You likely don’t visit a land-based or online casino with the intention of losing. Instead, you’re hoping to earn profits and leave a winner.
And you’ll improve your chances of doing so by playing casino games with high return to player (RTP). But how exactly do you know what’s good RTP for each game?
The following guide discusses the factors that determine payout percentages. It also covers what’s considered favorable RTP for many casino games.
Various Factors Affect the RTP
Certain games feature variable payback based on multiple factors. The following aspects can cause a casino game’s RTP to differ from one situation to the next.
Land-Based or Online Casino?
Mobile casinos offer higher RTP for most games. This element is especially noticeable when it comes to slot machines.
The RTP average of real money online slots is around 96% RTP. Meanwhile, land-based slot machines average in the neighborhood of 93% payback.
Blackjack is another instance where mobile gaming sites often pay better. Online blackjack RTP averages about 99.4%. Land-based blackjack, on the other hand, features common payback around 98.7%.
As I’ll cover later, brick and mortar casinos can offer higher payout percentages in some cases. But online gambling sites are your best bet for the highest-paying games.
Specific Casinos and Developers Pay More on Average
Some casinos build their reputations around offering the most favorable odds. This effect is most noticeable among land-based establishments.
Certain Downtown Las Vegas casinos are especially good about featuring high RTP. Meanwhile, the glitzy resorts on the famed Las Vegas Strip generally offer worse payback.
In the online gaming industry, developers drive payout percentages. For instance, Play’n GO slots pay better on average than Playtech slot machines.
Your Skill Level
Many casino games feature strategy. This strategy could be complex, like with blackjack and its myriad of game-altering decisions. It can also be simple, like how the banker bet (98.94% RTP) is superior to all other baccarat wagers.
In any case, your skills and knowledge have an effect on the RTP. With a better understanding of gaming strategy, you’ll win more money over time.
The Given Game
Blackjack usually pays more than slot machines. This is just one example of how games vary in their payout percentages.
Here’s a look at what you can generally expect from the main casino games:
Baccarat = 98.94% RTP (banker bet)
Blackjack = 98% to 99.5%
Craps = 98.64% (don’t pass line bet)
European Roulette = 97.3%
French = 98.65% (even-money bets)
Three-card poker = 97.68%
9/6 Jacks or Better video poker = 99.54%
The Given Bet
Specific bets within each game also influence payback. In craps, for instance, the pass line bet (98.59% RTP) pays much better than Whirl (86.67%).
Considering how much the RTP varies in this example, it definitely pays to know the payout percentages between each wager.
High RTP by the Game
Some games feature different variations and rules that significantly change the payout percentage. Here’s a look at what’s considered high payback for popular casino games.
With some effort, you’ll find a decent number of online slots that offer 97% RTP. This figure generally constitutes a high-paying slot.
In these cases, you can find online slots that pay up to 99% RTP. But this is a rare occurrence and may require you to place a larger bet to qualify for maximum payback.
If you have any question about a mobile slots game’s payout percentage, you can visit the info screen. Most developers list the RTP in this section.
Anywhere from 94% to 96% payback is considered good for a land-based casino. The high-roller areas can offer games with 97% to 99% RTP. Just like with online casinos, you’ll need to place a larger bet to enjoy these payout percentages.
Online blackjack usually offers between 99% and 99.5% payback. In the best-case scenario, you’ll find a game that features 99.7% or 99.8% RTP. Again, you should visit the info section to see if the payout percentage is listed there.
Brick and mortar casinos don’t offer as favorable rules as gaming sites do. Therefore, the average land-based blackjack RTP tends to be between 98% and 99%.
However, you can find plenty of exceptions in certain parts of Las Vegas and other gambling hubs. Located in Downtown Las Vegas, El Cortez is known for featuring low-stakes blackjack with up to 99.7% RTP.
If you stick with the basic craps wagers, then you’ll see the same payback no matter where you play. Pass line (98.59% RTP), don’t pass line (98.64%), come (99.59%), and don’t come (99.64%) bets all provide a solid chance to win.
You can improve your winnings even further, though, with odds bets. Odds don’t carry a house edge because they pay at the true odds of winning.
Some casinos let you place larger odds behind a pass line or don’t pass line bet. In this case, you’ll look forward to better RTP.
Here’s how the payback changes based on the size of odds:
1x odds – Pass line 99.15% RTP; don’t pass line 99.32% RTP
2x odds – Pass line 99.39%; don’t pass line 99.54%
3x odds – Pass line 99.53%; don’t pass line 99.66%
3-4-5x odds – Pass line 99.62%; don’t pass line 99.72%
5x odds – Pass line 99.67%; don’t pass line 99.77%
10x odds – Pass line 99.82%; don’t pass line 99.88%
This is one area where brick and mortar casinos actually outperform gaming sites. They generally allow up to 3x-4x-5x or 5x odds. The best online craps games, meanwhile, only allow up to 3x.
Pai Gow Poker
Strategy plays a large role in the Pai Gow Poker RTP. With expert strategy, you can improve the payback to 97.16% in land-based and online casinos.
Brick and mortar establishments, however, also give you an opportunity to act as the banker. By banking the game when it’s your turn, you’ll enjoy up to 98.54% RTP.
The roulette payback differs based on the specific game. French Roulette (98.65% RTP) and European Roulette (97.30%) both offer respectable payback, while American Roulette (94.74%) is one of the lowest-paying casino games.
Mobile casinos are much more apt to feature European Roulette. RealTime Gaming (RTG) and Microgaming casinos even offer French Roulette.
Many land-based casinos, unfortunately, have the American roulette wheel. You’ll mostly only find European and French wheels in European land-based casinos.
Online casinos commonly offer 9/6 Jacks or Better and 8/5 Bonus Poker, which feature 99.54% and 99.17% RTP, respectively. The highest-paying mobile video poker games include Microgaming’s All Aces (99.92%) and RealTime Gaming’s Aces and Eights (99.78%).
Some Nevada casinos feature rare games that offer over 100% RTP, including 10/7 Double Bonus (100.17% RTP) and full-pay Deuces Wild (100.72%).
For the most part, though, land-based casinos are pretty stingy with the RTP. Your best option in some cases will be an 8/6 Jack’s or Better machine (98.39%).
How to Ensure That You Get High RTP
You certainly don’t want to rely on random luck to achieve the highest payout percentages. Instead, you can take action with the following tips.
Play the Right Games
The easiest way to ensure high RTP is to pick the right games. Blackjack and craps (with odds), for example, are going to pay more than American Roulette and most slot machines.
Of course, the individual bets within games also play a role in the payback. Don’t pass line backed with 2x odds (99.54%) is far superior to the field bet (94.44%).
Consider Online Casinos First
As covered earlier, mobile casinos usually offer higher payout percentages on average. Therefore, you should grab your smartphone when seeking a better chance to win.
Of course, exceptions do exist. Land-based craps (thanks to larger odds) and Pai Gow Poker (thanks to banking games) feature better RTP than the online versions.
By and large, though, you’re better off playing at gaming sites. This is especially true when it comes to online blackjack, roulette, slot machines, and video poker.
Improve Your Skills
Depending upon the game, your abilities will affect the payout percentage to a large degree. Blackjack and video poker feature the most extensive strategy of any game covered here. Your strategy knowledge will affect the payback by several percentage points in both cases.
Other games, like craps and roulette, don’t require as much skill. Instead, you simply need to know which bets or variations offer the top RTP.
Take Advantage of Bonuses
Bonuses may not directly boost payout percentages. However, they reward you for playing casino games and will ultimately improve your winnings.
With that said, you should take advantage of casino deals whenever possible. Online gambling sites, for instance, feature deposit bonuses that are worth hundreds or even thousands of dollars.
You can also take advantage of loyalty rewards in brick and mortar and online casinos. Loyalty perks include cashback, among other things.
The standard for high RTP varies between games. Therefore, you should focus on payout percentages for your favorite games to determine what is and isn’t a good deal.
Blackjack is one of the best examples on how much RTP can vary between tables. It can offer anywhere from 98% to 99.7% RTP depending on the rules and setting.
Other examples exist on payout percentages varying wildly from one situation to another. So, you should perform some research and find the highest-paying versions of the games you play.
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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