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Thread: Can someone explain optimal betting to me...

  1. #1


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    Can someone explain optimal betting to me...

    ... for online 'bonus play.' I play blackjack on online casinos in NJ for their somewhat generous sign up bonuses (though many/most have been watered down since their launches). The way i figured out the bonus' EV was by the simple calculation of bonus x rollover x HE (so a $1k bonus with a 100x rollover playing their best BJ game with .04% HE would have a $600 value). To be safe, I'd bet around 30-35/hand, which, using some online calculator seemed to give me a 45-50% ROR, which i was fine with (besides the fact that it'd take forever).

    However I recently met an AP who said that he was told that's not how it should be calculated, and the bonuses actually contain more value than the result of that simple equation. He said he heard through a game of telephone that "optimal betting" for these bonuses is $140/hand, which obviously increases the ROR a lot, but also somehow maximizes the bonus value. He said he wasn't able to explain the math behind it but when he first heard the reasoning, it made sense.

    Does anyone here understand the logic behind this?
    Last edited by cottage cheese; 05-26-2019 at 03:56 PM.

  2. #2


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    Yeah, it is optimal to go all in on baccarat and then clear the bonus if you win, assuming this does not break T&C.

    First of all, your expected loss foe $100,000 of action is $100,000 * 0.4% or $400. So yes, you would have an expected win of $600.

    But if you double it first, assuming it is a 100% match bonus, you have $4000 in funds now with an expected loss of $400 so $3600 or $2600 expected profit.

    SO 50% chance you make $2600 and 50% chance you lose $1000.

    This is because you are risking the bonus funds before they are reduced by the house edge.

    Betting $140 / hand does somewhat the same thing, only less cleanly.

    Please review the terms and conditions of your bonus carefully, because often bet sizes are restricted.

  3. #3


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    Quote Originally Posted by Meistro123 View Post
    Yeah, it is optimal to go all in on baccarat and then clear the bonus if you win, assuming this does not break T&C.

    First of all, your expected loss foe $100,000 of action is $100,000 * 0.4% or $400. So yes, you would have an expected win of $600.

    But if you double it first, assuming it is a 100% match bonus, you have $4000 in funds now with an expected loss of $400 so $3600 or $2600 expected profit.

    SO 50% chance you make $2600 and 50% chance you lose $1000.

    This is because you are risking the bonus funds before they are reduced by the house edge.

    Betting $140 / hand does somewhat the same thing, only less cleanly.

    Please review the terms and conditions of your bonus carefully, because often bet sizes are restricted.
    Thank you for answering. That's very interesting; something i never would've figured out myself, that's for sure. So the bonuses are now worth 800 each instead of 600. The only problem with this method is that it takes such a long time to complete if i go back to my normal 35/hand bet after doubling that it's almost not worth it. Do you have any advice on what to do after doubling up on first hand on baccarat?

    I guess you can't go all in on BJ first hand bc of the potential split/double. Do you know how the exact amount of $140/hand was computed, or it's just that it's a large enough amount that it will reduce the HE on the bonus funds? I've tried it six times and lost every time pretty quickly, but i understand the ROR with a bet size like that has to be astronomical.

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