Intro to French roulette
France looms large in the history of roulette. An early version of the game was developed by the famous French mathematician Blaise Pascal, while François and Louis Blanc created the modern European roulette table in around 1840. French roulette has slightly better payouts than standard European roulette. This is due to two rules that appear in French roulette - “La partage” and “En prison” - which mean the house edge is 1.35%. Online French roulette is very popular, and if you're not used to the slightly different rules you can always try them out for free.
French roulette rules
A French roulette table has 37 pockets. The numbers 1-36 are red and black, while zero is green. Players can bet which pocket they think the ball will land in, before the dealer or croupier spins the wheel and everyone waits to see where the ball settles. Unlike other variations, with French roulette you don't necessarily lose your even money outside bet if it lands on 0. Either your bet rolls over to the next spin (“En Prison”) and if 0 comes again you lose, or you get half your money back (“La Partage”). These rules mean the house edge is just 1.35%.
French roulette tips
Check out of top tips for French roulette to give yourself the best odds to win:
Plan your bets in advance
Firstly, bet small and often but stay within the realms of what you can afford. Decide on your bankroll before you join to make sure you're only spending what you can afford.
Take advantage of La Partage and En Prison
Outside bets are more valuable in French roulette, thanks to these rules. Stick to these even money bets to take maximum advantage.
The house edge doesn't change
It's important to appreciate this fact. No matter how you bet the house always has a very slight advantage of 1.35%, and there is no magic combination of bets to change this.
Play for free online
This is a great way to get used to the differences between French roulette and other versions with no financial risk, especially if you are not used to two unique rules.
French roulette strategy
Playing around with different roulette strategies is one of the best things about roulette. One popular technique is to double your bet if you lose (known as the Martingale Strategy), so you almost always end up winning you money back. Of course, this is only foolproof if you have unlimited money.
French roulette's unique rules mean certain strategies work particularly well. Only placing even money outside bets (i.e., bets that aren't on a specific number) means the house edge is reduced to just 1.35%, which is a tiny margin. You can learn about other types of roulette here.
French roulette FAQs
How does French roulette work?
The rules of French roulette are similar to other versions. Players can bet where the ball will land when the roulette wheel is spun. A French roulette wheel has slots for numbers 1-36 plus the green zero slot. When the ball lands on zero in French roulette, all outside bets don't lose automatically. Instead, either half is returned (La Partage) or the bet remains in place (En Prison) for the next spin.
Where can I play French roulette online?
Lots of online casinos feature French roulette, both for free and real money. Check out our list of recommended sites for the best places to play.
Are the odds in French roulette better than other variants?
Yes. The odds in French roulette are better than American roulette (thanks to only having one zero) and the house edge is lower than both American and European roulette (thanks to the La Partage and En Prison rules).
What's the house edge?
The house edge in French Roulette is very low, at just 1.35%. This is the mathematical advantage of the house or casino.
What's the RTP?
In French roulette, the RTP (return to player) is 98.65%, which is 100% minus the house edge.
Can I use a roulette system to play?
Yes. There are lots of betting systems and betting combinations out there you can try. Experimenting with different strategies is part of what makes roulette such a unique game.
Is there a French roulette winning formula?
No. French roulette is ultimately a game based on luck and chance. There is no way to guarantee you win consistently. But that's the fun of gambling!
How many numbers (pockets) are there in French roulette?
There are 37 pockets in a French roulette wheel - a green zero and red and black numbers from 1-36.
What's the best French roulette bet?
Thanks to En Prison and La Partage rules, even money outside bets are mathematically slightly better than betting on individual numbers.