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Vietnamese Gambling Games Worth Checking Out

May 22, 2023 Vietnam iGaming & Gambling

Vietnamese gambling games are a fun way to expand your portfolio of gambling games to play. There are a few gambling games in Vietnamese that are popular in the culture but aren’t widespread throughout the world.

There are exceptions that should be noted, though. Two casinos in Vietnam currently allow Vietnamese citizens to enter. These casinos are located on the southern island of Phu Quoc and the northern province of Quang Ninh. Measures are in place to restrict certain citizens from entering the facilities.

Only Vietnamese citizens that have no criminal record, earn at least $449.00 USD a month, and have no objections from their families are permitted to enter. They are also charged an entrance fee. The situation is much different for tourists visiting Vietnam.

This doesn’t stop Vietnamese people from playing their favorite gambling games, though. There are millions of Vietnamese nationals around the world that like to gamble. Playing a popular Vietnamese gambling game together is a national pastime for some families.

Vietnamese Gambling Games

If you are Vietnamese, there is a good chance that you’ve already heard about these games. Even if you haven’t played gambled on them, there is probably a family member or friends in your circle that knows how the games work.

Why learn about Vitanemse gambling games if you aren’t Vietnamese? There is a whole world out there and educating yourself about unknown types of gambling and cultures is always a positive. Let’s get into the most popular gambling games in Vietnamese.

Bau Cua Tom Ca (Gourd Crab Shrimp Fish)

Bau Cua is the most popular and well-known gambling game in Vietnamese. This is a game that many Vietnamese families and friends will play on the Vietnamese New Year.

Bau Cua Tom Ca is a simple game to learn and fun to play. There aren’t any translations required to play Bau Cua. Anybody can pick up and learn Bau Cau right away and have fun.

If there’s any popular casino game in the United States that this Vietnamese gambling game can be compared to it has to be roulette or craps. The United States has a carnival game known as chuck-a-luck, but this hasn’t been popularized since medieval times and isn’t played widely.

Winning at Bau Cua Tom Ca requires being lucky and correctly guessing the symbols that are going to come up on the dice. Find out how to play Bau Cua Tom Ca and the rules for payouts below.

How To Play Bau Cua Tom Ca

The game is based on a board with six symbols. The board consists of a crab, gourd, fish, rooster, shrimp, and deer. Three six-sided Bau Cua dice are required to play the game.


Before the dice are rolled, gamblers must place their bet on a symbol on the board. They can pick any of the six animals by placing their money on the symbol.

Once the gamblers make their choices, the dice are rolled, typically between a plate and bowl, and winners and losers are then declared. Gamblers that don’t have their symbol face-up will lose all of their bet.

If there’s one symbol, then players will receive their bet back in a push. Two symbols result in two times their money. In other words, a $20.00 bet will return $40.00.

The biggest possible payout in Bau Cua is hitting three symbols on the dice. This will result in three times the original bet being returned to the winning player.

Bau Cua Tom Ca is a fun and fast game that anyone can learn in seconds. If you are lucky, it can also be a profitable Vietnamese gambling game.

Fish Fighting

It is a pastime in Vietnam. This obviously isn’t a gambling game for most people.

It’s mostly played by rural villagers and older Vietnamese citizens today. Gambling is largely forbidden in Vietnam, so the fish fighting circles are not operating legally.

Authorities are quick to bust up fish fighting and gambling rings in Vietnam. However, the practice is still done privately, and in some cases, fish fighting is only for entertainment.

There are Vietnamese farmers that specialize in breeding and raising fighting fish. The fish are mostly purchased for pets and ornamental purposes these days, but some are still used for gambling.

Vietnamese fighting fish are male Siamese fighting fish and Bagan Betta fish, which are naturally attracted to attack each other. They can cost pennies up to more than $30.00 for one fish.

The fish are kept in jars until it’s time for their fight.


Gambling may be largely illegal in Vietnam, but it’s hard to hide the cultural impact of gambling in the country. While it is illegal, the government has softened its stance on gambling in recent years. There has been a push to allow more local casinos to cater to Vietnamese citizens.

Gambling laws have been the subject of rapidly changing conditions over the last 20 years. It will be interesting to see where things go next in Vietnam for casino gambling.

Traditional Vietnamese gambling games will continue to be played by locals, though. There are also underground sports betting operations, with millions of dollars wagered every year. Football (soccer) is the most popular sport to bet on in Vietnam.

While fish fighting isn’t nearly as popular as it once was in the country, Bau Cua Tom Ca continues to be a popular gambling game among gamblers, family, and friends. Check the fun game out if you are interested in trying something new.

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