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Amusement World (M/V) - Casino Ship @ New Century Tours Corp P/L

Straits Times, 30 April 2017


Jackpot machines thrilled her like nothing else could.

Their sound effects raised her heart rate and made it feel more exciting than gambling at tables.

Madam Loh (not her real name) especially loved the ka-ching of falling electronic coins. But landing in a $200,000 debt and having to sell her four-room flat motivated her to join the self-exclusion list and stop gambling four years ago.

She staved off the addiction for eight months, until she was bored at a Downtown East chalet, run by NTUC Club, and walked into a jackpot room. “That night reignited my demons. It’s hard to control the urge to gamble,” said the 58-year-old office administrator in Mandarin.

She then started hitting Safra jackpot rooms two to three times a week. And her losses there were no less than at the casino.

IN A GAMBLING BUBBLE

When you’re in the room, you feel no horror, fear or remorse. You just keep betting, hoping to recover your losses. It’s only when you walk out of the place that it hits you and you end up crying.

MADAM LOH

She even took bank loans and borrowed from her family and friends to feed her habit.

The fruit machines take in $10, $50 and $100 notes and, with itchy fingers, the credits do not last long.

Some machines price each bet at just two cents, but there is a minimum number of lines that punters have to bet on.

So each tap of the finger on the button can cost anything from 50 cents to $30 or $40.

Madam Loh said her bets depended on her mood. Sometimes she would get greedy and make big bets, hoping to get bigger winnings. “Once, I went in the morning, left for lunch, then headed back to the jackpot room again. I lost $6,000 in the morning and another $4,000 at night,” she said.

She sometimes visited two outlets in a day, for a change of luck.

As of 2015, there were 84 private lottery clubs that are licensed to have jackpot machines here.

The National Council on Problem Gambling has a self-exclusion scheme for individuals to shut themselves out of online betting outlets and 24 of these jackpot rooms. However, it is not a blanket exclusion across all 24 outlets.

This list also does not cross-reference the self-exclusion one for the casinos, thus gamblers such as Madam Loh can fall through the cracks, quitting the casinos only to fuel their addiction at clubs.

In Madam Loh’s case, hope was a dangerous thing. She said: “When you’re in the room, you feel no horror, fear or remorse. You just keep betting, hoping to recover your losses. It’s only when you walk out of the place that it hits you and you end up crying.”

She was mired in jackpot rooms until last year when friends intervened and took her to Blessed Grace Social Services for help.

The former jackpot machine addict now has this to say: “At least the casinos have a $100 levy, but the jackpot rooms are so easy to get into.”

These private clubs are “evil”.

“The temptation is so big. I see housewives going to play until 4pm or 5pm before they return home to cook. Some say they’ve lost their grocery money.

“There shouldn’t be so many of these places. The Government should slowly close them down. Out of 10 bets, you’ll lose nine times. The machines’ odds are set, it is very stupid to go and ‘donate’ your money to them,” she said.
 

AhLee

Alfrescian
Loyal
AW officially return to HF on 31 Dec 2016. Heard from inner news that AW will replace Leisureworld in Penang route. LW will undergo major retrofit & overhaul.

Only AP (using SGD) the only gambling ship operating in batam.

thanks for the info and update. aw still trading ? i haerd its only in RM Ringgits.?
 

HorLee

Alfrescian
Loyal
AW officially return to HF on 31 Dec 2016. Heard from inner news that AW will replace Leisureworld in Penang route. LW will undergo major retrofit & overhaul.

Only AP (using SGD) the only gambling ship operating in batam.
Thanks for information. Did you see AW Boss Albert Ng ???

Heard that Albert is in Hospital. Please confirm :(
 

justl00king

Alfrescian (Inf)
Asset
from 3rd of jan 2018 , ap will go dock dock , left only aw in operation.
AW very old ship, cabin like from the 70s. The ferry trip also take longer than AP who wanna go?
Only those die hard auntie uncle punters since AP going dry dock.
I may only go look see if got direct boarding and disembark at HF, why waste so much time to ferry up for this old ship.



 

ahboy123

Alfrescian
Loyal
Thinking of go AP overnight the last time of year 2017 , call tmft counter said room fully book , asked aw got room , no also today and tmr 30 n 31 2 ships fully book , walan damn good biz , skip loh , don't think go there no room then sit at restaurant till mor back like mad fellow, better stay home.
 

SallyTan

Alfrescian
Loyal
many cabins available brother. Albert and all his girlfriends are here. waiting for countdown and waiting to count the ships earnings for the full year of 2017.

if you are gold card member and above sure got cabin for you :smile:

next week Albert has instructed his runners to convert aw to trade in sSing$$$.
 

ahboy123

Alfrescian
Loyal
many cabins available brother. Albert and all his girlfriends are here. waiting for countdown and waiting to count the ships earnings for the full year of 2017.

if you are gold card member and above sure got cabin for you :smile:

next week Albert has instructed his runners to convert aw to trade in sSing$$$.
Once upon a time i was gold member ,kept winning at one moment then was told eligible to apply gold member , after got the gold membership, lost like a hell until i cut the card and thrown it ,now if i can win thousand in hand will split the chip to cash out , cash out 1k above they want to put in record , kannasai.
 
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