Gambling hints

I’m about to go on a cruise. I never gamble, but will probably wander into the casino at some time. I understand the best odds, excepting bacarat are with craps and blackjack. What simple method gives the best results, or what website is best in explaining this to me. I tried googling and couldn’t find an easy succinct web site.

This belongs in IMHO. I’ll move it for you.

General Questions Moderator

My only advice on gambling is “Don’t”. Even on games with the best odds, you are more than likely to come up a loser. The slots on the ships are the worst from what I hear.

You are going on a vacation. Don’t risk ruining it by losing a wad of cash. If you are going to rationalize it with “I can afford to lose XX amount. I have it bugeted in advance!” , you are really fooling yourself. You are really planning on the big score and are willing to lose XX amount. Well, people rarely stop at XX, and end up getting in over their heads.

If you are really okay with losing XX, go out and buy something nice for yourself or your family and feel good about it.

I grew up in Nevada, worked at many a casino (in the food end) and still am a resident the state. My brothers both work in the gaming industry. All I can tell you is, its a bad scene. In my opinion, it is the worst form of entertainment available. Worse than sitting in front of a Playstation on a nice day. It is the cigarette of entertainment. I’ve seen many a human tragedy unfold due to gambling. The only real winners are the ones running the game.

Have a nice cruise. (you’ll need that gambling money for booze on those ships. trust me)

“Lets get them meek bastards NOW!

Some people are disciplined enough to have fun at gambling and walk away from a loss without total devastation.

I set two limits for myself when I go on a trip where some gambling might be involved. A daily limit, and a trip limit. My daily loss limit was $200 and my trip loss limit was $500 on my last trip. When you go into the casino, don’t even allow yourself the means to purchase more than your daily limit in chips. I bring no credit cards or bank cards, just my $200 in cash. Even if I have a big winning day, next day I stop once I lose $200.

OK on to the actual games. I play blackjack. Here is my simplified strategy guide:

Dealer showing 4-6: Dealer will probably bust, so play conservative. Don’t take any card that might bust you. Double down if your total is 9-11. (or even 8 if dealer has a 6) Split A’s, 2’s, 3’s, 7’s and 8’s.

Dealer showing 2,3 or 7: Unpredictable, best bet is to play conservative. Don’t take a possible bust card. Double down on 10 and 11. Split A’s, 7’s and 8’s. Hit on 12 if you’re feeling lucky.

Dealer showing 8: Hit on 14 or lower. Dealer is not likely to bust. Double down on 10 and 11. Split A’s, 7’s, and 8’s.

Dealer showing 9: Hit on 15 or lower. Double down on 11. Same splits.

Dealer showing 10 or A: Say your prayers. Hit on 16 or lower. Double down on 11 if you have a big pair. Split on A’s, only split on 7’s and 8’s if you’ve got your groooove on.

Very interesting, really. Anyone know about craps and how to play the pass line?

dil, no offense, but your advice sucks! It might be acceptable if you were playing single-deck, by yourself or with a good friend, but on a cruise ship (where you will find a giant shoe, no doubt and many other rookie players) it ain’t gonna do any good.

Splitting 7’s? Nut-job strategy! Real good way to lose two hands of 17.

Splitting 2’s? See above, but substitute 12 or another equally shitty number.

If you must, only split Aces and Eights (and Eights only if you don’t mind losing too often and the dealer has a shit card up)

About that dealer card showing- I can’t begin to tell you how often a 4 showing turns out to be a 19 or 21! Increadibly depressing how often it happens!

The only sucess I have ever had with BlackJack is by letting the dealer bust consistantly. The only way to have a chance at winning is to be in the game at the end. I’ve won by standing on 12’s and 16’s when the dealer ends up getting a 26! But I can’t recommend the experiance in any way.

(In craps, I hear its best to bet against the shooter, but quickly makes you unpopular at the table. Oh well, screw the losers! :D)

Catch a show or walk around on deck and enjoy the sea air, instead of the cigarette smoke and bad neon lighting.

Never kiss an animal that can lick its own butt.

The secret to craps and in fact to gambling in general is money management. Just because you have a pile of cash in front of you doesnt mean you play that pile until it all goes away or a certain amount is made. It dont work that way and in fact playing that way just makes more money for the house.

When you play craps, you have your start money. I usually start with anywhere between 40 to 80 bucks depending on how the table is playing. If its crowded and lively, more money is needed to start. If its dull and lifeless, I’d plunk less money in. Play in the lively noisy table. more fun and more chances to win. Look for a table where one guy (or gal) has been throwing the dice for ages. work with him. If the dice keeps changing hands, work against them.

Working with them means you put you money on the “Pass line”. be sure to put odds on your bet. Better returns. Ask the croupier if you dont know how thats done. Dont be afraid or intimidated to ask. youre there to have fun. Dont let the asshole who thinks he’s cool tell you what to do, they usually lose.

Working against them means you play the “Dont Pass line” It just means if the shooter loses, you win. Dont play that when youre the shooter.

“Place” a 6 dollar bet on 6, 8 or a 5 dollar bet on 4, 9 when the shooter gets a point. rake in the money each time he rolls that number. If he gets the “point” number before rolling a 7, your “Line” bet wins.

Money Management. Your start money and all your winnings are what you play with until they are all gone. It pretty much determines (along with your luck) how long you play at the table. Heres the key. You always should have your start money amount. Anything lower (you lose) then you leave the table. Take a break, walk around, clear your head, join another lively table. If your “winnings” equal your start amount, take that amount and pocket it! Do not play with any money you have pocketed. So if you doubled your start money, put it away and let what you have work their magic. Again if what you have on the table is lower than your start money amount, take them and walk away. That takes a lot of discipline but you’ll end up with a pocket full of chips at the end of your gambling night.

then put your hands in your pockets and ask your SO if she wants what you have in your hands. :smiley:

How to play the Pass Line

You put the minimum bet on a Pass line before the guy throwing the dice called the shooter throws the dice. Always put full odds on a pass line bet. Ask the stickmen what it is on what you laid down.

If the dice comes out 7 or 11, you win

If the dice rolls a 2, 3 or 12, thats craps and you lose.

Any other number besides those 5 comes up and that becomes the point. The game now becomes rolling that number again before a 7. Get the point and you win. Roll a 7 before that and you lose and a new shooter takes over. When you have a point, a 2,3 or 12 wont affect your Pass line bet. Its pretty much stuck there (you cant touch it, change it, or take it away) until either a 7 or your point is rolled.

Never bet on the big 6 and 8, field bets or the hardways. Those are sucker bets and multi-billion dollar casinos are built on those bets.

Pass line-shmass line.You want action you play the numbers (that’s the 4/5/6/8/9/10 layout)You get odds and always have action (except on the comeout roll)

Follow along with the shooter,deciding when it’s time to “off the number” (you don’t want to keep a number around indefinitely at some point the shooter’s going to crap out and you’re holding a 6 bet bag)

The beauty of it is you don’t have to concern yourself with the shooter making a point-just the number of times you feel you can “press” your bet (let it ride as opposed to taking the win that instant).It lets you (at least me) get a clearer idea about how much is riding looking at your table rack and what’s out on board.
That’s called money management.

I’ve had times when I started with the minimum bet you need to cover the numbers (ask the dealer he’ll tell you),and run it up over 1k in less than an hour by pressing,dragging (pulling bet back) action thru many different shooters.

Also had times when I wasn’t so fortunate-but was always involved with the game,not just hanging back waiting on a decision on the pass or don’t pass.
A variation is the “come” line where you establish a point in that shot,but you don’t get odds unless you back it up,and you’re vulnerable to a craps roll on the comeout.

Thats called “Placing” a bet, dude. the numbers 5,6,8,9 have the highest chance of coming which was why I play and recommended it.

The info on how to play the Pass Line was in response to dauerbach’s post.

Craps might be a little complicated for someone who “never gambles.” For blackjack, some casinos will let you use a small card that shows you when to hit, stand, etc. Some will even provide you with one if you ask. But other players at the table may get annoyed waiting for you to look up each hand.

There’s no game in the casino that doesn’t have a house edge so just play something you like. Luck is a bigger factor than skill anyway, in my experience.

Video poker that pays 8/1 on a flush, 5/1 on a straight, and 2/1 on two pair is gentle on your bankroll.

Don’t play the slots; don’t play craps unless you can understand a little about it-- and then play the pass line and max. odds; do play blackjack but learn basic strategy before you do. Try to get a good basic strategy chart. The blackjack strategy tips offered so far were correct about a couple points, but wrong on others. Just learn the basic strategy and you’ll be OK. Never go with hunches or feelings

Playing craps is easy. Stick to pass line bets with odds. Just watch the table for a little while. Those are the bets that most players make. I believe that being a “wrong-way” bettor (betting no-pass) offers a very slight advantage over betting on the pass line but then you end up being the one guy on the table that is pulling for everybody else to lose. It takes too much fun out of it for me. I’m not there to make money anyway. I’m there to have a good time.

As for blackjack, I learned the following six rules from Casino Player magazine. If you follow them, you will (statistically speaking) average returns of over 99%. They’re not perfect but they’re close enough and easy enough for a beginner.

  1. Dealer rules. Stand on 17 or higher. The exception is to hit soft hands up to 18.
  2. Stand on hard 12 - 16 when the dealer is showing a 6 or less.
  3. Always split aces and 8’s.
  4. Double down if you have a 10 or 11 showing and your total is higher than the dealer’s card.
  5. Split all pairs except 4s, 5s, and 10s with the dealer showing 2 - 6.
  6. Double down all soft hands up to 18 with the dealer showing 4 - 6.

If you’re going to play blackjack, it wouldn’t hurt to download a copy (I like 5 Star Casino) and practice. That way you’ll be prepared.

Good luck.


Call it what you want-dude-place a bet put a bet-you’re betting the numbers on a craps layout to a player or dealer-which include the 4 and 10.You do this for the odds,and the action.

My brother gambles semi-professionally. He never plays anything except poker. All other games pits you against the house, and in the long term the house loses. Poker pits you against other players, and if you pick your opponents right, you can win. (The house gets a cut of each pot, which is where they make their money). He likes to gamble around the edges of tournaments, which often draw people who are not very good. Of course this is a very risky strategy if you aren’t good. There was an article in the Times about playing on-line, so that you don’t have to worry about telegraphing your hand, and where the minimum bets are smaller.

He used to play blackjack by counting, but this is getting increasingly difficult. Sometimes he does a drunk act to draw attention away from himself.

As for me, I figure if I keep my losses to around what I would pay for a movie that kept me entertained a similar amount of time, I’m happy.

The advice you want depends on your goal of the trip. If you want to keep losses to a minimum here is what you do. First, play Blakcjack with a good “basic strategy.” You can find this on many websites and it is not nearly as daunting a task to learn as you might think at first glance. Once you really study it, most of the rules just make good sense and you just have to learn a few exceptions. There will be some minor variations according to which website you go to, mostly concerning when to surrender, when to double on non-10/11 totals and soft hand advice, but it doesn’t matter too much which table you learn. You can memorize most of the rules in probably one or two hours. The second set out rules outlined above it pretty close to a good basic strategy list, but there are some thing I disagree with in that post.

      Second, play craps with only come and pass line bets.  This gets a bit boring, which is why I don't play it much, but its the safest way.  Despite the adivce given above, the odds aren't as good once you start betting the field.  Plus it can get confusing, especially for a beginner.  Both these games played in this manner give probably a 1% or less advantage to the house.  You probably won't lose much money.  However, like I said, admittedly the craps game can get a bit tedious this way.  

     If you really want to go over the top and get an advantage at the Blackjack table, you have to learn to count cards.  The simplest system is probably K-O.  You can buy the book on Amazon for like $15 bucks.  However, it takes a lot of practice to learn to count well enough to keep track of the cards at a fast paced table.  It best just to start with basic strategy for awhile before trying to incorporate any card counting.  

     I have had pretty good success following just those rules in the casino.  I have only lost money I think twice and came out ahead probably 6 times or so.  Its true that you can't beat the Casino in the long run, but remember you have the chance to quit while you're ahead.  No on can force you to keep playing except yourself.

   If you're just in it for fun and don't mind a little risk, follow these rules most of the time but go out on a limb once in awhile if you get a good feeling about the cards or the dice.  I just wouldn't make a habit of it or you could either lose a lot or lose most of your money quickly.  And set a limit before you start how much you will spend.

The best advice I can give you is don’t gamble to win, gamble for fun. Over a long enough period of time the house will win. They don’t build multi-billion dollar casinos in Las Vegas by losing.

Play blackjack rather than craps. With blackjack you can play for a long time with not too much money. With craps you can lose a lot very, very quickly. $100 will probably get you at least a couple of hours at a blackjack table (if the minimum is a $5 bet) but you could lose it all in 10 minutes at a craps table.

Set yourself a limit and look at it as the cost of a night out. If you end up winning, good for you but most likely you will lose it all (especially if you are new to gambling).

The quickest and safest way of doubling your money is by folding it in half.[ul]Honeur de Balzac[/ul]

First advice: don’t gamble. You will lose over the long run.

Second advice: if you’re willing to risk losing money, and want quick thrills, play Craps. I always play pass/max odds, with a minimum of 3x odds. If there are no craps tables with odds, I don’t bother.

Quickie instructions on how to play Craps with pass/max odds:

  1. Wait until the shooter is about to establish a new point.
  2. Place the minimum bet on “Pass.”
  3. Wait for shooter to set his point.
  4. Place 3x/5x/10x/whatever times your minimum bet behind your original bet. E.g., if the table is 5x odds and your original bet was $10, slap down $50 behind it.
  5. Pray the shooter makes his point.

If the luck is against you, you’ll lose your money real quick and go search for a cheap drink. If the dice are in your favor, you will win money toot sweet – I more than doubled my $100 kitty at a $10 minimum/5x odds table in ten minutes the last time I went to Vegas.

But win or lose, you’ll definitely not be bored! :wink:

Do all you folks saying “Don’t gamble - you’ll lose” also tell folks “don’t go to movies - you’ll lose” or “don’t go see a show - you’ll lose”

This is somebody going on a cruise and looking for some entertainment. Gambling is a form of entertainment with a plus; I’ve never left a movie theatre with more money than I entered it with.