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What Does RTP Mean in Gambling?

What Does RTP Mean in Gambling?

You may have encountered the term RTP in gambling if you're a fan of online betting. However, you may not necessarily understand what RTP (Return to Player) means, which may keep you from making accurate predictions about your payouts.

If your gambling is primarily on a virtual casino game or a slot machine, where you bet with real money, mastering RTP is essential.

In a nutshell, RTP gives you the percentage likelihood of how often a casino game will pay out. The RTP statistic, expressed through a percentage, is integral to casino games – you can dive into real online casino games and find out for yourself.

Calculated as a percentage, the casino RTP meaning is defined as working in a completely different to the house edge. In essence, it puts into complex numbers the statistical advantages of playing a virtual casino game.

In this article, we'll discuss the term in detail to better understand its practical usage. The breakdown will answer any questions or anything you're unsure of regarding RTP.

How To Calculate a Return To Player

Coming across the term RTP, you're probably wondering how to work it out yourself.

Some people wrongly assume that calculating an RTP percentage is done by mathematical professionals and senior game developers who keep it a secret under lock and key.

You'll be pleased to hear it's much easier than expected. It would be best to calculate the total profit made (returned) to gamblers during a specific hand or game. Then, divide this figure by the net amount the same gamblers have staked during the game's duration.

At a glance, this seems a bit too easy to work out. Well, the RTP doesn't work on the entire history of just one game. That wouldn't be representative or an accurate figure. The RTP comprises thousands, sometimes millions, of rounds over a minimal period.

One person doesn't perform these spins. It is usually a computer algorithm that spins the reels or plays rounds hundreds and thousands of times over a short time. The algorithm provides the most accurate measure of an RTP and is the best indicator of how often a game will pay out.

Is It the Same for All Types of Casino Games?

This is where the RTP discussion becomes more complex. It becomes more challenging to work out the RTP of table-based casino games. To clarify, when we say table-based casino games, we are referring to:

  • Roulette
  • Craps
  • Blackjack
  • Baccarat

As games such as Blackjack, for example, command slightly more skill than a game of pure luck like an online slot machine, the Return to Player percentage differs. Gamblers who are more proficient on what hands to look out for in games such as blackjack skewer the RTP percentage.

This is because they will have different strategies and sometimes bet bigger or smaller hands when they have the odds in their favor. 

 However, when it comes to games such as Roulette, there are no ways of changing the RTP as it is fixed odds. As more states in America accept the idea of legalizing gambling, more and more players will be looking to find ways they can put the odds more in their favor.

Games like poker and Blackjack rely on skill, which causes a fluctuation in the RTP for each game. Poker is a popular sport, with the world series being televised nationally.

Players with more experience and knowledge may not utilize their hands effectively and damage their RTP percentage.

What Casino Games Do Have A Fixed RTP?

We have already discussed that games such as Blackjack do not have an accurate RTP due to various factors. However, the main one is the standard of players and the knowledge they have regarding the game due to the level of skill needed.

In some instances, the RTP percentage is fixed. In games like Roulette, there's no skill involved, and it is a complete game of chance. American Roulette has a slightly different RTP due to the inclusion of the enigmatic double zero. However, the nature of both games, whether American or European, is identical, so the RTP percentage is fixed for both.


You have probably heard the saying, “the house always wins.” While some gamblers can turn away a tidy profit if their luck is in, the odds are always in the house's favor. The RTP percentage is the data that underpins this statement.

If casinos were not profitable, they wouldn't exist. It's important to remember this when you gamble. By keeping a level head and paying attention to vital statistics such as RTP, you set a good base to ensure your casino venture remains fun and exciting.

It is crucial to ensure that any games you play are done purely for enjoyment and are not seen as a way to make money. Unfortunately, many people have learned this fact the hard way.