Deal Or No Deal: Playing the odds, how to play smart

Looking at the odds to deal at the right time and beat the banker!

This webpage is the creation of Richard Steel, a UK viewer of the popular TV gameshow Deal Or No Deal

It pays to know the risks when you make a decision! It's good to do a cost/benefit analysis. That is why it is good to gamble when the odds are in your favour! Let's look at a scenario where 5 boxes are left, and the banker makes an offer to see if it is worth taking it, or going on, from a perspective of the mathematical probabilities, the statistical odds. Check back as I'm planning to update this page with more scenarios, or send me your own, and I would be happy to give you an analysis back.

250 1,000
10,000 50,000

The odds of taking out the 100,000 in the next 3 boxes = 3/5 or 60%
The odd of taking out both the 50,000 and the 100,000 are 30%
The odds of taking out 250, 1,000 and 10,000 are 10%
The odds of taking out 10,000, 50,000 and 100,000 are 10%

At this stage with 5 boxes remaining the banker offers 12,500. Should the contestant take the deal? There are 10 combinations possible in picking the next 3 boxes, each with 6 permutations making a total of 60 permutations. Let's consider what sort of deal to expect after each combination and see how many deals are higher than the 12,500.

10 possible combinations of boxes left after the next 3 are taken out:

250 1,000

Deal offered: 500

250 10,000

Deal offered: 3,000

250 50,000

Deal offered: 19,000

250 100,000

Deal offered: 35,000

1,000 10,000

Deal offered: 3,600

1,000 50,000

Deal offered: 19,000

1,000 100,000

Deal offered: 41,000

10,000 50,000

Deal offered: 25,000

10,000 100,000

Deal offered: 45,000

50,000 100,000

Deal offered: 72,000

As you can see, there are 7 combinations that would likely produce a higher deal for the contestant, compared to 3 where the deal would almost certainly drop. Of course the contestant may want to continue to open their final box, but sometimes it is more sensible to deal! In going on in this 5 box scenario and no dealing, the contestant has a 70% chance of improving their deal when the final offer is made by the banker.

Do you have a question? Please email me, Richard Steel:

Money can change your life. Spiritual truth can change your eternal destiny. What are the chances based upon evidence that the claims Jesus Christ made about Himself are true? See Go Here:

Deal Or No Deal: How To Play Smart

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Rico last modified March 2013

This website is in no way affiliated to the gameshow Deal Or No Deal