When I was in Vegas last month, it seemed that luck was never on my side. The gambling was certainly fun, but I never walked away ahead big. After day two, I realized that was how it was going to be, so it was all about playing small limits. This became a challenge, however, when the group relocated from downtown to the strip.
One night, while three of us were playing craps, my wife decided she wanted to play some blackjack. She said she was going to ask if she could play $5 a hand at an empty $10 table. I told her to not even try it, that they wanted those limits for a reason. But lo and behold she sat down and played for $5. When the rest of us tried to join, we were told that only she could play at that level.
That night planted the seed in our heads: Could you really negotiate a table limit down? The next night at Harrah’s we tried this, but it didn’t work. They wouldn’t lower the minimums. Not to be deterred, we waited until later in the night, when the pit boss changed and asked again. The table was empty at $10 a hand, we could guarantee four people to sit down if they lowered it to $5.
Sure enough, the pit boss was happy to do so. He dropped the table minimum to $5 and let us all sit down. Quickly two more people snagged the empty seats and we had a full table. We played for quite a bit at the table, had some fun, had some drinks, and eventually lost the buy in.
Everyone won from the deal. The casino was able to fill an empty table, get a dealer some tips, and create a more fun environment for everyone. The pit boss eventually raised the limit back to $10, but we were grandfathered in. Since we were having fun, new people enjoyed sitting and playing at $10 a hand. I never thought you could negotiate down a table minimum. I’m not sure if this could happen again, but it’s fun knowing it could work. It’s something I’ll definitely try again if the opportunity presents itself.