Roulette is incredibly fascinating and addictive.
As a casino dealer, I’ve seen many customers who would only play roulette simply because no other casino game would give them the same adrenaline rush.
It’s also a game where there are hundreds of possible bets and combinations of bets.
This has made it possible for roulette connoisseurs to come up with so many different methods and strategies over the years.
And while none of them guarantees winnings, unless you cheat in some way, experimenting with them can be fun.
In today’s article we’ll have a look at four roulette strategies that are based on split bets.
If you have your own split bet strategy, or if you can think of a variation of any of the strategies mentioned below, please leave a comment at the end.
What is a split bet?
In roulette, a split is a bet which covers two numbers. It has a payout of 17 to one.
For example, if you place a $5 chip on the line between 20 and 21, and either number comes in, the payout would be $85 plus the original bet.
The French term for this type of bet is “cheval”, which literally means horse.
If the roulette wheel has a single zero, your chances of winning with a single split bet are 5.4 percent. With a double zero, that would be slightly lower — about 5.2 percent.
The beauty of roulette is that, provided you don’t go over the table maximums, you can place as many chips as you want on the layout.
This includes combinations of bets, e.g. two straight ups and three splits, or seven splits and seven corners.
Basically, there are no rules in terms of what you can or cannot bet on. You could even bet on every single number, although it wouldn’t be very sensible.
Let’s have a look at four roulette strategies that are based on multiple split bets.
1. Single number and splits strategy
This is a strategy where you pick one of the twelve central numbers (0, 2, 5, 8, 11, 14, 17, 20, 23, 26, 29, or 32) and put a chip on it and also put a chip on its four splits.
For example, if you pick number 8, then you would need to place five chips on the layout:
- 8 straight up
- 5-8 split
- 7-8 split
- 8-9 split
- 8-11 split
Which means you’re actually covering five numbers.
The European roulette wheel has 36 numbers plus the green zero, so by covering five numbers you should expect to win almost one in seven times — one in 7.4 times to be precise.
Now, if you hit a split (e.g. if number 7 comes in, in the example above) then the payout would be 17 to one plus the original bet.
So if you take into account the four losing bets, that would be a net profit of 13 chips.
Then, if you get lucky and the actual number itself comes in, then you’d win a massive 103 chips (a straight up and four splits, which is a picture bet). And you’d keep the original five-chip bet as well.
Not the most conservative split bet strategy, so you may need to wait a few spins before any of the numbers come in. But the payouts are quite good considering you’re only placing five chips on the layout.
2. Black splits roulette strategy
Probably the easiest split bet strategy out there. All you need to do is place a chip on each of the five black splits, which are:
- 8-11 split
- 10-13 split
- 17-20 split
- 26-29 split
- 28-31 split
You can do the same on red splits, of course, but there’s only four of them on the layout so you’d win less frequently.
With five split bets, you are covering ten numbers, which means your chances of winning are one in 3.7 if the wheel has a single zero.
The payout is always 17 to one for splits, so when you do win the net profit would be 13 chips.
If you ever get bored, you can make this strategy more interesting by placing a few chips on black as well (roughly one in two chances of winning).
3. Splits of hot numbers strategy
On roulette, numbers that have come in twice or more during the most recent spins are usually called hot numbers.
Conversely, cold numbers are those numbers that have not come in in a while. Nowadays most roulette tables have a display that shows both hot and cold numbers.
The hot numbers strategy involves betting on them until you win — it’s quite simple.
So you can use the same concept and bet on the splits instead. For example, if 9, 20, 22, and 36 are hot, then you could bet on:
- 8-9 split
- 9-12 split
- 19-20 split
- 19-22 split
- 33-36 split
Chances of winning depend on how many splits you place on the layout as well as on whether hot numbers are actually more likely to come in again.
And they’re not, unless the wheel is faulty or the dealer is trying to hit numbers.
4. Six splits roulette strategy
The final roulette split bet strategy involves picking six splits for each spin, so you cover twelve numbers.
With this strategy, you can expect to win almost one in three times provided no splits overlap.
For instance, you wouldn’t bet on 25-26 and 26-27 because that covers three numbers instead of four.
This is a more conservative strategy, speaking of which, let’s have a look at why you should never increase your bet if you lose…
Never use progressive strategies
There are a few roulette systems in which you increase or double your bet each time you lose. The Martingale is one of them.
The idea is that if you lose a certain amount, but then double your bet until you win, you cannot lose.
This is a mistake because 1) all tables have maximum bets, so your range is restricted, and 2) if you get unlucky and lose many times in a row, which does happen, you lose way too much.
Now, if you had an infinite bankroll, and if there was no maximum at the table, then theoretically you could win against the house — every single time.
But in reality, progressive systems simply cannot work in the long run. Just like any other roulette system that doesn’t involve cheating.
But whereas there are systems that are relatively safe and conservative, progressive ones are way too risky, and the potential winnings, which are always low, do not justify the risk.
No roulette strategy guarantees profit
If anything, most if not all “strategies” guarantee losses in the long run. I’m sure you know this already, but I feel I need to point it out just in case.
No roulette strategy will ever be profitable in the long run. This is for two main reasons:
- Roulette has a house edge — relatively low if the wheel has a single zero, and relatively high with a double zero — and this pretty much guarantees that in the long run the player will lose.
- Even if you were able to exploit a vulnerability of the wheel, and found a system that could indeed guarantee profit in the long run, the casino would ban you. It doesn’t matter if what you’re doing is legal — casinos are a business and cannot lose money.
We’ve all heard of gamblers who won a huge sum on roulette, cashed out, and walked away and never played anymore.
But was it really thanks to a strategy? Or just pure luck? And most importantly, what amount did they start with?
If you put 100k on red, won, and walked away, then your profit would be 100k. But starting with, say, 500, and getting to 100k, is a whole different thing.
Then there are those players who cheated and somehow got away with it. Like the Eastern European gang who won £1.3 million at the Ritz Club in 2004 (I mentioned it here).
Either way, as explained, forget about winning consistently because either your money is eaten by the house edge or you’re practically trying to exploit a vulnerability, which would never be allowed.
I always say the best roulette system is to play for a few minutes, maybe an hour or so, get lucky, and cash out. Simple as that.
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