How Do Casinos Make Money?

  • Updated
  • By Amy McDonnell
casinos make money

Making money is no easy feat and for an establishment as unpredictable as a casino, it’s important that there are multiple revenue streams for them to stay profitable. For that reason, there are plenty of methods that casinos use to rake in the dollars. Some of these include:

The House Edge

The house edge is what casinos use to make most of its money. All casino games have a built-in mathematical advantage for the house which makes sure that they’re always in the black. This is done by offering odds that aren’t ‘true odds’.

Take roulette for example. A standard European Roulette game has 18 black numbers, 18 red numbers and a green 0. The payout for betting on a colour is 1:1, meaning that if you bet £10 on a black outcome and won, you’d receive £20 back (£10 plus the return of your £10 bet).

However, the probability of winning your bet isn't 50/50. To win this specific bet, a black number needs to come up. There are 19 numbers on the board that aren't black – 18 red and 1 green, meaning the probability of a black number being spun is 18/37.

Not all games are equal, however. In fact, with a basic strategy, playing card games like blackjack can see the house edge reduce to just 0.28% whereas a slot game may push upwards of 15%.

Distraction

Casinos are ultimately profitable because they know how to keep you playing. It’s no secret that the ambience of a casino is carefully designed to stop you leaving before they’ve taken a good chunk of your funds.

Free booze, free food and a complicated route to the exit are just some of the ways you’re convinced to keep gambling.

Put simply, casinos are experts at distraction and without any clocks to keep you focused, it’s no surprise that the money just keeps rolling in for the casinos.