Why Casino Owners Love Roulette and Baccarat

Thursday, December 11, 2014

I used to wonder why most of the casinos I visit in India, Sri Lanka, Macau, or Singapore, have more tables of Roulette and Baccarat than those of Blackjack. After a while I began to understand the probable reasons. In some places the players found Blackjack too technical or less-paying. Baccarat or Roulette on the other hand are more fun to play. Not much of a strategy needed, just listen to your inner voice and place the bet. Shout with joy upon a winning and bang the table or even tear away the cards in anger (Baccarat) upon losing. The story in Macau and Singapore is a little different. Casinos are big, seasoned players from all over the world play in those casinos, and as such, the demand for Blackjack or Three Card Poker is quite strong there. Still, you will have to walk around a lot to spot a Blackjack or Three Card Poker table whereas Baccarat and Roulette tables would be impossible to miss. That can only mean that the casino owners themselves prefer Roulette and Baccarat over other table games. Keep reading for more...

Players on Roulette Table

Casinos are built so that their owners can make tons of money and that would happen only if the players, collectively, lose their money. My conclusion here is that Roulette and Baccarat make more money for the casino owners than any other table game.

Random Games or Trend-Reading/Strategies Possible

Most Baccarat or Roulette addicts believe that these games can be mastered with strategies. Casino owners encourage this belief by providing free result cards & pencils at the tables so that the "masters" of the games can keep the scores and "win big". The truth is completely different. These two games are completely random, the next hand or spin will play out without any regard to what happened during the previous hand or spin. Casino owners know this truth and they also know that the players believe otherwise. Over the long term, casino owners become richer and the "masters" of these games lose not only their money but also the precious years of their lives still waiting to win at Roulette or Baccarat.

"The only way to beat Roulette is to steal the money when the dealer's not looking."
- Albert Einstein

What is House Edge

Casino gambling is a business for the casino owners, and it is a business because the house always wins in the long run. A few players win occasionally but then they return to casino to lose even more. To be specific, every casino game is designed to ensure a win for the casino in the long run. This sure shot long-term win is called a "House Edge".

Roulette House Edge

House Edge in a game of Roulette when a player bets on a single number (35 to 1) on a Single Zero Wheel is 2.70%. On a Double Zero Wheel, the edge will be 5.26%. Every spin plays out independent of the previous spin and the casino keeps winning a minimum of 2.70% or 5.26% depending on how many zeroes are in the wheel. Strategy masters lose more on Roulette than the casual fun-seekers who play occasionally and not on a regular basis. Remember the saying "Happy Go Lucky"? A casino is supposed to be an entertainment avenue and not a place for gambling away one's hard earned money.

Baccarat House Edge

Baccarat House Edge is much less than Roulette. A casino will earn 1.06% on the Banker bet and 1.24% on the Player bet if eight decks of cards are used in the game. However, on a "Tie" bet, the house edge can be as high as 14% for 8 to 1 payout. Many players bet on Tie and the overall house edge increases. There is no way to track a possible trend in Baccarat, so the trend-keepers end up losing more. The only way to lose less money in Baccarat is to bet on Banker every time, though I know that will be no fun.

Blackjack House Edge

Now the less-popular game, Blackjack, can actually be played with a legal strategy, called Blackjack Basic Strategy. If a player does that, the house edge in Blackjack can be kept down to around 0.50%. Casino owners know that too, hence no point encouraging this game.

Where do the Casino Comps or other Free Stuff Come From?

Ever wonder who pays for those free drinks and snacks that casinos so graciously offer to their players? Or what about that huge network of free shuttle buses running all over Macau? Its the losers, those who know the best Roulette and Baccarat strategies.

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Posted by Narinder Singh


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I left my day job in October 2013 and became a full time blogger. I love travel and hence a travel blog was the obvious place to start from. The result is desiyatri.com. I currently live in Bengaluru, India. - Narinder Singh.


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