René and I don’t gamble. But you can read our snowbird lifestyle blog to find out how we save when traveling in our RV by camping for free at casinos. Morongo is a favorite after a long day of driving I-10 that puts us a short distance from “home” when visiting family in L.A. And they have a great buffet!
Recently we enjoyed an awesome meal and a quiet night’s rest for less than the cost of most RV resorts. But this isn’t about boondocking, it is about respect for the dollar, and even cents for that matter.
While wandering the casino floor after dinner I pondered how the economy must be rebounding – the place was packed. Either that or there were a lot of people throwing money away hoping to hit it big because the economy sucks.
Then I found a cash voucher. (There is no jingle of coins in casinos anymore, only tickets printed when you cash out.)
The ticket may have only been for 6¢ but it got me thinking. Someone clearly threw it away. The voucher sat atop a slot machine right where someone put it, probably after letting out a grumble. I quickly proceeded to a “redemption” machine to cash it out. (Apparently you don’t have to interact with cashiers in casinos anymore either.) Then I returned to our RV, where we caught up on some work for the day.
Six cents may not be much, but does it really make any sense to throw it out? I know from experience that pennies add up, and will always stoop to pick one up. But more important than saving coins, is learning to respect money. While my father taught me this as a child, Suze Orman reminded me long ago in one of her best personal finance books.
If you show money the respect it deserves today, and carry it through in all your actions, then one day, when you can no longer take care of it, your money will take care of you. Respecting your relationship with money, you see, is the key not only to your security and independence, but to your happiness as well.
— Suze Orman, Women & Money
I don’t condone gambling. Nor do I condemn it. At age 13 I bet my age on the daily double at the races with my dad and won $222.20. I remember that being a lot of cash! And I remember my dad teaching me how to respect my winnings by spending a little bit to celebrate and putting the rest in the bank.
I believe gambling should be treated as another form of expensive entertainment. If you have money to burn, and enjoy doing so, then go for it. Those who view it as a way to make some quick cash, clearly have no respect for the dollar or the hard work it takes to earn and save.