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  • Writer's pictureJason Leppert

What You Need to Know About Casinos on Cruise Ships

Going on a cruise ship holiday can be an exciting opportunity – not just for the ultimate form of relaxation but also to get in amongst some of the awesome casinos that most cruise ships have aboard. It’s a great way to win some money, get social with the other passengers on board and to add something a little different to the nights on the ship.

If you love online slots, the sound of those machines and the open sea, then taking a cruise ship holiday is probably just what you need.

Here are some of the handiest things to know about your upcoming cruise and the casino that you are bound to find on board:

Which cruise ships have casinos on board? 

Most cruise ships, even the smaller ones, are likely to have a casino on board. The one exception to the rule on this is Disney’s cruise liners, and as they are geared mainly towards families, this should come as no surprise. It is also unlikely that research or expedition boats will have casinos on board. The easiest thing to do to ensure that you will have a casino on board is simply ask when you are making the booking to avoid any disappointment.

Tables and machines that you will find

Most cruise ship casinos will have a number of different slot machines as well as many table games such as blackjack and a great assortment of poker games. You are unlikely to find any truly high stake tables – unless the pit boss agrees to form one specifically for you and many of the ships will run tournaments such as poker, blackjack or slot tournaments. Winners of tournaments normally get money but they can also win cruise tickets.

Do the casinos take cash? 

Most cruise ship casinos will be more than happy to take cash, but you are also able to use your cruise cards. Very few cruise ships are cash only, and while there is almost always an ATM on board, it’s advisable that you take some cash with you, as withdrawal fees tend to be really high.

What are the operating hours? 

Cruise ship casinos are not 24 hours, as most people will be busy doing something else, like swimming, during the day and they will tend to close around 3 am. There are also certain restrictions that you must keep in mind – most countries don’t allow gambling in port and so the casinos will only open once you are out at sea. Bermuda and Malta are some of the few countries that allow gambling in port.

Are drinks free? 

Chances are that if you are on a luxury cruise line where all your drinks are normally free, then they are likely to be free in the casino. However, if the ship runs off a cash card basis then this will also apply to the casino.

How old do I have to be? 

Most of the cruise lines will have a minimum age limit of 18 but others may be upped to 21, so it makes sense to check before you get on board if you are worried that you may be too young.

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