An Interview with Heather Ferris from Vegas-Aces
Gambling is a very popular topic online, as players are always looking for the best places to play, as well as strategy for the various games, so that they may attempt to minimize or eliminate the house edge for games. Unfortunately, many of these guides fall short in terms of the depth and rules that you see in land casinos.
Thankfully, there are a few sites that attempt to show you exactly how to play at a casino. Vegas-Aces.com is one example of this, as it provides full video guides, game manuals, and toke numbers for casinos throughout various gaming regions. Complimenting this is a full dealer training section, which gives visitors a free platform to learn how to deal out games. This is all offered free of charge, which flies in the face of conventional wisdom, as many organizations charge hundreds, if not thousands of dollars for the same information.
We recently caught up with Vegas-Aces founder Heather Ferris, and asked her about her site and what she’s experienced in regards to being a dealer in Las Vegas.
Q. Heather, thank you for taking the time to answer some questions from us. If you could, please tell us a bit about your site Vegas-Aces.com, and how you got it started.
A. Of course. Thank you for interviewing me. Vegas-Aces.com is the world’s first free dealing trade school. I teach people how to play and deal casino table games, for free, without having to pay to go to school. I’ve helped many people around the world; get a job in the gaming industry, and there are several casinos and schools that use my materials to teach their students.
Here’s how it got started. I love playing video games and I would be addicted to M.M.O.R.P.G.s, which is a huge time waster. So I decided that I didn’t want to spend my life playing video games and that I needed a hobby. Since there was a void on the internet for good gaming education, I decided to try and fill that void and learn some new skills in the process. And that’s how Vegas-Aces got started.
Q. Vegas-Aces has a wealth of information on a bunch of different games, but can you share with us which of these games is the most popular in terms of drawing traffic to your site or YouTube channel?
A. Blackjack is the most popular because everyone wants to know how to play it. And as a dealer, it’s a great introductory game for getting into the casino industry.
Q. It looks like you’re working hard on an upgrade for Vegas-Aces. How’s that going, and what can users expect from the site when the new layout is completed?
A. The redesign is going slowly, but I’m excited for the finished project. I wish I could be done faster, however, because I’m self-taught, new to responsive web design (plus I have over 100 pages of content to go through), so it’s taking some time. The new re-design will look better, be easier to use, have a simple menu structure and it can be easily viewed on a cell phone or tablet. This will make the information available to more people (such as people who can only access the internet through their phone or casino dealers who are on break and want a refresher course on the game they’re about to deal.)
Q. Do you have any personal experience working as a casino dealer? If so, what are some things you’ve experienced that prove to be mistakes that blackjack players make at the tables?
A. Yes, I worked as a casino dealer in Las Vegas for 5 years and one of the mistakes I’ve seen players make is sitting down at a shoe game that pays 6 to 5. Or, they would sit down at a 6 to 5 game when there’s an identical game right next to them that pays 3 to 2.
Q. Is there a particular blackjack game that serves as being the most player friendly? What games would you recommend that players look out for at their local casino?
A. Blackjack game? Not that I can think of. For an easy-to-play, player-friendly game, I would recommend the Big 6. It’s a simple, straight forward game, which makes it a perfect starter game for newbies, but keep in mind that it has a high house advantage and those odds aren’t good for players. Now, if you’re talking about ‘what are the best odds’, then I would recommend baccarat. If you don’t want to play baccarat, then playing the Don’t Pass and Don’t Come bets (with full odds) on Craps is also good for the player.
Q. We all know that finding 3:2 payouts on blackjack in Vegas is getting harder and harder if you bet lower amounts. We do an annual report on Vegas blackjack, but see that things change throughout the year. Have you seen things getting better or worse in terms of blackjack payout?
A. Yes, I’ve seen things get worse as far as payouts go. Casinos realized that players don’t know the difference between 3 to 2 and 6 to 5, so they started adding more 6 to 5 games or they would make a shoe game 6 to 5 when the same table, right next to it, is 3 to 2. And unfortunately, players don’t realize that playing at a 6 to 5 table is against their best interests.
Q. Are there any other tips you have for players visiting a casino that they might have overlooked on past visits?
A. The only tips I have left are common sense tips. If you’re constantly losing at a table, then get up and go to another table or take a break for a while. Don’t keep shoveling out money on a losing table. And the dealers have no control over the cards or whether you win or lose, so please don’t yell at them and blame them for losing. (Side note: I always thought it was funny that the people who thought the dealers control the cards and the outcome of the game, are the same people that scream at the dealer and call them names. If the dealer can control the cards then isn’t it a good idea to be nice to them so they want to pay you?) And the last tip I have is: gambling is a form of entertainment, not a way to pay bills. If you can’t afford to lose the money then don’t gamble with it.
We want to take the time to thank Heather for agreeing to an interview, with us, and we highly urge you to check out Vegas-Aces should you want to learn more about your favorite table games.
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