7 Jobs That Pay More Than Professional Video Poker

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Most casino games aren’t designed to let you win long-term profits. Instead, they give casinos a small advantage.

Video poker is one of the rare exceptions to the norm. It offers a few different games that can deliver guaranteed profits when played right.

Full-pay Deuces Wild and full-pay Joker Wild are the best-paying video poker variations. They offer 100.76% and 100.65% RTP, respectively, with perfect strategy.

As I’ll explain below, you can even eke out a living with these games. However, professional video poker definitely isn’t as glamorous as it might seem.

In fact, seven non-glamorous jobs pay more on average than the best video poker machines. You can keep reading to see what these jobs are and why they’re actually more lucrative than video poker.

How Much Money Can Video Poker Pros Make?

Full-pay Deuces Wild and Joker Wild aren’t the only games that can offer over 100% RTP. 10/7 Double Bonus and 10/6 Double Double Bonus can also provide theoretical profits.

However, these games’ profits are only enough to make spare change from your video poker hobby. Therefore, you need to find either full-pay Joker Wild or Deuces Wild to make enough to get by.

Of course, these games are very rare and only found in certain Las Vegas casinos. You should consult the search engine at vpFREE2 when looking for these machines.

You’ll also need to be highly skilled at these games and play at a fast rate. Therefore, you should find a video poker trainer that allows you to train for either of these full-pay variations.

Now, here’s how much you stand to earn from Joker Wild and Deuces Wild when considering a 50-hour workweek:

Full Pay Joker Wild (Kings or Better)

  • You play 1,000 hands an hour.
  • You bet 5 coins ($1.25) on every hand.
  • 1,000 x 1.25 x 0.0065 = $8.13
  • The comp rate is 0.1%.
  • 1,000 x 1.25 x 0.001 = $1.25
  • 50 + 1.25 = $9.38 an hour
  • You play 50 hours per week.
  • 50 x 9.38 = $469 weekly
  • 469 x 52 = $24,388 annually

Full Pay Deuces Wild

  • You play 1,000 hands an hour.
  • You bet 5 coins ($1.25) on every hand.
  • 1,000 x 1.25 x 0.0065 = $9.50
  • The comp rate is 0.1%.
  • 1,000 x 1.25 x 0.001 = $1.25
  • 50 + 1.25 = $10.75 an hour
  • You play 50 hours per week.
  • 50 x 10.75 = $537.50 weekly
  • 215 x 52 = $27,950 annually

As you can see, the pay rate isn’t impressive for either of these games. You can probably get by if you find really cheap housing in Vegas and live frugally. However, you’re certainly not going to get rich from professional video poker.

Some exceptions to the norm do exist. Poker pro Huck Seed once played a progressive video poker machine that, due to its jackpot, was offering a high theoretical return.

Seed estimated that he was earning $3 in theoretical profits for every hand he played. The pro gambler realized these profits when he won a jackpot worth $670,665.

Of course, Seed is an exception to the norm. He had a large enough bankroll to chase the progressive jackpot and advanced knowledge to find the opportunity. In most cases, you’ll need to grind on Deuces Wild or Joker Wild machines to make money.

Regular Jobs That Pay More Than Professional Video Poker

When thinking of a pro gambler, you may envision a well-dressed person playing at high-stakes tables and sipping on the finest champagne.

With video poker, though, this vision is far off from the truth. You can actually make more money with the following seven jobs than you will through video poker machines.

1 – Factory Worker

Some factories are dark and dingy places, much like casinos. Factory workers, however, get paid more than video poker players for hanging out in dingy joints.

The average factory employee earns $15.52 per hour. This amount is almost $5 more than what a highly skilled video poker player can make.

2 – Secretary

Secretaries, or administrative assistants, handle many tasks for their bosses. They schedule appointments, prepare documents, support other staff, and more.

While secretaries may not get quite the same salaries as their bosses, they do earn a fair wage at $13.96 on average. This rate is $4 higher than a Deuces Wild professional and over $5 more than a Joker Wild pro.

3 – Artist

You’ve no doubt heard the term “struggling artist” before. Unless one is a teacher, art is a difficult field to make it in.

Those who do become professional artists, though, can at least expect better hourly pay than a video poker grinder. They make $13.72 per hour on average.

4 – Certified Nursing Assistant

As the “assistant” part implies, certified nursing assistants don’t quite make what registered nurses do. However, CNAs do collect decent pay at $13.72 an hour on average.

Some starting CNAs make around $10.25, which would be slightly less than a great Deuces Wild player. Typically, though, they earn a few dollars more per hour.

5 – Janitor

Janitors have to do some messy jobs, including cleaning bathrooms, mopping floors, and taking out the trash. By comparison, some custodians might embrace the confines of a casino.

However, they’ll take their pay over what a pro video poker player makes. The national average for a janitor’s hourly pay is $12.34.

6 – Retail Worker

Retail entails multiple jobs, including sales associates, cashiers, customer service, and/or sales associates. Therefore, salaries can vary based upon which exactly job one holds.

The average hourly pay for these jobs combined, though, is $12.25. This amount is $1.50 higher than what a Deuces Wild Expert would make.

7 – Fast Food Worker

The term “fast food worker” is a broad one because there are many different chains. Panda Express, for example, pays more than the average fast food joint. When looking at the broad spectrum of all fast food chains and jobs, though, the average worker earns $11 an hour.

People often see “flipping burgers” as a lowly regarded job. However, even a burger flipper is making out better than a video poker stud.

Is Professional Video Poker Worth Pursuing? Or Should You Get a Real Job?

You’ll feel more relaxed and at ease by taking any of these jobs over pursuing a professional video poker career. The latter is taxing and, ultimately, doesn’t pay well for how much trouble it involves.

  • First off, you must go through extensive training to boost your skills and increase your play rate. Playing perfect video poker isn’t enough because you also need to play quick enough to increase your profits.
  • Secondly, you need a large enough bankroll to survive the ups and downs until realizing profits. I’d suggest having at least a few thousand dollars to begin your video poker career.

Additionally, you also have to deal with lots of volatility. The royal flush, for example, only comes around 1 in every 40,000 hands. Given that 2% of the RTP is wrapped up in the royal flush, you’ll be waiting a while for a portion of your earnings.

If you don’t want to go through all of this, then you’re better off getting a real job. Normal jobs involve less stress and pay consistently.

Assuming you’re desperate to be any type of pro gambler, then you might think about video poker. Again, though, you should have really affordable Vegas housing and eat cheaply when going this route.


You can technically make it as a professional video poker. Your quality of life, however, won’t be very high while doing so.

You’ll need to develop incredible skills, play lightning quick, exercise great bankroll management, and deal with high volatility. Oh, yeah, and you also have to spend 50 hours in the casino doing it!

Is it really worth all of this time and effort to make less than a fast food worker? I certainly wouldn’t say so, especially when considering all the difficulties that come with professional video poker.

If you want to become a gambling pro, then you should consider more-fruitful routes, such as card counting or hole carding.

Michael Stevens

Michael Stevens has been researching and writing topics involving the gambling industry for well over a decade now and is considered an expert on all things casino and sports betting. Michael has been writing for GamblingSites.org since early 2016. ...

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