Online keno strategy appears to be a lost cause at first glance. The game is purely random and there is absolutely nothing you can do to alter the outcome of your wagers. At no point in a game of keno can you fold, raise, count cards or do anything else to gain an edge.
However, that doesn’t mean there is absolutely nothing you can do. In fact, I have three useful keno tips that you can put to use right away. These aren’t just basic tips like “take your time” and “watch your bankroll.” These are real tips that will help you improve your odds at keno.
1. Not all keno bets are the same
The number of picks that you make in keno has a big impact on the house advantage. In almost every keno game on the internet, the Pick 1 bet is the worst bet. Most gambling sites give you a payout of 3:1 if you hit your pick. Run the numbers and this comes out to a house advantage of 25%. So the first thing I can tell you is to avoid the Pick 1 bet at all times.
The house advantage of keno is determined by the pay table at that casino. Every casino does it a little differently. Some gambling sites give you lots of little payouts, while other casinos give you much bigger payouts on just a few numbers.
Take a look at my real money keno page and scroll down until you see the payout charts. At the bottom of each chart, I have the house advantage for every single bet you can place in keno. As you can see, different wagers have different house advantages.
Refer to that chart for the casino you play at. Whenever you play keno, use that chart and pick the bets that offer the lowest house advantage. Your money will last longer if you stick with bets that have a low advantage.
2. The house advantage is much lower at some gambling sites
Go back to the real money keno page again. Scroll down to the bottom and you’ll see a list of tables that show the payouts and house advantages of different bets. The first chart on that page shows the pay table for Golden Cherry Casino.
Look at the payouts for Pick 8. Every single number of hits (except 0) has a payout. The payouts aren’t large, but there are a lot of them. Compare that to the pay table for Bovada Casino. The payouts for Pick 8 on that one don’t start until you have 5 hits, but the payouts are larger.
When you run the calculations, the wagers at Golden Cherry Casino have a significantly lower house advantage than everywhere else. If you really want to get the best house advantage, play keno at Golden Cherry Casino. It has the best house advantage for keno out of every reputable gambling site that I know.
3. Understand how variance affects your deposit bonus
When you sign up at a real money casino to play keno, you’ll get a deposit bonus added to your first deposit. All casinos offer bonuses as an incentive for signing up and making a deposit. You don’t get the bonus money up front, though. You must first clear the bonus.
You clear the bonus by placing real money wagers at the casino. In this case, I am assuming you will be playing keno to clear the bonus. After you have wagered enough money at keno, you’ll get the bonus money.
Variance plays a big role in clearing deposit bonuses. Keep your bets small to avoid going broke before you clear the bonus. You’ll be tempted to place larger wagers to clear the bonus faster, but that is a recipe for disaster. Refer to this past post for a more detailed explanation of how variance affects bonuses.
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