Walkabout Joker Draw Odds for Friday, March 2, 2012

The Walkabout Joker Draw is now in Week 41. Friday night’s offered jackpot will be $8,419.

There are 13 face down cards remaining. One of those cards is the jackpot-winning Joker. Two of those cards are Aces that win a moto.

Recent ticket sales data is as follows:

Week Thirty Seven ($6,675 jackpot) – 694 tickets sold
Week Thirty Eight ($7,022 jackpot) – 822 tickets sold (+128 from prior week)
Week Thirty Nine ($7,433 jackpot) – 982 tickets sold (+160)
Week Forty ($7,924 jackpot) – 990 tickets sold (+8)

As you can see, ticket sales stalled last week. The bar only sold eight more tickets last week than it did the prior week, even though the jackpot was almost $500 higher. I don’t know the reason for that. Ticket sales normally increase steadily as the jackpots increase.

I’m going to say that last week’s poor ticket sales were an aberration. The jackpot has now broken through the $8,000 mark, which should generate some additional hype. I estimate that the bar will sell 1,200 tickets this week.

With 1,200 tickets in the drum Friday night, the odds of a patron winning the $8,419 jackpot with a single $1 ticket would be 1 in 15,600 (i.e., 1/1,200 x 1/13 = 1/15,600). These are roughly the same odds as a heterosexual guy spending an entire day in La Paz, Bolivia and spotting a local woman that he would want to have sex with.

Due to last week’s slowdown in ticket sales, and the fact that two $800 Aces still remain in the final thirteen cards, the Joker Draw should be a better wagering proposition this week than I estimated last week. The “expected return” on each $1 ticket purchased Friday will be roughly 64 cents.

Readers of the discussion forum have pointed out that the Walkabout also gives away a free draft beer (or $1 off any other drink, I believe) for every three $1 tickets purchased. So, if you buy three tickets, you are arguably getting up to 33 cents (retail cost) of beer for every ticket purchased, in addition to the 64 cents in wagering value.

Regardless, I can’t advise that you waste all of you condom and cigarette money on Joker Draw tickets this week. As usual, I instead recommend that serious gamblers try the “Deal or No Deal” gambit. If you are inclined to offer to buy the winning ticket from the lucky bastard whose number is called, you should know that this ticket will give the holder a 1/13 chance of pulling the $8,419 jackpot-winning Joker and a 2/13 chance of pulling an $800 Ace. That makes the ticket “worth” $770.

If you can buy the ticket for $500, that’s a terrific deal. You will immediate realize a 54% return on your investment, statistically speaking. Of course, there’s still a 10/13 chance you’ll turn over a useless card and everyone will mock you for blowing $500. Such is the price of gambling greatness.

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