Craps may well be the most complicated game in the casino, but craps strategy is actually easy to learn and use.
There is no way you can completely overcome the house advantage in craps but the right craps strategy can significantly reduce it. If you use these tips during your next craps session, you’ll experience a much lower house advantage and still have a great time.
Craps Betting Strategy
Knowing which craps bets to place and which ones to avoid is the single most important part of craps strategy. Some craps bets have a tiny house advantage and others have a house advantage so high that you might as well light your money on fire.
The Best Craps Bets
The Pass Line and Don’t Pass Line bets are the best craps bets to begin each round. The Pass Line bet has a house advantage of 1.41% and the Don’t Pass Line bet has a house advantage of 1.36%. These two bets are among the best bets in the entire casino.
After you place one of those first bets, you have the rest of the craps table open to you. Few people know this but there are actually a couple of craps bets that have 0% house advantage. These are the taking the odds bet and the laying the odds bet. The catch is that you can only place these bets after first placing a Pass Line or Don’t Pass Line Bet.
Most casinos restrict the amount of money you can wager on the odds bets. Some casinos only let you wager the same amount that you wagered on your Pass/Don’t Pass Line bet and other casinos let you wager twice as much as your original bet. The more you can wager on these bets, the more it reduces the overall house advantage.
The Worst Craps Bets
Proposition bets and hardway bets have house advantages that range from 9% to 16%. These bets should not be placed if you care at all about the house advantage. The remaining craps bets have house advantages that range from 1% to 6%. Check out our types of craps bets page to find the house advantage of each bet.
Craps Betting Systems
Craps betting systems do not affect the house advantage in any way. You can use all the betting systems you want and you’ll still end up with the same results in the long run. If you are fond of betting systems, that’s OK too; they don’t hurt you in any way. The only risk you run with betting systems is getting in over your head with systems that tell you to double your bet every time you lose.
Some craps players like to use betting systems that implement hedge betting. This is a type of betting in which you place a variety of bets in an attempt to have at least one win no matter how the dice land. It is true that this strategy limits your losses, but it also limits your wins. In the end, you still experience the same exact house advantage.
Beware of people that try to sell craps betting systems with promises of guaranteed wins. These people are good salesmen but the product they are pitching is snake oil. There is no secret craps betting system out there that can beat the house advantage. If there was, you can be sure that nobody would be out there selling it.
Craps Bankroll Management
Bankroll management is just as important in craps as it is in any other casino game. When you play craps, you should always play with money that you have set aside specifically for gambling. A craps bankroll is important because it keeps your gambling money separate from the money you need for bills and groceries.
It is also smart to size your bets according to your bankroll. You should keep your bets small relative to your bankroll because it gives you breathing room (and a chance to recover) should you hit a bad streak of bets. A solid strategy is to make your bets equal to about 1-5% the size of your total bankroll.
Know When to Quit
Smart craps players set both a maximum win limit and maximum loss limit. If you ever cross one of those limits, it’s time to pack it up and call it a day. The maximum win limit helps you lock in your wins while the maximum loss limit helps you keep from getting in over your head.
It is also a good idea to set a time limit and stick to it. Time flies at the casino and it’s easy to spend way too much time at the casino. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it can lead to bad habits. It’s important to make sure you’re always able to make yourself quit when you know you should. If you ever start having a hard time pulling yourself away from the tables, it’s time to take a break from gambling.