Roulette has been around since the 18th century in France. It is one of the more popular table games in the casino. A lot of gamblers are attracted to roulette because of its simplicity. Anybody can pick a number or pick a color. There are others that use complex betting systems in an attempt to beat the game. The reality is, roulette does not offer the best player odds and cannot be beat over the long term, but there are a few strategies that can significantly reduce the house edge.
“Even Odds” vs. “Even Money”
There is a common misconception that betting on an “even money” bet in roulette (red, black, odd, even, 1-18, 19-36) is also an “even odds” bet. “Even odds” and “even money” are two different things. “Even money” means if you place a bet for five dollars you will win the same amount, five dollars. “Even odds” means the casino does not have a built-in advantage over the player. The casino and the player have a 50/50 chance of success. This is not true for “even money” bets in roulette. The casino has an advantage because the roulette wheel has a green zero (0) and sometimes a green double zero (00). If you bet on red and the ball lands on green or black, you lose. The casino gets the advantage by having the extra green spot(s).
Green Zero and Double Zero
Never play on a roulette wheel that has both a green 0 and 00. This is the best roulette strategy a player can use. These wheels are also known as American wheels. Only play wheels that have a single zero, which are sometimes referred to as European wheels. By applying this one strategy, you are reducing the casino's advantage by almost 50 percent. The casino has a 5.26 percent advantage on an American wheel and a 2.70 percent advantage on a wheel that has only a single green zero.
“La Partage” and “En Prison” Rules
These are European rules that can further reduce the house edge on all “even money” bets. If you place a wager on an “even money” bet and the ball lands on the green zero, the player gets half of their bet back. This is known as “la partage.” If the “en prison” rule is in effect and the ball lands on the green zero, the player gets to keep the wager in place for an additional spin. If the player wins on the next spin, the original bet is returned without any additional winnings. Both of these rules are beneficial to the player. Try to find games that incorporate these rules.
Be Careful of Betting Systems
Many gamblers try to use different systems of betting to overcome the house advantage in roulette. Unfortunately, roulette has a fixed advantage which no system of betting can reduce. Depending on the setup and the rules of the game, the casino has a certain percentage advantage that cannot be lowered through altering wagers. Do not use a losing progression system of wagering. Increasing your bet after a loss can be dangerous. See: Learn more about the dangers of using a losing progression betting system.
Roulette is not a game that can be played with a small house edge, but there are certain games of roulette that are better than others. If you enjoy playing roulette, only play single zero games and games that use the “la partage” or “en prison rules.” There is no special system of wagering that will insure your success. Find the best games and hope luck is on your side.