Casino Host Letter To Guest

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Gamble enough in Las Vegas or other casino destinations and you’ll get a casino host. This person helps you with travel arrangements. She also offers perks like free rooms and meals.

If you have a host, take advantage of the situation. Use their services for whatever you need.

But a casino host won’t tell you everything.

1- Which Games Offer the Highest Comps

The core of a casino host’s job is to get you to gamble as much money as possible. As long as they can get you to put as much money as possible into play, the casino advantage will eventually take the correct amount of it.

Good casino hosts know which games have the highest house edge and highest hold percentage. They also know which ones have the lowest. This information is usually directly tied to the level of comps you can get.

A casino determines a player’s comp level by how much the player is expected to lose. This is determined by the expected house edge on the game being played multiplied by the total amount wagered.

Here’s an example:

A player bets $100 per hand on blackjack. He plays 500 hands. His total amount wagered is $50,000.

With an expected win rate of 2%, the casino expects to win $1,000 ($50,000 X 2%).

The more money the player is expected to lose, the better for the casino host.

2- Which Games Offer the Lowest House Edge

The casino host doesn’t want you playing the games with the lowest house edge. So they probably won’t tell you which ones have it.

It doesn’t matter which games have a low house edge if you don’t play them with the best possible strategy. But your host still wants you to lose as much as possible. They won’t steer you to better games.

3- They Don’t Have Your Best Interests in Mind

Your casino host doesn’t have your best interests in mind. Sure, they want you to have a good time, but only because people gamble more when they’re having fun.

Your casino host wants you to gamble as much as possible during your stay. Everything they do is directly related to this goal.

4- They Don’t Like You

Not every casino host dislikes every one of their customers. But the host isn’t your friend, and she doesn’t like you. Depending on your behavior, she might not dislike you, but don’t make the mistake of thinking she likes you – no matter how she acts.

The casino host’s job is to get you to gamble as much as possible.

Thinking your casino host is your friend? Try this little test:

Call your casino host – tell her you need to come to town on business but won’t have any time to gamble at all. Ask them what they can do for you or recommend for your stay.

Casino host letter to guests

If you drop thousands of dollars a year, you might still get a room. The casino doesn’t want to risk losing your future play. But even this has limits.

Casino Host Letter To Guests

And if they do comp your stay in this situation, expect them to encourage you to gamble.

5- They Don’t Care About Your Stories or Your Family or Your Business

Casino hosts listen to your stories and look at the pictures of your kids or pets. But they don’t really care.

Their job is to make you think they care enough to get you to start gambling.

6- Nothing in the Casino is Free

The free drinks, meals, rooms, and flights aren’t really free. They’re paid for out of your expected losses. The casino tells you all of these things are free. They want you to be grateful that they’re taking care of you.

Take the blackjack player who’s expected to lose $1,000 per 500 hands played. He comes to the casino and plays 5,000 hands four times a year. His expected loss for every trip is $10,000. He will have a winning trip every now and then. But on average the casino will have their percentages figured correctly.

The casino knows the player is going to lose an average of $10,000 every time he comes. They also know they can afford to give him thousands in “free” things and still make lots of money.

How much does a round trip flight, hotel room for a week, five buffet comps, and four or five nice meals cost?

Nowhere close to $10,000.

7- Everything You Get is Directly Tied to How Much You Play

Your casino host might hint at this if you aren’t playing enough. But they don’t like to come straight out and say you have to play a certain amount up front.

If you want more comps you probably need to play more. You’ll see exceptions to this rule, but for the most part, what you get from your casino host is directly tied to how much you gamble.

8- If You Don’t Ask You Won’t Get

Many players don’t ask their casino hosts enough questions. Your host will probably take care of your meals and room if you play enough. But you really have no idea how much more you may be able to get. If you don’t ask you’ll never know what you might get.

Want to see the Grand Canyon or the Blue Man Group? Ask if your host can help.

What about a trip to the spa for your spouse?

You don’t even have to ask for monetary value things. Sometimes information can be valuable. Your host should either have a great deal of information or be able to access it.

9 – You Can Get a Better Deal at Other Casinos

Your casino host doesn’t want you to consider another casino. She doesn’t even want you to start thinking about talking to another host.

Are you a big player?

You should shop your play as much as possible. Get as much in return for your play as you can.

10- You Can Get an Upgrade for $20

Casino Host Letter To Guest Rsvp

$20 is an arbitrary amount. But often you can get a room upgrade for a small amount of extra money. Has your casino host arranged for a room?

Ask her how much you would have to pay to get an upgrade.

11- When You’re Just Short of a Big Upgrade or Perk

Unless you track your play (which you should do) and know how the casino determines the amount of your comps (almost impossible to find out), you won’t know where you are on the scale of players at the casino. The bigger the player, the more you can get, but there’s always a line separating one level of play from another.

If you’re just a few thousand short of the next level of player it would be nice to know so you could play a little more.

A smart casino host may let you know when you’re close, but most of them won’t. If they do tell you, make sure you know exactly how much more you need to play and what you will get in return. You don’t want to lose twice what it would cost you to buy the same perks.

12- When You’ve Had Too Much to Drink

Why do you think casinos offer free drinks to players?

The more you drink, the more you gamble.

Because your casino host wants you to play as much as possible, she’s more likely to order you another drink than tell you it’s time to stop.

13- Where to Find a New Casino Host

The casino host business is competitive. Hosts protect their clients fiercely. If you start thinking about finding another host, don’t tell your current host.


Playing enough to have a casino host and getting perks from the casino feels great. But you still need to make sure you’re watching out for your best interests.

The casino host wants you to play as much as possible. Everything she does is done with this ultimate goal in mind. Remember this. You should be able to take advantage of their services and have a good time along the way.

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I can’t walk into a casino without encountering a stream of management questions related to guest service.

How do we improve our guest service? How do we make our guest service training work? How can we build a long-term customer service solution? We can’t outspend the competition, so how do we outservice them?

Casino executives who ask these questions are on to something. They know that no matter what else is going on in the world, their guests always want one thing: a great casino experience. Guests want an experience that is so wonderful and memorable that it keeps them coming back even if they have less money in their pockets when they leave.

Guess what? Good customer service and the outstanding guest experience that comes from that also have an effect on your bottom line. Guests who enjoy themselves will come back and play again.

Having said that, I want to pass along seven keys to improving customer service that I’ve learned from years of helping the gaming industry. These seven keys will set you on the right path to creating a customer service culture at your property and reaping the rewards.

Key #1: Change is Difficult

For some reason, people in the gaming industry lose sight of the fact that change is difficult. When I ask executives about getting players to try new games, they tell me how hard that is to do. They give examples of how slowly players get around to doing something new.

Players and employees are the same when it comes to change. Human beings do not quickly accept change unless they experience a major event or have some other good reason to change. Therefore, when you’re trying to develop a guest service culture among your employees, you’ll find it won’t happen quickly or easily.

Some casinos think they can “change” their people by marching them through a three-hour orientation or training session. Wrong! Change takes a high level of repetition and it needs to be of interest to those on the receiving end. You must identify what will motivate your people to perform the desired behaviors you’re looking for. Yes, a very small percentage of your staff members will change just because you ask them to. The challenge is getting a critical mass of employees to see that this change, this guest service culture, is in their best interest. If it’s not important to them, most will not invest the effort needed to change.

Developing a guest service culture is an evolutionary process.

Key # 2: It Starts With Hiring, But That Is Not Enough

All casinos work hard to hire the very best candidates to fill job openings at their property. Unfortunately, that’s just the beginning. Hiring the very best is a great place to start, but it simply isn’t enough. If hiring the “right” person was all it took, there would not be a multibillion-dollar training industry. A company invests in training because it needs and wants more out of its people.

All of us face budget crunches on an ongoing basis, but what is your budget’s alternative to training? If you’re like most properties, you don’t have a choice. You find and hire the best of the best and they still need improvement.

Just for fun, take a day and look at the amount of time and energy you spend hiring people. Now look at what it would take to turn your employees into truly great guest service ambassadors. It’s much better to invest in training than it is to throw money out the window hiring people and then firing them for not providing the level of guest service that will allow you to compete.

Key #3: All Training Is Not Created Equal

Isn’t it odd that people will spend $30,000 for a specific automobile because they recognize the quality of the brand but when it comes to investing in the growth of their employees through training, they shop it based on price alone?

Don’t get me wrong. I have no problem with going to a discount store and buying paper towels and napkins. That, to me, is good business sense. But I would not buy something as critical to my overall success as the guest experience and purchase it on price alone.

Automobiles are not created equal and the same goes for training. I’ve attended training sessions that did not use the principles of accelerated learning and within 10 minutes I was looking for the escape hatch. I couldn’t stand it. It was boring and slow and those were the good points.

Learning 101 dictates that people learn when they say it and do it. Unless you’re trying to teach your employees how to sleep, the training needs to have more interest. People retain new information the least when all they do is listen to a lecture.

You need to invest in training that makes the experience fun, that encourages participation. The trainers also need to know the industry. They should understand that most gaming employees only make money when they offer their guests a great experience. I’ve heard hundreds of stories about casino employees getting tokes from people who were losing money. Employees know that they will not always be compensated for their efforts. But they know they will win over time if they put in a consistent effort. Good training gives them the skills they need to make that effort.

After all, this is the entertainment business and if your employees are not part of the entertainment, your guests will make the choice to spend their dollars elsewhere.

You should also hire a company that specializes in customer service training for the gaming industry. Some casinos say they have one of their other vendors provide guest service training. That’s shocking because these are the same people who would never consider opening a window with a brick.

Companies that don’t specialize in customer service training can help you reach an outcome. It may not be the exact outcome you desire but they will help you to a point. The problem is they don’t always leave things in the best condition. A brick will open a window. The cleanup may not make it worthwhile, but the window will now be open.

So why would you trust your guest service needs to a company that doesn’t specialize in guest service consulting for the gaming industry? If you need to improve guest service, don’t grab the closest tool or hire the most available company. Invest a little time auditioning to make sure you find the best solution for your guest service needs.

Coming up next: keys four through seven (The Fun Factor, It’s An Investment, You Need to Start With An Accurate Perspective and People Are Not Born With the Guest Service Gene).
To read other articles by Martin Baird, go to

Martin R. Baird
Robinson & Associates, Inc.
[email protected]