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Do You Want To Be a Casino Dealer?

Dealers are a vital part of any casino. Not only are they responsible for ensuring that the games run smoothly, but they must also make the players feel welcomed, handle their questions, and provide them with the best possible experience. It is not for all, but if you have a keen interest in the games and have good people skills then it could be the job for you.

Where To Start

While you do not need much more than a high-school degree to apply for a job at a casino, you would be a much more attractive prospect if you went to a dealer school. It is more likely to find employment with a dealer school certificate or previous experience, but some casinos that are newly opening might be able to hire people without a degree and train you in-house.

Dealer Schools

Courses can range in price, with some American schools costing under $1,000 for a two month course, which is ample time to learn all the games, protocol and security measures that you will need in your employment.

Schools generally take eight to twelve months to complete. In Europe, it is beneficial to look for schools that are recognized by the European Casino Association (ECA), an organization that represents over 900 casinos with over 75,000 employees in more than 25 countries.

The Cerus Croupier Academy

A reputable institution, the Cerus Croupier Academy has schools in Paris, Nice, Lyon, Bordeaux, Strasbourg and Marseille in France, Manchester and Bristol in the UK, Rome in Italy, Madrid in Spain, Namur in Belgium and Nicosia in Cyprus. Any one of these 13 schools will teach you the ins and outs of poker, roulette and blackjack.

The London Academy of Gaming

For those looking for more specific games, the London Academy of Gaming offers would be dealers and croupiers the chance to learn roulette, blackjack, 3-card poker, 5-card Stud poker, Texas Hold’em and Punto Blanco. The more exclusive knowledge you have in these high stakes games, the more likely you are to get a chance to work at the high rolling casinos.

What Does it Entail

The job can be a rigorous one at first. You will have to be flexible with your schedule, you may be asked to work nights or during weekends, and you may not be able to take off major holidays. But these are things you will want; the weekends and certain Friday nights or holidays are the prime times to be working in a casino. Busy nights will be what you want to be looking forward to, as here you can pocket big money in tips.

You will need to be able to stay on your feet for extended periods of time, at the tables and roulette wheels you will be the one standing and calling the numbers or cards. It may take time in the beginning to adjust to the fast paced calculations and routine of dealing and spinning, but after you get used to it, it will be second nature. This can free you up to charm the guests, and that will not go unnoticed - on a big win it is quite common for guests to tip staff, a tradition which is a given amongst many of the high rollers.

Once you get used to being able to deal at card tables or be a croupier at roulette wheels comfortably, you must learn another valuable skill. You must be able to detect when guests are cheating or making unfair play. Calling out gamblers is tricky because although it is completely within your rights, it is a serious accusation. Trickery or cheating can result in a guest being shown the door, or in more serious circumstances, a suspension from the casino. Though it does not happen often, there are some people who have a reputation for trying to turn the odds to favour themselves over the house. These individuals are usually reported to other casinos and casino associations, so there is a good chance you will never encounter such an individual.

Patience is also another key skill. Casino guests are not always polite, sometimes they might just be frustrated because they keep losing their money, or they have had too much to drink. The same method on how to handle cheating players applies; you have the right to kick them out of the casino should there be any escalation. Violence, verbal abuse and damage of property are not tolerated, and the signs when an individual is starting to lose control must be noticed early. Otherwise, for guests who are mildly irritating, you have to learn how to deal with them.

Manual dexterity is essential to all dealers, as you will need to ensure that games are played at the right speed. You will need to be able to spin the ball in the roulette wheel properly and also know how to shuffle multiple decks of cards quickly with precision. We are not talking about those show-off shuffles like the one Rachel did in the Friends episode “The One With All The Poker”, but the proper casino shuffles. The spreading of the deck also requires manual skills, but perhaps the most important is just the ability to perform these operations in front of an audience, especially seeing as the hand you give them will either bring or lose them lots of money.

Quick arithmetic calculations are vital when you are dealing hands in a card game. Yes, it might sound obvious, but when dealing with a fast paced game like blackjack or baccarat, you should be calculating the numbers and calling them out instantaneously. This gets trickier in blackjack when you have multiple players, and your eyes must be on the cards as you deal them out, then when all cards are dealt and players can ask for a hit, you must be on point to call out the value as soon as they get their new card. Though this is probably not required for experienced guests, you may have newcomers or people who have not played that particular game, either way, it is protocol for the croupier to serve the players.


The average starting salary for croupiers or dealers in the UK can range from £15,000 to £17,000, and in London it is £20,000. This is the base salary; what you can expect for working your hours when you are a novice. With time, your base salary will increase, especially as you show your competence with how to handle guests and knowledge of the games. When you start serving tables you will show that you can take on more responsibility and your salary will increase accordingly.

However, the base salary is just what you get paid on an hourly rate, and by no means the limit to what you can expect moneywise. If you are helpful and make a good impression on the guests, you can receive hefty tips, even going as far as to double your salary!

This depends on whether you are able to work on those valued Friday nights, weekends and holidays, and on your usefulness and charisma with guests.

The Career Path

The good thing about being a dealer is that most of these games are popular worldwide. What is meant by this is that, if you choose to, you can find employment in any casino in the world. This is a great plus as it does not limit your options.

Should you choose to stay at one casino, you have the chance to climb up the corporate ladder, with a good work ethic and track record, you can be promoted to a supervisor within a mere two years. If you play your cards right you can become a pit boss, with a huge base salary of £40,000.

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