European Roulette vs American Roulette: Who Wins?

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  • Written by Anette
  • Posted on January 11, 2021
Home News & Articles European Roulette vs American Roulette: Who Wins?

Roulette was created in the seventeenth century, and gained prominence at Monte Carlo casinos in the nineteenth century. But the crucial moment for the development of the game happened in the eighteenth and nineteenth century. That’s when the game crossed the Atlantic Ocean and arrived in America.

It didn’t take long for American casinos and gaming venues to implement changes that made the game much more profitable for the house. It included changing not only the rules but the wheel itself.

Today, we’re going to break down American roulette and European roulette, compare them and see which version is better for casinos and which favours gamblers.

The Wheel

The most significant difference between these two variants is the design of the wheel. European roulette contains numbers from 0 to 36, meaning there are 37 pockets. On the other hand, the American version has an additional pocket. That’s a double zero, which has a massive impact on the game’s odds.

All bets made in European roulette (excluding the En Prison rule) give the house an edge of 2.7%. In American roulette, the house edge is 5.27%. That’s almost double the advantage when compared to the version played in Europe.

European Roulette table
We compare the two most popular versions of online roulette.


As we’ve already mentioned, more things are separating the two versions and further influencing the odds.

Take some rules, for example. The En Prison rule in European roulette impacts the house edge. In practice, this means the losses you make on even-money bets aren’t immediately lost. They will stay on the board (in prison, hence the name) for another spin. You can get your initial bet back, although it’s impossible to get the money for the win. If you get a zero, your bet will remain in prison.
With the En Prison rule in effect, the house edge on even-money wagers drops to just 1.35%. That makes it one of the most appealing bets in European roulette.

American roulette offers a similar rule. Called the Surrender rule, it’s usually found in Atlantic City casinos. It applies to even-money wagers. The main difference is that Surrender gives only half of your bet back if the ball stops on a zero or a double zero. This rule also impacts the house edge on even-money wagers, dropping it to 2.63%.

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Since roulette is a negative expectation game, there are no strategies that players could use. However, that doesn’t mean they can’t do anything to improve their odds. American wheels are less advantageous, so it’s probably better to avoid the popular game’s American variant.

If you wish to win more and lose less, stay away from American roulette completely. The majority of casinos offer European roulette, with and without the En Prison rule. Do your homework before actually playing. Doing so can save a lot of time in the future.

Bear in mind that playing European roulette doesn’t mean you won’t be able to lose, even with the En Prison rule in effect. However, if you choose the European variant, you’re probably going to lose much less. Even the statistic says you’re going to lose four times more money when playing American roulette.

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It’s easy to see who wins in the match between American and European roulette. The European variant simply offers more to players, although in both cases it’s the casino that profits. European roulette has better odds, and that’s why the game is more popular among gamblers in Europe. It’s even more popular at American casinos where a single zero version is available. The choice is obvious, but the rest is up to you. If you want to compare two versions yourself, visit OnlineGambling24 today.

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