Craps Strategy Guide

Master Craps Strategy: Expert Tips for Betting Systems That Crush the Casinos

13 min

Craps may seem like a game of chance, but following a smart craps strategy can drastically improve your odds at the table, and you might find yourself winning consistently in over 50% of the games!

In fact, certain bets in craps give the house an edge of less than 2%. Compare that to slot sites, where the house edge is generally between 5-15%, and you can see why Craps is actually one of the most favourable casino games you can play if you know what you’re doing.

This comprehensive guide will teach you the best craps bets to optimize your chances of beating the house. We’ll cover everything from basic strategy like the pass and don’t pass bets to more advanced tactics like taking advantage of free odds. You’ll also learn which sucker bets to avoid that have a massive 16% house edge.

Optimize Your Craps Strategy to Dramatically Shift the Odds in Your Favor

What separates dice from other casino games like Roulette or BlackJack is that each bet offers different odds and accompanying house edges.

It is crucial to know the odds before tailoring your best strategy for craps.

As a rule of thumb, remember that your chances of winning a wager are always lower when you’re betting on higher dice odds.

Dice maths for newbies

  • There are 6 ways to roll a 7-valued combination
  • You have 5 possible combinations that end up in a 6 or 8
  • To get a 5 or 9, there are 4 possible combinations
  • You only have 3 ways to roll a 4 or 10

Based on the above reasoning, shooting a 7 is the most likely event, while getting a 4 or 10-valued combination is the least likely.

Tips

We look up our selection of UK craps casinos in-depth to ensure you get fair games vetted by independent testers.

Odds for the various dice bets shall be displayed in the relevant game FAQs or Instructions tabs.

Best Craps Bets

  • Don’t Pass bet – 1.36% house edge
  • Don’t Come bet – 1.36% house edge
  • Pass bet – 1.41% house edge
  • Come bet – 1.41% house edge

What Is the Safest Bet in Craps?

Expert UK players know the Don’t Pass bet is the fundamental dice bet. It is arguably the safest wager you can make in the game.

The lower house edge ensures better chances to win compared to other bets.

Recommendation

Our experts suggest checking a short guide to craps payouts for more specific examples of how the house edge, odds, and payouts are linked in the game of craps.

Casinos Love When You Make Single-Roll Bets – Here’s Why You Should Just Say No

1st Step to the Craps Strategy Avoid Single-Roll Bets

Single-roll wagers are known as proposition bets, and the outcome is clear after a single dice roll.

Be aware

Single-roll bets are the worst strategy because you play against a high casino advantage!

The odds are stacked against you.

However, on the plus side, single roll bets have the potential to yield significant payouts and immediate bankroll feedback.

Recommendation

A welcome package will double your bankroll most of the time, and it can protect your real money.

If you’re up for practising single-roll proposition bets, you should claim the bonus and try these bets without risking your funds.

Bets to Avoid in Your Craps Strategy

Bet Description House edge
Any 7 The combined value of both dice will be 7 16.67%
Betting on 12 Landing a combination that results in 12. 13.89%
Betting on 2 The shooter’s next toss will land 2. 13.89%
Whirl World To win, you must land a 2, 3, 7, 11, or 12 13.33%
Horn Bet Rolling 2, 3, 11, or 12 wins the bet 12.5%
Betting on 3 Wagering on a 3 being rolled 11.11%
Hi-Lo (2 or 12) You only in with a 2 or 12 11.11%

Forget Everything Else – Free Odds Deliver Craps’ Best Strategy

The best strategy is playing with free odds, which can drastically reduce the house edge. But it requires a significant bankroll on your part since the payouts are 1:1.

UK Players must first make a Pass/Don’t Pass bet or a Come/Don’t Come bet to benefit from a Free Odds bet.

The Best Craps Strategy Uses Free Odds

True odds for Free Odds payouts

  • 6 & 8 – 6:5
  • 5 & 9 – 3:2
  • 4 & 10 – 2:1

Free Odds come at zero house edge

That’s why betting on them will be limited by almost any casino. However, such limits vary across gambling platforms.

Once the point gets established, you can wager on the Free Odds side bet. You will be allowed to place your initial Pass/Come up to a certain casino-imposed multiplier.

Free Odds example

  1. Your initial Pass/Come (or Don’t) wager is called the flat stake.
  2. After your wager, you become eligible for asking for a 5x, 10x or more Free Odds bet.
  3. Suppose your flat stake was £10 and the max Free Odds multiplier per casino is 10x.
  4. In that case, you’re allowed to bet up to £10×10= £100 on your Free Odds bet.
  5. Now, let’s say the shooter hits a 5 after your Pass Line bet.
  6. The point becomes 5.
  7. You place the maximum stake your Free Odds, feeling the shooter can repeat the outcome.
  8. Should your intuition be correct, you’re paid out at true odds for the respective number.
  9. Since you bet £100 at 3:2 odds (or 2.5 in decimal), you’ll get back £250 (including your stake).

Quit Betting Like a Rookie – The Don’t Pass Strategy Explained

An Example Craps Don’t Pass Strategy

Betting against the shooter is the concept behind a Don’t Pass craps strategy.

It has the benefit of providing a marginally lower house edge at 1.36%.

Remember!

UK Players win the Don’t Pass wager if the shooter rolls a 2 or 3 and lose if the dice value is 7 or 11.

If a 12 appears on the table, the bet becomes a push, and you get reimbursed for the wagered stake. The Don’t Pass craps strategy bet is made at the start of a new round, before the come-out roll. It is a multi-roll wager and can take many throws until it gets resolved.

Tips

Check out our guide on how to play street craps. You’ll find the Pass and Don’t Pass bets explained in more detail, both in how they used to be played on the streets and how present-day online casinos settle them.

Let’s look at an example

  1. You wager £5 on a Don’t Pass line.
  2. The point number is 10.
  3. You lay it with 2x odds, with a 1:2 payout.
  4. The shooter lands a 7 before 10.
  5. You win £5 from the original bet, plus the payout for the odds, which at 2x odds against 10 is £10.
  6. In total, you win £10 after betting £15.

It’s crucial to remember that this is a hypothetical case, and the success of the Don’t Pass strategy can vary depending on the circumstances.

Take the Safe Route and Hedge Your Bets – Here’s How the Pros Do It

Extra Tip for Your Craps Strategy Hedge Funds

UK Players with a limited bankroll who are not risk takers can hedge their dice bets.

Once the point gets set, the best option is to place 6 or 8 when the point is any number other than these two.

You should bet on 8 for Point 6 and the reverse for Point 8.

Remember!

Hedging offers a more frequent payout but reduces your overall odds and payouts.

Hedging with Craps Don’t Pass Strategy

  1. Let’s assume you bet £10 on Don’t Pass.
  2. The shooter lands 6 as the Point.
  3. You then make a £15 Odds bet, wagering a total of £25 against the shooter’s point.
  4. Hoping to protect your £25 bet, you hedge with a £4 bet on a Hard 6, at a payout of 9:1.
  5. In this instance, that equals £36.
  6. If you lose your £25 against the shooter’s Point, you still get £11 – the difference between the £25 lost and the £36 won.
  7. But the £4 Hard bet works only if the shooter lands 3 and 3 on the dice.
  8. Other combinations resulting in a 6 means you lose your entire stake.
  9. However, if the shooter does not shoot the Point again, you only lose the £4 hedge bet.

Be aware

This is only an informative example. UK players are solely responsible for the wagers they make and the possible consequences.

Playing dice with a cool head and always abiding by the best responsible gambling practices is imperative.

Think You’ve Mastered the Basics? Test Your Skills With These Expert Craps Tactics

If you want to make the best craps bets, Casino Alpha experts recommend alternative concepts for craps strategies. Having an all-inclusive view of your available betting options will prove helpful in real-life betting situations.

Craps Odds Strategy

Craps Odds Strategy

The main idea behind laying the odds is betting against other players and the shooter.

Craps odds strategy relies on a wager predicting the roller will shoot a 7 before a 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, or 10.

Naturally, you place the bet after the Point was established.

It’s encouraging that statistics indicate that the chances of landing these numbers are realistic. An additional benefit is that these wagers have no house edge.

The catch is in the small payout odds

  • 4 or 10 return at 1:2 odds
  • 5 or 9 payout at 2:3
  • 6 or 8 pay at 5:6

Press Strategy

Craps Press Strategy

The Press craps strategy revolves around players pressing wagers when they land a Place bet and pulling the winnings when the bet lands 4 times.

UK players thus get to double their bets after a win. In theory, the idea is to get more significant returns by investing less funds.

You use your winnings to double the wager during each new round.

The problem is that the chances of landing the same number multiple times are negligible.

The Press strategy is not the best option for UK players with a modest bankroll.

6/8 System

Craps 6-8 System Strategy

After 7, numbers 6 and 8 offer the second-highest probability of landing after a dice roll.

The 6/8 system employs a progressive method.

Suppose you wager £5 on 6 and 8.

If one of the two numbers lands, you repeat the wager with the same initial stake amount plus the profit from the win.

However, if the bet doesn’t pan out as expected, UK players should increase the wagered amount and make the same bet.

The strategy requires patience

You should consider the fact that you may face a sustained losing streak.

Similar to the Martingale Baccarat or Blackjack betting systems, this craps strategy is practical mainly for UK players with a large enough bankroll.

3 Point Molly

Craps 3 Point Molly Strategy

If you have a sizable bankroll, you may also benefit from the use of a strategy called 3 Point Molly.

Its main concept is placing several wagers with small house edges and fair chances of landing the expected numbers.

Important

The small wins during the game may offset the losses experienced after multiple bets. It’s a good tactic if you are confident in the shooter’s consistency.

Iron Cross Craps Strategy

Iron Cross Craps Strategy

The Iron Cross strategy is the preferred choice of advanced players. It opens your wager up to all numbers except 7, and it’s comprised of multiple Place bets.

Remember!

Place bets stay on the table and pay back the relevant winnings (but not the stake) until the shooter sevens-out or you ask it back.

Imagine yourself after a come-out roll

  • The point is established
  • You now wager £15 on Place 5
  • You put another £20 on Place 6
  • The next bet is £15 on the Field, and £20 on Place 8.

The total wager in this craps Iron Cross strategy example is £70. It may return varying amounts depending on the Odds sheet. The only exception is if 7 lands, in which case the wager is lost.

Wrap-Up and Final Craps Tips

If you’ve made it this far, you now have a solid grasp of craps strategy from top to bottom. You’ve learned about the best bets to make, worst bets to avoid, and how to leverage things like free odds and hedging to optimize your play.

While craps may seem chaotic to new players, it actually offers some of the best odds in the casino when you stick to the fundamentals outlined here. Just remember:

  • Avoid single roll proposition bets
  • Take full advantage of free odds to reduce the house edge
  • Use simple strategies like the Don’t Pass to bet with the house
  • Manage your bankroll and betting limits carefully

Of course, nothing can substitute for actual time at the tables. Play online craps for free to practice before risking real money. And have fun! Smart craps play keeps the house advantage low and your enjoyment of this classic dice game high.

F.A.Q

Is craps based on skill or luck?

Dice games always come down on luck. No wrist technique will produce the desired roll. However, selected strategies can compensate for the house edge.

What is the best craps strategy?

The best game plan is to wager on the Pass line and take the Odds side bet. The former bet has a house edge of 1.41%, while there is no house edge for the Odds bet.

What are the best bets in craps?

The most frequent wager experienced rollers make are the Pass bet, Don’t Pass line, Odds bets, Come bet, and Betting on 6 or 8.  

What is the safest bet in craps?

Players tend to disagree if the Pass line or Don't Pass line is the safest bet, considering both have a low house edge, but most favour the Don’t Pass bet as the safer option. 
Cosmin Brehoi
AuthorCosmin BrehoiAuthor & Editor at CasinoAlpha

Since forever a student of life and writer at his core, he loves to gamble on football matches in his spare time. Combining the art of prediction and a rigorously trained intuition, he has joined the iGaming world to promote a responsible and data-driven approach to sports betting.

Tudor Turiceanu
ReviewerTudor TuriceanuCEO & Chief Editor at CasinoAlpha

Tudor Turiceanu uses his multiple systematic skillsets to oversee and coordinate the CasinoAlpha project. He assists the authors in creating a transparent gambling niche for users. As a CEO and Chief Editor with broad knowledge, Tudor knows the importance of transmitting confident advice.