How Do Casinos Make Money Off of Card Games?

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By Monica Bates

In the world of gambling, card games have always been a crowd favorite. From poker to blackjack, these games have attracted millions of players worldwide.

But have you ever wondered how casinos make money off of these games? In this article, we will take a closer look at the mechanisms that allow casinos to profit from card games.

The House Edge

One of the primary ways that casinos make money off of card games is through the house edge. The house edge is essentially the advantage that the casino has over the player in any given game. This edge allows casinos to maintain a long-term profitability while still offering fair odds to players.

The house edge varies from game to game, but it typically falls within a certain range. For example, in blackjack, the house edge can be as low as 0.5% if played with basic strategy.

However, in other games like baccarat, the house edge can be as high as 14%. This means that for every $100 wagered on baccarat, the casino can expect to make $14 in profit on average.


Another way that casinos make money off of card games is through rake. Rake is a commission fee charged by casinos for hosting poker games. The rake is typically around 10% of each pot played and capped at a certain amount depending on the casino’s rules.

For example, let’s say there are ten players at a poker table and they each put $10 into the pot for a total pot size of $100. If there were no rake, then whoever wins would take home all $100. However, if there is a 10% rake on this pot and it’s capped at $5 per hand, then the winner would only receive $85 ($100 – 10% rake = $90 – $5 capped rake = $85).


Casinos also make money off of card games through tournaments. Tournaments are structured events where players pay an entry fee and compete against each other for a prize pool. The prize pool is typically funded by a portion of the entry fees paid by players.

For example, let’s say there is a $100 buy-in poker tournament with 100 players. The total prize pool would be $10,000 ($100 x 100).

However, the casino may take a percentage of this prize pool as an administrative fee. This fee can range from 5% to 20%, depending on the tournament’s size and structure.


In conclusion, casinos make money off of card games through various mechanisms like the house edge, rake, and tournaments. These mechanisms allow casinos to maintain long-term profitability while still providing fair odds to players. However, it’s important to remember that gambling should always be done responsibly and within one’s means.