What Freebies Cost

Comping was once the stuff of sketchy casino floor managers who doled out (and withheld) freebies at their discretion. Now it’s fully democratic and tracked with computerized rewards cards—though you ordinarily have to play four hours straight before any comping starts. Frank Scoblete, author of the Golden Touch gambling books, breaks down the perk tiers:

Average Bet: $10
Typical Comp: Free or discounted rooms during the week; small gifts like an umbrella, a beer mug, a cap; buffet tickets.

Average Bet: $25
Typical Comp: Free room during the week; discounted room on a weekend; food at non-gourmet restaurants; some gifts.

Average Bet: $100
Typical Comp: Free rooms anytime; meals; nicer gifts like steak knives and cell phones; “On a slow day, you may get a suite.”

Average Bet: $500
Typical Comp: Limos, suites, parties, fights, shows, everything. “They’ll probably pay for your airfare or send a limo to pick you up.”

Average Bet: Tens of thousands
Typical Comp: “The casino can make an agreement with high rollers to return half their losses. They’re basically saying, ‘We’re cutting the house edge in half for you.’ ”

What Freebies Cost