Meal Comps vs. Charging to Your Room

 Meal Comps vs. Charging to Your Room

In more than two decades of staying at casino resorts, one of my favorite methods for getting all I can out of available comps has been to charge meals to my room, and then see if I can get them comped at the end of my stay. That enables me to use comps earned later to take care of mealtimes from the beginning of the stay, when I don’t yet have anything in the comp bank.

Not all casinos allow that play, and that’s fine. We all have to live with casino policies. The key is to ask at the start of your stay, so you know the rules you’re playing by.

On many stays, I’ve had my room comped in advance, so I knew I was going to use any comps earned to take care of restaurant charges. It was just a matter of whether I would use points at each mealtime, or take care of it all at the end.

If the casino allows you to retroactively use your points at end of stay to settle dining bills, there’s another potential level to this. I’ve sometimes asked to see a host before checking out, then asked if he or she could take care of any of my room charges. I’ve occasionally had the host comp the food without deducting any points — in days of yore, that meant I could use the points for cash instead, though nowadays free play is more common than cash.

However, your first stop needs to be the players club booth to find out whether the points can be used for room charges. Just last year, I got caught in a situation where I’d charged food to my room, then was told I couldn’t use points, that I should have used points for individual meals over the course of the trip. It was a learning experience. Ask about casino policy  before you start the room charges.

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