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Atlantic City Players Worry About Slot Program Changes

9 August 2004

NEW JERSEY – As reported by the Press of Atlantic City: "Most serious gamblers don't traipse up and down the Atlantic City Boardwalk, playing a little here and a little there. They pick one or two favorite casinos, and that's where they play.

"So what happens when another company buys your favorite gaming hall? Will it keep the machines you like? Will you get the same amount of comps? Will it take away the intimate eatery your spouse loves?

"Atlantic City gamblers should find out in the next year or so, assuming Harrah's Entertainment Inc. completes its $5.2 billion merger with Caesars Entertainment. The merger would create the nation's largest gaming company.

"…For some gamblers, the buyout is no big deal.

"…But it is the change in benefits the slot club offers that many players fear most. In some circles of gamblers, Harrah's is believed to be much tighter with comps - free rooms, food and gifts given to gamblers - than the Caesars properties.

"Harrah's is already bragging about how its revised Total Rewards slot club has increased its per-player profits, and is eager to show Caesars how to do likewise, John Thomas of Mount Laurel wrote on an Internet message board for Atlantic City gamblers.

"…Good for the casino's bottom line, but not for the players.

"…In the long run, most gamblers probably won't notice the difference…"

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