I travel to Las Vegas quite a bit, visiting six to eight times a year usually for a week but sometimes two. I’m an Infrared Physicist/Engineer and there is plenty to do out here… If you want to see a cool video I did, tracing the flight of bats over my house in Massachusetts, go to: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gme0ffTl2h0&feature=em-upload_owner#action=share Not Sped up, real time flights over just under a minute and a half. Anyway, this is my first trip report and unlike many that I have read it will not use offensive language, refer to bodily functions nor is it pornographic. I usually don’t read those or if I do I discount their veracity. Arriving on Sunday I checked in to the plushly appointed Springhill Suites in Henderson, off Stephanie. Yeah, you’ve probably never heard of it and that might be why the hotel was quiet. I think it has about 160 rooms and on Thursday only 37 were occupied. It fits my needs: non-smoking, away from the strip, quiet, no hookers to rap on my door at night and no casino to walk through. When I’m in town for business I need to be focused, not distracted. Plus I get Marriott points! I played a little at the Fortune Casino in Henderson, my first time there. Surprised it was pretty decent and I left with more than I walked in with, as I also did at the Wildfire on Sunset. This trip I had to low roll it. Just bought a new 4Runner and I’m renovating one of my houses so cash is very tight. Playing mainly slots and once Keno (Fortune casino where I hit for $450). One night I went to Sunset Station for dinner at the Oyster Bar (lobster pan roast, very good!) I’ve had amazing luck there, particularly with the slots. I only wanted to drop $20 as I had to be someplace before sunrise so I picked an oldie but goodie and hit the free games: $665 for a Jackson. I’ll take that anytime. In 2008 I traded a Jackson for $10,350 on a Ruby Magic machine! Ahh the good old days! Aria gave me a decent deal for Thursday to Sunday. Three nights comped, including the dreaded resort fee, $75 resort credit, two tickets to Zarkana (which I gave away to friends: I think it sucks but they enjoyed it) and $150 slot play. The room was nice, didn’t try the $20 trick as I’m a cheapskate and it’s just a bed to me! Overlooked the strip and everything functioned well. I turned the $150 freeplay into $186 cash playing a dollar slot. Three credits a spin, 50 spins, cashed out! A friend of mine had never played slots in her life. No, this story isn’t going where you think it is. So she puts $1, yes, just a dollar, into a 2 cent machine at Aria and walks away with $5.80 after one spin! She was thrilled! I walked her to the machines near the Bell Desk to cash out, which she did and tried to explain more about the slots. There is a bank of Quick Hit pennies there and the day before I had seen an older lady just hitting the free games over and over again. When I’ve played Baccarat I’ve had some success with the “follow last bet” scheme so I dropped a $100 bill into the machine and started pounding away. She was horrified that I had put $100 in and was betting $3 at a time. I was up and down, mostly down for 3 minutes or so and was explaining to her about the Quick Hits and that wouldn’t it be nice to hit something big, like get 8 quick hits. Within 15 seconds of my saying that it did indeed hit the eight: They were nice enough to round it up to $3584 and I tipped them a bit. It took only about 10 minutes to get paid. I wasn’t in the Aria system with my SSN but I am at most of the other MGM casinos from previous hand pays. I thought I wouldn’t have to give them my SSN again but I did. I have probably 25 from Monte Carlo and maybe 10 from Mirage, Bellagio and NYNY plus a few from the others as well. Oh well, happy to have hit something decent! I didn’t hit much else except for $600 at Bellagio but I did manage to add over 90,000 tier credits to my account (Platinum). Not bad for a low roller. And the important part is I left with way more than I arrived with, highly unusual. In case anyone is interested, my alcohol consumption for the entire trip was one pint of Chocolate Porter at the Hi scores lounge near my hotel in Henderson. Love that place. Free pinball machines and great beer selection! One last note. At the airport I stopped at a penny Ghostbusters machine. Ten minutes and two bonuses later I cashed out for $157. I tipped the slot attendant $5 because she was cheering me on. When you look at the payback set for the machines the penny slots average between 85% and 90% across the country from my experience. While the higher denomination slots have higher payback I think they have higher variance too. Lots of people deride the pennies but looking back at all the big hand pays I’ve had – most are for video poker – there are quite a few in there for the penny slots. Right time, right place and it can happen. Back to Vegas in September, October and two weeks in December. Best of luck and best health wishes to all!