A New Jersey gambler won nearly $1.7 million betting $5 on progressive poker at an Atlantic City casino this weekend. The lucky winner, identified only as a Monmouth County woman and “longtime customer,” hit a $1,681,458.40 mega jackpot at Harrah’s Resort on Saturday.
The win is the largest jackpot payout on a progressive poker game at a Caesars Entertainment property in Atlantic City, the company said. The pool is generated by the games located in the company’s three Atlantic City casinos: Caesars; Harrah’s; and Tropicana.
But what happened next is the real story. The woman then tipped her dealers $77,000, according to casino officials. That’s a 4.5% tip.
Coincidentally, the same percentage tip was reported by a Caesars Entertainment property in Atlantic City in February 2021. In that instance, gambler Frank Nagy – also of Monmouth County – reportedly hit a $1.1 million progressive-poker jackpot at Atlantic City’s Tropicana Casino. Then he tipped $50,000.
Not All Lucky Gamblers Tip
While 4.5% seems like a fair tip, Casino.org’s guide to casino tipping etiquette notes that there is no set amount to tip on a huge jackpot for a carnival game such as progressive poker. Most gambling websites suggest a tip of $10K per million, or 1 percent, though as little as .5 percent is acceptable. As a rough guideline, many poker tournaments withhold 3% from the total prize pool for the dealers to split as a tip. (However, it’s also been reported by ESPN, that of that 3%, only 60% – or 1.8% of the prize pool – goes to the actual dealers.)
On Christmas Eve 2020, a man, identified only as “Kevin,” hit what is believed to be Nevada’s biggest jackpot in eight years. His $40 bet on a Megabucks progressive slot machine at Suncoast Hotel and Casino grossed him $15,491,103.27.
Yet, according to various accounts from servers and onlookers, Kevin left the casino without tipping even a dollar.
Not tipping on a jackpot fairly common in casinos. As uncovered by Casino.org’s own Vital Vegas blogger Scott Roeben, many million-dollar jackpot winners leave no tip at all for the gaming floor staff – at least in slots where there are no dealers. Roeben also reported a tip of $200 on a $1.1 million jackpot won on the Crazy 4 Poker progressive at Las Vegas’ Golden Nugget in August 2021.
“What’s a reasonable tip for a $1.1 million jackpot?” Roeben wrote. “We’ll put it this way: It’s more than $200.”
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