Martingale and Slots

The Martingale System is a staking plan that was devised hundreds of years ago in France but still remains in use to this day. It claims to offer guaranteed profit, a claim which in itself should set the alarm bells ringing. It is historically used to play roulette but here we take a look at how it could be used to play real money slots online and whether that is a good idea.

How Martingale Works

Martingale is best used for wagers with roughly a 50/50 chance of winning that pay at odds of around even money. When you lose, you double your bet, such that no matter how many times in a row you lose, when you do eventually win you are always one staking unit in profit (assuming an even money payout).

Say you bet $10 on black and lose, then $20 on black, then $40, then $80 and then, after four reds you spin again, betting $160 on black and finally win. You’ve lost $10+$20+$40+$80 = $150 but you then win $160 and are thus $10 in profit.

Martingale for Slots

You can’t really use Martingale for betting on real money slots because the win is variable on slots and not set at even money. Also, because of the nature of slots, long runs of many, many losing spins are very common and likely to occur even in a short session, so doubling your stake each time isn’t really viable.

However, what you can do when playing USA slots online is to use some form of negative progression system. Martingale is such a system, the “negative” referring to the fact that you are losing and the progression to the growth in stake.

By betting more when you are losing you increase your chances of recouping those losses more quickly but on the downside you can also lose more money, more quickly, at a time when your bankroll is already reduced.


Martingale is a doomed betting system, be it for online slots, blackjack, roulette or the goal line. With infinite time, money and no maximum stake it could work for roulette but it cannot really be used for slots. Depending on your bankroll and aims, increasing the stake when you are losing can be a good idea but, as mentioned above, whilst it can make winning your money back quicker, it also makes losing your money quicker and given the house retains the overall edge, the latter is more likely than the former.