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Craps School

The Buy Bet

Craps: The Buy Bet
by Wilson of

The buy bet is similar to the place bet; the difference between the two bets is that the buy bets pay off at true odds. True odds are the ratio of the number of times a number will appear vs. the times it likely will not appear. Basically all casinos payoff at less than true odds because they need to make a profit in order to stay afloat. Think of the house edge as an entertainment tax or fee for allowing you to gamble. However, for a tiny 5 percent commission which is mandatory if you decide to make a buy bet, the casino payoff will be at true odds.

How much should I bet if I want to buy a number? Well, you can bet as much as you’d like, but you need to bet at least $20, since 5 percent of $20 equals $1. For example, if you bet less than $20 the casino will still charge a $1 commission and then the house edge would be enormous. My advice, don’t buy any number for less than $20. Of course to make a $20 buy bet you will need to actually bet $21. The dealer will put your $20 on the particular number and then drop the $1 commission into the box or table bank. To differentiate your buy bet from a place bet as they are located in the same area on the layout, the dealer will also place a small “buy” chip on top of the buy bet.


What are the best numbers to buy? The 4 and 10 buy bets carry the lowest casino edge if bought for at least $20 as it reduces the casino edge from 6.67 percent (place bet edge) to 4.76 percent (buy bet edge). A player is more than welcome to buy the other four point numbers but given the 5 percent commission, and the fact that these numbers bet as place bets offers a lower casino edge there is no reason to buy the numbers 5, 6, 8, or 9.

To review, it’s a good idea to buy the 4 and 10, and place bet the 5, 6, 8, and 9. This way a player will have the lowest casino advantage per number and perhaps capitalize on a good run of numbers. Also, like place bets, buy bets are off on the come-out roll unless the player tells the dealer to have them on or working. In addition, the buy bet may also be reduced, increased, or taken down at any time before the next roll of the dice.


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