- Slots on the Strip and in Downtown Las Vegas were among the tightest in the entire state of Nevada.
- The loosest slots were found in the North Las Vegas and Boulder reporting areas.
- For the 4th year in a row, slots on the Strip were a hair looser than those downtown.
Casinos across Nevada are required to report revenue figures to the Nevada Gaming Control Board to include what percentage of wagers they held as profit on slot games.
A nerdy annual tradition of mine is to dig into that real-world data from the previous year to help you find the loosest slots in Las Vegas.
Unfortunately, the data we have access to isn’t granular enough to tell us how loose or tight slots were at individual casinos. Rather, the reporting will highlight groups of casinos based on where they are located (ie The Strip, Downtown, Boulder, etc). I’ll make sure to point out what casinos reside in zones identified as having looser slots.
As a matter of housekeeping, casino slot “win percentage” is defined as the percentage of the total amount wagered by the player that the casino held as profit. For instance, a 10% casino win percentage means that the casino, on average, kept 10 cents of every dollar wagered on slot machines.
Example: A player put $20 into a slot machine and made her money last for a while playing a total of $200 in spins before losing it all. The total amount wagered by the player was $200 and the casino won, or held, $20 resulting in a 10% casino win percentage.
Essentially, the higher the casino win percentage is, the worse it is for the player.
Where To Find the Loosest Slots in Vegas
Where you play matters.
The graph below details casino slot win percentages by area, which lumps together all slot denominations. You can quickly surmise that casinos in tourist centers hold a larger percentage of slot play as profit.
As demonstrated by the graph, the best places around Las Vegas to play slots are the Boulder Area (6.36% casino win percentage) and North Las Vegas (7.60% win percentage).
As tends to be the case year after year, Reno is an outlier boasting a player-friendly 5.45% casino win percentage.
Keep in mind that video poker also figures into the slot statistics above. Lower casino win percentages away from the Strip are in part, but not completely, due to better video poker pay tables offered by establishments away from tourist centers.
Downtown Tighter Than The Strip Again in 2023
For the 4th year in a row, slots were tighter in downtown Las Vegas than they were on the Strip (8.53% downtown vs. 8.01% on the Strip).
Before this current 4 year stretch, slots in downtown Las Vegas were reliably a tad looser than those on the Strip, however, I’m beginning to think this may be the new dynamic going forward.
Slots on the Strip Trending Looser
Historically, slots on the Strip have almost always tightened slightly vs. the previous year.
Refreshingly, 2023 saw slots on the Strip loosen slightly for the 3rd straight year to an 8.01% win percentage in 2023 vs. 8.14% in 2022.
In 2021, slots held an even higher 8.27%.
Moving in the right direction.
Where to Find the Loosest Penny Slots in Vegas
Since penny slots are the most popular denomination with players, I also broke down where the loosest penny slots in Vegas can be found by region.
Since the data below looks exclusively at the penny denomination, it’s untainted by video poker and thus provides a clearer window into where looser slots can be found across Las Vegas.
As evidenced by the graph above, there is again a correlation between an area being “touristy” and higher slot hold rates.
Downtown and Strip penny slots came in as the tightest with casino win percentages of 11.20% and 11.22% respectively.
Similar to my previous data set that looked at all denominations, penny slots more apt to pay out can be found in the Boulder (9.48% win rate) and North Las Vegas (9.51% win rate) areas.
Reno came in with a comparatively low 5.97% win rate which is significantly more player-friendly than slots in and around Las Vegas.
So, What Las Vegas Casinos Have Looser Slots?
Although most players aren’t able to tell the difference between a “tight” or a “loose” slot, the data suggests getting away from the Strip and Fremont Street will give you a slightly better chance of winning.
Casinos that fall into the looser Boulder and North Las Vegas reporting zones are broken down below.
Note that these aren’t the most scenic areas, but if winning is more important to you than bright lights, acrobatic shows, and celebrity chef restaurants then hail an Uber and make the trip.
Notable Casinos in the Boulder Area: Sam’s Town, Arizona Charlie’s, Boulder Station, Sunset Station, M Resort, and Green Valley Ranch.
Notable Casinos in the North Las Vegas Area: Jerry’s Nugget, Cannery, and Aliante.
The Denomination You Play Matters
Slot denominations also play a role in finding loose machines which is demonstrated by the graph of statewide data below.
In 2023, penny slots were the tightest denomination in Nevada by a large margin with a 9.67% win percentage, with quarters coming in a distant second place at a 7.99% win percentage.
Although the data is somewhat “polluted” by video poker at the quarter denomination and above, the visual provided by the graph below is still beneficial to demonstrate the poor bet penny slots are comparatively.
As a general rule of thumb, higher denominations tend to be looser.
If you’re a penny slot player who plays 75 cents per spin or more, you’d likely give yourself a better chance of winning by playing the same bet on a higher denomination machine.
Of course, I never recommend betting more than you can afford to chase better returns. Slots at any denomination are a losing bet over time.
I’d also recommend that penny slot players brush up on their video poker skills as the returns are more favorable in comparison.
While looking at the numbers is a fun exercise, the random number generator could select you as the next big winner anywhere. Ultimately, the best slots to play in Vegas lie away from the main tourist corridors and at higher denominations.
Good luck, and hopefully my breakdown of real-world slot data helps you on your quest to find the loosest slots in Vegas!
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I’m a former software salesman turned Vegas aficionado. While the craps table is my preferred habitat, I pull myself away to explore new attractions, shows, restaurants, and outdoor activities around Las Vegas with the intent of sharing my experiences.
Ultimately, I just want to help folks plan a better trip and save a few bucks in the process.