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by Steve Bourie

In 1992 Steve Bourie wrote the first edition of his annual guide book to all U.S. casino/resorts, riverboats and Indian casinos. Through the years, he’s added stories by some of America’s best gaming writers, plus a special coupon section to save his readers money at some of the most well-known casinos in America’s major gaming cities. Steve has sold more than 650,000 copies of his American Casino Guide and it’s now the #1 best selling book in the U.S. on casino gambling.

If you like to play blackjack and you are heading to Vegas, you may want to pick up a copy of my 2010 American Casino Guide to save some money on your trip. In a moment, I’ll explain why.

Published annually since 1992, I update the American Casino Guide each year with information on all U.S. casino/resorts, riverboats, and Indian casinos. The 2010 edition covers more than 700 casinos in 41 states and is loaded with pertinent details on each casino: their toll-free numbers, web site addresses, room rates, buffet prices, casino size, casino games offered, and any special features of that particular property. There are maps of each state showing where the casinos are located, plus detailed maps of five major gaming cities: Las Vegas, Reno, Atlantic City, Biloxi, and Tunica.

If you or someone you know also plays the slots, the book also includes slot machine payback statistics for each state. In addition, I summarize the details on how gaming in one state may differ from other states. For instance, at Oklahoma's Indian casinos, most, but not all, of the blackjack games are player-banked. This means players must pay a commission to the house on each hand that they play. Here’s another example: you wouldn’t want to play video poker in New York because the games don’t allow skill to be a factor. (The games are operated like scratch-off lottery tickets where there are a predetermined number of winners.)

Besides all of the useful information in the book, many players value it for the extensive collection of money-saving casino coupons in the back of the book. The 2010 edition has more than 200 coupons for casinos all over the U.S., but the majority of the coupons is for Las Vegas-area properties and features numerous two-for-one deals on buffets, meals, and shows. (There are also free drink coupons and special room rate offers.)

Coupons for gambling bonuses are also included in the book with slot or video poker players getting a total of $30 in free play at four casinos: $10 at El Cortez, $10 at Hard Rock, $5 at the Plaza and $5 at Vegas Club. For first-time slot club members, there are also three casinos that provide another $45 in free play: $10 at the Palms, $10 at Silverton and $25 at Venetian/Palazzo.

Blackjack players looking for bonuses will not be disappointed because the book contains more than $200 in matchplay coupons. All of them can be used at blackjack, while some of them can also can be used on other even-money table game bets. The coupons are:

$10 blackjack matchplay at Big Horn

$10 table game matchplay at Cannery

$10 table game matchplay at Eastside Cannery

$10 even-money table game matchplay at Ellis Island

$5 table game matchplay at Gold Coast

$5 blackjack matchplay at Golden Gate

$10 table game matchplay at Hard Rock

$5 blackjack matchplay at Jerry’s Nugget

$10 blackjack matchplay at Lucky Club

$10 table game matchplay at Orleans

$10 even-money table game matchplay at the Palms

$10 blackjack matchplay at the Plaza

$10 blackjack matchplay at Silver Nugget

$10 table game match play at Terrible’s

$5 table game matchplay at Tuscany

$10 blackjack matchplay at Vegas Club

$5 even-money matchplay at Western

Up to $25 matchplay for any even-money bet at Westin Casuarina

Up to $25 even-money matchplay at the Sahara

Finally, one of the best coupons in the book allows a player to receive a 2-to-1 blackjack payoff on any bet up to a maximum of $200 at Casino MonteLago in Lake Las Vegas. (Unfortunately, this casino is scheduled to close on March 14 so you will have to act quickly to take advantage of this offer.)

(Editors note: The E.V. of a blackjack matchplay coupon is worth slightly less than half of the coupon’s face value. Therefore, the above coupons used at blackjack are worth roughly $90 ... and this excludes the valuable $200 coupon at MonteLago, which alone has an E.V. of about $95.)

Keep in mind that all of the gambling coupons in the book have restrictions. A player can use most only once a calendar year, while some are restricted to just once every 30 days. The majority of the offers also require that a player present their Player’s Club Card along with the coupon when making their bet, and the casinos are rather strict in enforcing these rules.

One final note about the book: it also contains 98 pages of how-to-gamble stories. The most popular table games of blackjack, craps, roulette, and baccarat are covered in detail, as well slot machines and video poker. You’ll find all the details on how to properly play these games, plus information on the best strategies for winning. Therefore, after you use all the moneysaving coupons in the book, you will still have a good reference book for your gambling library.

Editor’s Note: I save money every year with Steve’s book. I have to eat when I’m in Vegas, and I take advantage of all the coupons in his book to save money. Of course, I also take advantage of the matchplay coupons (you always have the edge when you use them). I also give copies of Steve’s book to friends and family members who like to gamble (there are coupons for Atlantic City, Tunica, Biloxi, and other casino destinations in the book).

Special: As a BJI subscriber you can purchase copies of the 2010 American Casino Guide for only $13.95 (plus S&H). Click here to order.

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