Top Tips for Anyone Considering Playing in a Cruise Ship Casino

Cruise ship casino

So, you're planning a couple weeks away, sailing on the high seas. You know there's an onboard casino and you're considering playing a hand or two. Before you head down to the casino floor, take a moment or two to read these top tips.

Casinos onboard a cruise ship are much smaller than those you'd be able to visit on land in destinations such as Las Vegas, but they usually mirror the rules and standards expected of the dealers. You'll find the latest and most popular slots and table games, including blackjack and penny video slots.

A cruise ship that also has a casino can provide vacationers with some great entertainment choices, as well as the possibility of making some money. Read and take note of the following tips and you should be able to improve the odds of winning and enjoy playing more.

Learn the rules

When you play at a land-based casino on visit one online there are plenty of choices when it comes to the games. This gives you more opportunities to ship around and find the most favourables rules for the game you'd like to play. A cruise ship casino, on the other hand, will only offer a select number of games and it's highly likely the rules will be less favourable than those you'd find in a land-based on online casino.

A cruise line casino will be closed at certain times

It's important for cruise casino players to realise that they won't be able to play in the casino at certain times. One example is when the ship is in a port. Almost all casinos in a cruise ship will be closed at this time so as not to compete with local gambling or entertainment business. And also because of local gambling laws. A cruise ship casino will only be open when in international waters. This is usually 3 to 12 nautical miles from the coast. So until that time players will have to find other forms of entertainment.

High rollers tend to play during the night

A great feature of cruise ships is that they tend to become a 24 hour party zone. It'll be possible to sit down in the casino at 7am in the morning and enjoy a game before breakfast. Or visit the tables at 11pm and enjoy a few games before retiring for the night. A number of cruise ships have higher minimums during the evening hours, which is something to be aware of if you've got a tight budget. Play during daylight hours and you might save a little bit of money.

Cruise ship casinos are the last holdout for smoking

While smoking is pretty much frowned up almost everywhere you go and there are fewer places than ever to smoke on a cruise ship, the casino is often one of the last holdouts. With the exception of luxury lines, you'll find designated smoking areas for cigarette smokers. Cigar smokers, on the other hand, are rarely allowed to light up.

You won't find many card sharks onboard

Casino cards and chips

As a general rule professional gamblers tend to concentrate their efforts in land-based casinos that open 24/7. They also tend to seek anonymity, which is not something permitted on a cruise ship as passengers have to provide passport details before boarding.

Gambling theme cruises

There are a number of cruise lines introducing gambling theme cruises. Perfect if you want to increase your gaming opportunities at sea. You might find blackjack slots and poker tournaments being hosted and these have the potential to attract hundreds of gambling fans. The qualifying rounds are often held on cruises throughout the year, with the final competition being held at the end of the year.

Cruise ships offer pretty poor payouts

In fact, they offer some of the poorest payouts of any casino you'll find. And because there are no other games around you can't just head off and look for a casino with better payouts. Blackjack is a particularly good example of how the rules are adjusted to put the advantage in the cruise ships favour. The most common change is blackjack paying 6-to-5 rather than the usual 3-to-2. Doesn't sound like a lot but a $10 bet would pay $12 on blackjack, rather than $15 under the usual rules. Another common rules change is that the dealer must hit on a 'soft 17'. This change increases the house edge by around 0.2%. Again, this doesn't sound like an awful lot, but when combined with other changes the amount adds up.

General tips when gambling

Set aside a specific amount of money for gambling and you'll have a lot more fun and enjoyment. Divide your bankroll up over the number of sessions you'll be able to play and you won't find yourself running out of money long before the cruise is over.