What Playing Cards are Used in Casinos? Casino Typical Practices

What Playing Cards are Used in Casinos? Casino Typical Practices

Casinos are places of excitement, chance, and strategy, where players gather to test their luck and skill against the house. One crucial element in the casino environment is the playing cards used for various games like poker, blackjack, baccarat, and more. These cards are not your everyday deck; they are specially designed, manufactured, and maintained to meet the unique demands of the casino world. 

Let’s dive into the world of casino playing cards and figure out what playing cards are used in casinos!

An Overview to Casino Playing Cards


Casino playing cards differ significantly from the standard decks you might use at home for games or magic tricks. They are designed to enhance the gaming experience, ensure fairness, and prevent cheating. Several key characteristics set them apart: 


Casino cards are typically made from paper or plastic. High-quality paper cards have a smooth finish that provides a good grip and ensures durability. Plastic cards, on the other hand, offer greater longevity and resistance to wear and tear. 

Size and Shape: 

Casino cards are usually larger and slightly wider than bridge decks for example. They are typically poker-sized, measuring about 2.5 inches by 3.5 inches. This larger size makes them easier to handle and prevents accidental marking or damage. 

Design and Back Design: 

The design of the card backs is carefully chosen to prevent players from marking the cards and to ensure that any potential markings are not easily detectable. Casino decks often have intricate patterns, intricate borders, and vibrant colors. 

Security Features: 

Security is paramount in the casino world. Many casino playing cards incorporate security features like holographic foiling, UV markings, and special inks that can only be seen under specific lighting conditions. These features help prevent counterfeiting and cheating.

Types of Playing Cards Used in Casinos

Casinos are exciting places where people play games to win money. Playing cards are a big part of these games. But in casinos, they use special cards that are different from the ones you might have at home. We will learn about three types of these special cards: Jumbo Index, Standard Index, and KEM cards. These cards make the games fun and fair for everyone.

1. Jumbo Index Cards: Super Big and Clear

Imagine cards that are really big and easy to read. These are Jumbo Index cards. They are made for casinos so that players and dealers can quickly see which cards they have. The numbers and pictures on these cards are large and clear. This helps everyone know what's happening in the game. Jumbo Index cards are often used in important games where it's important to be very sure about the cards.

2. Standard Index Cards: The Regular Choice

Standard Index cards are like the ones you might use at home. They have the usual numbers and pictures, but they are a bit smaller than Jumbo Index cards. These cards are good for many different games in the casino. They feel comfortable in your hands, and they are easy to hold and use. You can find them in games like poker and blackjack.

3. KEM Cards: Super Strong Cards

KEM cards are really special because they are super strong. They don't get bent or torn easily. This is important in casinos where cards are used a lot. These cards are made from a special material that makes them last a long time. This helps casinos save money because they don't need to buy new cards as often. KEM cards are often used in many different games, just like Standard Index cards.

In casinos, the cards we talked about - Jumbo Index, Standard Index, and KEM cards - all have their own jobs. Jumbo Index cards help people see the cards clearly, especially in important games. Standard Index cards are like regular cards, good for lots of games. KEM cards are very strong and last a long time. All these special cards make sure everyone has a fun and fair time playing games in the casino.

Casino Typical Practices

Casinos follow several practices to ensure the integrity and fairness of their playing cards and games:

Regular Inspections: 

Casino cards undergo regular inspections to identify any signs of wear, marking, or damage. Damaged or worn-out cards are promptly replaced to maintain a consistent gaming experience.

Shuffling Techniques: 

Casinos employ various shuffling techniques to ensure randomness and prevent card counting. These techniques include riffle shuffling, stripping, and overhand shuffling.

Changing Decks: 

Decks are frequently changed to prevent players from gaining an unfair advantage due to marked cards or wear. The frequency of deck changes varies depending on the game and casino policies.

Card Cutting and Drilling: 

To render the cards unique and prevent counterfeiting, casinos often drill a hole or cut a corner off the cards before decommissioning them. This is known as cancelling a deck, resulting in the term 'Cancelled Casino Deck".

Security Measures: 

Casinos employ advanced surveillance systems to monitor gameplay and prevent cheating. Security personnel closely observe the table action to identify any suspicious behavior.

Card Handling Procedures: 

Dealers are trained in specific card-handling procedures to minimize the risk of exposing the card faces accidentally. They are also trained to handle the cards in a consistent manner to maintain game integrity.

Sealing and Packaging: 

New decks of casino cards are often sealed in plastic wrap to ensure they remain untouched and untampered with until they are used at the gaming tables.

The Bottomline

In the world of casinos, playing cards are not mere tools; they are integral components that contribute to the excitement and fairness of the games. 

These specially designed cards undergo rigorous testing, security measures, and handling procedures to ensure the highest standards of gameplay. From their material and design to their security features and typical practices, casino playing cards play a significant role in creating an authentic and enjoyable casino experience for players around the world.

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