Sunday, September 09, 2007

First Card Ace

The Palace and Chips casinos are handing out free "First Card Ace $25 max" coupons the first four hours they're open each day (except Thursdays). I've played them twice, hitting blackjack with the first one (+$37.50) and losing the second (-$25). I'm not sure what the actual value of them is -- my math skills have gotten too rusty -- but one quote of one source says that the first card ace coupon gives a 50.5% player edge. Compare this to the roughly 1% house edge in blackjack or no-commission pai gow. I think it's close in value, percentage-wise, to the match plays.

Speaking of match plays, September is running badly: I'm 10-17, so I'm "only" up $45. I'm going to be traveling several days this month, too (three days in Portland, seven days in Vegas), so I'm not going to match August's +$570, unless the First Card Aces take up the slack, or if Happy Days keeps running out of match plays. Details?

They've finally got their policy and routine down. I walk up to the cage. They recognize me, stamp two match play coupons with the date and time, and hand them over, unless they've run out for the day. Then they direct me to the pit boss, who twice has given me a single $25 match play (value: about $12.25) instead of two $10s (value: about $9.70).

My cousin also gave me a handful of $10 match plays that he'd picked up this week -- he's been eating at Happy Days, but not playing there -- so I'll need to figure out how to extract some value out of them, given the fact that they give them out for free at the cage, and they limit you to using two per day. Maybe I'll just carry an extra, and try and schmooze the dealer into letting me play a third one once in a while.

(Image is of a similar "first card ace" coupon that the Sahara put out a few years ago.)

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