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While roulette is not a hard game to understand, the problem is learning how to bet properly. As in any game of chance, there is no fool-proof method to winning consistently.

How to Play

There is an American version and a European version, the difference being the “double zero” slot found in the American version. Players place their bets on the roulette table and watch as the croupier spins the roulette wheel in one direction and rolls the roulette ball in the opposite direction.  Once the ball stops and lands in a numbered slot, if you placed a bet on the number that the ball landed in, you’re a winner!  Once all bets are paid off for that spin, it starts all over again, a very simple process.

How to Bet on Roulette

Each player is given a different color chip, so the croupier knows which player to pay on different bets.  He can also guess the player jumping up and down is probably the one who won his bet. There will also be a table minimum bet.

There are two basic areas for betting in roulette, the inside and the outside. The minimum bet for the table is usually the same for inside and outside, however, the inside bet can cover multiple bets, whereas the outside bet covers one spot and must be that minimum.  For example, a $5 minimum inside bet can be $1 on 5 different numbers, and an outside $5 minimum bet is a $5 bet on one option.

Types of Inside Bets

  • Single Number – Straight bet – pays 35:1, the riskiest, but most rewarding
  • Two Numbers – Split bet – pays 17:1, your chips are placed on the line splitting 2 numbers
  • Three Numbers – Street bet – pays 11:1, your chips are placed on the line that separates the inside and outside of the table
  • Four Numbers – Corner or Square bet – pays 8:1, your chips are placed on the line intersecting all four numbers
  • Six Numbers – Double Street bet – pays 5:1, your chips are placed on the line between two rows of numbers, between the inside and outside of the table
  • In American roulette, there is a five number bet that pays 6:1, your chips are placed on the line beside the zero, double zero and numbers 1-3

Keep in mind that the inside bets have the best payouts, because they have the highest house edge and you have to assess the risks vs. the rewards.

Types of Outside Bets

  • Red or Black – pays 1:1, chips are placed on the red or black diamond
  • Odd or Even – pays 1:1, chips are placed on the odd or even rectangle
  • Field Bets – pays 1:1, chips are placed in the rectangles marked 1-18, or 19-36
  • Dozen Bet – pays 2:1, chips are placed in the rectangles marked 1st 12, 2nd 12 or 3rd 12
  • Column Bet – pays 2:1, also a 12 number bet, chips are placed in the squares at the end of the number columns

Outside bets are safer bets and therefore have lower payouts.

Best Roulette Tips and Strategy

  1. Beware of the house edge – Understand that the house edge in American Roulette is 5.26% (it’s 2.7% in the European game) which is big compared to the .5% house edge in blackjack. There are better ways than roulette, to make money in a casino.
  2. Manage your bankroll wisely – as in most casino games, give yourself a loss limit before you step to the table
  3. Control your emotions – if you keep calm while having fun, the smarter bets you’ll make and hopefully win more money
  4. Stick to the outside bets – While they have the lowest payouts, they are the safest bets, with more consistent payouts over the long run.
  5. Stay away from betting systems – There are popular betting systems, such as The Martingale System, associated with roulette, but for the most part, you’ll lose your bankroll quick if you run into a bad streak. As a beginner, don’t try to use any roulette betting system, just play for the fun and the experience.


In a casino, the roulette table can produce some of the loudest cheers. It’s a fun game that can have huge payouts for the players. There is no absolute strategy with this game of chance.  Each roll is a separate occurrence and you must remember the old adage “the wheel has no memory.”  Give it a chance, just for the fun of it!

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