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Sneak-away to Winstar Casino plus snow bonus

Discussion in 'Non-Vegas Trip Reports' started by Geogran, Jan 8, 2017.

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  1. Geogran

    Geogran Whooo. Whooo.

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    My Trip Report

    The plan: A spur of the moment 2 night stay at Winstar World Hotel and Casino, for those not familiar with this place, it's advertised as the largest casino in the USA. It’s a 4-4 ½ hour drive from Austin, TX to Thackerville, OK straight up IH 35.

    Being the responsible, mature, adults we are ;);), we first check the 7 day weather forecast for Thackerville. Sunny, very cold, no precipitation for the next 4 days, with possible snow flurries predicted for Saturday, the day we would return home.

    Do we go or not? Wednesday afternoon we call Winstar to check room availability for the next two nights, lo and behold we get a comped reservation for Thursday and Friday night. With reservations made, we text our daughters that we are sneaking away for a few days; they send back happy faces and dollar signs wishing us good luck and safe travels (they are accustomed to our little ‘sneakaways’). DH gases up the car, gets some cash from the bank (we are on a self-imposed budget after the holidays but still plenty enough to have a fun time playing slots for a couple of nights). I throw the essentials into a suitcase, load up my tea and fixings, round up our heavy coats, hats, gloves, extra water, a blanket, flashlight and put everything into the car – yeah, overkill, but remember, we are responsible, mature, adults ;);)

    Thursday morning, being the responsible, mature, adults ;);) we are and rechecking our local forecast for temperatures down in the 20’s, we turn up the heat, drip the bathroom faucets and make sure outside pipes are still wrapped; text our neighbor that we will be gone til Saturday. We load up a small ice chest with water, yogurt, fruit and snacks and off we go for some gambling fun. Beautiful sunny day, cold and getting colder as we head north to Oklahoma – easiest trip ever, despite construction along IH 35, no traffic delays or accidents and made it to Winstar in good time. Left the house at 8:15AM and arrived at 12:30pm with two quick stops along the way (cold and old = more potty breaks, plus more gas for the return trip). Scored a corner suite and able to check in right away. Took the luggage to the room and then moved the car from the hotel parking area to the parking garage. The parking garage is way at the far end of the casino complex and not at all close to the hotel itself – although you can walk from the parking garage through the casino and then through to the hotel, it is a hike and a half! Normally, we just use the surface parking lots at the hotel, but decided to use the garage – just in case it snows, plus temps were going down to the low teens (turns out to be a good call). Called our daughters on safe arrival, they tell us to have fun but watch the weather as that part of Oklahoma had snow forecast for the next day (Friday) and they are worried for us – we laughed and said ok – thought they were off by a day as we had seen the forecast for snow flurries for Saturday.

    Time to gamble. A little win here on a dollar machine betting 2 credits - actual win was $240.

    image.jpeg


    Thursday turns out to be a mostly losing slot day, but having fun regardless - just happy to be here playing! Not too crowded Thursday afternoon as many of the old folks have gone home (Winstar has free Senior breakfasts on Wednesdays and Thursdays and LOTS of seniors play and stay those days but leave shortly thereafter). As seniors, we know these things. Take a break and use the first of our two free buffet coupons – not a bad buffet – salad bar is fresh and plenty to choose from. Fried chicken is my favorite along with a baked potato and some good dessert choices (chocolate tres leche and coconut cream pie for me). More slots – more losing. Typical first day for us… yet still having fun - winning isn't everything, right? Both getting tired and about 9 pm grab a slice of pizza and head to room for a while. Turns out, we are through for the night, tired and decide to start fresh early Friday morning. Forgot to check the weather forecast, ha ha….

    Friday morning wake up at 6 – look out the window and no snow or rain or ice, good sign. We grab a shower, and head downstairs at 7 for coffee and tea and a quick visit to the high limit slot room. I’ve had a wild hair that hubby’s favorite $5 slot machine is calling his name. We go in and spend $30 on my $2 machine, no luck. Move to my DH’s favorite $5 machine Hot Red Ruby and on his 5th spin playing one credit (3 credit machine), he hits a jackpot for $1320! Sorry no pic cause the guy was there so fast it made our head spin, I sign the form, he turns the key on the machine and poof away goes the winning display, we were shell shocked it happened so fast. As we are standing there waiting for our payout, we realize no pic, darn it. My husband doesn’t win very often so I was disappointed I missed the chance to preserve the win. Oh well, next time for sure. Back to the room to put the win in the safe and have some yogurt and cereal for breakfast.

    Back downstairs and we head off to NYNY to play dollars and quarters. (Winstar has themed areas – London, Madrid, Rome, Beijing, Paris, Vienna, Cairo, and NYNY).

    On a previous August 2016 trip which I didn't report on (pic below), I won 10k on a dollar machine playing max credits - 'Smooth as Silk’ in the NYNY area – This type machine has a 'red screen’ random bonus – after a win, sometimes the screen turns red and starts respinning from one to x number of times with increasingly bigger wins. So I’m trying to repeat - nope - lightning did not strike twice.

    image.jpg


    But DH was playing quarters, 3 credits, on ‘Hot Red Ruby’ and he won $700 on the re-spin - I could see the light flashing and heard it dinging for each $10 it increased. Wow, does he take a picture? No! But he brings me his ticket, ha ha! So it did happen and he gave me $300 of it, lucky me….

    Now we are walking from NYNY around 11AM and happen to look outside as there is a lobby area there, and it is snowing on Friday! Yep we forgot to check the forecast. We’ll worry about it later.



    image.jpeg image.jpg


    We continue playing and have lunch at the buffet again, using our last free buffet coupon. Cream of Spinach soup was good, salad again, fried chicken again, brown rice with steamed vegetables. Dessert was apple cobbler with a scoop of ice cream. Telling on DH - he is a fish, fruit, veggie person but he had 3 desserts and finshed them all!! Rare event. We only eat at the buffet when we have coupons for free buffet for two. They also have a 24 hour restaurant/cafe, a steak restaurant, Italian and Mexican restaurants, and Toby Keith in addition to 6 or 7 fast food type places (including starbucks coffee) so plenty of options at reasonable prices. Some of the bars have appetizers and happy hours with discount coupons provided on checkin for most places. BTW no free alcohol at this casino - you must purchase. But they have numerous beverage kiosks for free coffee and soda options.

    We take another break and get more pictures of the snow from our hotel room to send to our daughters so our grandsons can see snow. Bundled up and went outside again - made snowballs and tromped in the snow - woohoo!

    image.jpg

    Both girls called at different times worried about traveling and urged us to stay an extra night – we tell them we will play it by ear and not do anything crazy as we are responsible, mature, adults. Hotel is completely booked for Saturday night but we don't mention that to the girls....:wink2::wink2:
    Supper is a fried cod fish sandwich and fries from the Fish and Chips place in London and very good – in fact we like everything at that place. We are having a little luck here and there which keeps our bankroll in good shape but husband has had enough gambling (not so secretly prefers tv and reading to gambling ) so I am on my own the rest of the night - lucky me!
    Look out! Here comes my winning part, finally:woohoo:

    My first jackpot occurs Friday night about 11:30pm $1376 on a two dollar/3 credit ‘Polar High Roller’ – I’m only betting 2 since I’m in my conserve mode where I want to play for a longer time and choose not to play max credits. I’m happy with this win. I call hubby, he comes downstairs and takes my win to the room (he's the good guy of this twosome). I continue playing through the night, as it’s our last night, and I win a few hundred here and there.

    image.jpeg

    Getting tired but want to keep playing so I wander around for a while and then hit this $1515 on a dollar machine playing max 3 credits on ‘Countin Cash’ machine at 2:43 AM. Woo Hoo. No, I did not call and wake up my husband this time!! I’m through for the night/day.

    image.jpeg


    Next morning roads are clear, we check out, play for an hour and hit the road. Clear sailing, no weather issues and back home by late afternoon.

    Fun sneak away! Winning trip! And snow! What a treat! Sorry for the rambling....it's a senior thing :haha:
     
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2017
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  2. Richard Alpert

    Richard Alpert LOST

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    A way more than OK trip to OK!
    Congrats and thanks for the TR! :D

    RICHARD
     
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  3. dtmk66

    dtmk66 Welcome to Las Vegas

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    Do you have much luck there other than this time? We have only been there once and did nothing but lose. What part of the hotel did you stay in?
     
  4. Drewm1972

    Drewm1972 VIP Whale

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    Congrats for those winning.. but more congrats on you and your hubby having awesome time together!!! Thanks for TR
     
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  5. Geogran

    Geogran Whooo. Whooo.

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    Thanks for asking @dtmk66 - we do have more losing or break even trips at Winstar than winning trips - I didn't mention it in my TR because a) it was already long winded and b) it was such a fun and winning trip I didn't want to highlight the previous losses, lol! We have been going to Winstar once or twice a year for about 6 years. With one or two exceptions, all of my handpays at Winstar have been between the hours of 11pm and 8am. My 10k win was at 10:30am. I play mostly dollar, and two dollar slots. We lose in Vegas too but tend to remember only the wins :whistle:.

    We stayed in the North Tower with a pool view which is how we got such a good pic of the pool area with snow all around.
     
  6. kevin853

    kevin853 High-Roller

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    Loved your trip report.

    Sounded an awesome visit. Enjoy every single one of the 'non Vegas' trip reports.

    Fantastic wins. Glad your travels were safe also.
     
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  7. tringlomane

    tringlomane STP Addicted Beer Snob

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    Nice TR and wins! Those OK machines may not as flashy as some of their Vegas counterparts, but when they hit, they seem to pay well!

    I've never been, but I've heard they have decent VP in terms of payback there. But never play VP with a bingo card on it! ;)
     
  8. KimiCoconuts

    KimiCoconuts Low-Roller

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    Nice trip report, I've been thinking of going to this place. Is it easy to earn comps from them?
     
  9. JakeF

    JakeF Tourist

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    I was coming home from a class in OKC in November. Stopped and play blackjack with $100. Played for an hour or two. Now I've got several 2 night free stay offers. They seem to be pretty liberal with them.
     
  10. Geogran

    Geogran Whooo. Whooo.

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    Thank you - it was a fun trip.
    At Winstar, it is pretty easy to get free room offers based on slot play, I don't know how table play is rated though. It may take a couple of months after your first trip and player card sign-up to see an offer. If you sign up for email, you will get room offer reminders as well. We play mostly on my card to get better offers.
    I don't know how they calculate coin in /Theo versus comps. We never take more than $2000 between us for a 3 day/2 night stay - often it's $1500 between us with $500 for 'emergency' lol.
    My husband doesn't play a lot and he gets two free night offers on Sun-Thurs and can be used twice a month, sometimes weekends too.
    I get two free night offers for each week. Weekends need to be booked pretty far in advance, weekdays can usually be gotten on short notice.
    Bonus play (FP) is minimal - I usually get $25 and husband gets $5 or $10 twice monthly.
    You can earn points on slot play that can be converted to free play or used towards food.
    Also two free buffets twice a month with enough play.
    Offers are mailed monthly for the following month - one mailing is for room offers and another for buffet and free play (although free play is loaded automatically). You must present the buffet coupon and ID.
    Hope this helps!
     
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  11. Geogran

    Geogran Whooo. Whooo.

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    Thanks!
    Shame on me - I never thought to look at VP payouts / returns but will do so next time - I do see lots of folks playing VP, Winstar is slot heavy. I'm surprised how many people play table games given the fact you have to pay an 'ante' or fee or whatever it is called each hand.
    The bingo thing at first is weird, but you soon ignore it as each slot machine has a little bingo card and numbers in the upper left hand of the screen that determines the win. Some folks will wait for a certain pattern to appear before they hit the play button since they believe certain patterns win more often (4 corners, bunny hop, etc). I'm not a believer..
     
  12. Geogran

    Geogran Whooo. Whooo.

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    Thank you @Drewm1972 ! I am indeed lucky that hubby indulges my slot passion - and we do have fun together!

    Thank you @kevin853 ! I agree with you -- the 'non Vegas' trip reports are fun and informational - so many interesting places to add to our to do list!
     
  13. dtmk66

    dtmk66 Welcome to Las Vegas

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    We have reservations Friday night but it looks like the weather may keep us at home
     
  14. Venus

    Venus Tourist

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    Great trip report. I like Winstar, have stayed a couple times. Hubby does not care for it since there are no free drinks. I don't drink alcohol so does not bother me. The soda/coffee area can sure get sticky on the floor. Glad you got to see some snow. I live in the hill country so snow is always exciting though a rarity.
     
  15. Geogran

    Geogran Whooo. Whooo.

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    Ha Ha - that is so true! Always sticky even though they constantly clean each area.
    We are practically neighbors - thanks for reading!
     
  16. Geogran

    Geogran Whooo. Whooo.

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    @dtmk66 - hopefully the forecast improves and it doesn't prevent you from going - best of luck to you when you do get to go again!
     
  17. dtmk66

    dtmk66 Welcome to Las Vegas

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    Thank you hopefully the ice will stay north! :beer:
     
  18. Niteshade

    Niteshade VIP Whale

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    Great report - congrats on the wins and having
    a fun trip. I haven't been to WinStar in a long time - I guess
    I need to make a visit again. It is about the same travel time
    from me as you have. 4 - 4 1/2 hours - not too bad. Thanks
    for sharing. Really enjoyed the pics too.
     
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  19. Geogran

    Geogran Whooo. Whooo.

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    @Niteshade - thanks for reading! I see you are from Abilene - too bad we don't have a casino in Texas so we wouldn't have to drive so far - not that it will ever happen, lol!
     
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  20. tringlomane

    tringlomane STP Addicted Beer Snob

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    My electronic bingo superstition was to always pick 69 in the top or bottom right corner of the card before playing. Seemed to help my luck.

    Still my biggest non-VP win came from electronic bingo, represented by 5 "Texas Teas" on the center line! In reality I hit like 22 certain spots in 48 balls or something, which gave roughly equivalent odds to Vegas slots for that value hit. Too bad only playing 2c a line for $200.12 total. :( But still a winner that day!
     
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