Casino Counting Tips
There is a big difference between practicing card counting at home and doing it in a casino. The noise is a huge distraction for some people, and there are lots of other distractions, too, such as servers asking for drink orders, other players who want to chat, and so on.
Here's an approach to learning how to deal with the noise and interruptions in a casino. Simply simulate casino settings at home. When you practice, turn on the radio and television. If you have kids, ask them to come in and bug you every few minutes. Answer the phone when it rings. Keep a running (and accurate!) count of the cards in a deck in the midst of all the distractions you can find.
Players learn various techniques for keeping track of the count amid the noise and confusion casinos are all about. To be an effective counter, you should learn these techniques. Look like you're spending too much time concentrating on the cards being played, and you run the risk of attracting the attention of casino management. Should there be anything else about your play that could make them suspicious, they could ask you to leave.
What about your play could arouse their suspicions? Any and all of the following:
Varying your bets by large amounts. To avoid problems with management, it's best not to make a substantial change in bet amounts. Pit personnel keep an eye on any player who raises his bet three times the amount of the first bet he made on the shoe.
Placing bets that go against basic strategy. You're going to do this when you count cards. Again, you can make it a little less obvious by betting judiciously.
Spending too much time scrutinizing the cards. If you spend too much time doing this, it will look as though you are trying to count cards.
How can you learn to keep the count when you're trying to look like you're not doing it? One simple way is to use your fingers. You'll want to do this surreptitiously under the table. If you rest your fingers on your thigh, it looks better. Some people use their knuckles, others use chips. Try a few ways at home, and see what works for you.