They say that slot machines, also known as slots, are one of the most random casino games there are. But that does not mean that there are no tricks, tips and recommendations when it comes to betting money responsibly and with higher profits (or lower losses).
That is to say, and to make it clear: there are no safe strategies to win at slots. The reason is that they are programmed so that only between 3% and 8% of the games or bets are winners. In fact, the probability of winning something in a game with a slot machine is 18.3% of the times it is played, according to data from the professor of Applied Mathematics at the CEU San Pablo University, Miguel Córdoba, in the book Anatomía del Juego. A comparative analysis of the chances of winning in different games of chance.
But don’t be discouraged! What there are are tricks to minimize losses and play responsibly in order to get the biggest winnings. Here are 10 tips to succeed at slots.
Take advantage of bonuses and promotions
Most online casinos have welcome bonuses to attract new players and also loyalty programs to encourage their users to keep playing. They usually send newsletters by email or publish their promotions in some section of their website.
These promotions can be, for example, that they give you a bonus without initial deposit so that you can try their games in a real way but without investing money, that they double what you deposit to play, or even that they return you a percentage of the losses during a certain time; so they are a good option to minimize losses and to obtain a greater amount to play with.
However, it is important to take into account the characteristics, rules and restrictions of these promotions, since the most common is that you have to fulfill certain conditions to be able to collect the benefits (such as betting X times the amount of the bonus received).
If you want to know what types of bonuses and promotions exist, you can check our article The best casino bonuses for slots, where we explain the exclusive bonuses for this game of chance, the most recommended ones, how each of them works, their pros and cons.
Choose the right slot machine
An important variable to take into account in order to win money playing slots is the machine to choose. Much has been said about false myths and legends about how to choose a slot machine that are of dubious reliability, but there are some recommendations to take into account when choosing the slot machine that will benefit you more than others:
- Choose slots with the highest payout percentage. This point is explained in the following section.
- Choose games with good pay tables. This point is explained below.
- Play in casino slots, not in bars (if you are going to play physical slots).
The reason is one: the payback (payout rate) of the slots in this kind of places is usually much lower than in physical and online casinos.
In casinos the payback percentage ranges from 95% to 99%, while in other types of premises it can range from 50% to 75%.
Avoid progressive machines.
Playing a progressive machine with the objective of winning the accumulated jackpot can be very tempting. However, the chances of winning the jackpot are more or less the same as winning the lottery. In addition, most of them require maximum bets, so you have to have a very large budget to support the game.
Choose slots with the highest payout percentage
As we have already mentioned, slot machines are programmed so that 92-97% of the bets are not winners. This means that the odds of winning on each spin are low, but they can be even lower if you do not choose well which machine you are going to play (no matter if it is online or physical in a casino, bar, or gaming room).
Now, the question is the following: how can I know what is the payout percentage of each slot machine?
Online slots: you can resort to the reports published by the casino websites themselves or you can even get information in casino forums where users share their experience and knowledge.
Physical slot machines (casinos, bars, gambling halls): consult the staff and other players in the room. It is also useful to observe a particular slot machine to see if it pays a lot of prizes per day or not.
Choose the games with the best Paytables
Most online casino websites have payout tables where they show the payouts that have been given in the last hours in the different games, along with the winning amounts. Some even tell you how much the winning person had wagered.
Take advantage of this information! Study, from your favorite games, which are the ones that give the most money and choose the most advantageous ones.
Take into account the different types of slot machines
The logic and operation of slot machines is the same and common to all of them. That is to say, they are games of chance and probability or statistics cannot predict their behavior at all, since all numbers or symbols have the same probabilities of appearing in each of the new spins.
However, it is interesting to know that there are different types of slots, since the differential characteristics between the different types make it possible for you to choose different types of plays, and thus your chances of winning money in the slot machines are higher (or lower).
An example is the paylines available, the amount of numbers or symbols that will be available depending on the number of reels of the slot machine in question, or whether or not it has bonus phases. All these variables influence your game, so it is important to take them into account.
If you want to know what these different types of slot machines are, we explain them in the article Types of Online Slots: there are 7, do you know the differences?
If you win a progressive jackpot, change game
If you have won a lot of money in a purely gambling casino game, change and try another one because the casino game in which you have won is probably not going to return you a big jackpot.
This is especially true if it is a progressive slot machine. If you have won the jackpot or progressive jackpot, the machine will be reset to zero and although you will still be eligible to receive prizes, if you win the progressive jackpot (whose probabilities are as low as winning the lottery, but there are always some) it will be of a low amount.
Actually, our recommendation if you win a progressive jackpot would be to stop playing and go out and celebrate!
Set a budget and stick to it
It is very important that before you start playing you decide what amount you are willing to play (bankroll) and do not exceed it. This can be difficult at times when we believe that “the machine is hot”, that’s why we are going to give you some tips or tricks to make it easier for you to set a limit.
Stick a post-it on the screen of the computer or the machine the amount you are willing to spend to have it always visible.
If you are going to physically play slots, do not carry credit or debit cards with you. Only the amount in cash that you are going to play.
To control your losses in online slots, you can contact the customer service of the casino website you play with and ask them to limit your daily, weekly and/or monthly deposits.
Do not play under the influence of any type of stimulant such as alcohol.
Read the instructions and options of the games
Okay, this may seem very basic or unnecessary; but it is important. When you play an online slot machine, they usually have bonus stages that open on a different screen when 3 bonus symbols match in a row.
In these bonus games it is possible to win back quite a lot of money, but for this it is important that you know what the game instructions are so that you are prepared. You can also try them first by playing without money on the sites where this is possible.
In addition to the bonus stages there are also special bonus symbols that can appear in the game, giving you more options for game play and winnings, such as the wild bonus or the scatter symbol.
Don’t be fooled by false tricks and myths.
You hear all kinds of things. From the fact that the temperature of the machines can indicate when they are going to pay out, to legends about the location of the slots in the room and false tricks about patterns you have to find in the machines to know when the next jackpot is going to be awarded. Nothing beyond the truth. Most of them are superstitions and unscientific myths.
We recommend you to read our article 13 False Tricks and Urban Legends about Slot Machines to know which are the most widespread hoaxes about these recreational machines.
Play with Maximum Bet
As we all know, when playing slots, losses are more likely to be greater than winnings. You have to take this into account beforehand in order to accept it and not to lose (or to choose another type of casino game).
However, a trick is to do it with maximum bet to win more money. The most common is that these cases occur with progressive slots since in them it is essential to play with maximum bet to be able to claim the jackpot in case of winning.
However, we advise you to follow this recommendation only if you have a high playing budget, otherwise you can lose your bet in a matter of seconds. The most responsible thing to do is to start playing with a minimum bet, and once you have doubled or tripled your profit, invest it by betting more heavily, until you reach a maximum bet, in this way you will only be playing the profits and not the money you have invested directly.
If you win, change the game
As we already mentioned in the article 8 Essential tricks to win money in an online casino, if you have won a lot of money in a slot machine, we recommend you to change and try another one, since it is quite probable that the one you have already won will not have another big jackpot. Especially if it is a progressive slot, because if you are lucky enough to hit the jackpot, its score will go back to zero and you will not be able to scratch there.
Besides, if the jackpot you have won is very big, the best thing to do is to leave the game there and keep your money in your pocket.
Do not bet what you win
This trick to win money in slots is important. What you win you should put aside and not use it to continue your bets because if you don’t you will end up with empty pockets, betting until you are down to zero, it’s that simple!
You can keep the money won in another pocket or in a special wallet if you are in a casino, bar or gaming room; and if you are playing online slots you will have to keep the accounts or if you have the option to put what is the initial money you want to play and then start the game. This way if at the end of the game you have, for example, 50€, those are the ones you have won and you should NOT invest again.
Another option is to ask for a refund in your account of the part that is not going to be reinvested in the game.
And, of course, if you win a progressive jackpot… Stop playing and go out and celebrate!
Learn how to get the most out of Slots
As we have already said, slots are purely games of chance, where personal skill plays a low role in determining whether or not you are going to be a winner. However, if we take into account the tricks mentioned above, we will be able to maximize the winnings and minimize the losses considerably.
And if, in addition, you take the time to know well how these machines work, i.e. what options they have, what additional functions they have, whether they have bonuses or not, how the number of reels affects them, etc., it will be easier for you to win money with slots by playing more responsibly and profitably. With more knowledge.
To do so, we recommend you to read How Slots Work: Get the Most Out of Them!
If you need more information, we recommend you to consult this guide to online casinos in Spain where you will find very complete and reliable information about what to consider when choosing an online casino, the different casino bonuses and tips and tricks for the different types of games.