“If you're playing a poker game and you look around the table and can't tell who the sucker is, it's you.” Paul Newman hit the nail on the head: if you’re going to gamble, go in with your eyes wide open; know what you need to win; and how likely it is you’re going to lose.

Whether you just enjoy playing a few slots at home, or you’re heading to Vegas on a trip of a lifetime, we’re going to take you on a crash course of the games you’re going to want to play – and the odds you have for winning.

Afterall, as Newman also reflected: “A dollar won is twice as sweet as a dollar earned.”


Poker hand

When it comes to table games, Blackjack is your best bet (if you’ll excuse the pub). No other casino game gives you as good odds.

And it’s incredibly simple to play, so you’re less likely to trip yourself up. You're simply looking for a number that beats the dealer's number without going over 21.

The house edge in blackjack is as low as 1% when a basic strategy is implemented.

Play long enough, and the house will eventually win.


Craps at a casino

Once you’ve got over the name (stop sniggering in the back!), Craps is one of the most exciting games you can play at a casino.

It’s also one of the most enticing, as the house edge for the most basic – Pass Line – bet is just 1.41%.

The name actually derives from the French ‘crapaud’, meaning toad, a reference to the way players would squat down to shoot dice on the streets.

These days, if you’re playing craps you’ll most likely be standing up at a casino table. Rather than betting against others, you’re playing against the house.

With odds of 2.51 to 2.44, a pass bet is nearly – but not quite – the flip of a coin. Of course, there’s an extensive range of bets that offer larger returns, but the bigger the potential gains, the bigger the risk you’ll need to take.



No other casino game is more symbolic than roulette: your fate in the spin of the wheel.

Of course, as with any casino game, there are ways to push the odds in your favour.

Naturally, simply better in red or black is entry level – win and you double your money. The odds aren’t actually 50:50, though – there is one catch that gives the house its edge: the extra green 0 position on the wheel just tips it in their favour.

If you’re feeling lucky, you might be tempted to bet on your lucky number, as the payout is 36 to 1. But beware, the most experienced croupiers are able to effect where the ball will fall within a few numbers, so you’re best to spread your bets across the board.


Poker hand

Poker virgins should avoid playing at the casino. You want to practise at home first – online is good, with your mates IRL is better.

The competition can be high at poker tables, so novices are best to give them a wide berth.

Probability can only get you so far. Even if you were a human calculator, poker is a psychological game where tells, psychology, and dynamics come into play.

In terms of odds, a Royal Flush comes in at 649,739 : 1. So we wouldn’t bet your house on it.


Slots at a casino

Casino slots are too diverse for us to give specific odds here. They can range from one-in-5,000 to one-in-about-34-million.

However, there are some good rules of thumb you might want to consider if they do take your fancy.

The more money you put in per bet, the higher your chance of winning. If you put the max in a penny machine – which is usually around 50 cents in Vegas – you have much better odds than if you put in 2 cents.

Also, in general, the penny slots have lowest odds, with $1 and $5 slots paying much better.

Above all, only ever gamble for fun; always gamble responsibly; and never bet more than you can afford to lose.