Hey guys I posted this on 2+2 and figured you guys could learn from this too.
Hey guys, I recently moved to Vegas in February after visiting Vegas last summer for the WSOP, and deciding it was a good move. I still think it was a great move, however I fell into a lot of bad habits out here, and I am hoping some of you can learn from my mistakes.
I came out to Vegas with 32k to my name (mostly online, 4k cash) I moved into a poker house of 7 other players. All mostly SNG players, so I couldn't really relate there (I grind rush/stud hi), but most of them are laid back and easy to get along with. As far as living in a poker house, I 100% recommend this. It gives you access to social interaction, poker strategy, and essentially friends. I couldn't imagine coming to this town without knowing absolutely anyone (which I did) and fending for myself. The house didn't really feel homey, so I found it very important to decorate your room with things that remind you of who you are. (easy to forget who you are out here) I still haven't done this, but I feel like it would definitely make it easier to live in such a lucrative material town. (Put up posters of skiing if you like to ski, or of nature if you like to hike etc... things that remind you of the things you enjoy in life) DO NOT forget what you love to do. If you work out, find a local gym, if you play tennis, find someone who also does and make sure you get some tennis in. Make time for yourself, and don't forget poker isn't the only reason you are living. I made this mistake by grinding 24/7 when I first came out here. I became burnt out with in 4 weeks of non stop grinding and went on a massive downswing losing mostly all of my roll after going on a massive upswing. Poker isn't the only thing to do in Vegas.
Vegas is all about gambling/partying/women. There are a lot of options of all three out here. Partying is by far the easiest way to get carried away out here. Every casino has a club and they are all super expensive. Essentially it's best to get bottle service with friends, but going out every weekend can run you a couple hundred easy. This is fine if you have a large bankroll that you can afford such an expensive habit. If not, I'd highly suggest avoiding the clubs, and find some cheaper less flashy clubs (I still have yet to search for these, but I'm sure they are out there, and just as fun) or just find another hobby/habit that isn't as costly to you and your health. When you come out here it is very important to have a plan. If you know you can't handle partying every weekend, because you know it will distract you, than plan on not doing that.
I really didn't map out a solid plan, as I am a stud/rush player, I just figured i'd keep grinding online. I soon found the live grind at a few different casinos and put that 4k that I brought to work. I bought in at the 2/5 games and ran hot, so I jumped in the 5/10 games taking an obvious shot. Things went extremely well for me and I ran up that 4k into 23k. It was at this point that I'd advise everyone to slow down, as when you run up money quick in Vegas I HIGHLY suggest taking at least half of the winnings and secure it in something like your bank account or casino box, whatever, just don't carry around liquid cash with you. Cash runs this town and if you are cash broke it's like a carpenter throwing his hammer out the window. Tell yourself how much money it is that you think you would be happy with grinding the limits you are grinding, and set aside the rest for savings until you are ready to move up stakes. DO NOT just move up stakes because you are winning. This can result in an obvious disastrous downswing if you run bad, in which case you HAVE to move down. Do not get caught up in the ego of poker.
Coming out to Vegas I hadn't really lived with anyone else that had played poker before. Everyone has an ego in poker, and it seems like everyone has an opinion of how everyone else plays/handles their poker. Do your thing and don't worry about anyone else, unless it is to model yourself after someone successful. If you grind 1/2 on a 100k roll and feel comfortable, but everyone calls you a nit... forget them, they clearly don't understand what it is to grind poker for a living. There is no reason to feel like you need to play high stakes to be a respected poker player. (the most successful grinders in my house are 1/2 2/4 grinders that just put in volume) If you are constantly called a degen, maybe these are some flags that you are a little too reckless with your bankroll/money management and should re-evaluate the way you do things. (I'm a degen so I've heard that I'm a degen quite often) Going out to eat at the best restaurants every other day is probably a reason to be called a degen, if you're grinding .50/1.
Restaurants are another huge business in Vegas. There are high quality resteraunts everywhere. You could get kobe beef in 10 restaurants all within 100 feet of each other. Eating smart in Vegas is a must if you want to live here long term. It's very easy to get carried away, especially if your roommates or friends go out to eat a ton. You will save a TON of money if you just go to the supermarket every week and stock up on food. (Make sure to have some sort of healthy diet, since your job has very unhealthy habits) I would also avoid credit card roulette, another thing that poker players often feel pressured to do when out with a bunch of other players. Trust me, if you don't CCR for 2k bills you aren't missing out on much. I got stuck with a $400 bill for one meal of one day of eating and felt miserable afterwards. I also dodged a 1k bill and felt great, but the losing isn't worth the bankroll hit especially if you don't have an expensive taste when you go out to eat. Yes you are still cool if you don't order only kobe and crystal. Yes ladies are impressed if you order expensive champagne, no it does not help your chances of getting laid.
Women in Vegas are like another breed of women I have no idea how to relate to, not to say that you cannot relate to them. Most girls here are material fake tan, fake boobs, blonde hair or dyed haired gold diggers. That being said of course there are a bunch of girls which don't fall into any of those categories, but if you surveyed a club or pool party or casino, I'm sure you'd find some similarities. Meeting girls in Vegas is only as hard as the amount of effort you put in. If you are very outgoing it's very easy to meet girls, especially if they are tourists (tourists obviously are looking for that whatever happens in vegas stays in vegas fling) Meeting girls is a whole other topic that you could inquire in one of Bond18's threads or whatever, as unfortuneatly for me, I am no pick up artist... however I do know how to meet strippers.
The Spearment Rhino is the by far the biggest money pit in Vegas. If you do not know what the rhino is, I highly suggest never finding out. You will thank me in the future. I've spent upwards of 4k in one night at the rhino. (This was after a 12k blackjack heater, but still is inexcusable) The time spent in Rhino should be reserved for special occasions (tournament wins, birthdays, and bros nights out) There is no reason to go there more than once a month if that. If you are a professional poker player, the money and time spent in the rhino will never be worth it. Yes they have the most gorgeous girls in the world there, no you will not pull them out of the club (OK sometimes it happens, but don't count on it) yes you will have a great time for that specific time being, no you will not have fun immediately after leaving the club.
These are just some of the few experiences I've had so far from living in Vegas for two months. It's been a roller coaster ride as always, and I'm holding on for dear life right now (at the end of my biggest downswing ever). So I hope that if any of you are considering moving here, that you be smart about it, because **** new york, if you can make it in vegas, you can make it anywhere. (I'm from New York)