Casinos may be willing to pay you by check if you win thousands of dollars (or more) on one of their The Ugly Side of You hope to win games. Sure, they want you to keep playing so that they win some of that money back but you have the right to leave with all your winnings.
In a land based casino if you take most or all your prize money in check format then you cannot fritter it away. On the other hand, cashing a check from an online casino may be problematic.
Make it as hard on yourself to gamble away your winnings as possible.
Whether you are playing at land based casinos or online casinos, draw up a list of their table minimums, special rules, theoretical returns to players, and more. Make an informed choice about where you gamble. In Las Vegas, for example, many card players prefer to play at off-strip casinos where the table minimums tend to be lower than at the main strip casinos.
You may not have to change venues to get the best betting limits. Some casinos lower their limits during off-peak hours.
If you know enough to limit your table bets to Pass or Don’t Pass, go ahead and place bets on the Odds when they are available. The house has no edge on Odds bets and this reduces their advantage on the Pass and Don’t Pass bets.
If there are players at a poker table who know each other or the dealer you should pass on playing at that table. These could be yokels who lose their paychecks every week but experienced players often prefer to play with strangers. Local players may be regulars who are very good at poker compared to casual card players.
However if you like a challenge and want to learn poker from people who are better than you then getting to know the local players may be the best way to study the game. Just remember that they will take your money and may not be the best potential friends you can make.
And some of those local guys may work for the casino as well. They keep the tables more full and the games more interesting but they are not playing with their own money. Their interest in the game will be different from yours.