These days most people think of the penny as a useless coin with no value whatsoever. It’s the one that always gets lost and forgotten under the couch, only to be found next to a few dried-up old skittles and matted with dog hair weeks later. While the penny is the lowest and least-cared-about denomination of currency in the US, some places that do still favor these bronze babies are casinos.
Penny slot machines have been around for decades, and despite their low desirability, casinos can still rake in a fair profit from the people who play them. By labeling these games as “penny slots”, casinos can attract a demographic of players that psychologically view them as more affordable than they actually are. But is there any real financial benefit to playing these types of slot games? Read on to find out!
Penny slots are games that can be played for as little as $0.01 per spin. As they tend to feature multiple paylines, however, players really need to be betting on more than one if they want to see a half-decent return. This is why most players still end up wagering over a dollar on each spin to increase their chances of making a profit. As players are so enticed by the idea of betting and winning off a single penny, they often forget about the other paylines and end up betting more without realizing it. This is one of the clever ways casinos make a profit and how players can easily deplete their budget much quicker than they anticipated.
For an educated gambler with strong bankroll management skills, the above scenario is unlikely to phase them when they play penny slot machines. However, when there’s no budget set for your playing sessions, the losses can quickly add up and leave you worse off than before you started. Here are a few textbook mistakes you should try to avoid when playing penny slots:
Even on penny slots, players rarely bet a single penny on each spin. Most bet the maximum amount, which could be around $0.5 per spin. If a slot has 10 paylines, that’s $0.50 per spin and a total of $300 wagered in one hour. To put that into context, if the payout rate was 76%, you’d lose $72 per hour playing this penny slot machine. While this isn’t a huge loss compared to what you could lose playing $1 slots, it all adds up eventually.
Penny slots aren’t the machines you should be playing if you’re hoping to score a million-dollar jackpot, but as the RTP can still make a significant difference to how much you can win, it’s always worth opting for a slot with a high payout percentage and checking the jackpot amount so you know whether it’s worth your time and investment.
Another trap you can easily fall into as a penny slot player is not checking the rules or the paytable information. Some machines automatically activate all of the paylines by default rather than let you manually turn on which ones you want to bet on. If this happens, the game will automatically deduct one penny for every payline the game features, meaning you’d end up placing $1 per spin if the machine has 100 active paylines.
Though betting on all of the paylines gives you a higher chance of winning, for someone who wants to stick to a budget, it’s so important to familiarize yourself with how a game works before you start pumping your shrapnel into it. Otherwise, the next time you look at your bankroll balance, you might be in for a nasty shock when you see how much you’ve spent unknowingly.
It’s not all about payout percentages and wagers with penny slots; sometimes, a mistake can be as trivial as not using a slot bonus to help maximize your play sessions. Even though penny slot bonuses are rare, you should snap them up immediately if you are presented with an opportunity to use one.
Most slot bonuses come in the form of extra money to use on a game or a certain number of free spins. You never know; one of those spins could well score you a jackpot, particularly if the bonus gives you the maximum betting value. If an online casino offers you 30 free spins to use on a penny slot, this is still worth redeeming because that’s 30 extra chances you have to win the jackpot without using a single cent of your own money.
Playing online penny slots is exactly the same as playing any other type of online slot machine. First, you need to find a reputable online casino that offers these types of games. Spend a bit of time researching different sites that you like the look of, or save yourself the hassle and have a quick browse through our shortlist of recommendations for the best online penny slot casinos. From there, the process is easy peasy:
1. Sign up to your preferred site
Do note that not all online casinos have dedicated penny slot sections in their lobby. You may need to browse through them and check the paytable information to find out the minimum bet amounts, as it may not always be obvious that the bets start from $0.01. However, if you select a casino from our list, you’ll be able to find these games instantly without needing to trudge through all of these steps beforehand.
Whether you’re playing online penny slots or land-based machines, the internet is inundated with tips and advice on how to minimize your losses and maximize your winnings playing these types of games. Unfortunately, a lot of it is just claptrap sentiments from players and sources who don’t have any real-world experience.
For example, some players believe that you should reduce the size of your bets when you’re losing on a slot and increase the size when you’re winning. The fact is that all slots are random, and therefore, whether you’re raising or lowering your bet, it doesn’t matter because the outcome is always unique. The same goes for hot and cold slot machines in land-based venues: you’ll never be better off playing a “hot” slot because again, there are no concrete patterns that will determine when the machine will pay out, regardless of how long you or the person before you has been playing.
The best advice we can give you for maximizing your earning potential is to stick to the basics, which include solid bankroll management, choosing the right slot machine that fits your pace, style, and wager capacity, along with machines that have a strong payout percentage.
In addition, if you are able to use a bonus when playing these games online, be sure to check the terms and conditions before you redeem it. While slot bonuses in general are some of the most common deals available, penny slot bonuses are quite difficult to come by and normally attached to some kind of conditions like wagering or playthrough requirements.
Playing penny slots can be a lot of fun and a great way to get rid of some loose change when you’re playing in brick-and-mortar casinos; however, they can also end up costing you more cash than you’d expect if you’re not careful. Take the time to clue yourself up about the realities and mathematical dynamics behind these games before wagering money on them, and don’t be afraid to play free online penny slots to see if these are the right kind of slot games for you before playing for real money.
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