The Martingale is perhaps the most famous gambling system of all time. It’s been used by gamblers for centuries in an effort to beat the house.
This system requires you to double bets following each loss. It’s the most effective with even-money wagers, where you have a higher chance of winning.
Roulette is a popular target for Martingale gamblers. It features multiple even-money wagers, including high/low, red/black, and odd/even.
The problem with the Martingale, though, is that gamblers eventually lose enough times to where they hit the maximum limit. At this point, you can no longer effectively use this system.
Many gamblers have experienced this problem firsthand in land-based casinos. But what about online casinos, where the minimum bets are lower?
I’m going to discuss more on this betting system and how many losses you can suffer online before hitting the table limit.
Basics of the Martingale
Again, the Martingale system revolves around doubling your bets after every loss. You then go back to the table’s minimum wager as soon as you win.
The goal here is twofold:
Earn back all losses.
End with small profits after you win losses back.
In theory, the Martingale is the perfect gambling system. It’s the only strategy that would deliver guaranteed profits under the right circumstances. I emphasize the word “would” here, though.
Casinos combat the Martingale with maximum table betting limits. You can only lose so many consecutive times before hitting the limit and not being able to double wagers any longer.
Here’s an example:
You bet $1 and lose (bankroll at -$1).
You bet $2 and lose (bankroll at -$3).
You bet $4 and lose (bankroll at -$7).
You bet $8 and lose (bankroll at -$15).
You bet $16 and lose (bankroll at -$31).
You bet $32 and win (bankroll at +$1).
Regarding the infinite bankroll aspect, you’ll eventually run into a losing streak so long that you’ll need a massive amount just to cover losses. Elon Musk might be able to keep using the Martingale under any circumstance. You, on the other hand, are going to run out of money at some point.
As you can see, this system is far from perfect. However, it usually works well enough in the short run to help you enjoy many winning sessions. This is a key reason why so many gamblers are willing to try the Martingale again and again.
The Martingale Is Extremely Popular in Roulette
Gamblers use this betting strategy in various games, such as baccarat, blackjack, Caribbean Stud, and craps. All of these games offer the necessary even-money bets that make the Martingale more effective.
But roulette is more associated with this system than any other casino game. It doesn’t involve much strategy, which encourages many players to force the issue.
Some gamblers aren’t satisfied with placing the best bets, lowering the house edge, and letting fate do the rest. They want more control over the odds and will use certain strategies in an effort to have this influence.
Here’s where the Martingale comes into play. A portion of players believe that they’ll ultimately win more money through roulette if they use this system.
I’ll cut to the chase. The Martingale doesn’t ultimately swing the odds in your favor. The house edge remains the same no matter what betting system you use. But again, you can’t do much else to influence roulette results. Gambling systems become more attractive as a result.
Here are some other betting strategies that players use in this game:
Understanding Online Roulette Stakes Is Important
Before I get more into using the Martingale in online roulette, I’d like to discuss what stakes you’ll be seeing. After all, the stakes are critical with regard to how you use this system.
The average online roulette game lets you place $1 bets. This amount is cheaper than the $5 minimum wager featured in land-based casinos.
With that said, you can play internet roulette for 5x less than the brick and mortar version. Furthermore, you have more wiggle room with regard to the Martingale.
The maximum wager at most casinos is $500. This is the same max bet available at many land-based gambling establishments.
In summary, you can place bets worth between $1 and $500 at gaming sites. The key here is that the minimum wager is much smaller.
How Many Times Can You Lose With the Martingale?
In land-based casinos, the average roulette table features stakes ranging from $5 to $500. You can lose seven straight times before reaching the bet cap on these tables. On the eighth bet, you’ll need to wager $640 to win everything back.
Online roulette offers more promise due to its smaller minimum bet. You can start at $1 and begin doubling from there when you lose.
Now comes the big question, though, exactly how many times can you lose before reaching the betting limit?
Here’s an example to illustrate how many times online roulette lets you lose before the Martingale is no longer effective:
You wager $1 and lose (first loss).
You wager $2 and lose (second loss).
You wager $4 and lose (third loss).
You wager $8 and lose (fourth loss).
You wager $16 and lose (fifth loss).
You wager $32 and lose (sixth loss).
You wager $64 and lose (seventh loss).
You wager $128 and lose (eighth loss).
You wager $256 and lose (ninth loss).
You’re supposed to bet $512, but you’ve hit the $500 table maximum.
As shown above, internet roulette offers more leeway regarding losses. You might want to consider the online version over the land-based game when using this system.
What Can You Expect to Win When Successful?
So far, I’ve shown that online roulette gives you a better chance to use the Martingale without hitting the table limit. The downside, though, is that your win potential is unlimited.
Even if you win 10 straight bets, which doesn’t happen often, you’re only going to bank $10. Meanwhile, you’ll collect just a dollar in profit when ending Martingale losing streaks.
This scenario may be perfectly fine if you’re only interested in playing for the lowest stakes. You might not mind ending your session with just a few dollars in winnings.
On the other hand, you may be the type of player who wants to win big when you’re successful in online roulette. In such cases, the online Martingale route may not be enough.
What’s the Best Approach to Beating Roulette?
The biggest problem with the Martingale is that it causes you to lose lots of money when you suffer big losing streaks. If you’re only risking $1 per spin, these losses won’t hurt too badly. But they do sting relative to your bet size.
You might seek a more traditional route to beating this game. Here are some tips that can increase your winnings.
Find Online French Roulette
French Roulette is the ultimate variation in terms of RTP. You can look forward to 98.65% RTP if you stick with even-money wagers. This game offers a rule called la partage, that pays back half of your even-money wagers when the ivory ball settles on zero.
You can find French Roulette in both land-based and real money real money online casinos. Assuming you don’t live in the few European countries that offer the French game, though, then an internet casino is the more convenient route.
If you can’t find French Roulette in either setting for some reason, then European Roulette isn’t a bad game to settle on. It features 97.3% RTP no matter which wager you make.
Get a Bonus
If you do sign up at an online casino, then you definitely want to look into the bonus offer. After all, you have an opportunity to earn hundreds of dollars with certain deals.
For example, you might be looking at a 100% match bonus worth up to $250 when you deposit at a new casino. After depositing, you need to play roulette and/or other games to earn the bonus funds.
Here’s an example on how this works:
You qualify for a $250 bonus.
Playthrough on roulette is 80x.
250 x 80 = 20,000
You must wager $20,000 before withdrawing your bonus.
$20k is certainly a lot of money to bet. But if you plan on playing plenty of online roulette, then you might as well go for a bonus offer, too.
Be Smart With Your Bankroll
Bankroll management is important with regard to making your money last in roulette. You definitely want to invest a little time into managing your bankroll before playing.
You can go about bankroll management in a variety of ways. In case you’re not sure where to begin, though, here’s an example:
You have $500 extra to play online roulette with.
Your average bet size is $2.50 (varies between $1 and $5).
500 / 2.50 = 200 units
You plan to never lose more than 20 units in a given session before quitting.
200 / 20 = 10
Your bankroll will last for at least 10 sessions.
The Martingale isn’t a foolproof strategy for roulette success. Table limits are a big reason why it doesn’t work in the long run.
You can only lose so many times before hitting the maximum bet. At this point, you can’t double wagers any longer.
However, online roulette offers you more breathing room. You can lose up to nine straight times (starting with $1 bets) before reaching the table maximum. The land-based version, in contrast, only lets you lose seven consecutive times (starting at $5 bets).
Of course, the downside is that you have limited win potential due to the $1 wagers. Nevertheless, online roulette is a good place to try the Martingale as a low roller.
Michael Stevens has been researching and writing topics involving the gambling industry for well over a decade now and is considered an expert on all things casino and sports betting. Michael has been writing for GamblingSites.org since early 2016. ...
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