Roulette Strategies: a Quick Guide To The Most Popular

In this article, we list the most popular roulette strategies and highlight some smart tips that will help to improve your play of the most popular online table game.

What is a roulette strategy?

All players know that online casinos are businesses and that this ultimately means that the house always wins in the long run. Online casinos have a mathematical advantage over their players, therefore players have to put in place smart strategies to beat the house and to increase their chances of winning.

The aim of this article is to help players to learn and use the best and most popular roulette strategies available, such as the Martingale, d’Alembert, Fibonacci, and Oscar’s grind.

So, enjoy reading and choose the right roulette strategy for you!

Different types of roulette strategies

Roulette strategies are categorised into two groups – progressive and non-progressive/flat strategies. Let’s look at them one by one:

The Martingale roulette strategy

This strategy is very popular with new players because it is easy to remember and to implement. This strategy does not include a mathematical element, which is often what complicates the learning of other strategies for players.

The Martingale strategy is applied on even outside bets which include Red/black, Low/High, and Odds/Evens bet. These bets have the highest chance of winning (close to 50%), but also the smallest payouts on the roulette table (2.00).

The logic behind this strategy is simple: double your bet every time you lose and keep doing so until you win, that’s all. Once a win comes in, it will be large enough to recover any losses and to make a profit. After a win, return to your original bet size and repeat the bets.

As a roulette strategy, the Martingale is easy to learn but it is also quite risky, particularly for advanced and high roller players.

The main problem is that a player risks exhausting their money after just a few rounds. If they lose too many times in a row, the player might hit the table limit which possibly means that a player cannot double their bet and therefore will definitely lose all the previous losses.

Reverse Martingale roulette strategy

The reverse Martingale is the opposite of the Martingale. A player has to double their bet every time they win and keep doing so until they lose. This strategy is applied on even bets such as red/black, low/high, and odd/even.

Start to bet with the smallest amount possible. Continue at this bet level until you win, at which point you double your bet on the next spin. Continue in this way until you lose, at which point you restart the process by betting at the smallest amount again.

The logic behind the reverse Martingale is based on the thinking that losses and wins usually come in streaks. By adjusting your betting to increase during winning streaks and decrease during losing streaks, you minimise your losses.

Paroli roulette strategy

The Paroli strategy is also known as the Reverse Martingale, which we have explained above.

Red/Black strategy

The king of bets at online roulette tables is the red/black bet.

It’s important to point out that red/black has the same probability odds as odd/even and 1-18/19-36, so all of these systems can be used for those bets too.

The red and black bet can be played using different strategies, below you will find the more interesting:

The Martingale: Is a very common system that players use. All you have to do is choose a colour (red or black) and then if you lose, you have to double your next bet. You repeat this process over and over until you get a win. Once you get a win, your overall profit will be higher than all the bets you made. This is one of the riskiest roulette strategies that you can use. The Martingale can be used all over the roulette table, not just on the red and black bet. It is red and black where it is most commonly used though.

Reverse Martingale: This is the exact opposite of the system above. It is also known as the Paroli system. Instead of increasing your bets after a loss, you increase your bets after a win. The hope is that you will get a long streak of the colour that you’re betting on and take a big win.

The d’Alembert: This is one of the safest strategies available. This system can only be used on even chance bets. Read the explanation below.

The Fibonacci: This is a strategy that involves you increasing your bets after a loss, like the Martingale, but it’s safer and regular. Patience and discipline are required with this strategy.

Whittaker strategy: This system is identical to the Fibonacci. The only difference is the name.

The Labouchere: This is a strategy that will take a bit of practice to get started. It’s another regular system that is safer than the Martingale, and the maths adds up nicely when you use it properly.

Oscar’s grind: This is a very similar system to the d’Alembert. You increase your bets after a win and keep them the same after a loss. A slow system that attempts to grind out wins, hence the name.

Hollandish strategy: This is a slow progressive system where you go through “stages”, where each stage has 3 bets.

Flat betting

In Flat betting, you simply have to bet the same amount over and over again. If you do this, you can expect to lose to the house edge over the long term of play, or to win or lose a little bit.

The main advantages to flat betting are as follows:

  • It’s regular, you know how much you will bet on each spin because it comes without the need for complex mathematical progressions.
  • You don’t lose large sums in just a few spins like you do with other roulette strategies like the Martingale.
  • On a lucky day, you may get a small win.

The main disadvantages are:

  • Not much profit even on a lucky day.
  • You likely lose over the long term as a result of the house edge.
  • No excitement and boring play.

D’Alembert roulette strategy

This strategy is based on flat progression and is one of the safer strategies available.

How it works? First, the player must identify their lowest bet. This can be of any size, but the player must keep in mind that they need to bet several times this amount, so it should be advisably low. The strategy works on even bets. It can be used on red-black, odd-even, and 1-18/19-36.

With the d’Alembert strategy a player has to pick a starting bet, then increase their bets by one unit after a loss, and decrease them by one unit after a win. The theory is that once you have wins equal to your losses, you will be in profit by the amount of bets you’ve placed. Below is an example with a starting bet of 5:

  • Bet 5 and lose
  • Bet 6 and lose
  • Bet 7 and win
  • Bet 6 and lose
  • Bet 7 and win
  • Bet 6 and win
  • Bet 5 and lose
  • Bet 6 and win

The maths for what we have just done is as follows: 5 – 6 + 7 – 6 + 7 + 6 – 5 + 6 = 4

In the above sequence, there were 4 losses and 4 wins, but despite this, you are in profit by 4. This is the golden rule with the d’Alembert – If the number of wins is the same as the number of losses, you will always be in profit by the number of bets.

The d’Alembert is a low-risk strategy and easy to implement. That also means there is a low payout.

There is also the risk of hitting a long and painful losing streak, which can quickly destroy a player’s bankroll.

Labouchère roulette strategy

This interesting progressive strategy requires a bit of study for a player, but once a player gets familiar it is easy to use it.

The first step for a player is to decide how much they want to win. Just as an example, let’s say €20.

The next step a player needs to do is split this amount of €20 into small bets and write them down in a row like this: 2– 2 – 2 – 4 – 4 – 4 – 2

For the first spin, the bet will be the number on the far left plus the number on the far right, so it is 2 + 2 = €4. That is the size of your first bet.

If the first spin is successful, the player deletes the two numbers of the bet, the 2 from the far left and the 2 from the far right, so the line will be: 2 – 2 – 4 –4 – 4. Using the rule above, the bet on the second spin will be 2 + 4, so €6.

While if the first spin is a loss, the player adds the amount of Euro 4 to the right-hand side of the sequence (this amount is always the same amount as the last bet lost), creating the following sequence: 2 – 2 – 2 – 4 – 4 – 4 – 2 – 4. The next bet will be €6.

This strategy is easy to understand and to implement, and there is nothing stopping the player from stopping the sequence and starting with a new one.

What are the downsides of this strategy? The main one is that one long losing streak could lead a player to more losses than they can manage. Only an equally long winning streak can save a player from that happening, and winning streaks are rather hard to predict.

Oscar’s Grind (small is good) strategy

The ‘grind’ part of the name comes from this strategy’s aim, which is winning small amounts regularly.

It’s a very similar system to the d’Alembert strategy. Oscar’s grind is an even outside betting system so it can be used on red/black, even/odd, and 1-18/19-36.

This system has four stages which you move through as you’re winning. The stages are as follows: 1 – 2 – 3 – 4

The idea of this system is simple: When you’re winning you increase your bets by 1 each time until you get to 4. When you’re losing the bet stays the same. The aim is to get a 1 unit profit each time and once this is achieved you go back to betting 1 again.

The main rule of this system is easy. Go back to the beginning of the progression once you have a one-unit profit. It doesn’t matter which stage of the progression you were at when you achieved the one-unit win, go back to the start. Another thing to remember is that you neither increase nor decrease your bets after a loss. Here is an example:

  • Bet 1 and lose
  • Bet 1 and lose
  • Bet 1 and win
  • Bet 2 and win

That is a very simple example. As you can see, the bets stayed the same when we were losing, and as soon as a win came in, we moved up to betting 2 units. Because the bet of 2 units won, we had won one unit overall so that was the end of the cycle, we would then start over by betting 1 unit. Here is a longer example:

  • Bet 1 and lose
  • Bet 1 and win
  • Bet 2 and lose
  • Bet 2 and lose
  • Bet 2 and lose
  • Bet 2 and win
  • Bet 3 and win
  • Bet 4 and lose
  • Bet 4 and win
  • Bet 4 and win

At this point, you would be up by 3, so you would walk away from the table.

The downside to Oscar’s grind strategy

The downside to this strategy is that even a short losing streak can create a big problem for you and only an equally winning run can pull you out of it.

Also, if you have to bet 4 units a spin and then go on a losing run, you will find yourself in a deep hole that you’re extremely unlikely to find a way out of.

The best thing you can do with this system is to have a realistic stop-loss and stick to it. For example, if you find yourself 15 units down, it might be better to walk away because you’re unlikely to get it back. Obviously, your stop-loss limit would depend on your bankroll capacity and what kind of a player you are.

Fibonacci roulette strategy

This strategy is based on the famous Fibonacci sequence, this sequence is present in nature and has endless mathematical and scientific applications. The sequence is as follows:

1 – 1 – 2 – 3 – 5 – 8 – 13 – 21 – 34 – 55 – 89 – 144 – 233 – 377 – 610 – 987.

The Fibonacci roulette strategy is simple. First of all, this is an even chance betting system, and it can be used on red/black, odd/even, or 1-18/19-36. A player can wager any bet size while keeping the proportions the same. Start at 1 (ex. €1) then move down the sequence until a game is won. If the fourth spin is won, for example, that means the series of bets will have been €1, €1, €2 and €3.

When the game is won, the player moves back two numbers in the sequence and bets at that amount, with the aim being to get back to the first space over time.

The Fibonacci is an interesting roulette strategy because it’s safer than others such as the Martingale, and despite it’s safer nature, there’s still potential for it to win bigger sums.

But what are the issues with this strategy? The Fibonacci sequence is just a sequence of numbers. A player’s bankroll capacity and table bet limits can block bets larger than a certain size, consequently, there is a big risk of a massive loss in the event of a losing streak in the higher end of the sequence.

Let’s have an example:

  • Bet 1 and lose
  • Bet 1 and lose
  • Bet 2 and lose
  • Bet 3 and lose
  • Bet 5 and lose
  • Bet 8 and lose
  • Bet 13 and lose
  • Bet 21 and lose
  • Bet 34 and win

Now, once you’ve bet this 34 and won, you move back two numbers in the sequence and bet that number (13). You repeat this process over and over until you’re back at the start of the progression – always move back two numbers in the sequence after a win. Here is an extended example to show you how this works, using the above example to begin with:

  • Bet 1 and lose
  • Bet 1 and lose
  • Bet 2 and lose
  • Bet 3 and lose
  • Bet 5 and lose
  • Bet 8 and lose
  • Bet 13 and lose
  • Bet 21 and lose
  • Bet 34 and win
  • Bet 13 and lose
  • Bet 21 and win
  • Bet 8 and win
  • Bet 3 and lose
  • Bet 5 and win
  • Bet 2 and lose
  • Bet 3 and lose
  • Bet 5 and win
  • Bet 2 and win
  • Bet 1 and win

With the above example, you would have made your way back to the start of the sequence and your profit would have been 1, so in this sense, it’s a bit like the Martingale, but the difference between the two strategies is in the Fibonacci you’ve lost eight bets in a row and the highest bet was 21. If you were using the Martingale, you would have placed a 256 bet and lost, so the Fibonacci is unquestionably safer.

Another good thing about the Fibonacci is that in the above example there were 12 losses and 7 wins, but despite this, it still came out with a profit. So as you can see, the Fibonacci is one of the better strategies that you can use for even chance betting, although there is still no guarantee of a win.

Column and dozens betting strategy

This strategy is built around hedging bets and covers a larger proportion of the table space, and can be used on columns and dozens because the odds are the same.

How it works? On the table, there are three different Dozen bets marked as: 1st 12, 2nd 12, and 3rd 12.

There are also 3 Column bets marked on the table as 2 to 1. The first Column covers numbers 1 to 34, the second 2 to 35, and third 3 to 36.

  • Example 1

The player makes a €20 bet on the column/dozen they think will win.

A second bet will be placed as a hedge on another column/dozen, the bet will be half the size, €10.

So we will have three possible results in this game: You win on the first column a total of €30; break-even on the second column (€20 total) or take a loss if the ball lands on a number in the third column.

Players can hedge their bets by betting even money on red or black for example. If the ball lands in the selected zone the wins can be large, but the losses can be equally big if the spin results in a loss. This strategy doesn’t change the roulette odds, but uses them to at least minimise losses and improve the chances of a win.

  • Example 2

You have 6 bets, each bet covers 12 numbers (just less than a third of the wheel with a total of 37 or 38 numbers), they have the same odds and payout which is 2:1. So if you bet €1, you can win €3.

Strategy 1 – Choose a Dozen, any of them, and you bet on it with €1 (you can scale down to 10 cents if you want and divide the numbers below by 10). Then, if you lose, you must use the below betting sequence until you get a win:

1 – 1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 6 – 9 – 14 – 21 – 31 – 47 – 70 – 105 – 158 – 237 – 355

If you win on any of those numbers, you will have a small profit. The obvious negative aspect is that if you don’t win within that sequence, you report a big loss. Another downside is that because you’re covering less than a third of the table, you’re going to lose a lot more bets than you win over the long term of play. Here’s a table that shows how much you’ve lost in total at each stage of the progression.

Martingale on dozens/columns, starting with a bet of €1

Loss Bets PlacedEuroTotal LossProfit If The Bet Wins

As you can see, after 15 losses in a row your total loss will be €709 and your next bet will need to be €355 to cover the previous losses which is a total outlay of €1,064. Here are the odds of getting 15 spins in a row without wins on Dozen/Column:

European Roulette: (25/37)^15 = 0.2793% – This works out at a 1 in 358 chance.

American Roulette: (26/38)^15 = 0.3372% – This works out at a 1 in 296 chance.

Just to give you an idea of what to expect, when playing roulette online, we have seen over 30 spins in a row without a dozen or column hitting, and when this happens you will lose. Test it on a free roulette at this link:

Tip: Wait for 10-15 spins without a dozen or column hitting and then bet on it, which doesn’t change the odds of the game.

Strategy 2 – The problem with the above strategy is that you don’t cover large portions of the table, so you can report lots of losses. To minimise this you can bet on 2 dozens at the same time instead. This is the progression that you would need to use:

1 – 3 – 9 – 27 – 81 – 243

In the above example, the numbers quickly became big, that’s because you need to triple (x3) your bet after every loss. The upside to this is you cover less than 2/3 of the table, and you get more wins than losses. But with a steep progression like that, it only takes a few losses in a row to give you a big loss that is hard to recover from. As with the first system, some players try ideas such as waiting until the same Dozen has hit three times in a row and then bet on the other two, but this again doesn’t change the odds of the game. Our tip here is to set yourself a stop-loss and target for a win. For example, with the first strategy above, if you set up a stop-loss after 43 bet, you have to stop the game and leave the table, don’t chase your losses (read our article on this 13 Useful Tips To Play Online Live Roulette )!

James Bond roulette strategy

The James Bond non-progressive strategy still remains in use today. The strategy can be used progressively as well. The system is not present in the James Bond films, but is written in Ian Fleming’s books, where he also used the Labouchere system.

How it works?

The player places a bet of a certain amount. It doesn’t matter how big or small the amount is, the key factor is to follow the right proportions. Just as an example, a player starts with a €20 bet, which would be split as follows:

  • €14 on High (19 to 36)
  • €5 on the line bet 13-14-15-16-17-18
  • €1 on 0

This bet covers 25 spaces on the table, leaving 12 empty (the numbers 1 through 12) that would constitute a loss.

What is the main problem with this strategy? It can’t hold up in the long term. If we had to spin 43 times, it is unlikely that we would hit every single number available, so we might win a lot or lose a lot. The 007 strategy is certainly as unpredictable and exciting as the famous secret agent, but we need also to point out that doesn’t give any guarantee for players.

Play Online Roulette today

Now that you have an arsenal of strategic knowledge about online roulette, the next move is to head to CoinSaga where we have over twenty Bitcoin Live Roulette games to choose from! – Play Now