Roulette Payoffs and House Advantage

Roulette: Payoffs, and the House Advantage
by Wilson of

Most experienced gamblers know the payoff for each individual bet. By definition, the payoff, for the novice player, is simply the amount of money a player receives given their particular bet is a winner. For example, in the game of blackjack if a player is dealt a blackjack which means the player receives a combination of cards equaling 21 (ace and a face card, or ace and 10) then that player is usually paid one and a half times their original wager or 3 to 2. Therefore if you wagered $10 and hit a blackjack you would receive $15 plus the original $10. Lets take a look at the pay-offs for each bet on a roulette table.


Straight up bet: This bet occurs when a player places a bet on one single number. The payoff is 35 to 1.
Split: (two adjacent numbers): The payoff is 17 to 1.
Trio: This bet represents three numbers in a row. The payoff is 11 to 1.
Four-Number; (square of numbers): The payoff is 8 to 1.
Five-Number: (0, 00, 1, 2, and 3): The payoff is 6 to 1.
Six-Number: (two consecutive rows of numbers, also known as a double trio): The payoff is 5 to 1.
Red: (eighteen red numbers on the layout): The payoff is 1 to 1.
Black: (eighteen black numbers on the layout): The payoff is 1 to 1.
Even: (eighteen even numbers on the layout): The payoff is 1 to 1.
Odd: (eighteen odd numbers on the layout): The payoff is 1 to 1.
Low: (numbers 1 through 18): The payoff is 1 to 1.
High: (19 through 36): The payoff is 1 to 1.
Column: (twelve numbers in a column): The payoff is 2 to 1.
Dozen: (1-12, 13-24, and 25-36): The payoff is 2 to 1.

The house advantage for most roulette tables is in the neighborhood of 5.26 percent. The only exception is the five-number bet (0, 00, 1, 2, and 3) which stands at a whopping 7.29 percent. What does all of this actually mean? Well, basically it means that for every $100 you bet, youll get back about $94.74, or if youre wagering on the five-number bet then you will be getting back a slightly lower amount at $92.71. Remember these numbers are merely an average return over a long period of time.

The deciding factor of the house advantage comes primarily from the two numbers 0, and 00. If not for these two numbers there would be no house advantage on the roulette wheel. What does that mean? For example, if there were no 0 or 00 numbers on the layout, the chance of winning for the odd or even, or the black or red numbers would be at 50 percent. However, with the 0, and 00 the chance of winning is reduced to 47.37 percent. In other words, the house, which pays 1 to 1 when your odds of winning are 47.37 percent will profit 2.63 percent over a period of time.

Roulette is easy and fun to play, but the house advantage is higher than other casino games. However, if you enjoy an easy game to play with mainly self explanatory bets then roulette may be your ticket. Remember, an educated gambler is usually a winner over time. Luck to ya.