The Best Keno Strategy Guide: How to Win at Keno

If the question of how to win at Keno has been floating around in your mind since you first heard of the game, you’re likely looking for the best Keno strategy. Knowing the how the game works and how to make the best decisions are the topics of this page, plus providing the resources to play with confidence.

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On this page, you’ll find the most up-to-date and comprehensive information about Keno strategies, which are the best and how you can play the game to win. We’ll dispel some myths about the game and give you suggestions of how to choose an online casino to take your strategy to the big-time.

Keno Strategy Explained

Keno was invented in China, and accounts tell that its popularity was so widespread that it raised substantial funds for the construction of the Great Wall of China. It remains popular in China to this day, but the game has also spread across the globe thanks to its simplicity and availability.

The most important thing to understand about Keno is that, much like other gambling games of chance, the player cannot affect the outcome. Therefore you can find and trust strategies on how to play the game, but not on how to win at keno.

How it Works

Video keno online game card

Keno is a simple, lottery-style game that is easy for new players to quickly understand. If you need a guide on how to play, check out our keno rules page before getting any further through this guide. This way, you’ll have a good knowledge foundation to build from.

There can be variations to the rules and gameplay styles depending on which version of keno you are playing. Regardless, most of them follow the same general concept as they are all declinations of the same game, even if they are in land-based or video keno strategy.

Regardless of these small changes, Keno remains one of the easiest gambling options due to its reliance on chance to create outcomes. This page is basically here to tell you that there are no strategies to ensure winning, merely those to ensure fun.

Basic Keno Strategy Checklist

The following Keno checklist has been put together to give you some handy tips to follow that should be appropriate regardless of which variant of the game you play or where you play it. As with all advice about gambling, only do these things if they fit your budget.

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Play at a Reliable Casino

Always gamble at reliable online casinos that have their games tested for fairness and assigned a return to player (RTP) rate. This ensures that the games are not rigged to make you lose. It is easy to find trustworthy operators – every site we recommend is safe and secure. All are licensed in the jurisdictions within which they operate and guarantee reliability.

You can find out more about online casino safety in our casino safety guide, which will give a thorough explanation of the things to look for. Cross check your chosen Keno casino with these points for a peaceful experience.

A keno odds sheet
Check the Odds

If you choose 20 numbers, the odds of getting one right is 1 in 86, and the odds of getting all 20 is 1 in more than 3.5 million. The odds of winning will depend on how many numbers you choose. However, this is also how to increase the potential winnings from each round.

Both methods of playing are appropriate keno betting strategies, and can be selected based on the type of risk you wish to experience. You can check the odds of various keno bets before you play to help inform this decision, and an informed player is a happy player.

A free play demo of keno online
Practice Before Betting

The keno cards and layouts of the games can change from one version to another, so get a good handle on any of the differences by playing for free before betting real money on a cash game.

Most of the world’s best online casinos will ensure registered players have the option to try games for free. There, you can ensure you actually enjoy the aesthetic of the keno variant before kicking off into the real money wagering. You can find some of these sites further down the page.

A keno game with low betting limits
Start with Small Bets

The next step from playing for free is to make small bets. You can play several cards at once, simultaneously to the same draw, and get some idea about which choices had better outcomes.

Once you have a handle on this, reflect on your gambling budget to ensure you know what your boundaries are. Only ever budget the money you are willing to lose, as there are no guaranteed strategies on how to win at Keno that will bolster your wallet.

These simple tips are applicable to any of the best keno strategy options you choose to employ as a good overall way to think about the game. There are a lot more in-detail tips that you can implement in the following guide, so read on.

Keno Best Practice

Though there is no way to affect the randomness of which numbers will be called, but there are many options about how to play, as we’ve already discussed. This means that you have a lot of input about how you want to bet and how much you want to bet, and everything has a best practice option to follow.

Choose Between 4-8 Numbers

One of the most tangible tips for a keno strategy that works is the advice about how many numbers to choose on the card. There are 80 numbers in a standard keno card, and you can usually choose as many or as few as you like.

If you choose a lot of numbers, your likelihood of having winning numbers drawn increases but the payout decreases. If you don’t have many numbers, the payouts are higher but the likelihood of your number being drawn is lower.

Expert advice for the best keno strategy tells us to choose between four and eight numbers. This puts your likelihood of the numbers being drawn and the payout ratio right in the sweet spot.

In fact, the name for the game itself comes from the latin for ‘five’, so that even is a hint about the best way to win at keno. Of course, this is only a statistical probability concern and will not affect the numbers drawn.

Four Card Keno

The four-card keno strategy is one of the most popular ways to play the game strategically. This strategy can be employed across any multi-card variant of the game, and unsurprisingly involves playing four cards at once.

On these cards, you choose six or seven numbers in a cluster, aiming to hit the 6 spot or 7 spot for a big payout with low bets.

The four-card keno strategies of 6/7 spots are a long term strategy, which pay off in small wins when one number is drawn, and in huge ways when all six of the numbers match. You can test this out on any of the demo games below that offer the ability to play four cards at once.

Round Robin Keno Strategy

The round robin keno strategy is best used on the 20-card keno or live keno games. It tells the player to play three sets of numbers on each card, and rotate the sets to create different winning combinations on each card.

This is also a long-term strategy, which will pay off eventually if the player gambles for long enough but also involves a lot more wagers to occur simultaneously.

How Does An Odds Chart Work

An odds chart, also known as a paytables, is a resource that players can use to find out the probability of winning, and how it will pay out when you do.

These are very complicated to generalise as it depends on how many numbers are available in the game you are playing, how many numbers you pick and how many numbers are drawn.

Strategy Myths to Avoid

As you’ve already become aware, there is nothing more than luck to influence the outcome of the numbers. However, gamblers like to think that they can have more impact on the game in order to feel like there is control.

Unfortunately, there is only pure luck to the outcomes, but that doesn’t stop more myths about keno strategy from popping up. It’s best to avoid these myths rather than fall into a trap of spending over your budget.

Keno Strategy Myths
  • The numbers 12, 13, 14, 15 and 16 and a keno card. 1/4 Choose Consecutive Numbers This myth recommends that players select several numbers in a row, hoping that the cluster will be luckier than spreading them across the board. This is not true in any regard.
  • Keno balls on a background of ice and fire. 2/4 Choose Cold/Hot Numbers Following the outcomes of the previous keno games will result in a list of “hot” numbers that are often drawn, and “cold” numbers which are seldom drawn. Picking one or the other will not guarantee a win.
  • Several keno cards with the same numbers highlighted. 3/4 Stick to the Same Numbers Picking the same numbers over and over must eventually result in a win, right? Wrong. The previous numbers that are drawn in a game have no effect on the next round as they are completely reset.
  • Several keno balls and a four-leaf clover. 4/4 Use Your Lucky Numbers Lucky numbers are just that: luck. There is no reason why any numbers have any additional reason to be drawn by the random number generator. Luck only follows tradition, superstition and belief systems.

These myths that float around in the best keno strategy discussion are never going to help you win any games, but the interesting thing is that they won’t hurt you either.

There is no possible affect that any choices you make will have on the outcome of the numbers, so if these myths make you feel good then feel free to pretend that it will be a good choice. Just don’t let it trick you into thinking that it will guarantee any outcomes and have you bet more than your budget.

Betting Strategies

Outside of the gameplay strategies of which numbers to choose, there are also strategies for the values of the wagers you want to place. These are known as betting strategies and are most popular for use in games like blackjack and roulette even money bets.

However, many types of gamblers also like to use these betting strategies on all sorts of other games, such as slots and, you guessed it, keno. The Martingale strategy is one of the most popular for keno gamers because of its simplicity.

All you need to do is double the wager every time you lose, which will cover your losses eventually when you win, but will not end up in a very big profit. Others like Parlay only involve increasing wagers after winning hands, which don’t cover losses but do increase winning funds.

Choosing a Casino

As there are hundreds of different places you can use your best keno strategy, you have a lot of choice. This also gives you the opportunity to find one that best suits your needs and desires, particularly with the type and number of other games that are available such as slots, blackjack and roulette.

Always Practice on a Free Trial First

It’s all well and good to be able to understand the best keno strategy as it is written onto a page, but the best way to get a firm grasp is to try it out. You can take your test runs to a real money casino right away, however, you should always play a free trial before getting into any real money risk.

The monkey-themed Keno casino game.
Monkey Keno
  • Fun Jungle theme
  • Produced by leading developer
  • Easy to play

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A classic version of Keno for online casinos.
Classic Keno
  • A no-nonsense standard
  • Great RTP
  • Available at leading casinos

Play Here!

Keno as available at Mansion Casino.
Keno
  • Simple and sophisticated
  • Multiple cards
  • Aesthetically pleasing design

Play Here!

The Disco Keno online casino game.
Disco Keno
  • Interesting theme
  • Engaging audio and visual
  • Low limits

Play Here!

There isn’t any downside to taking one of these free play games for a spin, it’s purely for you to get the opportunity to test out the features. Not just the gameplay but also the aesthetic features such as the theme, graphics and audio styles. The different software developers have different styles across all of these variants.

Frequently Asked Questions

Still confused about how to win at Keno? So are many players worldwide who continue to question the possibility for guaranteeing a winning game. We’ve collected some of the most common questions about the best keno strategy in the following section to remove all doubt from your mind.

How do you win at keno every time?

There is no strategy that will guarantee the player will win a game of Keno. This is because Keno is game of chance and the player cannot influence the outcome of the winning numbers that are drawn. Like almost all casino games, the outcome is luck-based.

What is the best way to win at Keno?

The best way to win at Keno is to play a variant of the game with a high return to player rate. There is no interaction that a player can have to guarantee a winning card is held, so you must purely rely on luck.

What's the difference between online and real keno?

There are not very many differences between online keno and live keno, though the system of drawing numbers is more like bingo in live keno. The other differences will be the atmosphere of playing the game at home versus in a social arena.

What are the best keno numbers?

Equality is real when it comes to Keno, as all numbers have a one in 80 chance of being drawn in a standard game. No numbers have any benefit over the other, so it doesn’t matter which numbers you play, and any information that says otherwise is just pushing keno myths.

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AuthorSimon Rose First published: Jun Last update: 09/05/2020
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