Casino Challenges: Achievements That Can Sweeten the Deal

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MGM Rewards challenge for Las Vegas

Casino players seem to love a good challenge. I’ve seen many slot players talk about bucket list goals like 15 Gold Buffalo Heads or a Grand progressive jackpot. So it’s sort of surprising to me that casinos don’t lean into the idea of challenges more often.

The concept is simple – accomplish X, get Y. This can be earning enough tier credits to get a gift, bonus tier credits, comp dollars – there’s plenty of ideas to be had there.

Do you like challenges to play for bonus offers?

More than half of players polled on Brian Christopher’s YouTube channel were down for a challenge, with another 20 percent open to it depending on the offer. With the ability to get more points or gifts, it certainly can be a way to get something extra for your play.

Recently I had not one, but two challenges pop up – one was more clever and enticing than the other, but both caught my attention. Like other smarter gambling practices like looking for offer stacking opportunities, leveraging challenges represents another permutation of that strategy.

The first challenge I was presented with came as part of a recent Las Vegas trip, offered by MGM. I had never seen such a challenge offered before. The concept was simple: I was booked at Aria, and so they wanted me to visit at least three other resorts and spend. There was no minimum spend requirement – I just had to earn one tier credit.

Now, earning one tier credit on purchases means spending even $1 – so that seemed easy enough. What wasn’t clear, but was even more helpful, was that any sort of gambling counted too – earning even one tier credit gambling at three other properties was enough to satisfy the challenge.

What did I get for that little extra effort? For each property (up to three) I earned a tier credit or more, I got 1,000 bonus tier credits. And for getting all three done, I also got $60 in MGM Rewards Points. That’s a pretty sweet deal for doing something I probably would’ve done anyway.

This is a pretty savvy move by MGM at a relatively minimal cost to encourage players to play across their Las Vegas portfolio. With a pretty connected set of properties, it isn’t hard to start at Aria and, say, play at and through Park MGM to New York-New York and, say, MGM Grand. And those MGM Rewards Points can be used for food, experiences and more throughout the United States, so they don’t have to necessarily be spent right there.

The tier credits are the same as would be earned on a couple of hundred dollars of gaming, so that’s not a bad bonus either!

The other play to earn challenge I had came courtesy of Yaamava’, which is about an hour from where we’re based in Palm Springs. They had a gift card offer, but with it came the chance to earn a second gift card for enough play.

By comparison, they wanted me to do about 50 percent more play than my norm on a visit there, and the gift card worked out to about 25 percent of my expected loss for that amount of play. Unfortunately, I had a bad run so it didn’t seem worth it to chase more tier credits for the amount of the bonus gift card they were offering, but for those players who were having an OK day, it seemed like a nice touch to offer a bonus.

Yaamava’ had five days on the calendar in January where I could claim the same valued gift card, but only one where the play to earn option was tacked on, so in this case it made sense to visit on the play to earn day if I could only make one trip in January, which happened to be the case because of that Vegas trip I just talked about.

As such, it’s another type of offer players should watch for, and consider timing their trip for, to maximize their offer potential.


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