You're putting too much thought into it. They aren't about offering a fair or official game, they just want a simple way for people to donate money while still having a little fun.
While we're "open for business" 8-hours per-day, the fact is, that the room does not really get busy until about 8:00 PM and people start to go home shortly after midnight. So, in the final analysis, our "peak" activity is about 4 hours (max). After midnight, we have about 50% occupancy and after 1:00 AM, about 30%. At 2:00 AM, we close up shop! At 5:00 AM, after clean-up and money count, I hit the hay! :)
You would be allowing an Odds Bet but instead of 3x4x5x being an upper limit, it would be a Min/Max. In other words if a player wanted to make ANY odds bet he would have to make the Maximum odds bet that was alllowable. This keeps all the players and all the dealers informed of what the rules are and what the math is. No slowdowns, no lectures.
Your goal is to make money.
That means to satisfy demand and do it "fast and furiously without glitches".
You do not want players that are confused and have to ask questions that slow the game down.
You do not want dealers that are confused and have to ask questions of each other, you or who will be making mistakes.
I forget what you do now, but its a pretty low table with no odds bets allowed.
That is a poor offering to people who like craps. I have a "2x odds" game two hours away from me and I've never even considered going to it. I have a 5x game a half hour away and a 3x4x5x game four hours away. I do each of those but never the lousy cheap place offering a mere 2x odds bet. Most Cruise Ships offer a 2x table because they have a captive market and don't have to be attractive much less generous.
So IF you decide to offer an odds bet, then just about anything you do will improve the situation. Even if you just do that lousy cheap 2x odds it is a heck of an improvement over No Odds Bets. You could however go to 5x odds or to "up to 5x odds" and not be risking taking a bath. The risk is in COMPLEXITY of informing the players and in educating the dealers in how to make proper odds payouts. 3x4x5x odds is a choice also that is mathematically very close to 5x and is simple in that the payout on a max bet is always the same, so players and dealers won't be confused.
Offering Place Bets that pay even money is a veritable Gold Mine for you.
Offering one third shaved payouts on most prop bets is quite an edge for the house also.
The major goal for you, particularly for your "busy time" is smooth operation. Dealers can't be confused on payouts or slow to calculate them. I don't think it makes much difference which decisions you make, the evening is going to be determined by speed and ease of calculation. Whatever you decide on, makes your signs large and make sure the dealers know what to do.
Place bets are paid even money.
No odds on the pass line.
Payoffs at props and other games are also reduced.
What charity is this? The Mob?
Is there a three card Monty game too?
And seriously, who banks the games? How much of the profit goes to the charity and how much to the gaming company?
Actually the Mob would definitely offer a much better deal, they know to let people win from time to time.
>Is there a three card Monty game too?
I doubt it, too slow.
>How much of the profit goes to the charity and how much to the gaming company?
The charity's volunteers do all the work and all profits go to the charity. Its losses that he is concerned about and that is not necessary.
The schools that I know that hold casino nights have volunteer dealers, and the players purchase chips with their pass to the casino night. They have the option of buying extra chips at the event.
At the end of the night, chips are traded for tickets, usualy a rate of $5 chip per 1 ticket. All tickets are put into a hopper for a raffle.
Prizes donated by businesses, usually alumni-owned businesses, are then raffled off.
Price of prizes: $0
All money taken in for passes and chips is pure profit.
They also allow odds and regular payouts on craps, because this is supposed to be as close to a Vegas casino as possible, and it is for fun.
I can't believe these people are playing for cash and still playing this game with that kind of an edge, even if it for a good cause.
Captive markets, good causes and regional variations. The word "charity" allows alot to be done, both good and bad.
I've been wrestling with this stuff overnight and again, thanks to all for the ideas. We have a huge 4-day event coming up over the entire Memorial Day weekend. It's all part of a Carnival-Fair where we have a "Vegas Tent" a part of the attractions. Getting dealers for all the games except craps is easy. Craps. On the other hand is a lot of work and requires a lot of training. Over the weekend, I may have 10-15 different craps dealers, some proficient, some brand new. Most don't volunteer for craps the following event.
While I think that allowing free odds is a smart thing to do, it poses some problems.
1. The dealers will have difficulty with it.
2. If we allow free odds on the pass-line, we would have to allow them on the don't pass (even more difficulty)
3. If we allow free odds "anywhere", then we would probably have to offer standard payouts on "place" bets ( even MORE difficulty!)
The recurring theme that seems to prevail here is speed and efficiency. We've been doing this for 40 years now and, at the end of the day, we don't have any trouble filling up the craps table with players--even without free odds. In fact, people stand in line just to get in to the game (need for 2nd table). And everybody seems to have a great time, win or lose (more so when players win).
Again, all I'm trying to do increase the take without causing delays , confusion and increasing workload. When I started doing this 12 years ago, the old timers would only allow bets of .25 to $1 no odds . I finally got that up to $1 $2 (no odds) to where we are today, $2 $5 (no odds) We still allow $1 prop bets. I'm thinking that, at least for our big event next months, well simply go with $5 $10 no odds and that will have the same, if not bigger lift to the take and everybody will still have fun.
The little players will gripe because the remember the days when the minimums were .25. They may go play blackjack but I still won't have difficulty filling the table. I will definitely go to free odds at one of our Saturday Night events later on.
Here's my final question relating to this and then I have a question regarding roulette which I will post in a new thread. Currently, allow $1 prop bets (if it a horn bet, we require $4). If we raise the pass/don't pass minimums to $5, should we require the prop bets to be the same or leave it at $1. So for say, a high horn 12, the player would wager $25 versus $5. Same thing for hard-ways?
You guys probably thing at I work at this too hard at this but nobody at the school would ever go through this exercise in a zillion years. They'd simply say "we've always don it this way" and we'd still be at .25 $1.
Prop bets should always be a $1 minimum to encourage action on these high HE wagers.
As the Wizard wisely advises... shear the sheep, don't slaughter them.