The Casino Comp System
Complimentaries, or “comps” as they are called in the business, include free drinks, overnight accommodations and meals, reduced or free airfare, and other “freebies” given out by the casino.
It’s estimated that over $700,000 worth of comps are given away everyday in Las Vegas alone. The bulk of these perks typically goes to those who are betting an average of $25 or more on each hand or round. People who play at this level will have themselves “rated” (the process whereby the bet levels are recorded by the pit personnel) and use this rating to negotiate free offerings from the casino, especially hotel accommodations. Ratings are based on the casino’s potential to win a gambler’s money. Those who sit at $100-minimum blackjack tables or spend all night at the baccarat tables, where the betting can quickly escalate to thousands of dollars, will have no trouble receiving comps. But these days, with heavy competition for customers from the surge of new casinos, even the grind player can work the comp system. Free drinks and meals are often offered to players who might be betting as little as a roll of nickels at a slot machine.