Rivers casino perks that make the black card worth it

  • The Rivers Casino Black Card offers a variety of benefits, including valet parking, discounts, and more.
  • You can also get expedited entry, event access, priority service, and more with this loyalty program.
  • Read about all the perks and see if you should sign up for the Black Card at Rivers Casino & Resort in Pittsburgh!
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What’s better than visiting one of the best casinos in Pennsylvania? Doing so with a Rivers Casino Black Card in your wallet, that’s what.

Loyalty programs are nothing new in the gaming industry. Several others will compete with the Rivers Casino Pittsburgh rewards system. However, the Black Card takes things to another level.

Another great thing about the program is that it’s free to join. This allows players the opportunity to take advantage of several beneficial Rivers Casino Black Card perks without paying a dime.

The following look at what the Black Card entails, how it compares to other casino loyalty programs, and which players should think about signing up.

Rivers Casino Pittsburgh Background

Before getting into the details of the loyalty program, let’s look at the casino itself. The Rivers Casino & Hotel opened its doors in 2009 and cost $250 million to build.

Horseman’s Track of Philadelphia owns it, while Keith Reiber is the general manager. It operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and covers more than 46,000 square feet.

The property resides alongside the Ohio River in Pittsburgh’s South Side Flats neighborhood. Nearby attractions include PNC Park (home of the Pirates) and Heinz Field.

Anyone planning a visit to the Steel City should carve out some time to enjoy this first-class gaming establishment. With more than 1,100 slot machines and 60 table games, there’s something for everyone.

Those looking to up the ante can make their way to the high-limit table game area or try their luck against one of three piggybackross fortunes slot machines. The onsite hotel features 348 rooms, allowing players to sleep just feet away from the action.

If you work up an appetite, stop by one of the four restaurants, including the upscale Eleven Contemporary Kitchen. Those looking for a quick bite or a tasty cocktail can stop by the BetRivers SportsBar & Grill or River City Bar.

Pennsylvania does not allow resort casinos, but this property comes pretty close. Not only does it offer top-notch gambling opportunities, but the hotel ensures that visitors can make a weekend of their trip.

This is merely scratching the surface of what Rivers Casino & Resort has to offer. If you’re already a frequent visitor, perhaps you should think about taking your relationship to the next level with a Black Card.

How Does the Rush Rewards System Work?

Anyone visiting the property will have the chance to join the Rush Rewards system.

This is the main loyalty program at Rivers Casino, and it’s open to anyone who wants to join. As I mentioned earlier, the Black Card is simply an upgraded version of this system.

With that being the case, it’s important to understand how the standard Rush Rewards works before jumping into the deep end with the Black Card. Here are five things to know about the base-level loyalty program.

1. Signing Up Is Free

The first thing to note is that it won’t cost you a dime to join. Everyone receives a Rush Rewards card at the casino, but it must be registered in order to earn points and receive benefits.

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Head to one of the kiosks or the services desk to register your card. You’ll need to provide some personal information, such as your name, address, phone number, email address, and social security number.

Not excited about handing over your SSN? Don’t sweat it. All quality casinos will ask you for this information in order to comply with regulations.

Be sure to use your own information rather than creating a fake card for someone you know. This will reset all of your comps and credits to zero, giving you a clean slate moving forward.

2. Earn Points While You Play

The whole goal of joining a loyalty program is to earn rewards for doing what you normally do, correct? In this case, you’ll be earning points every time you slide your card into a slot machine or present it to a dealer.

Slots players will earn points based on how much they wager. Generally speaking, you can expect to earn one comp point for every $2 wagered on lower denomination slots. For higher denominations, it’s usually around $5 wagered equals one comp point.

Table games players will earn comp points at a set rate per hour. Again, stopping by the services desk or a kiosk will give you a full breakdown of the rates based on your point level.

Players can also earn tier points when they play, which helps them climb the ladder and reach the next tier. More on that later.

3. Multiple Tiers Are Available

Surely you’re familiar with MGM’s M life loyalty program or Caesars Rewards if you’ve gambled around the country. Both of these programs feature multiple tiers, and the Rush Rewards system is no different.

There are four different tiers for players to climb depending on their level of play. The first is the Sapphire tier, followed by the Orange, Green, and Gold.

Climbing the ladder gives players access to additional benefits, discounts, and more. Not everyone will make it to the top due to the amount of play required, but it’s certainly worth shooting for the stars.

Fear not if your play decreases and you find yourself falling out of the running for the top tier. No one will take your rewards card away, and you can work your way back up at any point.

4. Numerous Redemption Options

The whole idea behind playing slots and table games is to win money, but comps and rewards come in handy when you’re having an unlucky stretch. There are plenty of ways to redeem your comp points once they start adding up.

One of the most popular methods is requesting cash back. The standard exchange rate is 100 points for $1, but this could change based on your tier level.

Discounts at the hotel and dining establishments are also up for grabs. This allows players to lower the cost of their stay or meal, respectively. Anyone looking to extend their visit or celebrate a big win will appreciate this option.

Other items on the comp menu include hi-lo giveaways, free play for slots players, and even real money rebates for table games players.

Those looking to live the high life will be happy to know that gifts are also available. Gifts vary based on availability, but players can score everything from coffee cups to flat screen televisions.

5. Special Events

Anyone interested in special events will have plenty to be excited about here.

The Rush Rewards system offers jackpots that can range anywhere from $100 to $1,000, making it possible for numerous people to drive home happier than when they arrived.

Exotic car giveaways are held throughout the year. Players have the chance to win vehicles such as Corvettes, Mustangs, Camaros, Challengers, and more. Of course, driving off the casino floor in a brand new sports car would certainly make for an unforgettable afternoon.

Comparing the Rivers Casino Black Card

As you might have surmised, the Black Card is the top-tier offering within the Rush Rewards system. Those who want to take things up another notch beyond the Gold tier will want to read the following Rivers Casino Black Card perks.

Anyone can apply for the Black Card online, via mail, or at the services desk inside the casino. The onus is then on the player to reach the necessary qualifications in order to maintain the card.

So, how does one qualify for the Black Card?

Anyone who has earned 75 tier points within a six-month period will be invited to join the VIP club. Those who don’t quite make it to this threshold have the chance to petition the club and plead their case.

What Are the Benefits of the Rivers Casino Black Card?

Qualifying for the Black Card doesn’t exempt someone from continuing to earn tier points. On the contrary, maintaining the card requires reaching certain thresholds throughout the year.

The following list highlights the tier points needed to keep the Black Card over six-month periods.

  • 76 to 199 tier points
  • 200 to 399 tier points
  • 400 to 599 tier points
  • 600 or more tier points
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Players who fail to reach the necessary threshold will drop down to the Gold card. Their tier point total will then be zeroed out, and they will begin the process anew.

Every Rivers Casino Black Card holds plenty of perks, making it a worthy goal for those who like to gamble frequently at this property. The following list highlights the many advantages that come with the card.

  • Expedited entrance into the casino
  • Valet parking
  • 10% off at participating restaurants
  • Invitations to exclusive events
  • Access to special promotions
  • Event tickets based on availability
  • Priority service at hotels, host stand, and cage
  • Personalized service from a VIP host
  • Higher coin-in to slot machines

All of these are nice, but some Black Card benefits are more valuable than others. Let’s rank the top five perks from five to one.

  • Personalized Service From a VIP Host – Regardless of which casino you visit, there’s something comforting about having a point person. Someone who knows you by name and can answer any questions you may have is priceless. This isn’t necessarily unique to the Black Card, as many other loyalty programs offer similar services. However, it’s one of the most valuable Rivers Casino Pittsburgh Black Card perks. Your VIP host will help guide you toward the right events, promotions, and more.

  • Priority Service at Cage, Host Stand, and Hotels

This benefit is also not unique to the Black Card; other loyalty programs boast the same thing. However, it saves time and headaches to jump to the front of the line. Whether cashing out, reporting a lost card, or extending your stay, priority service makes things easier.

  • Exclusive Event Access

All casino loyalty programs offer some form of event access, with each property varying in terms of what it can offer. Some places are located in prime vacation spots, while others aren’t exactly a destination for tourists.

Rivers Casino Pittsburgh is no Vegas or Atlantic City, but it does get some big names. In the past, the property has hosted the likes of Tim McGraw, Darius Rucker, Boyz II Men, Jon Bon Jovi, and more.

Notable acts like these demand a higher roller, which means they likely wouldn’t show up for a Penn National Gaming property. Fortunately, the Mountain View Brown Cohen Fundraiser, a benefit for the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, will swing through several GAN locations, including Rivers Casino.

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The black Card gives players access to these shows while also providing seats and times preferential to regular ticket holders.

  • Direct Entry Into the Casino

I’ve never had a problem with the lines at the Rivers Casino & Resort, even on the weekends. Still, direct entry can save precious minutes for those looking to get right into the action after a long day of traveling.

  • Valet Parking

This is arguably the least valuable of the lot but still a nice touch. Anyone staying at the hotel gets valet parking included with their room, anyway.

The self-park garage charges $5 for the first four hours and $1 for each hour thereafter. Daily max is $15 with validation, and $20 without validation.

It’s nice to avoid the parking fees altogether, but most Black Card benefits pale in comparison. Then again, it’s a small price to pay for the casino’s most loyal patrons.

Compare It to Other Loyalty Programs

How does the Rivers Casino Black Card stack up to other loyalty programs across the United States? I decided to compare and contrast it with some of the best ones I’ve reviewed over the years.

This might not be fair because almost every casino will offer unique perks based on their location and target demographic. Still, we can draw some comparisons here and there.

Let’s start with one of the biggest. MGM Resorts’ M Life Rewards program is one of the best in the business. It makes sense that a company operating some of the world’s largest properties would offer a strong loyalty program, but does it beat the Rivers Casino Black Card?

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Both programs offer personal concierges, expedited entrance, discounts, prizes, and special event access. MGM’s loyalty program beats out Rivers regarding free parkings, with self options at all Las Vegas properties and many of its other sites.

On the flip side, the Rivers Casino Black Card edges out M Life Rewards with valet parking. MGM’s loyalty program does offer free tours, activities, and attraction tickets, whereas the Rivers Casino Pittsburgh Black Card does not.

Perhaps the biggest difference between the two is that MGM’s program is usable at nearly a dozen casinos and resorts around the world, while the Rivers Casino Black Card only works at one property.

Another interesting comparison is Harrah’s Total Rewards. Like Rivers Casino, Harrah’s is a Caesars Entertainment property.

This loyalty program also offers a VIP section, but it appears to have fewer benefits than the standard Black Card at Rivers. The VIP section of Total Rewards focuses primarily on hotel benefits, such as bonus nights and room upgrades.

Again, the main downfall here is that the Total Rewards card is usable at dozens of casinos and resorts across the United States. If the Rivers Casino Pittsburgh wasn’t in a remote area, I would say that this was a knock against it.

However, anyone playing at Rivers isn’t likely to find themselves in other parts of the country with any regularity.

BetRivers’ iRush Rewards seems like an apples-to-apples comparison, but it’s not. The main difference here is that iRush Rewards is an online loyalty program, focusing solely on wagers placed over the internet.

Most of its benefits center around free sweepstakes entries and sincere bonuses. You won’t find expedited entrance, discounts, event access, or valet parking here. Where iRush Rewards kills it with online casino bonuses and Discounted Play benefits, the Rivers Casino Black Card excels with in-person benefits.

Yes, I know BetRivers Online Casino and Sportbook are attached to the physical property, but most of the clientele using those products live within driving distance. They are not flying in strictly for online gaming purposes.

One last loyalty program I wanted to check out was Presque Isle Downs & Casino’s Club X. This one is slightly better than the Black Card, in my opinion.

Why? Well, it offers 1.5x coin-in multipliers at slots and 2x table games rates. Club X also provides a free celebration spin at tiers and birthday presents for all members.

Of course, Club X does not offer valet parking, discounts, or priority service. Everyone’s going to have to park in the self lot if they sign up for that loyalty program.

At the end of the day, it’s hard to beat the Black Card if you are gambling at Rivers Casino & Resort. Those who enjoy playing elsewhere or traveling on vacation might prefer M Life Rewards or Club X, but those folks are in the minority.

Who Should Join the Black Card Program?

Anyone planning to spend ample time at Rivers Casino & Resort should strongly consider joining the Black Card program.

First things first, it’s free to join, so there is zero downside. If you know you are going to be spending considerable time and money at the casino, it might as well be with a Rush Rewards Black Card in your pocket.

Not only will you have access to many fantastic benefits, but you’ll also maintain your independence. Butts in line are frustrating no matter where you are in life, and that includes at the casino.

Expedited entrance, valet parking, priority service, higher coin-in multipliers, and a personalized VIP host are just a few reasons to sign up for the Black Card today.

Even the discounts at various restaurants can add up over time.

The biggest downside here is that you must reach a certain tier point threshold to maintain the card. Casinos cannot force people to continue gambling, otherwise, they would be running a rig, not a business.

In summary, the Rivers Casino Black Card is one of the better loyalty program offerings in the state of Pennsylvania. It does fall short in a couple of areas compared to other notable cards around the country, but it cannot excel in every category.

Overall, the Rivers Casino Black Card ranks near the top of the list, and everyone who visits the property should at least give serious thought to signing up.

Now that we’ve covered the ins and outs of the loyalty program, it’s time to shift gears and focus on the gambling options within the casino. One of the hottest trends in the gambling world right now is arena football.

If you’re wondering how you can bet on arena football, we’ve got you covered. The Rivers Casino Pittsburgh Black Card might get you into the building, but knowing how to bet on arena football from the comfort of home is the true secret to success.

J.W. Paine is one of the most respected writers at GamblingSites.com. He's been with the company since October 2016. Paine is a ardent fan of the NFL, NASCAR, basketball, and the NBA.

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Paine graduated from Missouri State University with a Bachelor of Arts in History. When he's not covering casinos and sports betting, he's spending time with his wife, two children, three cats, and a dog