How Much Should You Tip on a Handpay?

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Given Brian Christopher’s volume of jackpot handpays he wins in the casinos (in part credited to his bet amounts), the question of tipping for a handpay comes up frequently, and what general tipping etiquette is for such a scenario.

First of all, we want to note that tipping is a very personal thing, and so while we’re happy to give our advice, please keep in mind that it is ultimately an individual decision as to how much to tip – just as it is at restaurants, bars and coffee shops.

So what would Brian do? Brian does indeed tip after each handpay (with the exception of group pulls, where any tips are handled at the conclusion of the event). 

Brian has long followed a rule of thumb many others have followed;1% of the win or $20, whichever is greater. Therefore, any jackpot up to $2,000 would be tipped $20, and above that would be 1% of the total. For example:

  • $1,200 jackpot: $20 tip
  • $2,000 jackpot: $20 tip
  • $5,000 jackpot: $50 tip

One other thing we advise is to check and see if handpay tips are pooled or individual. In some casinos, the tips for slot attendants are pooled and split, not unlike most casinos when it comes to dealer tips at tables. But this is not necessarily the case at every casino, and in many cases two people will be there for the cash payout moment. By verifying, you can confirm if it makes sense to tip each person, or just handing the tip to one person is sufficient.

We hear those players who say that all the slots have a built in house advantage, so why should you tip when getting paid for a big win? But this goes back to the original point we made that tipping is a personal decision. And as such, while we give our rule of thumb, we recommend doing what feels best in the moment. We’ve certainly seen scenarios in both directions, higher and lower, than our guide, and ultimately it’s best to do what’s right for you.

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