Picture of American roulette at the casino.
Although you may think roulette is the simplest game at the casino, there are many complexities to the game that you might not know about. For example, choosing the right roulette wheel for your goals can increase your chances of winning. 

American and European roulette wheels may look the same: revolving wheels with different numbers and colors built into the structure. However, they are worlds apart and have small intricacies that are worthy of notice. 

Roulette is easy to play. You pick a number and wait for the croupier to throw the ball in and spin the wheel. If the ball lands on the number or color you selected, you win. However, the European and American wheels differ based on the house edge.

The Difference Between European and American Roulette

Here are two of the main differences you need to note;

1. The Structure

In American roulette, you normally witness both zero and double zero pockets. This is the traditional form of the game, which differs from European roulette. In the American version, unless the player bets on either of the pockets, the ball landing on the zero pockets is generally a bad outcome. 

In the European version, although the ball landing in the zero pocket has the same outcome, the outcome is reduced by half. This is because European roulette only has one zero pocket. This may seem like a small and insignificant difference, but it matters a lot when it comes to the house edge. 

2. The Odds, House Edge, and RTP

What are roulette odds, and how are they calculated? 

Let’s learn about RTP and the house edge first. The RTP is the percentage that you can retrieve from your investment into the game. On the other hand, the house edge is the percentage that would probably go to the casino. 

This percentage is different for European and American roulette. This is because the house edge differs for both variations. Although the American version of roulette has lower odds, the payouts are still the same as European roulette. You will still get paid 35 to 1. 

In American roulette, the house edge is higher (5.26%) than in the European version (2.7%). This is because the odds of winning in the American version are lower (1 in 38) compared to European roulette (1 in 37). 

Which is Better? 

The house edge for European roulette tilts in the favor of the player. The odds of winning are also a lot better when compared to American roulette. But does this necessarily mean that European roulette is better than American roulette?

There are multiple factors you should consider before making a choice. You need to decide whether the thrill and payout value matters to you more than the occasional win. In American roulette, you may get a bigger payout when you win, but winning is much less likely. In the European version, you have higher chances of winning, and the return-to-player ratio is also higher. 

This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t play American roulette. It simply means that if you are going to play roulette, it is important to get educated on the differences between the two variations. This is only possible when you begin playing the game. 

Some players are a lot more comfortable with the American version. We suggest you try both online for free before you consider stepping into the local casino and giving the game a shot. 

Remember that there are many more variations of roulette that you can try online. You don’t need to limit yourself to these two variations. For example, French roulette offers you even better odds through the En Prison Rule, whereby you simply need to skip a turn instead of giving up all your earnings if the ball lands on a zero. 

Tips for Roulette Players

Here are some general tips that may come in handy when you play roulette; 

1. Focus 

Try not to lose your focus and get lost in the bling of the casino. Keep an eye on that bankroll, and do not invest more than possible. If you have to, step away from the wheel until you think you can think and decide rationally. 

2. Avoid Drinking

Avoid drinking when you are playing roulette. Roulette is won with rationality, and you don’t want to lower your inhibitions when you are betting. The more you drink, the more likely you are to make impulsive decisions that are unhealthy for your pocket. 

3. Don’t Use it To Escape

It is important to come to the casino with a positive mindset. Never use roulette to escape a negative situation, as that is a recipe for a gambling addiction. Instead, try to approach the roulette table with entertainment and fun in mind and learn as you go. This will also leave you open to criticism and learning from professional players. 

4. Get the Basics Right

Get the basics of roulette right. This includes betting strategies that you need to incorporate and whether those strategies align with your bankroll. Do not pick a radical betting strategy if you don’t have the bankroll to match it. 

5. Avoid Tracking

Don’t invest in roulette tracking, as it isn’t really helpful in the long run. Instead, study betting strategies online and determine which strategy works best for you. 

European vs. American roulette.
Picture of roulette at a casino.

Final Thoughts

A winner isn’t always possible in the battle between European and American roulette. This is because the preference varies from player to player. Some players may like American roulette’s thrill and adventure, while others want to play it safe. 

At the end of the day, the variation you play must suit your personality. Determine whether you are a thrill seeker or want to play throughout the night. If you want to play for longer, consider European roulette!

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