Roulette Odds and Payouts Explained

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When you play roulette, you are taking part in a game of chance in which no one knows where the little ball will end up. However, you can improve your chances of winning by fully understanding the roulette odds and payouts that are involved.

Are Roulette Odds Always the Same?

The first thing worth mentioning here is that you will find both American and European versions of this classic table game. The main difference between them is that the American variant has two zero pockets instead of one (0 and 00). This means that the roulette table odds are lower in European games, making the decision to play European versions one of our top casino rules.

The second factor to take into account is that the odds vary according to the bet that you choose. If you choose a single number, then the chances of winning are 36 to 1 in European-style games, and 37 to 1 if you play an American version. The payout, in either case, is 35 to 1.

Yet, if you decide to put your stake on red or black, the odds of the right colour coming up are close to 50%, and the payout is on a 1:1 basis. It is the presence of the zero, or zeros in American games, that stops this being a straight 50% chance of coming up.

Therefore, you should consider, first of all, how adventurous you want to be. Do you want a bet that has the best chance of winning you a small amount, or would you prefer to look for higher roulette odds on a type of wager that is less likely to come up?

To help you make your decision, we can now look at all the roulette payouts and how they are different on a variety of bets.

Do Roulette Payouts Vary?

Roulette payouts are affected by the odds we just looked at, as the wagers with the lowest chance of coming up also have the highest payouts. If you are using a roulette strategy, this will help you to see which kind of wager to use and where to place your casino chips.

For example, progressive strategies will often use the bets with the best possibility of winning and the lowest payout. On the other hand, someone who hopes to win a lot of money in few spins might decide to look for the biggest payouts, regardless of the high odds of this wager coming up.

Therefore, we can say that the best bet in roulette would be one that gives the odds you are happy accepting and a payout you feel is worth it. This will vary from one person to the next, and even the same person may feel like placing very different bets from one day to the next.

What Are Roulette Pay Tables?

These are tables that show how much you would win if you correctly predicted the outcome of a spin of the wheel. The following roulette pay table shows some of the payouts you will typically find when playing roulette.

Type of BetRoulette Odds (European)Roulette Odds (American)Payout
Straight / Single number36 to 137 to 135:1
Split17 ½ to 118 to 117:1
Street11 ⅓ to 111 ⅔ to 111:1
Corner8 ¼ to 18 ½ to 18:1
Column / Dozen2 ¹⁄₁₂ to 12 ⅙ to 12:1
Odd or Even / Red or Black /
High or low
1 ¹⁄₁₈ to 11 ⅑ to 11:1

As you can see, the roulette payouts for each bet are slightly lower than the odds of the bet coming in. This is where the house edge comes from, as the zero pocket(s) skews the odds slightly in favour of the casino. It also allows us to work out the RTP in the same way as on slots.

More complex bets, such as called bets, are a little more difficult to calculate on a roulette payout chart like this, as you generally place several chips across a series of numbers. The payout varies on these wagers, depending upon which of the chosen numbers the ball lands on.

How Do You Choose the Right Bet for the Best Roulette Odds?

As shown in the roulette odds chart, the odds and payout of each bet vary by roughly the same amount in each case. What this means is that there is no single bet that is significantly better than others in terms of the return vs the odds.

It could eventually come down to whether you are comfortable going through a sequence of losing spins before winning, or whether you would feel happier with low odds that mean you should win a fairly small amount more regularly.

By understanding the subject of roulette odds and payouts, you can start to choose your wagers more wisely and find a strategy that works for you.

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Did you know?

Did you know that the house edge in roulette has changed over the years? It first changed when Francois and Lois Blanc added a zero to the wheel in 1842. It changed again later in the century when American casinos added a second zero, taking the number of numbers from 37 to 38.

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Angela Wyman is nationally recognized as Your Gaming, Gambling, Vegas Girl Friday. She has been based out of Las Vegas for the last 10+ years, after extended stints entertaining in Scotland and Macau. Professional stage credits include Tony N’ Tina’s Wedding, Evil Dead, countless shows with A Touch of Mystery and as a Magician’s Assistant for Paul Draper, Dr Scott Lewis and Jackson Rayne. She is featured in numerous TV and radio ads (Golden Gate Casino, Newsmax TV, Nectar Bath Treats) and has made guest appearances on television series that range from Criss Angel: Mindfreak to National Geo’s Brain Games. She is most often recognized for her gambling videos with The Wizard Of Odds.

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