Did you know that pathological gambling is becoming more of an increasing issue among older adults? With that, there is nothing wrong with taking a casino trip with friends or going on a planned and guided trip to indulge in a bit of gambling and other attractions. However, you’re going to want to stay vigilant throughout your trip given the fact that the gambling industry often preys on seniors.
With so many older adults losing their social security checks or funds that were allocated for essentials like food or medication, learning how to stay safe as a senior in Florida and how to stay smart while enjoying yourself on a casino getaway has never been more important.
Keep reading to learn how to plan and navigate a safe casino trip without falling victim to losing the money you need and potentially coming back home with some money that you didn’t have when you left.
How to Keep Your Money Safe When Visiting Casinos
There are several ways that you can keep your money safe when visiting a casino. One of the top ways is to keep track of your chips while they’re in your possession. With this, try your best not to leave your bag anywhere, and don’t set your bag on the back of your chair when sitting at tables or slot machines.
Additionally, you’re going to want to make sure that you know the rules of all of the games that you play. If you’re not sure of the rules, you might want to ask a casino employee before placing a wager. You can easily go up to a table and learn how to navigate the game before jumping into playing.
Another thing to consider is time tracking. While this might not seem like a big deal, it can be quite easy to lose time when playing casino games making it easier to lose the money you have.
One other thing to keep in your thoughts is to mind how much you drink. This is especially true if you’re alone or even if you’re just separated from your group if you went on the trip with others. Alcohol can impair our judgment and ability to concentrate and pay attention in general. On average, people lose about $115,000 over their lifetime in the casino alone. To avoid this and to make the casino a fun experience, do your best to stay aware at all times.
How Are Seniors Taken Advantage of by Casinos?
Many casinos target seniors with false marketing claims that they can be trusted to keep. One way that seniors fall victim to casinos is that the casino will often offer table games like blackjack with negative pay-outs that say that you can win without having to risk losing much of anything. Slots are also often the focus of this scam, with jackpots that are nearly impossible to win without putting in a substantial amount of money.
While seniors may enjoy these types of games, most cannot afford to play for long periods and end up losing a lot of money and this is exactly how the scam works. This isn’t something that just targets seniors though. Young and middle-aged individuals could fall victim to this just as easily.
The simple fact is, that casino games are often addictive given that gambling issues can reach 10.4% of adults that are over 55. You’ll also want to be aware of table games that lure you in with easy-to-understand rules that are actually designed to keep you from winning much of anything.
Keep in mind that seniors are the fastest-growing group of gamblers while many lose the majority of their savings. People also often wonder if they are required to give their social security numbers when redeeming their earnings. This is not something you have to do and if someone asks for your social security number to release your winnings, you aren’t obligated to do so.
Learn How to Recognize a Casino Scam
From the counterfeit coin ordeal in 1998 and the remote-controlled roulette ball debacle in 1973 to the cufflink camera and infrared contact lens scandals in 2011, casino scams are always present in some form. The key to not falling victim to some of the scams and trickery out there is to remain observant and to know how to spot potential risk factors.
You might think that with the level of unseen security that casinos have in place and with the fact that their eyes in the sky….or the ceiling rather, are keeping track of everyone that enters the casino, that scams wouldn’t be something you would need to worry about. Unfortunately, patrons throughout casinos may try to pull scams as well and they will often be present in private dice games, blackjack, craps, and even roulette.
So, with every game having the potential of being compromised, how do you determine what is and isn’t a scam? Or at least, what is more than likely going to be safe for you to play? All you have to do is pay close attention to spot what does and doesn’t seem or sound legitimate.
For example, if you decide to try out online gambling, be aware that sites with delays in payment processing and unresponsive help desks are often scams. When you’re in the physical casino, pay attention to guaranteed returns based on the edge provided by the patron. Also, remain aware when playing more short-term games and anything that might require longer-term investments. There are a few things that might seem normal that you should keep an eye out for as well.
If you’re ever asked to pay for a “game of chance” with a credit card this is more than likely a scam. Also, if you’re ever actively encouraged to share a table with someone else, avoid playing at that table.
Gamble Smart and Lessen Your Financial Losses
If you are looking for a good time without the risk of losing money, you don’t have to give up your casino trip. All you have to do is keep your eyes and ears open. For seniors living in Florida, consider going with a group of people and do your best to keep track of your belongings, winnings, and alcohol consumption. Keep in mind that the wins in a casino are pretty random yet consistent enough to keep you playing.
This is a common tactic to keep people in the casino and all you have to do is to know your limit. If you are planning a casino trip soon, make sure that you are prepared for the possible losses and scams that might occur to ensure your trip is successful.