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How to win at craps?

This is designed to inform you of a playing strategy that will reduce the House advantage to about 1% or less.

Familiarise yourself with the following bets: Pass Line, Come, Don’t Pass, Don’t Come, and Place. Nearly all casinos offer a free gaming guide that will explain these bets.

Watch a game in operation until you know the procedures for throwing the dice, making bets and collecting payoffs. Ask a dealer if in doubt about any aspect of the game.

Most people are “Right” bettors, making Pass Line and Come bets and hoping that the shooter will make several points before rolling a 7. Pass Line and Come bets have a house advantage of 1.41%, which can reduce the House edge to a low of 0.18%.

Pass Line and Come (as well as Don’t Pass and Don’t Come discussed below) are all paid off at even money, but the odds bet is paid off according to true mathematical odds.

The odds ratio (the ways of rolling a 7 compared to the ways of rolling some other number) is:

6:3 (2:1) on the 4 or 10
6:4 (3:2) on the 5 or 9
6:5 on the 6 or 8

Example: If you bet $5 on the Pass Line and the Point is either 4 or 10 you could now take $5 single odds. If the Point is made, you would win $5 on your Pass Line bet and $10 (2:1) on your odds bet. If you took double odds ($10 as an odds bet), you would win $5 on your Pass Line bet and $20 on your odds bet.

Begin by betting the Pass Line and “taking” the odds. When you are comfortable with the Pass Line bet with odds add a Come bet and “take” the odds.

If winning, make another Come bet and “take” the odds.

You now have three bets working – Pass Line bet with odds and two Come bets with odds. Remember your numbers, keep track of your payoffs and retrieve your money promptly.

You might want to occasionally Place the 6 and/or 8. In this case you would put $6 or 6 chips (or any increment of 6) in the Come area and tell the dealer to “Place the 8” (assuming that the 8 is not already your Pass Line Point or Come number). If the 8 is made before a 7, you would be paid off at the ration of 7:6 on the Place bet. This bet has a house advantage of 1.52%.

At times you might prefer to be a “Wrong” bettor, betting that the shooter will not make many points. Bet Don’t Pass and Don’t Come and “Lay” the odds. In this case, you have to “Lay” the larger number (or increments thereof) in the odds ratio to receive the smaller payoff. Don’t Pass and Don’t Come bets have a House advantage of 1.40% which can be reduced to .69% by “Laying” single odds and .46% by “Laying” double odds. The edge is only .12% at 10 times odds.

Recommended Reading

For more detailed information and resources on Craps tips and strategy check out Wizard of Odds.

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