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Drink service: Table Games vs. Slots

Discussion in 'Misc. Vegas Chat' started by thecarve, Jul 25, 2013.

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  1. thecarve

    thecarve Misanthrope

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    Prior to a year or two ago, I was strictly a table games player. And when I would read a gripe about drink service, I never quite understood it. Someone would be complaining that drink service in Casino X was “non-existent” and I’d be thinking to myself that I was just in Casino X and had to turn down more drinks than I actually ordered – and I’m a [STRIKE]problem drinker[/STRIKE] guy who enjoys a cocktail or two!

    Then I started to incorporate video poker into my gambling repertoire and I began to understand what these folks were complaining about. There is a marked difference in the drink service you get at the tables and that which you get on the machines. Certainly, the big tip (but just the tip:nono:) right off the bat helps matters if one is really thirsty. But even tipping $5-10 a drink at a machine isn’t enough to get you the kind of service you routinely get on the tables – at least not in my experience.

    I get it. There are far more machines than there are tables. The tables are all concentrated in just a few areas of the casino whereas the machines are spread far and wide throughout the joint. And people are probably more apt to move from slot to slot than they are to play a few hands at one table and then move on to the next one. So it is certainly harder for the CWs to provide service to the slot/VP players than it is the table games players.

    But wouldn’t you think the casinos would do a better job at fixing this “problem”? If slots are their biggest money makers and the whole reason for free booze is to keep people gambling longer and at higher stakes than they would while sober, then wouldn’t it logically follow that the slot players are the ones that they need to keep lubricated?

    Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying that an inability to keep patrons sufficiently wasted is a major failing of Las Vegas casinos. They are pros at that without a doubt! And I can’t remember a time that I haven’t been able to get my fill of the free booze. I’m just curious as to why they haven’t been able to figure out a cost effective way to balance out the debauchery a little better.

    Any thoughts, ideas, gripes? Are my experiences consistent with what you’ve encountered?
     
  2. Tammy58

    Tammy58 Frugal Slot Jockey

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    I have always felt that table players get much better service. I am a slot player and have seen many hours of no cocktail service. I always notice the servers in the table area. I have been left high and dry so many times that I never leave my room without a bottle of water/soda with me just so I am not totally high and dry. I'm not a big liquor drinker. This is one topic that I always roll my eyes at when newbies ask/talk about free drinks. Slot players have to be in the right place at the right time to get any service in some casinos. This is the main reason I really enjoyed Rio and their ipad order takers. I was never offered as many drinks as a slot player as I was there.
     
  3. Big Tip

    Big Tip VIP Whale

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    I would imagine the cocktail people like the table games better. For one, they probably don't have to walk as much as their patrons are more concentrated. I would also think they make more money. Not that slot players are cheaper but that table players always have "play" money at hand to tip with as opposed to having to dig into a wallet for "real" (hard earned lol) cash.

    Lesson learned? Don't play slots. :poke:lol
    Or if you do, play at the bars. I like video poker too on occasion, but I always play at the bar.
     
  4. mdm4sfest

    mdm4sfest Low-Roller

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    Yea I learned a few trips ago that playing VP at the bar is the best. I brought my mom to Vegas for her 60th birthday last year(doesnt gamble) and she sat with me in the Cosmo where I played(slowly) $1.25 max bet JoB for about 90 mins. Walked away with a $15 profit which I tipped the bartender since she comped us each 3 drinks and my mom was just sitting there.
     
  5. makikiboy

    makikiboy VIP Whale

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    I agree with the big tipper, lol.

    You have to imagine, there are a bunch of players on the tables, the waitress only needs to go round and round the tables on a continual basis. the tip from tables are usually at least $1 (since they readily have chips available) but can go up to $5 or $10 or more depending on the mood of the player(s) and the dollar limit on the tables. It is usually not a long walk from the tables to the bar and back.

    with the slots and vp the cw has to walk the whole floor to all the areas with machines. In addition, depending on the $ amount of the machine her tip could range from loose change to dollars. With the advent of TITO the slot player doesn't always have coins or dollars readily available and has to dig into his pocket or her purse to get $ to tip the cw. As someone also mentioned, if you tip big then the cw will probably come more often but if you aren't a big tipper (sorry BT, didn't mean you, lol) then the cw may not come back as often.
     
  6. thecarve

    thecarve Misanthrope

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    Of course it’s easier for the CWs to hit the tables. And I assume it’s more lucrative as well (for all the reasons mentioned). But really, what does any of that have to do with anything?

    Surely someone assigns each CW their “zone”. Don’t they? Wouldn’t it make sense that the person in charge has the duty to do what’s in the best interest of the casino (keep as many people as buzzed as possible) an not what’s in the best interest of the CW (as little effort and as many tips as possible)?

    Or put another way: why aren’t more CWs assigned to walk the slot area even if it is at the expense of the tables (where, IMO, a few CWs could be sacrificed and still provide decent service)?
     
  7. FXT

    FXT VIP Whale

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    The change came once they switched over to the ticket system. I've watched countless CWs get shafted on tips from people sitting on machines because they're a) cheap b) dont have small bills on them.

    On my last trip I ran into the same problem. On my 3rd drink, I reached in my wallet to grab change and all I had was Benjamins. So I asked the waitress if she could break it because I didnt want to stiff her a tip. She couldnt and that was the last drink I got on that machine for the next hour.

    I wasn't walking away from a good machine and she wasnt going to make any money off me so she never came around again. For the first two drinks, I tipped 5 for the first one and 3 for the second one.
     
  8. DeMoN2318

    DeMoN2318 The DERS

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    I will agree the service is better at tables but I have not had poor service on the slots. Best service I have is when I play in the HL slot room at MGM, the CW comes over right when I sit down, I order, and in literally seconds she is back. I never have to order again because when she sees me getting low she brings me another one. I usually tip $5 on the first drink and $2 or $3 on subsequent drinks.
     
  9. VegasBJ

    VegasBJ VIP Whale

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    I had a CW tell me years ago that they get frustrated working the slot areas as customers order drinks, and when they return, the customer has left the machine, so they feel like they are wasting their time, and time is money.
     
  10. Fafa2e

    Fafa2e Low-Roller

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    I usually play table games, but if I know that I will be playing slots for a while and place an order with a CW, I will let her know I may jump around from machine to machine, but will stay in the general area. I'll let her know that I will keep an eye out for her and ask her to check the area when she returns.

    Also, I make sure I have tip money.
     
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  11. stackinchips

    stackinchips High-Roller

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    Bingo. Some people replying apparently think that cocktail waitresses are simply turned loose on the floor to serve whatever areas they feel like, and they gravitate towards the tables because tips are bigger.
     
  12. topcard

    topcard Older than the Stardust!

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    I never play slots, and when I play VP, I typically do this at a bar-top, for the very reasons y'all are talking about.
    To be fair, I do understand why things are the way they are. As others have mentioned, TITO & the tendency of slot players to roam has truly impacted (negatively) the drink service to all slot players.
    ...and to think, I get impatient if I have to wait more than 10 minutes without a drink!

    My advice? If you're gonna stay put for awhile, tell the CW on the first opportunity that you're going to be at the same machine (or same machine area) for awhile...tip her $5 on first-delivery and let her know that you have plenty of singles for future drinks.
    After she brings your second drink, tip her $1...pause, and then give her another $1 for the next drink.
    AS long as service remains decent, keep doing that.
     
    Seems like forever from now, but the flights are booked, so it counts!
  13. thecarve

    thecarve Misanthrope

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    Stackin gets me! :nworthy:

    I'll try to be a bit more clear:

    It seems to be a given - at least among those who've responded to the thread - that slots don't get the same level of drink service that the tables do.

    Why do the casinos allow/not do anything about the fact that their most valuable customers are getting the worst service? Are the CWs upper management and I'm just the last to know about it? Is whatever union they're a part of so powerful that they can do whatever they want? Or are the higher-ups just unaware of the day to day operations of the casino?

    Again, I'm not complaining about the situation. But it just seems odd to me as I think that slot players (in addition to being very profitable) would be the most "vulnerable" to spending more than they had intended because they're a bit tipsy. It's just too easy to keep feeding cash into the machine.
     
  14. casinoboy

    casinoboy Low-Roller

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    there are more waitresses serving slots then on tables but slots are a big area so you cant see them as easy. some places have electronic ordering and serve yourself for soft drinks or coffee or water. you will get the same drink service whether you tip $1 or $5 or $10 it all just depends on the waitresses schedule and path.
     
  15. thecarve

    thecarve Misanthrope

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    Interested in buying a bridge? It's in a prime location. :poke:
     
  16. casinoboy

    casinoboy Low-Roller

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    maybe $10 is different but ive tipped $1 and $5 and never notice a diffrence in service between the two. the times i get good service if im at a slot or video poker is im on the waitresses path. at tables you are usually on their path so its not an issue.
     
  17. thecarve

    thecarve Misanthrope

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    No argument there. Location is a big deal, without a doubt. And I'm not saying that a sawbuck will have a CW waiting on your every need. But 60% of the time, a big tip works every time. :beer:
     
  18. billyinpg

    billyinpg Low-Roller

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    Interesting this thread come up today. I was thinking earlier that a good sticky might be the "zone" of different casinos where VP and slot players might expect the best drink service.

    We spent 7/14 to 7/21 at TI, we gave them most of our play as well. This trip was strictly VP and a little slot FP as well.

    The drinks flowed like water at TI seriously and I like to think it was because...

    We are personable people always please and thank you, how are you today, and we do not sit down to play until we each have at least 20 $1's for tips. By the second day the cocktail waitresses knew us by name and it didn't matter what the time of day was either, they knew what we liked in the morning and when we switched to afternoon drinks. By day 3 they would take their break and sit and chat with us.

    We got one eye opening lesson about what they do and what it's like. With 2 days to go my GF put herself between "our" cocktail waitress and some ****** who was irate because they wouldn't serve him unless he was playing. Those ladies I credited in the email I sent to TI.

    Other fantastic service was provided by the staff at Bellagio, Mirage, Flamingo, P-HO and the Fremont.

    Just ok goes out to CP, NYNY, MC and downtown the Cal, MSS, 4Q, LaBayou and mermaids. Kind of weird with the last 2 here as they have always kept them flowing every other trip.

    That being said we had some terrible drink service elsewhere Mville at Flamingo was good but we got a terribly snotty waitress one night, MGM forget it service so bad it was non existant, Binions well we spent an hour there and couldn't even find a waitress while looking through the whole place.
     
  19. egelston2

    egelston2 Low-Roller

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    I think a key factor is line of sight. There are so many nooks and crannies in some slot machine areas that sometimes a CW just won't see you. Some hotels are worse than others. I'm not a big slot machine player but the best CW service I ever received playing slots was when I was about 15 steps from the bar station where the CWs went to get the drinks. I was the first person she saw when walking out the door.
     
  20. smartone

    smartone VIP Whale

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    One of the main reason I play VP at the bar is for the quality service... I know the floor pay-tables are a little better than bar top, but I want drinks and I ALWAYS have one sitting behind the one I'm 'bout to finish.
     
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