The Difference Between French and American Roulette
If you want to play roulette online, there are many sites where you can do it. You can find out which of these is a better option by examining the ratings of roulette sites for UK players. But no matter which site you choose, you will find that there are three different roulette variants you can play: European, American, and French. So, are these different games from each other? If so, what is this difference? Below, we answer these questions by listing the differences between the American and French variants.
Basics of French Roulette
The simplest way to distinguish between roulette variants is to look at the wheel. If the wheel has a single 0, you are playing European or French roulette. If there are two zeros (0 and 00), the game you are playing is American roulette. In this context, at first glance, French and European roulette look the same as they both have only one 0 on the wheel. There is no difference in terms of general rules. However, French roulette has two special betting rules that make it a better option for players:
- La Partage: If you bet on one of the outcomes that pay 1:1 and lose, half your bet will be refunded. Bets that pay 1:1 are red/black, odd/even, and low/high. If you bet 10 units on any of them and lose, for example, you will get 5 units back.
- Le Prison: If you bet on one of the outcomes that pay 1:1 and lose, your money will not be refunded, but in the next spin, you will be deemed to have re-betted the same outcomes with the same amount. In other words, you get to try your luck one more time.
In French roulette, only one of these rules is used, not both. You can see which rule is in effect by looking at the name of the game or on the game table. Generally, the La Partage variant is more common. Refunding a part of the bet or using it on the next spin increases RTP and decreases the house edge. French roulette has 98.70% RTP and 1.3% house edge. For European roulette, these numbers are 97.30% RTP and 2.70% house edge. In summary, French roulette introduces two new betting rules without changing the basics, and these rules favor the player. In this regard, it is the roulette variant with the highest RTP and the lowest house edge.
Basics of American Roulette
American roulette, as we mentioned above, is a variant with two 0s (0 and 00) on the wheel. This is more important than you think because the “0” pocket belongs to the casino and determines what the RTP/house edge of the game will be. As the number of this pocket increases, so does the house edge (and RTP decreases). Therefore, the RTP of American roulette is 94.75%, and the house edge is 5.25%. In this regard, it has the highest house edge among the other variants and, for the same reason, causes the player to win less in the long run.
Another difference of American roulette is an additional betting option. This is called a “basket bet” and is placed on five numbers (0, 00, 1, 2, 3). Of all the variants, only American roulette has this betting option. However, contrary to popular belief, this is not an advantage, as the basket bet has an RTP of 92.11% and a house edge of 7.89%. In other words, it is not a bet that can be taken seriously as no other type of bet has the house edge exceeding 5.26% in American roulette. Basket bet, on the other hand, is a type of bet that gives an advantage to the casino, so it is best to stay away from it.
If you cannot decide which variant to choose, both are fun and based on the same basic rules. However, for playing for real money, French roulette is always the better choice as it lets you win more in the long run.