How Does a Casino Make Money?


A casino is a facility for certain types of gambling. Modern casinos are like indoor amusement parks for adults, with the vast majority of the entertainment (and profits for the owners) coming from gambling. Slot machines, blackjack, roulette, craps and keno provide the billions of dollars in profits that U.S. casinos rake in every year. Although elaborate hotels, shopping centers and lighted fountains help draw in the crowds, casinos would not exist without games of chance.

In most cases, a casino’s advantage on each game is only a few percent, but over the millions of bets placed each day that slight profit adds up to huge amounts of money. Because of this, it is very rare for a casino to lose money on its games for even one day. To further increase their profitability, casinos regularly offer big bettors extravagant inducements such as free spectacular entertainment, reduced-fare transportation and luxury living quarters.

Another way casinos make money is by comping players. A player who spends a lot of time playing the same game is considered a good customer by the casino and is given free goods or services. These can include hotel rooms, meals, show tickets and limo service. Ask a casino employee for details on how to get your play rated and comped.

Since large amounts of money are handled within casinos, there is always the temptation for patrons and employees to cheat and steal, either in collusion or independently. To prevent this, security personnel constantly watch the games and the players through cameras located throughout the facility. In addition, the patterns of behavior on the casino floor – how dealers shuffle and deal cards, the locations of betting spots and the expected reactions and actions of players – follow strict standards that security personnel can easily spot when something is out of the ordinary.