The Evolution of Casino Chips and Tokens

If you’ve ever played at a casino, casino chips are an integral part of gambling. They serve as currency that can be used in both online and land-based establishments alike.

Before the introduction of casino chips, people used coins, gold nuggets and other valuable objects as their gambling tokens. This caused chaos in games and made it difficult for gamblers to keep track of their bets.


Casino chips and tokens have been around since the 19th century. Gambling was quite common at this time, with players using a variety of items to wager: gold dust, nuggets, coins, and paper money among them.

To standardize gambling games, saloons and casinos began producing standardized playing currency. These early chips were typically made out of ivory, bone or wood.

With time, these chips began to look more and more like the ones we use today. They became the standard in most casinos and a beloved collectible for gamblers.


Casino chips and tokens are small discs used as currency in casinos. Usually made of compression-molded clay or colored metal, but some may also be injection-molded plastic.

Playable casino chips can be found both offline and online casinos. They’re also known as gaming chips, checks, cheques or poker chips.

Traditional potato chips were made from clay, but modern technologies allow for the production of full-color and beautiful chips. These include computer-aided design capabilities, laser etching technology and manufacturing methods.

These new types of chips are not only cheaper, but lighter and easier to manage. Furthermore, they boast greater security compared to traditional ones – making them increasingly popular with both players and casinos alike. Furthermore, these chips come in different denominations with custom-tailored labels, further adding to their appeal.


In the early days of gambling, players used any object they could find as a form of representation for cash. This could range from small pieces of gold to coins or paper money.

Eventually, saloons and casinos created standardized chips to replace these valuable objects. In the 18th century, these tokens were made with ivory or clay in various designs.

Today, most casino chips are uniform in color. This makes it simpler for dealers and security personnel to determine how much money a player is betting.

Unfortunately, counterfeit casino tokens still exist on the market. To combat this, manufacturers have implemented anti-cheat measures such as custom colors, UV markings, high-resolution art and sometimes RFID technology.


Casino chips and tokens are a widely-used form of gambling currency, both at land-based and online casinos.

The use of tokens is subject to various regulations. These include color, weight, size, designs and materials.

In certain jurisdictions, the Gaming Control Board or national gaming regulators are responsible for overseeing the use of these tokens. These boards review and approve their design and features before they can be utilized in a casino setting.

Casino chips typically range in value from $1 to $10 and may be customized with higher values in certain social casinos; these chips tend to be either blue or white in color.


Casinos of the past often disposed of their chips and tokens in various ways. Some were dumped into nearby lakes, while others served as foundation fill for abandoned casino structures.

Today, outdated chips are destroyed by Gaming Control Board-approved disposal companies. Expirated chips are loaded into a truck and crushed by a tumbler into dust.

The chip destruction process is overseen and monitored by the Nevada Gaming Commission, who require to be present during auditing and witnessing of the destruction.

In addition to chip destruction, many casinos also employ NSA listed disintegrators to destroy old dice, cards, gaming tokens and ID badges. Not only does this protect the casino’s brand image, but it helps prevent fraudulence from outside parties as well. Though time-consuming and costly, this step is necessary in order to keep the establishment secure.

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