Martingale Betting System: The Ultimate Guide

We investigate the myth of Martingale to find out if this betting system really works.
How to play roulette

Centuries have passed since the invention of Roulette, and many changes have been introduced in this time. There are now various versions of the game, including American and European, and thanks to a number of online casinos, you no longer have to leave the comforts of your home to spin the wheel. One thing that hasn’t changed, however, is the fact that players are still searching for that elusive winning roulette strategy to guarantee big wins and beat the house.

One of the oldest and most well known roulette systems is the Martingale system. This strategy, much like the game of roulette itself, originated in France. It became popular during the 18th Century, and despite a number of success stories, there have since been many debates about whether the infamous strategy works or not. We’re here to put an end to the debate and provide a definitive answer.

How The Martingale System Works

The Martingale betting system is a simple one – if you lose a spin after you’ve placed a bet, you are required to double your stake on the next spin of the wheel. This ensures that your first win would recover all previous losses, plus win a profit equal to the original stake. Following a win, you return to staking your original amount.

To ensure the system can be properly implemented at the roulette table, you will need to wager on even money bets exclusively, such as Even or Odd, High or Low, and Red or Black.

For example, if a player bets a base unit of £20 on red, and loses their first spin, they will then have to bet £40 on the next spin. If this spin is also lost, the player will have to bet £80 on the third spin. Let’s say the player guesses correctly and wins this third spin, they will then receive a payout of £160. This payout recovers all previous losses. No matter how long the series of spins is, the eventual win will return a profit equal to the base unit, which was £20 in this instance.

Does The Martingale System Work?


The system can be quite effective in the short-term. If you’re fortunate enough to avoid a lengthy losing streak, it can even work for an extended period of time. The main advantage of the Martingale betting system is that it is designed to ensure that every series of spins ends with a profit which equates to the value of the first stake. Assuming you eventually win on a spin before you spend your entire bankroll, you are guaranteed to make profit. However, making this assumption comes with plenty of risk.


If you were to use the Martingale system and experience a lengthy, ‘unlucky’ run of losing bets, you would eventually go bankrupt. As each spin is independent of any spins that have taken place in the past, a string of consecutive losses is more likely to happen than you’d think. It doesn’t take many consecutive losing wagers for the stakes to get extremely high.

Let’s take a look at our earlier example, which featured an initial wager of £20. After just six consecutive losing spins, you would be required to stake £640. This example demonstrates how relying upon the Martingale strategy can be costly, and could cause you to exceed any limits you may have set for yourself.

In theory, the concept makes sense, since a player with an infinite bankroll is highly likely to eventually land a winning bet, but no one possesses infinite wealth. Even if you did, every casino has a maximum stake limit, preventing the Martingale system from being implemented correctly.

Furthermore, the house edge represented by the green zero(s) on the table, means that the odds always lean in favour of the casino. This means the probability of landing an even money bet is just under 50%.

The house edge means that in the long-term, the casino almost always wins, and no roulette system can compensate for this. While several strategies may seem convincing, none are ever foolproof. It is important to remember that you are playing a game of chance.

Whether you decide to give Martingale a go, or develop your own strategy, try your luck at one of our top rated UK casinos. Always remember to play within your limits and most importantly, have fun.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Is the Martingale system illegal? No, it’s completely legal. The Martingale system is just a betting pattern, so you won’t be penalised for using it.

Can you get banned for using the Martingale system? While it’s highly unlikely that you will be banned for using the Martingale system, some casinos do have terms and conditions that prevent the use of systems designed specifically to beat the house. Whether the Martingale system falls under this category or not is ambiguous, and is open to the interpretation of each individual casino.

Is the Martingale system profitable?In theory, if you play with an infinite bankroll, at a casino with no wagering limits, you’re likely to make a profit using the Martingale system. That’s obviously unrealistic. While the strategy may seem attractive, it isn’t foolproof. It is important to remember that you are playing a game of chance, and that the house edge means the odds always leans in favour of the casino.

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