One of the most common questions people ask when they meet new people is what do you do? The answer to this question can lead many different ways. When I meet new people and they ask me what I do, I usually tell them I’m a writer.
This is a fairly safe answer, and most of the time they move on. But some people are more curious so they follow up in one of two ways. Sometimes they want to know more about writing. Many people enjoy the idea of being a writer, but most of them aren’t really interested in the work of writing. They want to know how I do it and how they can get started.
This doesn’t have anything to do with gambling. The second way that a few people follow up the question with is by asking what I write about. While I don’t exclusively write about gambling, the truth is that most of what I write deals with gambling.
When the conversation turns to gambling they either lose interest immediately, or they want to know how to be a better gambler. Rarely do I meet someone who knows much of anything about gambling. Most of the people who want to know more want to know how to get started and the best bets in the casino.
I write many articles about the best bets in the casinos and the best way to gamble with a low house edge. But these conversations require more than a few minutes. I decided to put together a short page I could give curious new gamblers a link to so they could give it a quick read and start gambling right away without getting killed by the casino.
This page is the result. If you’re a new gambler, this page will let you get started quickly without losing too much money while you learn more. If you want to help a new gambler get started, you can point them to this article.
I always give a few rules to beginning gamblers to make sure they don’t have a terrible experience. The first rule is to set a firm budget for your first gambling experience and stick with it no matter what. If you’re willing to lose $250, then only take this much to the casino.
The second rule is to always make the minimum bet. As a beginning gambler, you don’t have any idea how to find an edge, so you’re at the mercy of the built in house edge. This means that you’re going to lose until you learn how to play with an advantage. By keeping your wagers small, you minimize your losses.
The third rule is to start learning how the house edge works and find games that give you a realistic chance to win as soon as possible. After you use some of the strategies on this page, keep learning as much as you can about gambling and start looking for an edge.
1 – Good Blackjack Games
You can find blackjack tables in most casinos, so it’s a good game to start with. Most blackjack games have a house edge under 1%, so they don’t drain your bankroll too fast. The first thing you need to do is get a strategy card. You can print out a strategy card or buy one in a casino gift shop.
Using the best blackjack strategy on every hand keeps the house edge as low as possible. The next step is to find games with good rules. You won’t find games with every possible good rule, but you need to look for games that have more good rules than bad.
Here’s a list of good rules:
Dealer stands on a soft 17
Surrender is allowed
Blackjack pays 3 to 2 – Never play at a blackjack table that pays worse than 3 to 2
You can split as many times as you want
You can double down after splitting
You can double down on any two cards
Remember to always make the table minimum wager and never take advice from other players. Any advice contrary to your strategy card is wrong. The final piece of advice is to never take insurance. It’s a bad bet, no matter how good it looks or how many players tell you it’s a good bet.
2 – Video Poker Games
Video poker is easy to play and you don’t have to worry about making a mistake that makes you look silly in front of other players. Some video poker games have a house edge of less than .5%, making them a great option for new players.
The two video poker games that I recommend for new players are Jacks or Better and Deuces Wild. Video poker machines have different pay tables which change the house edge. The best Jacks or Better machines pay nine for a full house and six for a flush. The best Deuces Wild machines use this pay table: 4,000 – 1,000 – 125 – 80 – 50 – 20 – 20 – 15 – 10 – 5.
Once you find a machine with a good pay table, there are only three things you need to do:
Always bet the max five coins so you unlock the bonus for a natural royal flush
Always use a strategy card or chart to make the most profitable play
Play at the lowest coin denomination
3 – Craps Bets
Craps offers may different bets, and some of them have a terrible house edge. But you can stick to two simple wagers with a low house edge. The first bet you need to make is either a pass line or don’t pass line. The second bet is an odds bet after the come out roll.
The pass and don’t pass bets have a house edge of less than 2% and the odds bets have no house edge. By using these two bets together you play with the lowest possible house edge.
Most players make the pass line bet, but it has a slightly higher house edge than the don’t pass wager. It doesn’t make much difference which you bet on in the short run, so make whichever you want.
4 – Baccarat Is Easy
If you’re looking for one of the easiest games to play in the casino with one of the lowest house edges, baccarat is the game for you. The only strategy you need is to always bet on the banker hand. The house edge is just a tad over 1% and the house staff takes care of everything.
All you need to do is bet the table minimum on the banker hand every time. Winning bets on the baker hand pay a commission, but even with the commission the house edge is one of the lowest in the casino. Baccarat is the perfect game for beginning gamblers.
5 – Quarter Slot Machines
Slot machines have a higher house edge than any other games on this list. I usually recommend players not play them, because in addition to having a high house edge, you can play slots faster than any other game.
The reason I include slot machines on this list is because they are the easiest casino game to play. All you have to do is put some money in the machine and press a button.
Slot machines are available in many different denominations, but quarter machines are a good place to start. Find a machine that uses 25 cents for the coin denomination that also allows a single bet on each spin. You can find penny and nickel machines, but rarely can you make a single wager.
When you bet a quarter per spin, you don’t risk too much money, even if you play for several hours. This helps keep your losses down and gives you plenty of time to play on a reasonable bankroll. It also helps if you play slower than you can, because this also reduces the total amount you risk per hour and session.
6 – Even Money Roulette
The even money bets on the roulette wheel don’t offer the lowest house edge in the casino, but you win close to half the time and the game runs slower than many other games. The even money bets are red, black, odd, even, 1 to 18, and 19 to 36.
It’s best to play roulette on a wheel that doesn’t have a double zero space, because it cuts the house edge almost in half.
7 – Betting on Sports
One of the best ways to stretch your gambling bankroll is to make a small bet on a sporting event and then enjoy watching the game to see if you win. Most sportsbooks will accept bets as small as $10 or $20, and most games take two or three hours to play.
You can win somewhere around half the sports bets you make in the long run without any knowledge of handicapping. This makes betting on sports one of the easiest and least costly ways to start gambling as long as you make small wagers and don’t make too many of them.
If you’re looking for the fastest way to get started gambling without losing your shirt, or trying to help someone else get started, this guide is designed to be the ultimate resource. It’s not designed to teach you to be an advantage gambler, but it’s one the best places to start.
Michael Stevens has been researching and writing topics involving the gambling industry for well over a decade now and is considered an expert on all things casino and sports betting. Michael has been writing for GamblingSites.org since early 2016. ...
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