1. Entering a casino as a minor
British boy band One Direction was kicked out of the Palms Casino in Las Vegas in 2012 for being underage. Sure, they were old enough to drink and gamble in Europe but the U.S. has a strict 21-and-up policy for casinos. The lads experienced another disappointment later in their stay.
One Direction thought they were going to be put up in the same suite that The Hangover was filmed in. However, the 2009 comedy starring Bradley Cooper was actually filmed in Los Angeles. Guess they weren’t able to recreate the wild “stag party” featured in the film.
NEXT: Here’s why phones aren’t allowed at Blackjack tables and other casino games.
2. Using a computer to cheat
Using a computer of any sorts — e.g. a smartphone, device, etc. — to help gamble better in a casino isn’t allowed. That’s why phones aren’t allowed at game tables says an article on the website Cracked. The author spoke to two casino security experts who disclosed all things sketchy they’ve seen in casinos. “Phones are forbidden at the table and that’s not just to keep you from cheating or snapping photos — it keeps you from checking the time,” writes Cracked.
Not only are smartphones something gamblers could use to cheat with, “slot machine bill validator devices” can be used. CNBC details how the device works: Disguised as a $1 bill, the device is inserted into the slot machine and will program it to read any bill as $100.
NEXT: Scammers were able to swindle $88,000 from a casino in Cannes, France using this trick.
3. Card marking
This is when players mark playing cards in some fashion in order to tell them apart, CNBC. Card marking could consist of writing on cards, making small imperfections on cards or even drawing on cards in invisible ink. That’s what four players in Cannes, Frances once did, reported the BBC in 2011.
Described as a sophisticated scam, three Italians and one French man were caught card marking with invisible ink. One player wore a special contact lens that allowed them to see the invisible ink. Sneaky indeed! The four were able to swindle $88,000 from one casino using this technique. Suspicious about these guys were first raised at Princes Casino.
NEXT: This is why Allen Iverson got kicked out of casinos in Detroit.
4. Being unruly
Recapped by Philly.com in 2009, NBA player Allen Iverson was kicked out of two Detroit casinos for improper behavior. On the Pistons Blog on Detroit News, the blog said that Iverson is a sore loser who has been known to throw his chips or cards at the dealer. He’s said to have been loud, disruptive and rude to casino staff.
Rest assured, this could happen to you if you behave badly in a casino. Security will escort you off the premises and maybe even ban you from the casino forever. Taking preventative measures to prevent bad behavior (limiting drinking and recreational drugs) is a good idea.
NEXT: Ben Affleck got banned from a Vegas casino for doing this.
5. Counting cards
It’s not technically illegal but casinos can still ban you for counting cards, says All Things Vegas. This involves keeping a tally of card values to determine the ratio of high to low cards remaining in the deck, says CNBC. In Ben Affleck’s case, security approached the actor at the Hard Rock Casino.
Security believed him to be card counting at the blackjack table, said TMZ in 2014, and banned him from playing blackjack. TMZ reported that a car was called to take Affleck back to his hotel. Initially, Affleck denied counting cards but apparently later owned up to it in an interview with Details Magazine.
NEXT: No cameras are allowed in casinos for this reason.
6. Using a camera in a casino
The most that casinos might do is ask you to put your camera away, says Best of Las Vegas and Thrillist. It’s been known that some people use a hidden camera to cheat at casino card games, CNBC says. Here’s how the scam works: A player keeps a hidden camera up their sleeve to record the cards when they’re cut.
When the player cuts the deck, they take the cut cards and drag them over the deck making sure to slightly separate cards from each other, says CNBC. The hidden camera records the cards and sends the footage back to an accomplice. The information is then relayed back to players.
NEXT: Here’s a common way to cheat in roulette.
7. Past posting
This is also known as “late betting.” The Nevada Gaming Control Board describes the ruse as such: “To place or increase a bet after acquiring knowledge of the outcome of the game or other event which is the subject of the bet.” A player might not know the exact results but will have an advantage. A roulette-centric website called Roulette Online details how to pull off a successful past posting scam.
First, you’ll want to scout out your target — a roulette table dealer that isn’t paying attention. Secondly, it might be best to play with friends or other people that won’t call out your cheating (players might catch you cheating and alert the dealer!).
NEXT: Young Su Gy and Wookyung Kim stole thousands of dollars doing this but got caught.
8. Hand mucking
Also called “card switching,” basically involves players switching out cards for ones hidden up their sleeve or in hidden “holdout” devices. Cheaters just used to use sleight of hand tricks to switch cards, says CNBC, but then these holdout devices were created specifically for hand mucking. The gaming industry has lost lots of money because of this.
There was a big-time card switching scam involving the Foxwoods Casino Resorts in Connecticut and two South Korean nationals named Young Su Gy and Wookyung Kim. The pair stole several hundred thousand dollars using a holdout device but were caught, recaps CNBC.
NEXT: Here’s why you shouldn’t get too sloshed at a casino.
9. Drinking carelessly
Drinking too much, or using recreational drugs, can cloud your judgment and make you act inappropriately in casinos. Thus, you’ll get kicked out or banned from the casino or even tossed in the drunk tank (aka jail). A careless drunk gets in the way of casino staff and customers at the casino.
While we’re on the topic of drinks, you shouldn’t have to pay for them at casinos. At least you shouldn’t have to in Vegas casinos! Sabotage Trends writes that more and more casinos are trying to make customers pay for drinks but it’s usually been a tradition for gamblers to have their drinks comped.
NEXT: Here’s another way to cheat at roulette.
10. Using a rigged roulette wheel
This might involve collusion with the roulette dealer. One particular rigging scam happened in 1973 and had a movie called Tricheurs based on it, explains MentalFloss. A French roulette dealer at Casino Deauville took about $1 million from his place of work along with his sister and brother-in-law. Here’s how they did it:
A radio transmitter in a cigarette pack and a roulette ball with a small receiver inside was built. Pressing a button on the pack of cigarettes controlled the ball, making it land on a specific part of the roulette wheel.
NEXT: This is why blackjack dealers have to wear specific uniforms issued by the casino.
11. Not wearing casino-issued uniforms
Many casino employees are required to wear company-issued uniforms. Some jobs might require special clothing for protection or utility and so clients can locate you. Dealers, in particular, need to wear company issued clothes that don’t have pockets and aprons that cover their waistline, says website Cracked. The author interviewed casino security experts who explained more.
“We’re more wary of our employees than our patrons since they’re closer to the money,” a security expert who went by “Dylan” told Cracked. We can imagine that casino employers want to prevent employees from pocketing chips, cash, cards, and other items.
NEXT: Casinos usually sell or give away used cards for this reason.
12. Using a marked deck
Similar to “card marking,” there are marked decks. This involves roping in a casino employee in order to make it work, as they’re the ones providing the deck for the players to use. We imagine that it might be possible to switch out the deck, unbeknownst to the dealer somehow. There are various ways to mark decks of cards.
Some of these methods might be difficult to detect. In order to dissuade marked decks, casinos usually replace decks of cards often and sell or give away used decks. This makes a nice little souvenir to take home from your favorite casino in Vegas, no?
NEXT: You and your friends can get booted from a poker table for doing this.
13. Colluding in a game of poker
This is when two or more poker players work together to win more money from other players, says the poker-centric website Professional-Poker. An article on the site about player collusion goes on to say that collusion can be very hard to detect in online poker. Poker colluders might signal to each other to indicate their cards in hand.
Knowing what hand your fellow players have gives you a huge advantage at the poker table. Knowing this information can help you determine what move to make — e.g. deciding when to fold. Of course, there are more sophisticated ways of collision that casinos are always trying to identify and keep up with.
NEXT: Don’t go to this kind of casino.
14. Going to or working at an illegal casino
Identifying herself as just “Charline,” a former illegal casino employee told Vice Netherlands the details of what her former workplace was like. Apparently, a lot of crazy things happened to her and she painted a picture of a sketchy-sounding establishment. She even overheard guests planning armed robberies.
Charline said: “If a guest doesn’t pay, someone is sent by their place to collect the money. If he still can’t pay and threats or violence don’t work, the debt collector will take their car or anything of value from their homes.”
NEXT: Another way you can beat the house in a game of roulette.
15. Pulling a “top hat” in a game of roulette
You’ll need the participation of a dealer to pull off this casino scam, Roulette Online explains. A top hat usually involves the following: Players make their bet as usual, but the dealer might have spots on the table where they’d prefer the players make their bets.
Then, a dealer will add additional chips to a stack of chips that are already going to win, aka “top hat.” Sounds simple, but other players at the table might catch you doing this. If you play with all friends it might be easier to get away with, but remember that the casino has cameras…
NEXT: The Rivers Casino paid a cocktail waitress $1 million in a lawsuit because of this.
16. Harassing women
It’s unfortunately way too common for casino patrons to think it’s OK to harass female employees. Don’t harass women — or anyone for that matter! We like how Sabotage Times puts it in regards to cocktail waitresses and harassment. They say the waitresses’ uniforms don’t mean they want to be harassed.
“She’s not there for your adult entertainment even though she’s dressed sexily,” writes Sabotage Times. “She’s there to serve you drinks.” Casino management should not ignore harassment claims. Take care of your employees, otherwise, you might end up like The Rivers Casino who paid $1 million in a harassment lawsuit.
NEXT: An organization of cheaters once pocketed up to $7 million doing this.
17. False shuffling
Grab your dealer friend (or convince one to go along with this) and have them “false shuffle” a deck of cards instead of doing real shuffling. CNBC explains the scam as such: When a dealer false shuffles, they are leaving some cards in place. Players involved in the scam will have been tracking where the unshuffled cards are.
Thus, all cheating players and the dealer know when certain cards are dealt. From there, they are able to decide what moves to make that will win them the big money. The Tran Organization used this trick a lot, CNBC says. The group pocketed up to $7 million.
NEXT: This is considered “advantaged play” but casinos might still kick you out for this.
18. Hole card reading
This scam usually occurs in card games like blackjack, three card poker and Texas Hold’em. To “hole card read,” players have to try to peek at the dealer’s hole-card (the card that’s facing down), says CNBC. Knowing that card informs players as to what moves they should be making to win more money.
Hole card reading is considered “advantaged play,” meaning not entirely illegal, similar to card counting, but highly discouraged by casinos. If you start using devices of some sort to aid you in hole card reading, that crosses the line into cheating, says CNBC.
NEXT: Wynn Las Vegas lost up to $700,000 due to this scam.
19. Dice sliding
In a game of craps, a player will try to slide dice down the table in such a way that keeps numbers they pick facing up, says CNBC. Players are, of course, supposed to toss the dice and let them bounce so winning is left up to chance. Real slick players can employ some sleight-of-hand.
Skilled cheaters can control one die (having it land face up), while the other die bounces. This adds to the deception, making it appear as if the cheating player isn’t actually cheating. It’s not the most common scam, CNBC reports, but casinos can suffer big losses. Wynn Las Vegas lost $700,000 once!
NEXT: Harrah’s New Orleans might have lost $3,500 due to this roulette ruse.
20. Roulette color up
Grab a partner for this trick. Player one buys certain colored chips for $1 and keeps some in their pocket, explains CNBC. These are then passed to player two, who pockets the chips as well. Player two buys the same colored chips for $25 each, then cashes the $1 chips as $25 chips.
NOLA.com reported in 2015 that four men scammed $3,500 out of Harrah’s New Orleans using roulette color up scams. They made the mistake of returning to the casino the next day — state troopers were waiting for them there.
NEXT: Crockfords Casino in London was cheated out of $11 million because of this trick.
21. Edge sorting
This method of cheating in card games involves keeping track of tiny and minor imperfections on the back of cards, says MentalFloss. The publication goes on to say this practice works because cards aren’t cut symmetrically. Those observant enough can track the imperfections and use that information to win more money.
MentalFloss tells the tale of a professional poker player named Phil Ivey Jr. who was good at edge sorting: He bilked $11 million from Crockfords Casino in London. A dealer found cards with imperfections to help Ivey.
NEXT: A scammer that pulled off this ruse had a History Channel documentary made about him.
22. Using counterfeit coins
Some scammers, like Louis “The Coin” Colavecchio, made counterfeit coins and tokens to use at slot machines, says MentalFloss. Using organized crime connections and a day job as a jeweler, Colavecchio was able to make perfect discs to get away with his ruse. Eventually, he was found out in 1998 and arrested.
Casinos figured out his scam after discovering a surplus of coins and tokens in their vaults. Colavecchio was sentenced to six years in prison because of this scam. Doesn’t sound like he learned his lesson because he started to make fake coins again in 2006.
NEXT: Everyone at your table will hate you if you do this.
23. Spilling your drink on the table
Thrillist put it best when explaining why you shouldn’t do this in a casino: “With just the flick of the wrist, you’ve single-handedly forced your table to close and everyone sitting at it to relocate to a new lucky table.” Most people at gambling tables will not like being forced to move.
Besides making yourself a nuisance to everyone sitting at the table, it’s just embarrassing! Dealers and waiters might think you’re drunk (even if you’re not) and try to cut you off from those fun, comped cocktails.
NEXT: Scammers swindled $1 million from casinos in Southern California and Nevada doing this.
24. Robbing an ATM
This one should be pretty straightforward and applicable to other areas of your life. Don’t rob an ATM at a casino, an ATM at a mall, an ATM in a bar, etc. An ATM at a casino, however, might have the largest amount of cash. A possible motivator for this 2012 heist?
Thirteen people were recruited by Ara Keshishyan to exploit security protocol on ATMs throughout Southern California and Nevada, explains a press release from the US Attorney’s office in the Southern District of California. The scammers were able to withdraw over $1 million.
NEXT: Drinking and prostitution are tolerated in Las Vegas but not this.
25. Doing recreational drugs
Like ATM robbing, this shouldn’t come as a surprise. Doing recreational drugs — especially federally illegal ones — will get you the boot from a casino. In Las Vegas casinos, the use of cannabis is restricted although the drug is legal in the state. The Las Vegas Review-Journal detailed this in a 2018 report:
“If state gaming regulators follow the lead of Gov. Brian Sandoval’s 12-member Gaming Policy Committee, the gaming industry and Nevada’s new marijuana distributors will never share a business relationship,” writes journalist Richard N. Velotta. Only if there’s cannabis conventions and exhibitions in resorts can their paths cross.
NEXT: Read this before you bring your pet to Las Vegas.
26. Walking your dog on the Las Vegas strip
Technically, this is a rule within the vicinity of casinos… The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department says: “Animals are prohibited in the following restricted areas between noon and 5:00 a.m. The restricted area is defined as: Las Vegas Boulevard south from Sahara Avenue to Sunset Road and from 200 yards on each side of Las Vegas Blvd. roadway.”
Animals must be on a leash no longer than 3 feet and snakes — yes snakes — cannot be longer than 2 feet in length. Keep your 10-foot long python at home! Bold Tourist says that this rule was enacted to protect pets from harsh daytime temperatures.
NEXT: Sure you can drink in the streets of Vegas but only if you’re doing this.
27. Using a glass container on certain Las Vegas streets
The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department says: “It is unlawful for any pedestrian to be in possession of any glass container which is fit for beverage purposes or intended for beverage purposes, and which is not sealed in packaging, paper or otherwise, separate from the glass container, at any time of the day and on the following streets and highways:”
They go on to list Las Vegas Blvd from Russell Road to Sahara Venue, Mandalay Bay Road from Luxor Drive to Las Vegas Blvd, Tropicana Avenue from Koval Lane to two hundred feet west of its intersection with Las Vegas Blvd, among others. See specifications here.
NEXT: This is something else that Allen Iverson did to piss off (somewhat literally?) a casino.
28. Falling asleep or soiling yourself in public
This goes without saying — don’t fall asleep or soil yourself in a casino or other public places. According to an interview with casino security specialists in Cracked, it was quite common to see patrons falling asleep while playing the slot machines and even soiling themselves. They were so wrapped up in the game!
If a security guard spots you sleeping at a slot machine, they might jostle you awake. Allen Iverson was caught urinating into casino floor trash can in Atlantic City in 2004, says Philly.com. We’re assuming he got kicked out?
NEXT: Here’s another no-no when it comes to drinking in Vegas.
29. Drinking alcohol in vehicles
You’re allowed to carry open containers of alcohol, as well as consume the alcohol on the Las Vegas Strip but you can’t bring your open container into a car. That should be obvious, but tourists or someone that’s had a bit too much to drink might forget. A 2018 blog post on the Hill Firm Lawyers’ website details the law.
“If someone is using public transportation or is driving, he or she cannot have an open container of alcohol,” writes the Hill Firm. “This also means that someone who is getting a ride via an Uber, Lyft, or taxi cannot have an open container with him or her.”
NEXT: Las Vegas taxis can only pick you up here.
30. Trying to flag a taxi in the wrong area
Taxi drivers cannot pick up anywhere on the Las Vegas strip. In fact, it’s illegal. They have to go to designated pickup spots in front of hotels, casinos, and restaurants, says the Las Vegas Municipal Code. If you try to flag down a taxi, they might not even stop for you. Walk until you can find the nearest pickup spot.
The provision goes on to say that it “shall not prevent the operator of a taxicab from temporarily stopping in accordance with other stopping or parking regulations at any place for the purpose of and while actually engaged in the expeditious loading or unloading of passengers.” Best of Las Vegas says pickup spots ensure passenger safety and prevent drivers from fighting over business.