Have you seen the ads inviting you to “Get a Grand from the Grand”? The Downtown Grand is running one of those awesome loss-rebate promos that come around from time to time. Loss rebates allow you to gamble up to a designated amount with almost no risk, because you get your money back on the rebate. Usually, this promo is capped at $100, but this one is good for up to $1,000, which is the richest I’ve seen in Vegas since the Riviera did it three years ago. It’s a good deal all right, but it’s also structured with some unique rules. Let’s examine them:
Sometimes locals are prohibited from participating. That’s not the case here, but if you’re already a member of the Downtown Grand players club, you can stop reading, because the deal is available only to new members.
As with most rebate programs, there are some negatives. First, the rebate is paid in three installments—50 percent on the day after you play, then 25 percent per week beginning one week after the first installment (the schedule is extended for out-of-staters). That means you have to be in a position to possibly be without up to $500 for a couple of weeks. If you aren’t in that position, then be sure to lose only what you can afford to be out of pocket between the second and third collections.
Second, the rebate comes in the form of slot free-play that you have to play through the machine once before cashing out. The reason this isn’t a guaranteed free-roll is because you can lose a little on the rebate play-through.
And there’s one final wrinkle: Your initial losses have to be from playing reel slots—no video poker allowed. This interesting twist has dampened the enthusiasm of some players, because slots return less than video poker, but that’s not the way to look at it. As long as you’re getting your money back, it doesn’t really matter how you lose it. You can play your free-play on video poker, and that’s the best option for the rebate play-through.
Remember: Getting all of your money back from the rebate is only the second-best result; the best is hitting something big before reaching the loss threshold and banking the profits, so firing away is the only strategy you need to know. Also, make sure to stop playing when your loss hits $1,000. Lastly, monitor your card often to make sure it hasn’t timed out, and reinsert it if you take any breaks (it’s not cool to be piling up losses that aren’t being recorded).
Just be aware that the most common end result will be a small loss. But that’s easily trumped by the chance to be a big winner, making you a big favorite on this deal.
Anthony Curtis is the publisher of the Las Vegas Advisor and LasVegasAdvisor.com.