The craps table may appear intimidating at first, but in reality, it’s really quite simple to learn which craps bets to make and which ones to stay away from. Let’s start with the good bets and move down the line from there.
Your Best Bets
The Pass Line and Don’t Pass Line
Betting that the shooter will win and keep the dice is known as the pass line bet. It pays even money and has a house edge of 1.41%. You win with your pass line bet if the point number comes up before a seven and lose if the seven comes up first. The don’t pass line bet is the opposite (you win if the shooter “sevens out”), but has a slightly lower house edge of 1.402%.
The Come and Don’t Come
The come and don’t come bets are very similar to the pass and don’t, but you can only place them after the come out roll. Once you place them and the “come point” is established, you will win on the come bet if that number is rolled again before seven and lose if the seven turns up. The opposite is the case for the don’t come. For more detailed information on the come bet, see our Come Bet section.
Odds Bet: The Sweetest Craps Bet There Is
One of the best bets you can place in the casino occurs at the craps table. If you win on the pass line, don’t pass line, come or don’t come bets and they are backed by what is known as the odds bet (placed directly behind your bet), winning is even sweeter. The odds bet is paid off at true odds of the roll. There is no built-in house advantage at all. Why do you think there is no space advertised for the odds bet on the table? Some casinos allow double odds (a bet at twice the amount of your original wager), some 10, some more. Even at double odds it will bring the house edge down to .63 per cent; at 10 times odds it will bring it down to .2 per cent.
You “take out odds” on the pass line or don’t pass line bets directly after the point has been established, or you can place it after any come bet or don’t come bet when the come point is established. In each case, your odds bet will win if your original bet that you placed it on wins. A good strategy is to put the minimum bet on the original bets, but then back them with maximum odds, increasing your potential profit.
Place bets are bets on specific numbers that stay up until the shooter rolls that number or a seven. You can’t put a place bet on the point number. Since each number has different odds of being rolled, each place bet has a different payout and house edge. It is generally recommended that you only do place bets on the six or eight, as they have a house edge of only 1.52%. Still not as good as the above bets, but not bad. Betting on the six or eight is not to be confused with the Big 6 or Big 8 bets, however, as the house edge on these bets is about 9% - so high that we won’t even dignify it by caring what comes after the decimal point.
The Other Craps Bets (to Avoid)
Every other bet sucks. Plain and simple. But just in case you don’t care how much money you lose and feel like making a variety of bets simply for the fun of it, we’ll discuss them anyway.
This is quite a popular bet for inexperienced players. It might seem like a good bet because of all of the numbers involved, but this is deceiving. First, you’re betting on only the next roll, and second, there are more ways to get the other numbers combined than there are the field numbers combined. All in all this bet has a 5.56% house advantage.
Found in the middle of the craps layout, these bets make up most of the bad bets at the craps table. Quite well advertised on the craps layout, they hold very high house advantages. Don’t let the commotion the stickman makes when someone hits one of these bets fool you. Plenty of people get struck by lightening each year too, but that doesn’t mean you’ll get fried anytime soon. The house edge on these bets range from 9.1% to 16.7%.