Casino dealers are some of the most over worked and underappreciated people you will ever meet. They work across the table from players who are, for the most part, at their worst – drunk and losing. Players are often impatient and rude as well – shouting at the dealers, never waiting their turn, always blaming the dealer for mistakes that are often their own, and (of course) blowing smoke in the dealer’s face. For the most part, the dealers are also working at near minimum-wage salaries for a company that treats them like known felons, and they rely on the goodwill of their patrons for the vast majority of their income – which comes from dealer tokes, or tips.
A good craps dealer can be your best friend in the casino. Once he gets an idea of your betting pattern he will remind you about bets that may have slipped your mind, for example. And he’ll vouch for you to the boxman if an error in payoff was made and see to it that it is made right – even if it means he gets chastised for making the mistake. And for that reason – a good dealer should be rewarded for his efforts. Tip the dealer and he’ll be even helpful and pleasant. That tip may be a “hand in” if you wish, but most tips are usually made in the form of bets made “for the boys.”
The best time to start tipping is with your first bet after buy-in. It lets the dealers know right up front that you are on their side and will look out for them if they look out for you. It also speaks well to the floor person who is tracking your play for comps. Most of these supervisors came up through the ranks and depended on player tokes for a substantial portion of their income.
What sort of bet should you make for the dealers? The most commonly made dealer bet is the hardway bet. You might toss out four dollars and call “All the hardways for the boys.” Win or lose, the effort will be appreciated. Or you might put a dollar on the Pass Line and say “for the boys,” then take odds behind the bet once the point is established.
After making that first dealer bet it is a good practice to make an additional small wager for them every twenty to thirty minutes. The easiest way to keep track of the time is simply to toss out a dealer bet whenever the stick person rotates out. It reminds the stick person and the new dealer rotating in that you are a “George” and are on their side. And honestly, I’m of the opinion that every dollar I’ve ever toked the dealers in my years of play has come back to me many times over.
Finally, at the end of your session, win or lose, when you color up your chips make it a point to toss in any surplus one-dollar chips you have as a “dealer hand-in.” It isn’t mandatory. Let’s fact it. The idea behind tipping is to assure you continue to receive good service, and when you’re ending your session you’re no longer worried about it, right? Still, you tip your restaurant server at the end of the meal – not after every course is served. So if you received good service from the crew – toss those extra few bucks in for the crew. It’s the right thing to do.