Wee, we are assuming you are meaning a land-based casino, say in Las Vegas, Monaco or London, rather than an online casino. Casinos can feel pretty intimidating to first time visitors if you don’t really know what you’re doing. Even the slot games these days can be mind boggling, with their different coin sizes, max bets, ways to win, pay-lines and what have you. So we feel your pain!
The first thing we’d say, is that it pays to do a bit of research before you go. if you are heading to Vegas to play blackjack, why not just do some reading on the rules first- buy a book, search the game out on the Internet, play a few hands at an online casino (there’s no need to risk any money, just play a demo game). It’ll make your trip far more enjoyable (and less risky).
If you don’t have any experience with blackjack, craps, roulette or even slots, I’d start with blackjack which is a pretty easy game to pick up. Baccarat is even easier, but it’s quite fast, so I’d start with blackjack.
Try heading to the casino in the morning and you might find that some of the dealers are running mini schools to teach people how to play- this is especially true in Vegas. In the shops you’ll be able to pick up little blackjack mini guides that will help you on basic strategy (when to hit, stand, double down, split). Steer clear of craps! That’s a complicated game. Roulette is another option for first time visitors.
Try and play at tables that offer low minimum bets on their table games, such as $5 tables or lower. You may need to head off The Strip and head for Downtown if you are in Vegas. If you are playing in the Ritz in London, the table minimums are going to be high! Head for a Grosvenors.
You can also have a play around on the 5c slots (Nickel Slots). Remember that most modern games allow you to bet on more than one pay-line, so if you are playing a 50 line Nickel slot, you are going to be betting $2.50 a spin not 5c if you hit MAX BET.
The house edge on video poker machines like Jacks or Better video poker is lower than slots. But make sure you read up a bit on video poker. In a standard Jacks or better video poker game, hold all pairs, if you get no pairs then hold all cards that are Jacks or higher.
If you do want to play craps because you’ve seen it in the movies learn the basic craps bets (pass/don’t pass)- play our free craps game to get the hang of it. Craps is a lot of fun to play and a team game where there are high fives and banter at the table.
Look for a $3 minimum bet at the craps table.
Finally, remember that there are plenty of other things to do other than play on the tables or the slots at many casinos, particularly if you are in Vegas. Go for a swim, go and see a show, go shopping or head to a fancy restaurant. With all those options you might find yourself struggling to get on the tables!