Working as a casino dealer may look like fun but it’s hard work. It may seem like a great way to enjoy your day at work… throwing a ball into a roulette wheel, dealing cards, chatting with the customers and calling out wins.
There’s a lot of work and effort involved in being a good casino dealer, either at a land-based casino or an online casino live dealer, it can be a good career move. New casino jobs open as new casinos are built and more and more online casinos offer live dealer games – like Intertops Casino, Jackpot Capital and more of our casinos here. And since more and more places around the world are opening casinos, if you’re good, you have a job skill that can allow you to travel.
Becoming a casino dealer involves more than knowing how to call numbers and deal cards. You have to be a people-person who can multi-task as you chat with the customers while you do your work. You have to be savvy about spotting card-counters and other types of cheaters in order to protect your employers. Most of all you must be willing to put in long hours to learn and practice the skills needed to be a successful casino dealer.
Why Be A Casino Dealer?
- Salary – a skilled, practiced and well-liked casino dealer can make as much as $100,000 per year. That’s at the big Vegas casinos but even at small casinos, dealers generally make at least $25/hour. For someone starting out, that’s not bad.
- Working Conditions – working conditions at most casinos are good. The atmosphere is pleasant and casinos tend to take care of their employees because they value workers who have experience and know-how. The casinos don’t want to be constantly retraining staff so they try to take care of the staff that they have.
- Tips – players tend to tip, especially after a win. Dealers who have a good relationship with “their” players can generally look forward to collecting generous tips.
- Education – Dealer schools can turn out new dealers after as little as 2 weeks of training. In-house training is offered by some casinos to existing employees who want to move upward into a dealer position. You don’t need a high school diploma or other certificate to go to a dealer school and after the course, jobs are available, depending on the area of the country in which you live. The dealer school typically costs $500 for each game learned.
- Shifts – many casinos are open 24/7 so dealers can choose their shift, switch their shift and otherwise manage their time. Breaks are reasonable – half hour break after an hour and a half work is customary – and there’s usually flexible personal time off, which the dealer earns.
- Benefits – since many casinos are part of large corporations, they offer good benefits including bonuses, 401K match programs, tuition reimbursement for job-related college classes, etc.
- Pleasant work environment – there’s generally an atmosphere of comradery among casino employees that often translates to off-hours socialization.
- Mobility – if you work for a casino corporation that has properties in multiple locales you can transfer if need be. There’s often different types of jobs so you don’t get stuck in one spot for a long period of time.
There are many different types of dealer jobs. Some are combined into one job and others are specific to a specific dealer position.
Some of the dealer jobs include:
- Conduct gambling games such as blackjack, poker, dice, roulette, cards, or keno.
- Exchange money for chips to be used in games.
- Check players’ bets.
- Receive cash wagers.
- Compare players’ hands with the house and determine winner.
- Compute players’ winnings and losses.
- Announce winner and begin new game.
- Inspect gaming equipment
- Inspect cards to ensure compliance with gaming standards.
- Answer questions about game rules and variations.
- Resolve disputes or arguments by conferring with Pit Supervisor.
- Notify Pit Supervisor of any irregularities.
- Watch for cheaters/scammers and have them removed from table if need be.
- Assist in training new dealers.
- Entice players to play at the table.
- Prepare collection reports for submission to supervisors.
Requirements & Qualifications
Requirements and qualifications for licensing as a casino dealer vary by state but in general, to be licensed as a casino dealer, you must:
- be at least 21 years old (18 depending on state).
- have a high school diploma or GED.
- may not have a criminal record.
- pass a pre-employment drug test (and, at some casinos, periodic drug tests).
- obtain a Gaming License (background and fingerprinting checks are required).
- must be willing to be flexible with working hours (including weekends, nights and holidays).
How to Learn to Become a Casino Dealer
Working as a casino dealer might be the right job for you, if you:
- have good interpersonal and communication skills.
- have good customer service skills.
- can concentrate for long periods of time.
- work well in a team environment.
- are polite, tactful and friendly.
- think quickly and make fast mental arithmetic calculations.
- can handle complaints and difficult situations in a professional manner.
- are manually dexterous.
- can stand on your feet for long periods of times.
- are trustworthy.
- can manage money well.
It takes between eight to twelve weeks to finish a dealer course at a dealer school. Once you’ve completed the course you can take the exam to receive your license and apply to a casino to be hired.
Some casinos offer mini-courses that allow you to be trained as a dealer for a specific game but if you do a comprehensive dealer course you’ll be more marketable since you’ll be able to work at a number of gaming tables.
Before you choose the school for your course, visit a few and talk to some of the other students. Find out the teachers’ qualifications – the teachers should be full-time dealers or have extensive experience working the games.
Make sure that different teachers teach about the different games – the same teacher shouldn’t be doing all of the teaching. The school should also provide lots of hands-on interactive training and help you land a job when you finish the course.
Find out if the school will help you set up interviews after you finish the course and if casino managers visit the school during the course to meet the students and identify potential employees.
In some circumstances, on-the-job-training is available. This happens most commonly when a casino is new or is about to open. You may find a gaming company that offers on-the-job training with placement services post-course.
Regardless of whether you’re looking for a long-term or a short-term career, casino dealing might be a good option.