High roller

High roller

A high roller, also referred to as a whale in the casino industry, is a gambler that wagers large amounts of money. Because of potential windfall these high sums can bring to the casinos, high rollers often receive increasingly lavish "perks" from casinos to lure them onto the gambling floors, such as free private jet transfers, free limousine use and free use of the casinos best suites.

These players often have tables with very high table limits that can shut out almost all other players, allowing the whale exclusive use of a table.

High rollers are said to provide only a small fraction of casino "action." John Eidsmoe, in his book "Legalized Gambling: America's Bad Bet", claims that it is actually gamblers from the lower and lower-middle classes in the United States that provide much of the gambling money. "The occasional wealthly 'high roller' does indeed exist, but he is the exception, not the standard. The fact that more than 50% of Nevada's gambling income comes from slot machines as opposed to the card tables should be an indication high rollers are not the main source of revenue." [Eidsmoe, John "Legalized Gambling; America's Bad Bet", 1994]

While high rollers may not provide a significant portion of the revenues in the Casino Industry as a whole as stated above, for the casinos who go after them, they have a major effect on their yearly revenue streams. There are also significant costs associated with attracting the highest stakes gamblers, therefore if a casino takes this chance and the whale wins, it can cause major financial problems for the casino. On the reverse side if the casino's investment pays off and the high roller loses on his visit, the casino can experience significant revenue gains for the year.


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  • high-roller — high rollers also high roller N COUNT High rollers are people who are very rich and who spend money in an extravagant or risky way, especially by gambling. [JOURNALISM] …   English dictionary

  • high roller — ☆ high roller n. [from rolling the dice in gambling] Slang 1. a person who gambles for very high stakes 2. a person who spends or invests money freely or recklessly high rolling adj …   English World dictionary

  • high roller — n AmE informal someone who spends a lot of money carelessly or risks a lot of money on games, races etc …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • high roller — noun count INFORMAL someone who spends or GAMBLES a lot of money …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • high-roller — extravagant spender, by 1873, Amer.Eng., probably originally a reference to a gambler throwing dice …   Etymology dictionary

  • high roller — ► NOUN informal, chiefly N. Amer. ▪ a person who gambles or spends large sums of money …   English terms dictionary

  • high roller — noun 1. one who spends lavishly and ostentatiously on entertainment the last of the big spenders • Syn: ↑big spender • Hypernyms: ↑spendthrift, ↑spend all, ↑spender, ↑scattergood 2. a gambler …   Useful english dictionary

  • high roller — UK / US noun [countable] Word forms high roller : singular high roller plural high rollers informal someone who spends or gambles a lot of money …   English dictionary

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