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The Martingale Strategy | Everything You Need to Know

  • Written By Kevin Parker
  • Edited
  • Reading 9 minutes

Its no secert that casino games involve a good amount of luck to win. So, what can you do to try and increase your level of luck during a game? Strategies.

I came across a variety of card game strategies that helped me increase the odds of landing a win. These include options like Even-Money Bets, Value Betting, Oscar’s Grind, Labouchere, and the Martingale Strategy, among others. Different strategies work well with different table game varieties depending on factors like the house edge and table limits. Apart from that, it was also necessary to know when to switch up your strategy.

This blog will go into detail about one spefic strategy – The Martingale Strategy. I will cover the following:

Feel free to jump to the section that interests you the most. In the meantime, let’s start from the beginning.

What is the Martingale Strategy?

One strategy that I noticed can be used with different table games is the Martingale Strategy. This option has been around since the 18th century, originating from France. Players using this strategy applied it to help their chances of earning wins during a coin toss. Landing the heads wins while landing the tails loses.

During that period, the wealthy were seen as being the luckiest. Since each bet was double the previous coin toss, those without enough money would have to walk away eventually. That left the wealthy playing, where they would land the heads if given enough time.

The strategy earned its name from an English casino owner called John Henry Martindale. He didn’t come up with the strategy, but it was no secret that he encouraged players at his casino to use it at the Roulette tables. Using the math that accompanies the strategy as proof of its possibilities, his players were able to see the likelihood of beating the house edge in the end.

The viability of the system was further proven in 1981 by Charles De Ville Wells, an infamous gambler. He was able to turn 4,000 Francs into a million francs in just five days using the Martingale strategy.

The same strategy applies to games in today’s casinos. For every loss you make, you need to double your wager for the next round. So, if I were to wager $5 and lose, the next bet would be $10. If I also lose that, then the next wager will be $20, and so on. You keep doubling the bets until you land a win. The amount you’ll receive will reward you with all your previous losses, as well as a little extra on top. From there you can start with small bets again.

Image example of a Martingale Wagering Bet
When using the martingale strategy you will double your wager on a loss.

I only use the Martingale system for short term wins. That guarantees that the bets I make don’t grow too much while I chase my losses. This isn’t a great strategy for long term betting, though, as you’ll have to part with hefty sums to keep up with your growing losses. And don’t forget, there is no guarantee that you’ll win before you run out of staking funds.

If you’d like to play longer, other strategies out there would be better suited for that task without cleaning you out in the process.

Pro’s & Con’s of the Martingale Strategy

Pros

  • A win recovers all your previous losses
  • It’s a good way for beginners to learn the game while they wait for wins
  • It’s an ideal strategy for playing quick games

Cons

  • The odds of you winning remain relatively unpredictable
  • The casino’s table limits could prevent you from winning back your losses
  • You need a large bankroll to keep up with the wager amounts necessary after losing rounds

Martingale Strategy in Different Casino Games

The Martingale system remains the same through various table games. However, I’ve noticed that there are a few subtle differences in a round’s outcome depending on the game I used the strategy on.

So, let me give you a breakdown of my observations based on my experience using it on the following table games:

Martingale Strategy Roulette

Roulette Martingale Strategy Icon

Roulette requires you to place a wager on whether the ball will land on a red or black section of the wheel. That means whichever color you choose, you have a 50/50 chance of winning or losing, which makes the use of the Martingale ideal here. It’s the reason why this is the first game that will be recommended to you if you’d like to try this strategy.

This game has a tight house edge. So if you’d like to make use of the Martingale, you’d need to wager on red and black outcomes. That creates the 50/50 chance necessary for the strategy to be effective.

So I could start with a wager of $10. If I win, I’ll receive $20. Wins award you with your bet amount as well as one unit in profit. One unit is equal to the amount you staked. For the next bet, I’ll stake $10 again. If I lose, I’ll have to stake double for the next round, which will be $20. I’ll continue to make double bets for each loss until I win again.

If this something you want to try out online, here is a list of casino sites that offer a range of roulette games.

Martingale Baccarat Strategy

Icon Baccarat Martingale Strategy

When it comes to Baccarat, your success relies mainly on the table limits set by your chosen casino.

Most Baccarat games have a manageable minimum of around $10 up to a maximum bet limit of $10,000. At such a table, you’re able to continue staking for up to eight losing rounds. This gives you more room to try and win back what you lost.

The system remains the same, with you wagering double for the round after a loss, and receiving your stake plus a unit in profits after a winning round. Here is a list of baccarat casinos that you can try this strategy one.

Martingale Blackjack Strategy

Blackjack Martingale Strategy Icon

Playing Blackjack uses the same flow as with the other two games. You’re betting on whether you or the dealer will have 21 or a card count close to 21. That makes it a 50/50 game that’s similar to a coin toss. As such, you’ll find that using this strategy plays out very similarly to a round of Roulette where bets are on the red and black outcome.

However, keep in mind that a losing streak may end up costing you more if you play longer. If you do want to try this strategy online, I’d recommend these blackjack casino sites.

The Best Martingale Strategy

What Is the Best Martingale Strategy?

If this strategy happens to appeal to the casino gamer in you, then you’ll be glad to know that there are variations of it available. Each has been tweaked to serve a different purpose.

The different types of the Martingale Strategy are as follows:

The most appropriate strategy will depend on the game you’ve chosen, how long you plan on playing, the amount of bankroll you have, and the limits you’re working with.

The Anti Martingale

Icon Anti Martingale Strategy

Also known as the Reverse Martingale, this requires you to do the opposite of the original strategy. Rather than doubling your bet after a loss, you double it after a win. For instance, if I made a bet of $100 and won, I’ll stake $400 with the next bet. That’s because I’ll have won my $100 stake plus one unit worth $100, bringing it to $200. That continues until I lose, at which point I’ll start again with a $100 bet.

The Mini Martingale

Icon Mini Martingale Strategy

With this option, you get to set limits on how many losses you’ll continue to wager on. I could limit my bets to three consecutive losses. That means that after losing three hands, rather than double the wager for the next round, I’ll go back to the first wager amount. I will have made a loss but not as much as continuing on a losing streak.

The Grand Martingale

Icon Grand Martingale Strategy

This variant is similar to the original strategy with a slight twist. You will need to stake double plus one more unit after a loss. The reason for this is that after three losing hands, you stand to gain your stake plus three units, rather than just one unit, in profit if you win in the next round.

An example of a successful Martingale strategy I have is placing limits while using any one of the three Martingale strategies. For instance, when using the Anti Martingale, I can place a cap on doubling wins after three winning hands. That way, I get to collect all my winnings and start again from a low wager point.

FAQ

Is the martingale strategy legal?

Yes, it is. Casinos have no problem with players the Martingale because even while using this strategy, there’s still a 50/50 chance that the outcome could go in favor of either the player or the casino.

Does the martingale strategy work?

Yes, it does. However, you need to take into account all variables before betting. These include your bankroll amount and the game’s table limits.

How many losses can I take for the martingale strategy?

That would depend largely on your playing bankroll and the table limits set by the casino. However, with tables that have a small minimum limit and no maximum limit, you can absorb more losses than at a table with a high minimum limit and a cap on the maximum amount you can bet.

Can you use the martingale strategy in blackjack?

Yes, you can. Since Blackjack also has outcomes that can be described as having a 50/50 chance at being in your favor, you can use this strategy to try and recoup your winnings from previously losing rounds.

Kevin was raised on sports since a young teen and following a (fortunate) injury pursued new hobbies in table games such as Blackjack and Poker. Since 2009 Kevin has been writing for casino sites for various big names in the industry and CasinoSites.us is but one of his latest passion projects.