Glossary for Australian Gamblers: Casino Slang & Lingo

Unique terms and phrases emerge within social circles, professions, and activities all the time. The same applies to gambling, official terms and slang are used by all sorts of players. Some cross borders and are understood by all gamblers, while casino lingo can also be region-specific. The term pokies used exclusively by Aussie punters instead of slots is an evident example of this.

In Australia, gambling terms first emerged during the colonial days. Casino culture truly boomed in the mid-19th century, though, up to World War 2. For reference, our Aussie ancestors had over 200 casinos at their disposal while 14 make up the current list. Thankfully, online casinos are also widely available in Australia.

Aussie slang is typically employed as a way to shorten words, while casino games require an understanding of specific terms or participation is impossible. This guide should help rookies and those interested in learning more about Aussie gambling terms.

Aussie Gambling Lingo – casino slang words and phrases

Most Aussie gambling glossaries simply reiterate the same casino terms used by players globally. Aussie players exclusively use the following terms, so if you find yourself at a casino in Vegas you should refrain from using them. On the other hand, you should familiarise yourself with the following gambling terms if you are planning a visit Down Under.

  • Pokies – is the term used to describe slot machines in Australia. It emerged from the term poker machines after they started gaining traction throughout the country.
  • Aggro – Aussies use this phrase to describe any aggressive behaviour or approach, including casino gaming.
  • Chokers – this phrase, or Choc a bloc, is used to describe a casino filled with people.
  • Whinge – Aussies use the term whinge to describe someone who complains after losing money at the casino or on pokies. It is the opposite slang term of rapt.
  • Lightning Link – a popular jackpot network found at Aristocrat pokies across Aussie casinos.
  • Dragon Link – the latest linked jackpot pokies by Aristocrat that can pay over A$1 million from a single bonus.
  • Hooked – the term hooked is often used in a positive way to reflect someone who is excited about a game and plays it for hours. The term addicted would signify the same but with a negative connotation. Casinos provide several means to avoid getting addicted or to keep your gaming in check.
  • Punter – a UK-inspired term also widely used in Australia. A punter is anyone who places a bet; having a punt is a synonym for taking a risk.
  • Carpet – anyone who has entered a prestigious casino knows what this phrase means. The carpet signifies flashy entrants employed to attract potential players.
  • Two-Up – traditional gambling game played in Australia on Anzac Day involving flipping two coins and guessing the outcome.
  • Strewth – a word indicating surprise associated with winning at casinos.
  • Rapt – the term is often used to describe someone who is happy after a big win on pokies or casino games. Content or appease are similar terms.
  • Motser – Aussies often say ‘walk away with a motser’ when someone has won a large sum in the casino.

Terms Used in Pokies – read before you spin

Understanding how one feels or what they mean when using a phrase is important to make you feel at home at an Aussie casino. To play pokies though, you must get accustomed to the following terms too:

  • RTP – short for return to player; the RTP in pokies indicates the long-term winning odds in a percentage format.
  • Max bet – the most money you bet per round in pokies.
  • Jackpot – the largest win you can land in a game. Jackpots can be static or progressive.
  • Odds – this term reflects the winning chances of a casino game or action.
  • Random Number Generator – short for RNG; casino game developers power their games with a random number generator software to guarantee fair outcomes.
  • Reels – the reels are the positions in which symbols land in pokies.
  • Bonus Game – bonus games in slot machines come in varying forms, such as free spins and hold and win. A bonus game takes place after certain conditions are met and provides improved winning chances through a different format than the standard game (base game).
  • Static Jackpot – the most you can win from a poker machine. The amount is fixed and depends on how much you are staking per round.
  • Scatters – scatters are symbols in pokies that pay indifferently to where they land on the reels.
  • Wilds – these symbols act as jokers and substitute all other symbols to assist in the formation of winning combinations.
  • Paylines – fixed or adjustable lines used in pokies to indicate how the symbols must appear to win.
  • Penny – slang for pokies taking as low as A$0.01 bets per round.
  • Autoplay – a function enabling the automatic spinning of pokies reels without manual action. Casinos in Australia have banned this feature.

Casino developers employ a range of features in slot machines. Tap on this link to discover the different reel formats, bonus rounds, payline systems, and more. Our guides can advance you from beginner to pro in a heartbeat.

Casino Lingo – essential terminology

Online and brick-and-mortar casinos incorporate tables, cards, bonuses, and other features that make them attractive and unique. Although it is impossible to cover the full casino lingo in a single guide, the following are terms you are likely to encounter in any casino setting.

  • Cash Bonus – a cash bonus is an amount of money provided by the casino without any wagering requirements.
  • Free Spins – casinos provide players with free rounds on pokies machines as a bonus. The user cannot alter the bet per round, and the bonus dictates the qualifying games.
  • Wagering Requirement – also referred to as rollover or playthrough. The wagering requirement indicates the number of times the player must bet a bonus before it becomes cashable.
  • No Deposit Bonus – new players might receive free money after signing up at an online casino. The no deposit bonus term highlights such promos.
  • Casino Edge – showcases the long-term winning odds of the player, or the casino’s profit, for a game or bet type.
  • High Roller – players who deposit or wager significant amounts of money at the casino.
  • Bankroll/Wad – the balance a player dedicates to gambling.
  • 86’d – a term used to describe players who have been banned or suspended from gambling sites for breaking the rules.
  • Beef – describes players who are in a disagreement.
  • Eye in the Sky – associated with land-based casinos only. The slang term refers to casino cameras.
  • Card Washing – the cards facing down and up on the table are randomised through this method.
  • White Meat – term used to describe the net profit generated from casino gaming.
  • Sawbuck – slang for the A$10 bill.
  • Down to the Felt – indicates someone is out of money.
  • Fish – beginner players entering the casino.
  • George – someone who tips heavily.
  • Whale – another term for high roller, signifies players who wager huge amounts.
  • Shark/Sharp – skilled casino players who strategically place bets, usually on the blackjack or poker tables.
  • All or Nothing – hopefully you’ll never be in this situation. The All or Nothing term can be seen as All In in poker and means that you wager all your funds in a single hand or round.
  • Black Book/Blacklist – refers to the list kept by websites or bookies for players who are not welcome in the facilities.
  • Cage – term used for the cashier located in casinos.

Casino Games Lingo – prepare in advance

Every casino game follows unique rules and bet types. Each game will outline the rules and assign terms to the bets and gameplay to create a clear-cut and fun atmosphere. Players often generate their own lingo too.

To avoid listing the numerous terms employed within each casino game, and deviate from the Aussie lingo covered primarily here, I’ve linked eight popular gaming categories with a few terms as examples below. Before participating, you can tap on any of the following to learn more about the gameplay and terminology.

Conclusion

I could author a book covering slang terms, bet types, and colloquial phrases used by gamblers in Australia. Instead, I have tried to include the most widely used terms at Aussie casinos, while also offering additional resources to get you up to speed before visiting a casino venue or playing a game online.

If you think I’ve missed any important term or got something wrong, please let me know here.

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