Thursday, March 05, 2009

Slot Machine Tickets

Another thing that was happening about the same time I was leaving Vegas 5 years ago was the take over by of the slot and video poker machines by the ticket-in / ticket-out system. Tickets, as in no more cash money paid out by the machine, instead they print a bar-coded ticket that you take up to the cashier or a machine to get your money. The machines still accept bills and even those same printed out tickets, but the machines now don't accept or pay out coins which makes them a lot easier for the owners to operate.

I worked very briefly as a slot floor person at the Bellagio right after Westwood, while I started sending out my resume. That was right at the same time they were converting their machines to the ticket system. During that time I saw insides of a lot of slot and video porker machines. I know what a pain the coins were. The buckets would fill up, coins spilled out inside the machine, they would get jammed, etc. Not to mention the pain in the neck it was to deal with all the coins at the cashier's stations around the casino. So I can see where they are coming from wanting to cut down on the whole coin problem. Though, from my experience I would say the tickets jam more often than the coins ever did, but the rest of the argument still stands.

What I am really wondering about though, is the slot and video poker machines in the gas stations, convenience stores, grocery stores, and the like. I have never been a big gambler, but I also hate change in my pocket. As I would walk out of a convenience store I would dump my change into one of the poker machines, play a hand or two, lose, and then continue on my merry way minus the annoying jingling change. On a very rare occasion I might even win a few bucks.

Now that even these machines have be converted to the ticket system, I am dying to know if they make less money? I doubt that I was the only one who would dump their spare change into the damn things. And I can't really see this being an issue the owners of the machines would have overlooked or missed when deciding to convert them to the ticket system. Maybe the spare change from people during the day is/was nothing compared to the people who sit down and feed a few twenties into them.

No comments: