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How does free play work at Las Vegas?

Hey there, friends! Have you ever wondered exactly how casinos give away "free play" credits for gambling in Las Vegas? As an experienced Vegas enthusiast, let me walk you through everything there is to know about scoring and using free play offers on your next visit.

In short, free play refers to complimentary credits casinos provide to gamble on slots or table games without risking any real cash. You can use these credits just like money to play your favorite games. And here‘s the best part – you keep any winnings! It‘s a fantastic perk for players.

There are several ways to land free play when visiting Las Vegas: signing up for player‘s cards, checking email offers, asking the front desk, earning comps, and joining loyalty clubs. The credits usually come in the form of tickets or directly downloaded to machines through your player‘s card.

To use free play, simply insert your card or voucher into the slot or present it to the dealer. Pick an amount to play and the credits will display on the game. Any wins get transferred to your account balance. When finished, print a new voucher containing your winnings that can be cashed out at the cage!

Now let‘s dive into the details on how this wonderful casino incentive works. I will also provide tips to maximize your free play benefits!

What Exactly is Free Play?

Free play, also called "free slot play" or "free table play", refers to complimentary credits casinos give players to wager on games without risking their own money. Think of it as house money you can gamble with!

These credits function just like cash once uploaded to a machine or table game. You can play slots, video poker, blackjack, roulette, and more using free play rather than your own cash.

Winnings from free play accrue on your account balance or on a separate meter. You keep any winnings that you generate using the credits. However, you cannot directly convert free play into withdrawable cash.

Casinos provide free play to both attract new members and reward loyal players. The credits incentivize you to visit and gamble more at their establishments.

How Do You Get Free Play in Las Vegas?

There are several ways to score free play when visiting Las Vegas casinos:

Sign Up for a Player‘s Card

Nearly every casino in Las Vegas offers a free membership card that tracks your play and allows you to earn perks like free play. Make sure to sign up as a new member at the rewards desk or insert your existing card into slots or tables games.

Player‘s cards and slot club cards can unlock all sorts of exclusive offers. Most casinos will load periodic free play right onto your card based on your tracked slot and table play.

The more you gamble using your card, the bigger your free play rewards will be. High rollers and loyal customers receive the most generous offers.

Check Your Email and Mail Offers

Once you join a casino‘s player‘s club, you will start receiving promotions and coupon offers by email and postal mail. These frequently include free play credits alongside room, dining, and entertainment deals.

Offers are customized based on your observed play, value to the casino, and other factors. You may receive free play for holidays, events, or random rewards. Again, the best patrons typically get the biggest offers.

So be sure to open any mailers and check your spam folder for these great deals! Scheduling your trip to coincide with a special promo can score you extra free play bucks.

Inquire at the Front Desk and Rewards Center

When checking in or out of your hotel-casino, don‘t be shy about asking the front desk attendant or casino cage cashier about available free play. Many unpublished offers exist for guests who simply ask!

Let the rewards desk or slot attendant know you are interested in free play when signing up for a new player‘s card too. Casinos depend on attracting new members so are willing to give out signup credits.

Depending on availability and your history, asking politely may just trigger free play to be added to your account on the spot. The receptionist often has power to provide discounts and deals.

Earn Free Play Through Game Play

Certain slot machines and table games scattered around the casino floor offer players the chance to win free play credits while playing. Keep an eye out for games labeled "Win Free Play!" or with signs listing free play prizes.

Typically you need to hit a special winning combination or bonus round to unlock the free play prize. This adds excitement and incentivizes loyal play on those gambling games.

Again, look for the special icons or talk to casino staff to locate the games currently offering free play prizes right on the gaming floor. There are new options every week.

Take Advantage of First-Time and Birthday Promotions

Many casinos run promotions like "Hours of Free Play for New Members!" for first-time players. Also expect bonus credits on your birthday when you show ID at the player‘s club or slot club.

Scope out current openings and birthday deals online or by asking once you arrive. Displaying your driver‘s license or player‘s card on your special day can earn you anywhere from $20 to $100 in free play credits.

Join VIP Player Programs

If you are a high stakes gambler, get connected with a casino host to join exclusive VIP player lounges and programs. These luxury rewards programs offer huge benefits like large sums of periodic free play, usually $100+ per month.

At Caesars Palace for example, Seven Stars members get annual cruise certificates, elite gifts, and up to $500 in monthly free play credits. Casino whales and VIPs receive the royal treatment!

How Do You Use Free Play Credits?

Using your free play at the casino is a breeze. Just follow these steps:

  1. Insert your player‘s card into the slot machine or provide it to the table game dealer so your account can be tracked.

  2. Tell the attendant you wish to access your free play credits. They will verify your account balance.

  3. Enter your PIN if the system requires identification to release funds.

  4. Choose the amount of free play you want to use if given an option.

  5. You will receive a paper voucher with a barcode representing your free play value. This gets inserted into the gaming machine or scanned at the tables.

  6. Your free play balance now displays on the game credits meter. Play away!

  7. When finished, print a voucher containing any winnings that have accrued from using the free play.

  8. Take the cashout voucher to the main casino cage or slot club booth to redeem your winnings into withdrawable cash, chips, or other payment. Enjoy!

What Games Can You Use Free Play For?

Free play credits can generally be used on any electronic gambling machine like slots, video poker, video roulette, etc. Some casinos restrict use to certain slots, so check the voucher for details.

You may also be able to use free play vouchers at live table games like blackjack, craps, baccarat, and poker. Policies vary by casino, so ask a supervisor first before attempting redeem at tables.

For slots, using your free play is as simple as inserting the paper voucher into the machine bill validator. For tables, present your voucher to the dealer or pit boss to have the credits transferred to a spot for you.

Are Free Play Winnings Really Yours to Keep?

Yes! One of the best parts about free play is that any winnings generated are yours to keep and cash out (after meeting any playthrough requirements).

Think of it as temporarily playing with the casino‘s money rather than your own. Any profits you rack up belong to you. It‘s essentially risk-free gambling!

However, most casinos will make you place additional non-free play bets before cashing out winnings earned from free play. This encourages you to gamble more on your own, which benefits the house.

Always carefully read the redemption rules on any free play offer. But in general, consider any money leftover after playing through the credits to be real withdrawable cash going straight into your pocket!

How Much Free Play Can You Get in Las Vegas?

The amount of free play you can score really varies substantially. Here are some typical examples of free play offers at Las Vegas casinos:

  • Slot player‘s clubs: $5 – $50 based on your tracked slot play and tier status

  • Casino VIP programs: $100 – $500 in monthly free play credits

  • First-time player promotions: $10 – $100 in sign up free play

  • Birthday free play: $20 – $50 slot credits

  • Events and tournaments: $10K – $250K in free play prizes

  • High roller incentives: $500 – $5,000 monthly for proven casino whales

  • Random giveaways: $25 – $100 in surprise free play

As you can see, the range runs from just a few dollars for average gamblers up to thousands for VIP high rollers. But even small amounts can add up over time and improve your overall odds against the house!

Do All Vegas Casinos Offer Free Play?

Most Las Vegas casinos do provide free play, but there are some exceptions:

Casinos without free play:

  • The Cromwell
  • The STRAT Hotel, Casino & Skypod
  • Circa Resort & Casino
  • Sahara Las Vegas

Always check the casino website or call ahead to confirm free play is offered before gambling at an unfamiliar Vegas property. The vast majority do participate, especially the large strip casinos.

Famous Vegas casinos known for generous free play:

  • Caesars Palace
  • The Venetian
  • MGM Grand
  • Wynn Las Vegas
  • The Palazzo
  • Treasure Island
  • Golden Nugget

Again, rewards are generally better for proven big bettors and VIP members. But even low rollers can capitalize on signup deals, birthday free play, and player‘s club incentives.

Can You Win a Jackpot Using Free Play Credits?

Here is the major downside of free play – most casinos prohibit winning a progressive jackpot when playing with free credits.

Progressive slot and table games are electronically linked to provide huge prizes that grow over time across multiple casinos. Letting players win progressives with free play would cause financial loss.

You can absolutely hit any fixed, non-progressive jackpot using free play and keep the win. But expect restrictions on mega prizes like wheel bonuses, wide area progressives, and linked slot jackpots.

What Are the Benefits of Using Free Play?

Taking advantage of free play offers provides several gambling benefits:

  • Play without any risk to your own money
  • Possible to overcome built-in casino odds edge temporarily
  • Learn new games stress-free before betting cash
  • Leverage bonus offers more easily
  • Extend gambling bankroll and session time
  • Convenience of electronic credits vs cash
  • Earn comps and rewards tier status

When played properly, free play lets you enjoy upside earnings potential without the traditional downside. Just be sure to understand all the rules and read the fine print first!

Tips for Getting the Most from Your Free Play

Follow these tips to maximize the value received from Las Vegas free play:

  • Don‘t just use free play on slots – utilize lucrative table game offers too
  • First use free play when gambling before risking real cash
  • Study game rules beforehand to capitalize on bonuses easier
  • Cash out any accumulated winnings frequently rather than letting them ride
  • Combine small free play amounts by playing one machine longer
  • Try new slots risk-free that you normally avoid
  • Inquire about "secret" unadvertised free play deals only for asking
  • Set a win goal amount ahead of time and stop to avoid chasing losses
  • Look for seasonal holidays, events, and birthday specials
  • Check your account frequently for added free play offers
  • Always gamble responsibly and within your entertainment budget

Getting the most from your free play takes a bit of effort and skill. But the rewards are well worth it when used properly and strategically.

Can You Use or Share Another Player‘s Free Play Offer?

Unfortunately, no – free play credits are non-transferable. You must be the identified account holder to redeem offers.

Sharing free play accounts or vouchers with other players is prohibited. Most casinos now require a valid photo ID and player‘s club card present when accessing free play funds.

If caught using someone else‘s credits, you risk having all comps and offers permanently revoked. Additionally, any money won from unauthorized free play would be invalid and voided.

Is Free Play Considered Taxable Income by the IRS?

Yes, the Internal Revenue Service considers any promotional gifts, free play, and comps from casinos to be taxable income if thresholds are met.

You must report all gambling winnings + free casino credits if your total exceeds $600 within one tax year. Detailed records must be kept to provide in case of an audit.

It is smart to speak with a tax professional about properly accounting for any significant casino free play received, especially if large amounts won.

Are There Tricks to Getting Even More Free Play Offers?

Aside from increasing your overall play, there are no real secret tricks to getting more free play from casinos. Here are some tips though:

  • Always use your rewards card and have it properly inserted into every machine
  • Express interest in free play to casino hosts every visit
  • Tell the casino when you receive offers from their competitors
  • Negotiate special deals if you are a proven high stakes player
  • Take advantage of any seasonal holiday and birthday specials
  • Frequently check your account for added offers after each visit
  • Consider staying and playing more during slower mid-week times

Ultimately, free play is used as a marketing tactic by casinos to attract your business. The more they want you to visit and gamble there, the better the offers.

Do Other Casinos Around the World Offer Free Play?

While Las Vegas is the free play capital of the world, casinos across the United States and internationally also offer similar incentives:

  • Atlantic City
  • Reno
  • Laughlin
  • New Orleans
  • Gulf Coast
  • Tribal casinos
  • Cruise ship casinos
  • Online casinos

Wherever you gamble, be sure to join the casino rewards program and check for available free play opportunities to take advantage of. There are thousands in potential offers waiting for savvy players!


Thanks for sticking with me through this comprehensive guide on how free play offers work at Las Vegas casinos, as well as other gambling spots. I hope you now understand the incredible value proposition of using free credits strategically.

When played properly, free play provides upside earnings potential without downside risk, temporarily overcoming the house edge. Just be sure to gamble responsibly within your budget.

On your next visit, focus on signing up for as many casino rewards cards as possible, giving them your email, and checking for deals. Taking a few minutes to understand the rules and maximize your free play can really pay off in the end with extra winnings!

Let me know if you have any other questions. I‘m always happy to share casino gambling tips and experiences. Wishing you the best of luck scoring free play and winning big on your next Las Vegas adventure!



Michael Reddy is a tech enthusiast, entertainment buff, and avid traveler who loves exploring Linux and sharing unique insights with readers.