One of the most common questions posed by folks new to Vegas revolves around “comps” or freebies from the casino in the form of rooms, shows, food/beverage, and merchandise. The key is to obtain a player’s card and use it while gambling and spending on the property. A player’s card allows the property to get to know you and your gaming habits to determine your worth to their business. The two major loyalty programs on the Las Vegas Strip are M life (all MGM Resorts properties) and Caesars Rewards (Caesars Entertainment properties). In both programs, you earn Tier Credits that count toward status upgrades within the respective programs. Along with status upgrades in each program come additional perks like free parking, resort fee waivers, free early check-in/out, access to lounges, complimentary room upgrades, etc.
Here is a link to current benefits by status in each program:
In addition to tier credits, members of both loyalty programs also earn a separate set of points redeemable for cash value to pay for things like meals, shows, free play, merchandise and rooms on property. This separate point system is referred to as Reward Credits (Caesars) and Express Comps (MGM).
TIP: Don’t be shy – ask for comps before you spend your hard-earned points. Whether you have been grinding a blackjack game for 5 hours or just hit a slot jackpot, simply ask an employee if your current play warrants what you want whether it be a buffet, meal, pack of cigarettes or show tickets. Keep in mind, being friendly toward the staff and throwing some tip money around goes a long way in earning freebies.
Lastly, loyalty program members often receive free and discounted room offers that are based specifically on what you spend at properties within your respective program. Once you sign up for and use a player’s card you will likely begin receiving email/mail offers for free slot tournaments, free slot play, trips to Laughlin, free rooms, etc. Additionally, when you log into your program’s booking website hotel pricing is tailored specifically to you and is based on your gaming habits. Even as a low roller, you can expect to book at a steep discount direct with Caesars and M life as compared to 3rd party booking websites and will often receive free room night offers midweek and during slow times. Mid to high rollers will rarely pay for hotel rooms in Vegas. Comp offers are based on your theoretical expected loss which is calculated by how much money you typically run through games and what the house edge is on those games.
TIP: Concentrate your play at a single property/group of properties in the same program to inflate your value. As an example, if you are looking to earn free rooms, etc. in the future, don’t spread your play out between 3 or 4 casino chains daily. Instead, spend a day at Caesars properties, a day at MGM properties, etc. Doing this will make you look more lucrative to the property and they will want you back for more.
If your play is significant, a casino host may introduce themselves as your contact going forward to discuss comp offers, etc.
We chose to focus on the 2 largest loyalty programs, however, there are others across town that operate similarly. If earning status with a particular property is important to you, always make sure you are signed up for that property’s program, know what other casinos are a part of the program, and always use your player’s card.
Never play outside your limits to obtain status or comps within a loyalty program. The benefits you obtain typically won’t outweigh the money lost that you couldn’t afford to begin with. It’s a losing proposition.