Five Misunderstood Casino Phrases
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Jargon Buster

| 29.08.2018

Revealed: the most misunderstood casino phrases


Ever been sat round a casino table and felt the other players are speaking a different language? Well it seems you are not alone, as our latest research reveals that casino players across the country aren’t clued up when it comes to casino jargon.

The results found that just one in five knew that ‘edge’ was a term used in casino playing, along with less than one in ten (9%) knowing ‘barber pole’ and less than half identified ‘deuce’ as a phrase heard around the poker table. If this sounds like you, keep reading to find out exactly what they mean!  

If you are scratching your head at some of the common casino terms, we have created a jargon buster to help explain the meanings of the most misunderstood casino phrases.

 From ‘deuce’, ‘card sharp’ and ‘hold your own’ to ‘tapped out’ and ‘insurance’ our jargon buster will ensure you’ll never get your wires crossed again whilst playing a casino game.

Which of these terms have you heard before?

What does ‘deuce’ mean?

 Deuce - number 2 in dice

The meaning of the phrase deuce in casino terms is quite simply the number two on the dice. Based on the Old French for two, you are most likely to hear this around a craps table. It can also refer to a two card during a poker game.


What’s the definition of ‘card sharp’?

Card sharp - an expert game player

Curious to know what exactly a card sharp is? A card sharp is an expert game player who plays dishonestly or cheats in order to win. Also known as a card shark, the term first originated in the 19th century. Definitely not the most popular player around the table!


What does ‘hold your own’ mean?

 Hold your own - breaking even

If you’ve ever wondered what the definition of hold your own is in casino terms, look no further! Holding your own is when you break even at the end of the night, so no money was made but no money was lost either.


What’s ‘tapped out’?

Tapped out - A player losing their entire bankroll

Let’s hope you are never tapped out at the end of your casino experience. Tapped out means a player has lost their entire bankroll for the night or has spent all their money that they dedicated to playing with!


What’s ‘insurance’ in casino terms?

 Insurance - an optional bet in Blackjack that players can take if they think the dealer has a winning hand

Insurance is a phrase heard around the Blackjack table and is defined as an optional bet that players can take if they think the dealer has a winning hand. Most commonly used among novice players, it is also commonly known as a side bet.

Some other misunderstood casino phrases are:


Confused to what exactly a spinner is? A spinner is a winning session! Not just a term for the roulette table, the phrase can be used for any casino game, whether is a card game, dice or on the slots.


Heard the term edge around the casino table? The Edge is a term that refers to the built-in advantage that the casino has in all games. Always remember when you are playing, winning is never guaranteed and you should never bet more than you are comfortable with. 

Barber pole:

Nothing to do with getting a haircut before your night at the casino, a barber pole refers to a stack of chips in more than one colour or of different denominations.


A bug, in casino terms, is jargon for the joker card or wildcard. Used as part of a poker game, it can be used as an ace or to complete a flush. Once one or both jokers are added to the deck, if it is not being played as an ace, it takes the place of the highest card that can complete a hand.


An underlay is a phrase you do not want to hear during your game! Not to be confused with a sport betting phrase, an underlay is casino jargon for a bad bet, or an unfavourable bet.

Ready to try out your new casino lingo? Why not visit our Live Casino experience, which allows you to play your favourite games hosted by real-life dealers.





George Barbu