Linq Shrinks Strength of Drinks, .75 Ounce Pour Is New Normal

Here’s a fun game: Say “Linq shrinks strength of drinks” five times fast. Know what’s not fun? When casinos downsize their liquor pour size to save a few pennies.

Linq resort has done just that. The Strip casino has lowered its standard liquor pour to .75 ounces, according to a confidential internal communication.

Hey, this is Vital Vegas. Are there really any “confidential internal communications”?

Here’s today’s gut punch, or what the kids love to call “Another Vital Vegas Exclusive and Such.”

Linq smaller pour

Never fear, your libation watchdog is here.

You read that right. It’s weak. Just like your drinks at Linq from here on out.

Drinkers know the standard pour for cocktails in most establishments is 1.25 to 1.5 ounces.

In fact, there was a huge kerfuffle when we broke the news MGM Resorts had reduced its shot size from 1.5 ounces to 1.25 ounces back in 2016.

And by “reduced,” of course, we mean “improving the customer experience by offering a consistent product.” No, really, that was MGM Resorts’ response to our story back in the day. And they said it with a straight face.

Who would’ve imagined 1.5 ounces would be considered a “long pour” one day?

We anticipate a similar sentiment from Linq Hotel + Experience (the resort’s official name) and its owner Caesars Entertainment, but a .75-ounce pour seems much tougher to defend. It’s possible they’ll go the “this was communicated to staff in error” route (rogue beverage managers are everywhere in Las Vegas), but it’s possible Caesars won’t address this matter at all.

We reached out for comment from Caesars, but haven’t received a response. It’s worth noting we can’t recall ever having gotten a response to any Caesars Entertainment inquiry since about 2013, when we had the audacity to Tweet that then-Planet Hollywood headliner Britney Spears lip syncs.

Eldorado Resorts recently took the reins of Caesars Entertainment, so perhaps while they’re reviewing short-sighted policies like giving customers a thimble of liquor in their drinks, they can also take a closer at the company’s P.R. practices. Just saying.

Linq cocktail WTF

Situations like this are pretty much why “WTF” was invented.

The Linq’s new .75 ounce pour mandate is doubly concerning because this reduced pour applies not just to comped (free) drinks, according to the management memo, but also those
drinks customers pay for.

Casinos sometimes play a little fast and loose with comped drinks, including swapping the premium liquor a customer orders with a generic brand. But they tend to follow stricter guidelines with drinks people pay for.

Despite the downsizing of the standard pour at Linq, we trust the prices will remain unchanged.

The memo makes it clear if you want a “double,” or two .75-ounce portions, you’ll be dinged twice. For slightly more liquor than a traditional pour.

Our source said this puts the price of a double at Linq in the neighborhood of $32.

This move to reduce pour sizes would be baffling at any time, but seems especially misguided now.

We walked through Linq recently, and there were virtually no customers. Entire swaths of table games have been removed and replaced with slot machines. Such moves make some sense given low demand (table games involve much higher labor costs), but even if these changes are temporary, you’d think casinos would want to draw customers, not repel them with weak drinks.

Linq problems

Bonus points if you spot the carpet from the 10 minutes when Linq was The Quad.

The plot, like your cocktail, thins further as one wonders whether this new .75 ounce standard pour policy will be limited to Linq.

We’ve done this long enough to know big casino companies often test the waters before rolling out new procedures across all their locations.

Back in the day, Mirage tried drink ticket vouchers at one video poker bar. Today, drink monitoring is everywhere.

While Las Vegas has been distracted (understatement of the year) by the pandemic, it’s clear some of the town’s pre-COVID challenges persist.

Visitation in Las Vegas was already flat prior to the pandemic. This was mainly due to legalized gambling across the country, but it was also related to the increasingly widespread view Las Vegas has become a place where nickel-and-diming isn’t just an annoyance, it’s standard practice.

The perception problem has never been addressed, and policies like the one at Linq aren’t helping, they’re likely to make the issue worse just as people are thinking about travel to Las Vegas again.

To put this in layperson terms, “Have they lost their damn minds?”

Las Vegas visitors are looking for more value, not 40% less. Because that’s what it means to reduce a pour from 1.25 ounces to .75 ounces. Talk about a buzzkill.

Casinos that scrutinize their bottom lines at the expense of customer experiences had better get their act together. Otherwise, when visitors do flood back to Las Vegas, some casinos are going to find they’ve stepped over dollars to pick up dimes.

30 thoughts on “Linq Shrinks Strength of Drinks, .75 Ounce Pour Is New Normal

  1. Big vegas fan

    Yet another example of corporate greed in the casino industry!!!! I remember Westward Ho and the 99cent margaritas that actually had alcohol in them. Sad !!!

  2. Gaggles

    Eff El Dorado. First the new mgr at Paris and Bally’s cutting back on comped booze to gamblers and now this. Eff these guys and gamble elsewhere.

  3. Dean

    Gaggles, its not just Paris and Bally’s cutting back on comped drinks…..I think this is something that is going corporate wide. Harrahs Laughlin just started limiting many drinks to only Diamond Elite players and higher about 2 weeks ago. I like to drink the Crown Royal and they will no longer provide that as a comp. It will be interesting to see what they offer in the Diamond Lounges if they ever reopen (and if they only pour .75 ounce shots in there).

  4. JP

    Just validating further my decision to move my gambling from Caesars to MGM properties starting this year. Caesars management is so out of touch with reality and what their customers want it is no wonder El Dorado swallowed their failing company in the merger. No idea why they kept the Caesars brand as it means practically nothing anymore with the piss poor way it has been run. I’m staying comped at Linq March 17-22 and I won’t even wager a cent there now.

  5. Matt

    For the first time in over thirty years, I didn’t go to Las Vegas a single time last year. They aren’t giving me any reason to come back with this kind of bullshit.

  6. Hornbet

    I visited Vegas in November and will be back in 3 weeks. I get a room on the Strip, but most of my time is spent Downtown, where the slots seem looser, table minimums lower, and THE POURS ARE BETTER!

  7. Moi

    In Canada, a shot is 1 ounce.
    If it got around that a bar or establishment such as a Casino was ‘short-pouring’ it would be reported to our liquor licensing authority. AND that establishment would have their license suspended.

    If the Linq is about to do this there should be consequences, especially to PAYING customers.
    They should also have to POST that they do this to let the consumer know….SO THAT THEY GET THE F**K OUT OF THERE!!

  8. Michael Alexakis

    Time for the other competing corporations to step up, seems to me there is a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow… Complimentary adult beverages handed out to gamblers was never in history done out of benevolence or brotherhood, it has always been a means to an end. Shorting drinks by fractions of an ounce is a terrible look in the minimum, to see it in writing like this along with the initials POS is just ironic, baby… I only drink alcohol when we go to Hugo’s Cellar for dinner, Dean the bartender is a Grand Master, he makes a raspberry lemon drop that tastes like candy and turns me into a two bit comedian… I can’t imagine having to down multiple watered down drinks to get there, I always order water for my free drinks… To some at the poker table the visits of the cocktail waitresses are a religious event, so I get it that this is a serious business, MGM should not follow suit…

  9. Carl

    These casino operators remind me of rust belt cities lthat raise taxes because of less taxpayers and business thus driving more taxpayers and business away having the opposite effect. Just keep it up with parking, resort, and other fees and watch what happens.

  10. Mike H

    To witness Corporate greed backfiring, one only needs to walk through a Mall…..

    Once again Scott, thanks for alerting us, I will gamble somewhere else….

  11. Randy Diamond

    Short Shots, No Call Booze Allowed, Limited Service. These are sad times for Las Vegas and Nevada. There was a time pre-pandemic that we were Diamond Players at Caesars. The Diamond Lounges started cutting hours, reducing food choices and cutting drinks. When the value of the experience has a reduction; the willingness to “Invest” in the fun of gambling disappears. Doesn’t look like we are going back now that we have learned to live without this form of entertainment. Say what you want … Harrah, Boyd and Stupak for better or worse, knew how to treat the customer in the old days. We got to see Tom Petty, Rolling Stones, Aerosmith and countless other shows for free … (Well not really free, but due to our excessive play). Now to go to a nightclub (That no longer exist for now) you have to pay 1000 dollars for some cheap booze just to sit down for an hour. Strange Times !

  12. Johnny Canuck

    So now I can brag that I had 20 drinks and didn’t cough my cookies. I sure can hold my liquor now better I ever did!

  13. David

    A drink is meant to be a recipe, it has proportions. When you reduce the amount of spirit it changes the taste. Unless they shrink the glass sizes it means bad drinks, bad tips and loss of customers, loss of sales. Absolutely idiotic and I hope they get their senses back and reverse this.

    Mgm is a little inconsistent with drink comps between the properties but usually there is at least one bar in each resort that doesn’t do Ticket system. Aria is my favorite where for the most part the bartenders still have some independence.

  14. Chris

    I am Diamond with Caesars. I just spent 10 days in Vegas and did not step foot in a Caesars resort other than to put money on my mobile sports account and take it out. I have moved all of my play to Cosmo, downtown and MGM resorts (because thats where I stayed for part of my trip). Its a very bad sign for these resorts that people like me are not playing there. They just don’t make you feel wanted as a customer and this is just another example.

    1. JP

      I’m in the same boat Chris. I’m Diamond with Caesars as well and have gambled almost exclusively at Caesars for the better part of the last 10+ years when I visit Vegas. I’m going for March Madness and will be staying at the Linq since it is free to stay, but the only time that I will spend there is to sleep. My time will be spent at MGM resorts for the most part as I switch over to them for offers so my future trips will be booked with MGM. I thought Caesars had hit rock bottom already and then I see this about their watered down drinks. I wonder if these ill advised cost cutting initiatives that directly alienate the customer base are being driven by the same executives that sunk the Caesar’s brand to the low state it is currently at or if this is an El Dorado measure and a sign of even worse things to come.

  15. Paulz

    I moved all my play from Caesars to MGM this year. MGM has its problems, but Caesars has taken “for granted” to a whole new level.

  16. Chuck

    People go to Vegas to have fun. Resort fees, paid parking, crappy pay out tables might be acceptable to some folks. But nobody stays in a bar with watered down drinks. This is just nuts.

  17. Frank

    Just went to Harrahs order a Pepsi at the the bar $6.50 also order a shot of Jameson $15.46. Ask the bartender how much for house vodka soda which is .75 oz pour $13.01. Have no clue what they are doing.

  18. Grish

    I’ve been gambling and staying at Linq since the renovations from IP to Quad and I have never thought they put much alcohol in their drinks at the tables. My drink is a Vodka Red Bull and I could drink all day and not even be drunk and also a little sleepy! This is nothing new to me. Numerous hours on the craps table or BJ and a little funny how my wife or buddies would be drunk after drinking beers and I wouldn’t be after drinking all of that “Vodka”. haha They do, however, always pour very strong drinks at O’Sheas. Interested to see how this affects their pours as they weren’t consistent with inside Linq already. We’ll be back for March Madness as well and maybe even at the end of this month and am curious. The concerning thing is that they are doing this for purchased drinks. That is the most WTF moment for me. We are also Diamond Plus and are looking at switching to MGM after 12 years. We gambled and had drinks at Venetian in January and it was actually quite refreshing! We may look at switching there too!

  19. Leon

    I was just in Vegas in January and I kept saying… My drinks in the bars at the casinos were weak. It was so bad I went to liquor store and got my own liquor and even glasses and I took it to my room and made my own drinks with juice. Saved me money and the anger of paying for drinks where you couldn’t even taste the liquor. They’ve been cutting back since the pandemic. Resort fees at some places going up. It’s turning me off from Vegas.


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