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The Martingale Betting System

The Martingale Betting System

Although the house always has an advantage no matter what type of wager a player make, casino visitors have over the years tried to come up with systems to beat the casino. Many of these betting systems involve wagers giving even-money payouts, and the most famous is called the Martingale System. 

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What should you know about the Martingale Betting System?

  •   It’s both the king and queen of negative betting systems;
  •   You can use it on multiple games such as Craps, Roulette, Baccarat, and Blackjack;
  •   It is designed for bets that have a 50-50 chance of winning.

About the Martingale Betting System

The Martingale system is a progressive betting system, meaning you double up on your bet every time you lose, and then go back to your original bet each time you win. This system can only be used on bets that pay even odds (Field in Craps, and the Red/Black in Roulette, for example). You may be thinking it sounds quite strange to bet more when you have lost, but the theory behind this is that a losing streak will eventually have a win, and you will win your money back plus some more.

Martingale’s History

Martingale Strategy The origins of this betting system are not well known at all. The only information that has been passed down through the years is that the name ‘Martingale’ stemmed from the name of John Henry Martindale, who wanted players to use this system at his casino a couple of hundred years ago. He did not come up with the strategy itself, who came up with it and where it was first used isn’t known, but we do know that Martindale knew about it and then encouraged players to adopt this strategy in his own casino. It’s not difficult to see why a casino owner would want patrons to keep betting more and more despite the fact they are losing, and it should come as a warning to all those wanting to use this system when they play at an online casino

Then next moment in time the system reappeared was approximately 100 years ago in a French casino in the town of Monte Carlo. A gambler who went by the name of Charles Franc used the Martingale Betting System and he won himself a very large sum of money. Please do not think this means you will succeed in doing the same, this system is designed for casino owners to be the ones celebrating at the end of the night whilst you look at your empty wallet and wonder how you were $1500 richer only 30 minutes ago.

The Martingale System - How it Works

The system is designed for wagers that have 50 % chance of winning, for example a coin toss or a black-red bet in roulette (because of the green slots on a roulette wheel the chance of winning is actually 47.37 % and not 50 %.)

The basic idea of the Martingale System is that a player doubles his bet after every lost wager. If the first bet is $5 on red, and the ball lands in a black or green pocket, the player then bets $10. If the next spin also has the wrong outcome, the player doubles the bet again. This continues until the player wins. When the player wins, he will have gained the amount of his first wager. Let's say the player first lost $5 and then lost $10, but won when he bet $20. His total wagers are $35, but his winnings are $40 (including the bets) - in other words, a profit of $5. This might seem to be a waterproof system - and it is - under certain conditions:

The player must have (almost) unlimited funds, because in the long run, there will be abnormal streaks. Say that a player starts his Martingale session with a $5 wager and loses 10 bets in a row. He must then bet $5,120 to make a $5 profit. Obviously this won't happen that often, but when it does, the player must have a large bankroll.

Unfortunately, most casinos have a max-bet limit, so a player can't double the bets as many times as he wants. Say that the max bet is $1,000. A player who starts a Martingale session with betting $5 is in deep trouble if he loses the 8th bet ($640). He is not allowed to double the last lost wager and the system is ruined.

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Martingale Betting System - Casino Games to Apply it To

Martingale can be applied to quite a few games that have 50-50 bets. These are Craps Online, Roulette Online, Blackjack Online, and Baccarat online.

Craps Online

Let’s say you bet $20 on the pass or don’t pass line. You lose the bet, so for the next round you have to bet $40. You lose again. So far you have lost $60. You bet $80 for the next round and you win, now you are only $20 in profit and you have to go back to your original bet of $20 for the next round.

Roulette Online

Roulette attracts many people who want to test out and use the martingale roulette strategy in order to win big money at the table. It can be used only on the even money outside roulette bets such as odd or even, 1-18 (Manque), 19-36 (Passe), Red or Black bets.

Blackjack Online

The same martingale blackjack strategy applies to all Blackjack bets as Blackjack has even bets, and with a proper strategy one could even say that Blackjack offers great odds. When you are applying Martingale to Blackjack however, things change a little bit. You need an extraordinarily large bankroll because there is a possibility you will have to split hands or double down in which case you will need more money. Only use this strategy on this game if you really are rolling in the money.

Baccarat Online

Martingale StrategySome players also like using the martingale betting strategy in a game of baccarat. Baccarat has a low house edge, one of the lowest in all the casino games in fact, as well as even bets which makes it feasible to use Martingale in this game. Additionally, baccarat is typically a game for high-rollers, meaning the table limits are much higher so you would be able to play long enough (one would hope) to get a win after a run of losses.

Only do this if you really are a high-roller though, not a wannabee high-roller trying to make it by playing with this betting system of loss. In terms of how you bet whilst playing, follow the same strategy as above of doubling down with every loss, then returning to your original bet when you get a win. Just remember to be careful as you could possibly lose a lot of money in this game when the table limits are higher than average.

Newer Martingale Variations

Martingale was the first of the progressive betting systems, but others have popped up on the scene since such as Paroli, D’Alembert, Labouchere, The Great Martingale System and the Mini Martingale System. 

Great Martingale System

After every loss, you have to double the amount of your lost bet, and also add a unit. If you win, you go right back to the beginning again just like in the Martingale system. This system could give you bigger wins, but on the flip side you could also sustain much bigger losses as well. You have to remove yourself from the game earlier if you use this system as most tables have a betting limit which is reached more quickly when you adopt this strategy.

D’Alembert System

Another progressive betting system in which you increase your bet when you lose, and decrease when you win, however this system doesn’t require the same large betting figures as Martingale and the Great Martingale System. When you lose a bet you have to increase your bet by one unit, and when you win you have to decrease your bet by one unit as well. If you bet $10 and you lose, you would bet $11 on the next bet. If you win the following bet, then you put down $10 again for the next bet, and so forth. Using this system will take you a long time to get any kind of winnings.

Mini Martingale

This strategy is Martingale Lite Version – the amount of times you double your bet after a loss are more restricted so your losses don’t go running crazy.

The Anti-Martingale

The opposite rules of Martingale, you double your bet after a win, and go back to your original bet after a loss. This may sound like a better idea, but you could still lose all your winnings with a lost bet.

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Effectiveness of the Martingale Betting System

Although popular, using the Martingale system when you play at an online casino will pretty much guarantee that you lose a lot of money. In the rare case you may win, it won’t be much so when you think of the calculated risk, it is really not worth losing such high amounts of money. As you are betting more and more money with every loss, the possibility you lose all your money at the table is quite real. Unless you are comfortable with losing thousands in a single sitting of a game, then avoid using this strategy.

Additionally, because of the betting limits at casino tables you will eventually have to stop betting, potentially in a losing streak and again you will lose all your money. You would have to play a game like baccarat which has much higher limits. Again, if you are playing a game with very high limits, you also need a very, very big wallet.

Advantages & Disadvantages of the Martingale Betting System

There is a lot of confusion as to whether using this system is beneficial or not in the long run, and will actually give players some decent winnings if they use this on games they play at. Here we go through some of the pros and cons of using this strategy.


 You Win Back Losses, Plus More

If you play long enough you will eventually hit a win so you can win back all your losses, as well as make some extra money too.

 Simple to Use

For those who want to play using a strategy but are new to a game, following Martingale is quite simple and easy to follow (although using this one is not recommended).


 Your Odds Don't Improve the Longer You Play

If you are having a long string of losses, it still doesn’t increase the odds of having a big win. The odds of the bet don’t improve the longer you play.

 Many Games Have Table Limits

Playing using this strategy requires playing long enough that you will get a win eventually. However many games gave table limits which will make you only have losses before  you are able to get to any win because the table limit won’t allow you to bet such a high amount to win it back.

 Many Players Don't Have a Big Enough Bankroll

This strategy is best left to real high-rollers who have millions to throw away. As you have to keep doubling down on your lost bets, you need to have a pretty hefty amount in your bank account to start with. Most players are not in this position. 

 You're Most Likely Going to Lose

As a result of low bankrolls, as long strings of losses, as well as table limits, you will eventually run out of money before hitting a win and lose all your money.

Martingale Strategy - FAQs

    Is the Martingale system a positive or negative progressive system?

Martingale system is a negative progressive betting system as you have to increase your bet when you lose instead of win.

    What are the basic rules of Martingale betting system?

The basic rules are that you have to double your bet every time you lose, then go back to your original bet when you win. The basic premise of this system as that you will have some profit when you finally make a winning.

    Which games can I use the Martingale Betting system on?

You can use the system on any game which has even bets, such as craps online, baccarat online, blackjack online, and roulette online.

    Who started using the Martingale Betting System first?

Nobody knows who first started using this system but it first came to light when the casino owner Martingdale who wanted customers to use the strategy in his casino a couple of hundred years ago.

    Does the Martingale Betting System actually work?

In sum, no this system does not work. The table limits are too low for anyone to be able to get any profit back after a run of losses. It’s most likely you will lose all your money by doubling down on losses as you will either run out of money before you get to a win, or you will reach the table limit before you get to a win and lose everything you had bet. The best martingale strategy is to not use this strategy at all

Using the Martingale Strategy to Play Online

The Martingale System is the perfect betting system if the player has an unlimited bankroll and the casino doesn't have a betting limit. Is that the case for you? No, it probably isn’t. In fact, that’s not the case for any gambler.

For most players, the Martingale works perfectly for a while. You’ll lose, say, three four spins in a row and then make up for that loss on the next spin. You do it over and over again and life feels great. But if you’ll use this system for a while, you’ll eventually run into 10, 15 losses in a row. Now you have a huge loss on your hands – probably a lot more than you’ve made from your several small wins before. So Martingale works - in theory - but you should never use it. Use proper strategy if you want to use one at all.

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