European vs American Roulette: What is the Difference?

Date of publication: June 1, 2023

Few people know, but gambling in different countries has its own fundamental differences. So today, our team will help all lovers to tickle their nerves and make good money. All right, everybody, on your feet, the court is in session. Today’s schedule is American vs. European roulette. Which one is better, and which one is right for you? 

On our site, we take great care in choosing which brands we recommend. We analyze dozens of different parameters to give you accurate and useful information. So if you’re ready, let’s get started!

European Roulette vs American

Roulette is a timeless casino game loved by gamblers worldwide. Its elegance and simplicity have made it a staple in brick-and-mortar and online casinos. Yet, did you know there are distinct versions of this game? Two of the most popular are European Roulette and American Roulette.

European Roulette Rules

In the game of European Roulette, the roulette wheel features 37 pockets, numbered 0 to 36. The numbers are alternately colored red and black, except for ‘0’, which is green. The aim of the game is to predict where the ball will land after the wheel has been spun. Players can place various types of bets, ranging from a straight bet on a single number to odd or even numbers or color bets. The layout of the European roulette table is simple, with the main betting area showcasing individual numbers and an additional race track-style area for special bets.

American Roulette Rules

The American roulette wheel differs slightly from its European counterpart. The main difference is that the American wheel has 38 pockets compared to the European wheel’s 37. It has numbers 0 to 36 as in the European version but also includes a ’00’ pocket, also green in color. This additional pocket raises the house’s edge, making American Roulette more challenging.

Regarding betting, the options are the same as in European roulette. However, the presence of the ’00’ increases the variety of bets, offering an additional top-line bet (betting on 0, 00, 1, 2, and 3). The table layout in American roulette is much the same as in European roulette, although the positioning of the numbers around the wheel is different.

American Roulette vs European Roulette:  Pros and Cons

Understanding the differences between American and European Roulette can be significant when deciding where to place your bet. Let’s explore the pros and cons of both types.

American Roulette:


  • Variety of Betting Options: With an extra slot on the US roulette wheel (00), there are more betting options available.
  • Straightforward Gameplay: The rules are easy to grasp, making it an excellent choice for beginners.


  • Higher House Edge: The addition of the double zero increases the house edge to 5.26%, nearly double that of its European counterpart.

European Roulette:


  • Lower House Edge: With only a single zero slot, European roulette offers a lower house edge of 2.7%.
  • En Prison & La Partage Rules: These rules apply to even bets and can further decrease the house edge when in effect.


  • Fewer Betting Options: The absence of the 00 slots reduces the number of betting options compared to American roulette.
American RouletteEuropean Roulette
House Edge5.26%2.7%
Betting OptionsMoreFewer
Special RulesNoYes (En Prison & La Partage)

Whether you opt for European roulette vs. American depends on your preferred risk level. The European roulette payout can be more favorable due to its lower house edge. However, if you like more betting options and straightforward gameplay, you might find the US roulette wheel more appealing. Remember, every spin is a chance for fortune, no matter which variant you choose.

American Roulette Wheel vs European

The wheel plays a significant role in defining the essence of both American and European roulette. While the presence of an extra zero in American roulette is well-known, there are other nuanced differences that should be considered.

First off, the sequencing of numbers on the wheel varies between the two versions. In the American version, opposite numbers typically add up to 37. This is an interesting pattern you won’t find on a European roulette wheel where numbers are randomly ordered, a fact that some gamblers argue increases fairness.

Additionally, American roulette wheels have an inherent characteristic in their layout: numbers are arranged in pairs across the wheel, coupling odd and even numbers together. On the other hand, European roulette wheels project randomness in number placements.

Betting options also differ owing to the distinctive wheel designs. With its double-zero pocket, the American roulette wheel offers an extra betting option known as the “five number bet” or “top line bet”, which encompasses 0, 00, 1, 2, and 3. This particular bet is absent in European roulette due to the lack of a 00 pocket.

A distinct advantage of European roulette lies in the specific rules it incorporates, like “en prison” and “la partage”. These rules, applicable only to even-money bets, can reduce the house edge even further, providing an extra level of strategy to the game. Remember, these rules are exclusive to European roulette.

In conclusion, the game’s wheels – the American roulette wheel and the European roulette wheel – are more than just about the presence or absence of an extra zero. They offer different gaming experiences defined by number sequences, layouts, betting options, and specific rules. Understanding these nuances is pivotal when deciding which variant to play, especially when strategizing for long-term play.

The Difference Is in the House Edge

When playing roulette, the house edge is a critical factor that directly influences your winning odds. This is where American and European roulette reveals another important distinction.

European roulette, with its single-zero wheel (the renowned euro roulette wheel), holds a lower house edge of 2.7%. This means the casino gains an average of €2.7 for every €100 wagered, making European roulette a preferable choice for many players who value a longer play with lower losses over time. Thus, understanding what is European roulette means appreciating this lower house edge advantage.

On the contrary, American roulette comes with a higher house edge of 5.26% due to the extra double-zero pocket. In simple terms, for every $100 bet, the casino profits $5.26. This might not seem like a massive difference, but in the long run, it significantly affects a player’s potential returns.

How to Use House Edge to your advantage

Armed with the knowledge of the difference in house edge between American and European roulette, players can make more informed decisions to their advantage.

Choosing to play on a European roulette wheel versus an American one can substantially alter your overall gaming experience. With its lower house edge, European roulette provides players with improved odds. This implies that over a longer duration of play, you’re likely to lose less money on a European wheel compared to an American one.

Players can further use this insight to fine-tune their betting strategies. For example, while playing European roulette, they might opt for more conservative bets, hoping to leverage the lower house edge and extend their playtime. On an American wheel, they might choose riskier bets, aiming for larger wins but acknowledging the higher house edge.

Furthermore, knowing the structural differences between the two wheels can also influence bet placement. American roulette, with its additional double-zero pocket, alters the number sequence and affects bets like ‘neighbors’.

In essence, understanding the ‘American roulette wheel vs European’ comparison and the implications of the house edge allows players to strategize better, enhancing their playing experience and potential winnings.

Where to Play American and European Roulette

Regardless of which type of roulette you choose, you need to trust a quality casino with a good reputation. Our team has done all the work for you and has compiled a list of the best, in our opinion, companies. During the selection process, we pay attention to dozens of different factors, including feedback from loyal customers, stability of payments and availability of all necessary documents. So when you choose any company from this list, you can be sure that you will get the best customer experience and reliable protection for your money. Ready? Let’s take a look!

European vs American Roulette: The Verdict

Wrapping up our analysis of European vs American roulette, it’s clear that both variants offer unique features that appeal to different types of players. However, the crucial difference between European and American roulette lies in the house edge. With a significantly lower house edge, European roulette provides players with more favorable odds.

While American roulette’s additional double-zero pocket can add an exciting twist to the game, it does increase the house edge, making it a riskier choice. But for thrill-seekers who enjoy high-stakes risks, this might be part of the allure.

Ultimately, the decision between European roulette wheel vs. American one depends on a player’s personal preferences, risk appetite, and strategy. Awareness of the differences, the potential implications, and how these can be leveraged is crucial for a savvy roulette player.

In conclusion, whether you spin the European roulette wheel or take a chance on the American wheel, remember – understanding the game’s nuances is the real jackpot!