When it comes to gambling, managing your money is very important, which is why experienced gamers always have a sound money management system in place. This is especially important when playing real money casino games such as slots, which have no secret systems or strategies that you can use to move the odds in the players’ favor. The good news is, by having a solid money management system in place, you can stretch your entertainment dollars by maximizing the time you get to play, thereby increasing your chances of winning — or at the very least, minimize your losses.
Bankroll management begins with the understanding that you should never gamble money that you can’t afford to lose. With that in mind, here are some important bankroll management guidelines everyone should follow before playing any casino real money games:
Establish your bankroll. Before playing your first casino game, it’s essential that you determine your total bankroll; this is the maximum amount of money that you can afford to lose without impacting your non-discretionary obligations such as groceries and rent. Many responsible players open a separate credit or debit card that they use exclusively for online casino gaming; this can reduce the temptation of extending your entertainment by dipping into cash you originally had budgeted.
Establish win and loss limits. It is just as important to manage your winnings as it is your losses, which is why experienced casino gamers always set a win limit prior to every session. A good rule of thumb is to set your win limit to 60% of your session bankroll. You can extend your entertainment time by also setting a loss limit; some experts recommend this should be between 50% and 60% of your bankroll.
Take it easy. It’s no secret that casinos always have the edge over the gamers — they’re a business, after all. Some games can be played much faster than others. However, by playing at a deliberate pace, you can extend your entertainment time and reduce the risk of ending your gaming time prematurely.
Control your emotions. Sound bankroll management is virtually impossible unless you stick to your initial plan. The trouble is, it’s impossible to manage your money when can’t you control your emotions. More often than not, emotions cloud your judgment — and that usually leads to poor decision making.
So, how can highly-disciplined financially-responsible gamers in search of a little entertainment get the most from their gaming budget? Well, here are a few tips for some of the most popular real money games:
Slots. One of the most important things to track while playing any game of chance is the amount of money you spend. As mentioned above, this is especially important when playing slots, as the rate of play can be very fast. Even if coin denominations of slots are typically smaller versus other online casino games, controlling your money is still key to prevent rapid bankroll depletion.
Blackjack. It’s a tough skill to master, but card-counting can limit your bankroll losses — and greatly increase your odds of winning over the long run. For those who want a much simpler strategy, always try to sit in the anchor position at the end of the table; doing so puts you in a far stronger position because, by being the last to be dealt, you’ll know which cards everyone else has already received.
Poker. Yes, it’s a cliche, but whether you’re playing online poker with real money or not, it’s important to know when to hold ’em and when to fold ’em. As such, you need to have a firm grasp of the odds — as well as prudent bluffing strategies. Poker is a mental game — and that requires a lot of note-taking and constant analysis of your own game.
Roulette. If you’re looking to stretch your entertainment dollar playing this game, then look for a European-style table; unlike its American counterpart, it doesn’t have a “00” on the wheel, so the odds are slightly better.
The Bottom Line
If you’re the type of person who has trouble staying financially disciplined, then you shouldn’t play at all. However, by following the bankroll management tips and gaming strategies described above, those who are financially responsible should be able to stretch their gaming bankroll whenever they want to enjoy a little gaming entertainment. Best of all, you’ll enjoy playing more too.
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