Differences Between American and European Roulette

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American and European are the most commonly played roulette games in casinos. They are played in the same way. Rules and payout tables are identical. The main difference between the two roulettes concerns the zero pockets.

Differences between the American roulette and the European roulette

American roulette has 38 pockets numbered from 1 to 36, a zero, and a double zero.
European roulette has 37 pockets numbered from 1 to 36, and a single zero.
The payout rates on winning bets are identical for both roulette games. Whether you bet on a number, a group of numbers or single odds, the payout rates remain the same. What changes are the probabilities of winning every time. Upfront, we can affirm that European roulette offers the best chances of winning. This is due to the payout rate of each version. American roulette has a payout rate of 94.76%, while European roulette reaches 97.3%. If winning bets at American roulette paid more than with European roulette, there’d be a balance, but this is not the case.

Key differences between American and European roulette

The American roulette wheel has 38 pockets. Pockets have black and red numbers ranging from 1 to 36. In green are the two extra boxes: the zero and the double zero. European roulette also has 36 pockets from 1 to 36, but there is only one zero.

The other difference between the two roulettes is that the numbered pockets are not arranged in the same order. This has no impact on the winning odds, it’s just a different way of displaying the wheel. In fact the only difference that has an influence is the number of green pockets.

Comparison between the two roulette layouts

Casino margin

Betting on American or European roulette may seem equivalent. If you don’t often play at the casino, there’s really nothing to worry about. In fact, chance is a component of the game and luck holds a part. But if you bet a lot, then there is an impact. If this is your case, it is advisable to choose the European roulette.

The house’s advantage

Thinking that by playing European roulette will make you earn more money because it pays better than American roulette can cost you a lot. The casino is still favoured at European roulette: the odds are 2.7%. So you should always remain cautious. Also, if you lose chips at the table, don’t ever think that it’s possible to recover your losses. As proclaimed by many guides such as Casino.co.uk, irresponsible gambling should be avoided. The best way to avoid going broke is to limit your casino budget and the time spent in a gaming room.

American Roulette vs. European Roulette

The house advantage is due to the game’s rules. These rules favour the casino. For all possible bets, there are no exceptions. Yet, between the single zero roulette (European) and the double zero roulette (American), the single zero roulette pays the best. To give just one example, the chances of winning at American roulette by placing a chip on a number are lower than with the European. With American roulette, odds of winning are 1 to 38, whereas they are 1 to 37 with European roulette. In short, European roulette is much better than American roulette.

The Zeros on the Roulette Wheel make all the Difference

Without these roulette zeros, casino profit margins would be 0 on any 36-number wheels. Of course, gambling houses have other objectives than just entertaining their customers with shows, trendy bars, or offering recreational moments. Casinos must make a profit in order to cover their costs. As expected, it’s with slot machines that gambling houses obtain their biggest margins. With roulettes, to a lesser extent, the house also makes a profit.

RTP rate differences

With American roulette, the casino margin is 5.26%. The equivalent RTP rate is 94.76% (100% – 5.26%). This 5.26% margin is the theoretical percentage received on all American roulette bets. The return to player rate (RTP) is calculated based on the odds of winning and the odds of losing on an infinite number of bets. With the European roulette the casino margin is 2.7%. This amounts to a RTP of 97.3%. On the mass of bets, the casino always wins in the end. While some players may win, the casino never loses anything. Of course, for a gambling house to survive, it must have enough customers.

Verdict on American and European roulettes

Between the two, European roulette is the most advantageous. In the big English casinos, both versions of the game are usually available. If this is the case, we advise you to choose the European roulette. You should always make that same decision if you are an online roulette player. If the casino you are playing at only has American roulette, you should avoid playing there.