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What To Do About Tip Hustling

25 November 2012

By Frank Scoblete

These are posts by G-Man and others from the private, members-only message boards at

G-MAN: I have played at an old casino [poster names the casino and city] for a number of years. I don’t like the table so I don’t play a lot there each trip. I have seen every year the dealers encourage new players to place a $5 line bet and then a $1 “lucky bet” next to the line bet for them. At times they also ask the player to make minimum Place bets with $1 lucky bet.

As you know, this makes the odds against the player worse than a loan shark. The new people have no idea what happens to all their money

Monday I saw something different.

We were on a decent roll and after a couple of hits the dealer asked the three guys next to me to place a $5 line tip bet so he could play along, then said if you add odds it is even better. So the guys were playing $5/$25 odds on Pass Line and $20 for the dealers. I had my usual $1 on top and on the side. Each hit the dealer would take the line bets/odds and profit and slide them to the boxman and then request another line tip bet with odds.

We all had place bets at $24 to $60 and each win the dealer would say drop me a red chip and a white chip and I will be on the 8 or 6 with you. This was said to four guys including me.

He would place the $24 on the 8 or 6 etc. when it hit he would slide the $24 Place bet and winnings to the boxman and then state in a low voice here are your winnings on the 8, drop- me a red chip and white chip and I will go back up on it with you. Each hit he was taking the $24 bet plus $28 profit for $52 and sliding that to the boxman. He was actually making more on each bet than the players.

At first we felt he was just asking to drop a red and white because he was paying us in larger chips but, no, it was for his play.

Over the roll the dealer raked in hundreds. I would say more than any player made.

I admit to not being a big tipper, but I tip all the time. I felt this was wrong.

I feel this crew is taking advantage of players not understanding not only the math of the game, but what is reasonable expectation of treatment by the crew. I was also upset because three times during that roll they screwed my pay, once by taking down a complete Come bet and odds, and also missing a payment on a $24 six and then 8. They were either pissed I was not tipping as much or they were paying too much attention to their own bets.

I called the casino manager and stated my complaint. I indicated how long I had seen the activity of taking advantage of new players and I also indicated others had mentioned that to me including a number of casino people. He seemed to be upset and said he has heard there is a problem there, and needs help to stop it and wants a letter of complaint indicating what happened with my name on it.

I have decided (with guidance) to not forward a complaint with my name on it. There
are a couple of reasons for this. First the crew knows me by name one boxman and dealer
are originally live close to me and I don’t want to be singled out there.

Also I am a dice setter and I don’t want them to take that out on others

Finally, this activity was so blatant any decent review of the tapes could show the bets being placed and the money handed to the boxman.

It is funny they single us out for dice setting because we are trying to win and they
grind every dollar they can out of people that don’t pay attention or are new players.

FINISHER: When I play there it reminds me of State fairs and the big hustle to get you to play. It has been going on for as long as I can remember. I have been at other casinos were the dealers talk to each other about this. I listen but never say any thing and pretend that I am not hearing what they are saying.

I feel that a dollar on the line for them with pressing one on every hit I get is enough. That can add up if I roll several times. I always try to remember that they never lose because it is not their money at risk.

Some casinos will let you press the dealers bets and others will not. Even the same casino has different ways with each pit person that is on duty. I guess there is no written law about this; it is up to the casino.

At one casino I could piggy back a bet then the shift change and a new guy said that was not allowed any more.

Maybe some one knows if there is some thing written in the law about this?

I have even been told that you can not parlay the dealer tips but you can add what ever you want. I guess they did not like the word parlay or they did not want the dealers making more money.

So I just try to stay away from bets that I control for the dealers because it just brings to much attention to myself. The setting of dice brings enough.

Sorry that you did not have a good time [names casino and city].

It is amazing that at some of the casinos as soon as you set the dice they are all over you about hitting the wall; where others say nothing until you miss it a few times or not at all.

As if my $5 bet is going to change their bottom line!

BRETBOY: I'd stay away from this joint. I am sure they are all in on it.

DR CRAPOLOGY: I have seen dealers hustling tips, by trying to take the player on a guilt trip and the player has usually had too much to drink. They say something like "don't forget my bet" or "you are going to put odds down for me on that bet." The player feels guilty so he makes the bet or adds the odds for the dealer. These guys are hustlers and I usually leave the table. I have only seen this in Vegas and, in of all places, Aruba.

This does not concern craps, but many years ago before I joined Golden Touch, I was playing some Three-Card Poker and won a nice pot, a straight as best I can remember. So instead of giving the dealer a $5 tip I placed the $5 as a tip on the Pair Plus bet along side my of my $10 bet. As luck would have it I got three of a kind which pays 30 to one; a $150 win for the dealer and $300 for me. The dealer scooped up the $155 (the $5 and bet and the $150 win) and put it in the toke box. Not so much as a thank you for the bet. I will never do that again.

If I were to play Three Card Poker (which I don't now that I am an advantage player) I would place $15 on the Pair Plus bet and if I hit the three of a kind I would tip maybe $25. I do expect the dealer to, at the very least, say thank you. By controlling the bet I can tip what I want.

CMCIERRA: Tipping the dealers should not be made out of guilt. Tip them accordingly and when you are shooting the dice.

BRYANT: Totally unprofessional. Skip playing there.

NO-FIELD-FIVE: Dealers Toke Hustling = No Bet for the Dealers

ABBOT: I agree about not using your name. You never know. Just avoid the place. Sounds like a crummy group of people to me.

K.A.C.M: Hey; I played there this past February. It was funny. The first two times they hustled me out of six bucks - but after that I said to them, “Hang loose I need to make some money myself first.” Wow, I didn’t stay long after that because then the stick said you must throw harder, faster, slower, softer, higher, lower because you are a dice setter”

“Ok,” I said. “Now you get no tips and there are plenty of other places to play. See you later.”

You never know what the next funny story will be. Just one more story to add to my gambling file.

ONE-MOON-CIRCLES: Soliciting is illegal in Colorado. Still, several casinos dealers come close and it irritates the hell out of me. I just ignore them and don't place any bets for them when they start that.

[This post appeared on the private, members-only Golden Touch web site. Get a free 60-day subscription. Just email Frank Scoblete at]

Frank Scoblete
Frank Scoblete is the #1 best selling gaming author in America. His newest books are Slots Conquest: How to Beat the Slot Machines; Everything Casino Poker: Get the Edge at Video Poker, Texas Hold'em, Omaha Hi-Lo and Pai Gow Poker!; Beat Blackjack Now: The Easiest Way to Get the Edge; Casino Craps: Shoot to Win!; Cutting Edge Craps: Advanced Strategies for Serious Players; Casino Conquest: Beat the Casinos at Their Own Games! and The Virgin Kiss.

Frank and Casino City Times columnist Jerry "Stickman" teach private lessons in dice control. Frank's books are available at, in bookstores or by mail order. Call 1-800-944-0406 or write to Frank Scoblete Enterprises, PO Box 446, Malverne, NY 11565. Frank can also be reached by email at

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