackjack some 30 years ago, I resorted to using flash cards made from index cards to learn the basic playing strategy. On one side I'd put the player's hand and dealer's upcard, and the other side would have the correct basic strategy play. ... (read more)

Basics of Blackjack Tournaments

More and more casinos are offering blackjack tournaments, especially during the slower winter months. They can be fun, but before you enter it's best that you know the basics of how to play blackjack under tournament conditions. Tournaments work like this. ... (read more)

Top Ten Reasons To Play Blackjack

When you visit a casino, you have a choice of playing either a slot machine or one of the table games. The latter includes blackjack, craps, roulette, baccarat, big six wheel, Caribbean Stud Poker, Pai Gow Poker, Three Card Poker, regular table poker, and a few more new games which invariably find there way onto the casino floor. ... (read more)
Henry Tamburin
Henry Tamburin is the author of the best-selling book, Blackjack: Take The Money and Run, editor of the Blackjack Insider e-Newsletter, and Lead Instructor for the Golden Touch Blackjack course. For a free 3-month subscription to his blackjack newsletter with full membership privileges, visit For details on the Golden Touch Blackjack course visit or call 866/WIN-BJ21. For a free copy of his casino gambling catalog featuring over 50 products call 888/353-3234 or visit the Internet store at

Henry Tamburin Websites:

Books by Henry Tamburin:

> More Books By Henry Tamburin