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Cruise Ships Attract Whales

Written by: Kuki

You don’t have to be sailing on a ship off of the coast of Maui to see whales.

Though a different breed, you also see whales in Las Vegas. In Las Vegas there are all sorts of fish as well, who’d like to be whales.

The Las Vegas style whales are high stakes gamblers, who also spend a great deal of their time in Vegas placing bets.

The more time they gamble, and the larger amounts of money they wager have a direct correlation to the free perks and amenities they are offered as reward for their penchant for gambling.

Most cruise ships have casinos on board. And most often, for the random passengers who gamble,  those cruise ship casinsos should be viewed solely as entertainment.

While everyone who enters a casino ultimately hopes to win, loosing is the norm. The casual gambler takes (or should take) a few dollars into the casino, expecting to lose their “daily allotment”, and entertain themselves for awhile.

But there is a segment of the cruise public who are also more “serious gamblers”; the people who are willing to spend a considerable amount of time placing bets in the casino; and/or are willing to make considerably higher wagers.

That segment of the population is not the “life blood” of the cruise industry, and is not a group that is vigorously courted by the cruise lines, as they are in Las Vegas.

However, all of the major cruise lines do have some form of “Player’s Club”, to encourage passengers to spend more time (and money) gambling in their on board casinos.

The slot machines on the contemporary ships are now set up to monitor your play, and reward you with some perks if your play proves to be higher than that of the average passenger. Your play can earn you free drinks, a complimentary bottle of wine sent to you at dinner, or a free night in a ship’s alternate restaurant, or cruise line logo wear, or some cash back, or, for a considerable amount of play discounts for future cruises, or even a complimentary cruise.

These sorts of possible perks are also available to those who play the table games. Those playing table games may ask the casino staff to be rated (where the casino keeps track of your average bet and time spent at the tables).

Those table game players who want to be rated in hopes of earning reward perks should understand it normally requires a minimum $25 bet per hand before you might expect any perks to come your way.

The situations I’ve discussed above apply to the “average” gambler, as well as those above average bettors.

Then there are those who, at least in terms of cruise ship players, might be approaching “whale” status.  The majority of these people certainly wouldn’t be considered whales by Las Vegas casino standards, but are willing to wager significantly more money, and are very likely to spend a considerable portion of their time onboard doing so in the casinos.

Members of that “club” are well advised to call the cruise line’s casino marketing departments prior to booking.

They can establish credit lines in advance of their sailings, to diminish the need to carry large amounts of cash on board with them. They can also arrange to have table betting limits raised at their request. They may also be able to negotiate discounted rates, or even complimentary cabins, based on their potential amount of play.

Presently, several times a year Royal Caribbean hosts Poker Tournament cruises, leading to winners from various trips being brought together on a ship for a grand championship poker tournament.

For those with already established,  active, and verifiable credit lines at any of the major casinos in Las Vegas, there is a company called Casinos – The Grand Collection LLC, where you can become a “member” (at no cost).

Casinos The Grand Collection, currently offers it’s members complimentary cruises, several times per year on the ships of Celebrity Cruise Line , and Norwegian Cruise Line- members do pay ports charges and taxes.

Participants in this program are generally offered balcony cabins, and a number of additional amenities during the cruise. Many of these cruises are hosted by a representative of the company.

Table betting limits (both minimum and maximum bets) for participants of this program are set higher than what is standard in the ship’s casino.

So, if you’re a whale, or a wanna be whale, there is space for you at sea.

- A View From The Kuki Side of Cruising -

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