careertrend article image
ivanmateev/iStock/GettyImages

How Much Does a Casino Dealer Make?

Growth Trends for Related Jobs

Casino Dealers: All the Bright Lights, Bells and Whistles

If you love the bright lights, sounds and excitement that go along with a casino, you may want to become a dealer. Casinos are exciting places where there's lots of fast action and plenty of people contact. Education beyond high school is often not required, but you'll need job training, customer service-related training and a license. As an added bonus, you can work part-time while your children are in school so you can still spend quality time with them after work.

Job Description

Casino dealers work different tables with games such as roulette, blackjack, craps, baccarat and several variations of poker. There are other games, and those you work as a dealer depend on what is offered by your employing casino. Dealers make payouts in the form of chips to winning customers and alert security if there's suspected card counting or suspicious activity observed. Dealers make sure that the casino policies are upheld, enforce safety rules and report any hazards they may see to a gaming manager or supervisor. A dealer also explains playing rules to customers new to the gaming industry.

Dealers usually stand or sit behind the table they're operating while dealing cards. They announce each player’s move aloud to the entire table of customers so everyone can keep up with the pace, which can be quite fast at times. This helps players know when it's their turn to play.

A dealer determines the winner of a game and uses basic math skills to calculate the payoff and collect from losing players. They may also keep track of the amounts that a customer has already bet, as some casino rules allow betting only up to a maximum amount per game. Some dealers exchange money in the form of bills for gaming chips, and they always keep an eye on the dice and cards to make certain there are no irregularities.

Education Requirements

Not much extra education is needed after you earn a high school diploma or a GED, although some casinos require a college degree.

You'll likely get your training from a casino program or from a school program for casino dealers. In areas where there's a concentration of casinos, such as in Las Vegas, you'll probably find a training school program for dealers in the same area. In the program, which is generally about six weeks long, you'll learn all of the table game rules and procedures in addition to local laws and regulations for the area.

Casino dealers must be licensed by a state gaming board. This requires a fee, photo ID, proof of residency in the state and a background check. State gaming boards do not license applicants with criminal records.

You'll then audition for work at a casino so the hiring personnel can see you in action and scrutinize your technical skills as well as your personality. The best chance at securing the job is to be outgoing and able to handle disgruntled customers in a calm and collected manner. You also need general math skills to be a casino dealer.

The Industry

Casino dealers work inside, usually standing throughout an entire shift. You'll hear noisy machines and loud people and will be exposed to cigarette and cigar smoke. If you're promoted to a supervisory or management position, your time will be split between working in an office environment and walking around the casino floor.

There are a reported 96,900 casino dealers according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, of which 31 percent work in casinos. Self-employed dealers make up approximately 13 percent of the dealers. As a self-employed dealer, you can work part time and choose hours that lead to having more time to spend with your family.

Most casinos are open 24/7, meaning that there are shifts to work around the clock to fit your schedule if you're working part time.

Years of Experience

As with most jobs, you can expect higher wages as a casino dealer after you gain more experience. Salary.com lists the following projected annual incomes based on years of experience:

  • 0-4 years: $15,107-$16,418
  • 5-9 years: $15,975-$17,465
  • Over 10 years: $15,975-$19,014

You can also earn a considerable amount of tips along with free food and uniforms and four weeks paid vacation each year according to Casino.org.

Job Growth Trend

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment outlook for casino dealers is projected to be about 2 percent over the next decade. The slow growth rate is a result of the popularity of gambling establishments growing at a similar rate. It's expected that states without casinos will build casinos to increase state tax revenue for more state funding of projects.

The slow projected growth can also be attributed to online gaming becoming more popular; however, if you have the qualities needed to become a dealer and pass the training and hiring process, you should be able to find employment as a casino dealer in the future.