6 Things Casinos Don’t Want You to Know About Your Odds

Think you can beat the odds? Think again. Here are a few insider secrets to keep up your sleeve the next time you're ready to try your luck.

from Forbidden Advice (Reader's Digest Association Books)

Women at a Casino© Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Thinkstock
Think you can beat the odds? Think again. Here are a few insider secrets to keep up your sleeve the next time you’re ready to try your luck.

  • There’s a difference between the true odds of your winning any particular bet and the odds the casino actually uses to pay you if you do win. That difference is always in the casino’s favor and it’s the reason casino owners (always a government agency in Canada) are rich and you’re not.
  • Because of the house edge, the casino will always win in the long run, no matter how smart you are, how good you think your system is, or how lucky you are. The Las Vegas strip is paved with the losses of innocent fun-seekers who don’t know that.
  • Some of the games have a much smaller house advantage than others, so your chances of walking away a winner after playing them are higher. This assumes, however, that you play the best strategy and that you’re able to walk away while ahead.
  • If gamblers only played blackjack, mini-baccarat, pai-gow poker, live poker, the sports book, and bingo, they’d lose a lot less money. Those are games with a house edge of less than 3 percent.
  • The casino loves to see you playing games like Caribbean Stud Poker, Let It Ride, Red Dog, single-deck 21, and those undignified spectacles like the Big Wheel or Wheel of Fortune. The house edge on these is astronomical.
  • Playing keno is the equivalent of making a charity donation to the casino ownership. Yes, the young keno ladies are friendly and they need the tips. And yes, it’s simple and kind of fun to try to divine some numbers while you’re at the coffee shop or buffet or bar. Just be aware that the house advantage in keno can run as high as 50 percent. You’re better off playing the state or provincial lottery — it’s essentially the same game, but at least you’re donating your money to the public good instead of business magnates.

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  • Your Comments

    • Angrygraduate

      bingo? which retard wrote this?

    • Tim

      Casinos are evil, I’ve been trying for 6 years to find or develop the best system to legally take them down, and I might be getting close by experience

    • Dan Hilbert

      Here’s a good tip.  Never, ever, absolutely never, play a slot machine that has more than three reels or a video game that uses pennies as its denominations.  These video penny machines seldom cough up a big win.  Another tip:  Stay away from casinos, absolutely.  All the fun and excitement has been snuffed out by the bean counters in the last 8 years.  I used to get a buffet for $5.99 or a breakfast for $1.99.  No longer.  A buffet now cost $25.  

    • Lzendel

      Surprised you didn’t include craps in the group with odds under 3%. Craps played with only pass line wagers with odds behind the line is less than 1% against the player. But even so give the table enough time and that 1% will still do you in.

    • Jmoss

      “…live poker… Those are games with a house edge of less than 3 percent.”

      You’re playing against other players, not the house when playing poker.  The casino/poker room rents the chair or rakes the pot.

    • American Casino Guide

      The are some incorrect statements in this story. For example, the house edge on single-deck blackjack is not astronomical. It could be as low as one-tenth of one percent. It all depends on the rules of the game.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_2UVBVPSHNWKO5XQ6VHECWTESKQ Eric Bryce

      Also, the odds are you will never see a clock on the wall at a casino.  They don’t want you to know what the time of day (or night).  They hope you lose track of time while you are gambling.

    • Bmickler

      This artcle is useless

    • Live4fun

      what an absolute waste of a story, did you pay for this?

    • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/KKSEG5V5XHGL46Z5WLQGM4MVBY John

      The European Commission has something to say about EU countries that make the “public good” argument about gambling: they order them to stop doing it, as it is a violation of EU competition regulations.  In the USA, the problem is the roughly half of the states deliberately make their income tax laws on gambling winnings and losses non-compliant with Federal law.  Some are doing it for extra cash, but some are doing it as a back-door attempt to bar high-stakes gambling by their residents, which Federal and a string of Federal court cases forbid them to do directly.