4 Tips for Winning at Roulette

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Image via Flickr by Zdenko Zivkovic

Roulette is a game of chance, but you can still make educated choices that make winning more possible. Follow these four tips at roulette to make sure you understand how the game works and how you can use that knowledge to your advantage.

1. Know the Basic Rules

You can place several types of bets in roulette. To place a bet, you simply put your chip on the part of the playing board that corresponds to your bet. Some popular options include:

  • betting on red or black
  • betting on odd or even
  • betting on any one number
  • splitting your bet between two, three, four, five, or even six numbers.
  • betting on any number between 1 and 18
  • betting on any number between 19 and 36
  • betting on any number between 1 and 12, 13 and 24, or 25 and 36.

After players place their bets, the dealer spins the roulette wheel and drops a ball on it. Where the rests after the wheel has stopped spinning determines which bets win. Therefore, if you bet that the ball will rest on a red number, and it does, then you win. If it lands on black, you would lose.

2. Understand That Easy Odds Mean Lower Pay Outs

Many of the bets in roulette give players excellent odds of winning. Unfortunately, those bets do not pay out very much money. The better the odds are the less money players can expect to win. At the same time, players can expect to win more money by placing riskier bets.

The best odds are for bets placed on:

  • red or black
  • odd or even
  • any number from 1 to 18
  • any number from 19 to 36

All of these bets give you 47.37 percent chance of winning. Astute players might notice that this doesn’t make much sense. One should have a 50-50 chance of landing on an off or even number, right? That’s true, except that the house has a small edge that lowers the odds of winning. Many roulette boards also have a zero and double-zero space that complicates odds.

So, while it seems like players have a 50-50 chance of winning, the odds are actually a little lower. All of the above bets pay out 1 to 1. If you bet $10, you get your bet back plus another $10.

3. Halve Your Odds to Double Your Winnings

Players who choose to bet on any number between 1 and 12 (or 14 to 24, or 25 to 36) have a 31.58 percent chance of winning. That’s because the players essentially have a 1 in 3 chance of winning. This bet pays out $2 for every dollar bet.

4. Lower Odds Mean Bigger Winnings (Potentially)

When you lower your odds, things start to get much more complicated. Players who bet on a single number have approximately a 1 in 36 chance of winning (2.63 percent), but winners get $35 for every $1 they bet.

Splitting a bet between two numbers doubles the odds of winning to 5.26 percent while cutting the potential earnings to $17 for every $1 bet. Splitting a bet between the corner, first five, six line, and street numbers increases one’s odds of winning while also cutting potential winnings.

What are your favorite strategies for winning at roulette?

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