How to Play American Roulette

What is American roulette?

Given the various different roulette games, it can be easy to get confused but when it comes to the American roulette game, it is actually very simple.

This version uses all the basic rules of the traditional roulette game. The only significant difference is the American roulette wheels, consisting of 38 divisions, which have two zero segments rather than the single zero wheel that can be found in European roulette.

As the wheel includes two zeros, the house edge is higher but the payout odds remain the same as those found in other versions of roulette.

American Roulette Rules

For the rules of American-style roulette, there is very little difference. Players begin by placing a bet on the roulette table. This will happen during a betting window, which will eventually end when the dealer calls for final bets.

Once betting has come to a close, the wheel will spin until the ball finally comes to a stop on one of the segments. Winning bets are awarded to players when correctly predicting where the ball will land.

You can even play American roulette online, with some casino games offering a live chat experience to interact with other players and the dealer.

There are some games that include the "surrender" rule, allowing players to receive half their bet back when the roulette ball lands on either the zero or the double-zero pocket.

American roulette wheel

There is one significant difference when compared to other versions, which comes down to the double-zero wheel.

Adding the extra zero to the wheel increases the house edge to 5.26%. Despite the reduced odds of winning, the payout odds for a straight-up bet are actually the same as those found in the European version (35/1).

American roulette wheel visualised

American roulette betting options

American roulette inside bet types

Inside bets typically have the highest odds as they are the least likely to win. Some of the options include:

  • Straight-up bet - A bet on a single number.
  • Split bet - Betting on two numbers adjacent to each other.
  • Street bet - Selecting all three numbers in a row for one bet.
  • Corner bet - Placing a bet on four numbers where the chip covers the corner of each.
  • Five bet - Including the numbers; 0, 00, 1, 2 and 3.
  • Line bet - Consists of six numbers from two rows.

American roulette outside bet types

With outside bets, players are more likely to win which is why the payout odds tend to be lower. Some of the bets available include:

  • Column bet - Betting on an entire column of numbers.
  • Dozen bet - The 36 numbers on the wheel are split into three groups; 1 to 12, 13 to 24 and 25-36.
  • Odd or Even - Place a bet on whether the number that will hit is either an odd or even number.
  • Red or Black - Bet on whether the ball will land on a red or black segment.
  • High or Low - Bet on a low number hitting (1-18) or a high number hitting (19-36).

American roulette payout odds

As the American version is slightly different to other games, including a different roulette wheel and betting options, then you might be wondering what the payout odds are for the different bet types.

The different payout odds that are available include:

  • Straight-up bet: 35:1
  • Split bet: 17:1
  • Street bet: 11:1
  • Corner bet: 8:1
  • Five number bet: 6:1
  • Line bet: 5:1
  • Odd/Even bet: 50/50 even money
  • Red/Black bet: 50/50 even money
  • High/Low bet: 50/50 even money
  • Column bet: 2:1
  • Dozen bet: 2:1

It is worth noting that the payout odds for a straight-up bet are the same within American roulette as the European version, despite the increased house edge.

American Roulette FAQs

Is American or European roulette better?

There is no right or wrong answer when it comes to deciding which version of roulette is better.

The wheel does include the extra zero, increasing the house edge. This is one of the main reasons why players tend to choose the European version.

Online American roulette provides players with the option to play both live and virtual games, with some variants adding twists to the traditional version.

Due to the double zero wheel, the house edge is 5.26%. Despite it being less likely for you to win a straight-up bet, the payout odds remain the same at 35/1.

For unique American roulette bets such as the five bet, the payout odds stand at 6/1.

Even money bets such as red or black, have a win percentage of 47.37%.

The only real difference is the wheel which includes two zero segments.

Players will also notice a slight difference in the American roulette table with other bet options available, such as the special five bet. Standing at payout odds of 6/1, the special five bets allow you to bet on the roulette ball landing on the numbers 0, 00, 1, 2 or 3.

Despite the different options available, the betting layout remains very similar to the European version of the game.

It is worth noting that roulette strategies do not guarantee you a win at roulette as it comes down to complete chance.

Many different online roulette strategies have been developed over the years to provide a system/approach for playing, however, none of these guarantee an outcome.

One of the most popular strategies is the Martingale system. Following this method, players double their betting amount after each loss. The thinking behind the system is that a win with a double bet amount will cover any previous losses.

It is worth noting that the bet amount can rise fast when doubling your bet each time which can cause issues if you have a smaller budget or the table you're playing at has lower betting limits.

Each number on the 38-pocket wheel has an equal chance of hitting.

The number 17 is said to be the most popular in terms of how many times it has been bet on due to the position it takes up in the middle of the wheel.

The outcome of roulette is based on random chance so there is no certain bet, however, the evening money bet types offer the best odds of winning with a win percentage of 47.37%.

Take Time to Think | BeGambleAware.org | 18+

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