How To Become a Croupier

Discover what it takes to be a casino croupier in the UK

When you consider that the UK gambling industry generates a whopping £13.7 billion in annual revenue, there are obviously a lot of job opportunities on the gaming floor and behind the scenes. With 146 casinos across Great Britain, croupiers can find work in just about any city or town. Plus, there are opportunities for advancement.

Whether you love casino games or just want a stable job, it’s worth exploring this career path.

What is a Croupier?

A croupier is really just a fancy name for a dealer. You’ll find croupiers at roulette, blackjack, baccarat, poker, and other gaming tables.

Yet croupiers do more than just spin a ball or deal cards. They also:

  • Set up the table before the game starts
  • Greet players
  • Exchange banknotes for chips
  • Perform calculations
  • Payout winnings

Croupiers strive to create at an inviting atmosphere for players and make sure that the games are fair.

During the slow periods, a croupier may also be tasked with providing lessons to players, right at the table. If you work as a croupier, you’ll also play a part in stopping cheaters in their tracks.

While the majority of job openings for croupiers are at land-based casinos, it’s possible to work online too. Many gambling sites now offer live dealer games, which make use of croupiers. When players visit a live dealer table, the action will be webcast from a dedicated studio.

As the dealer at a live casino, you’ll have similar duties to your peers who work at land-based casinos. Croupiers in the UK can also work at private members clubs, charity events, and corporate functions.

How to Become a Croupier

All croupiers must be at least 18 years of age and have a valid personal functional licence from the UK Gambling Commission. Keep in mind that a licence currently costs £185 and you’ll need to pay a renewal fee every five years. You will also require clearance from the Disclosure and Barring Service.

There’s more than one way to become a croupier, you can either enrol in a croupier training course at one of the many casino academies or you can find a job as a trainee croupier and receive training from your employer.

Since you will be interacting with the public, clear speech, normal or corrected vision, and excellent hearing will help you perform your job. As far as educational requirements go, it’s recommended that you have a minimum of 3 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4, including maths and English.

Keep in mind that performing quick and correct calculations is part of the job. You’ll also need to have enough stamina to work long shifts while standing. The ability to concentrate even when performing repetitive tasks is essential too.

Understanding Roulette from the Casino’s Perspective

When you work as a croupier, you’re not just an employee. You’ll effectively be the casino’s ambassador. As you operate the game at hand, you’ll be the face of the house.

As far as players are concerned, they are playing against you. While they probably won’t laugh in your face when you win, you will need to quell occasional outbursts from losers. Even though you’ll certainly learn tips during your training session, you’ll probably thrive if you have a knack for diplomacy.

Although players are expected to be respectful, it’s important to remain calm and collected if they aren’t. Remember, you should never take anything personally during the course of your shift. Of course, some of the complaints you receive will be legitimate, so it’s important to follow the casino’s protocol.

Your employer not only expects you to have a firm grasp of the game, but you’ll need to ensure that everything runs fluidly. That means giving players enough time to bet while keeping the game moving. Let’s not forget that casinos have a bottom line to worry about.

As a result, croupiers need to strike a balance between making sure players can get place their wagers and ensuring there are enough games per hour. It’s also important to promptly collect losing chips and accurately paying out winnings. You won’t have the opportunity to reach for your smartphone calculator if you’re a croupier. When you’re fast, efficient, and competent, the players at your table are more likely to stick around.

The Necessity of a Croupier

If you’ve visited a casino lately, you’ve probably noticed that it’s possible to play roulette without croupiers. You’ll find games that use wheels controlled by robotic mechanisms as well as touchscreen games that rely on random number generators.

While these games give players the same odds as traditional forms of roulette, most players who take the time to visit a live casino prefer the human element that croupiers bring to the table. That desire for croupiers shouldn’t be surprising since you can easily play digital games online without leaving your house.

While automation is going to make many jobs obsolete in the future, there will be a place for croupiers in the decades to come. If you’re betting thousands of pounds, don’t you deserve a little human touch rather than a touchscreen? As we mentioned, even online casinos now employ croupiers in their studio for a more lifelike casino experience.

7 skills that could make you a good croupier

Although you can enrol in a gaming academy and land a job at a casino, there are no guarantees that you’ll make a great croupier. Yet if you have the right skills, you might turn out to be the best dealer your casino has ever seen.

Here are the skills that top croupiers have in common:

  • Capacity to work under pressure
  • Strong attention to detail
  • Excellent at following rules
  • Conflict resolution
  • Friendliness and diplomacy
  • Ability to perform quick calculations
  • Stamina to endure repetitive tasks

Of course, you’ll also need to be 18 and have a clean criminal record, but these aren’t skills in the conventional sense. Keep in mind that casinos attract crowds in the afternoon, overnight, and on weekends. That means you’re better off being a night owl rather than a morning person.

What Croupiers Earn on Average

Croupier salaries vary widely depending on where you work and how much experience you have. Trainees may earn as little as £15,000, but more experienced croupiers stand to earn a base salary of £20,000 to £25,000. Managers can expect to earn more than £40,000 in London.

Keep in mind that a croupier can earn much more through tips. Just ask any croupier in the United Kingdom and you’ll learn that tipping has been becoming far more common since it became legal in 2005.

One of the best things about working in a casino is that there is plenty of room for advancement in the gaming industry. You can find work as a pit boss, inspector, card room manager, gaming manager, or general manager.