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What Does RTP Mean in Gambling? - All You Need to Know in One Place

What Does RTP Mean in Gambling? - All You Need to Know in One Place

Playing your favourite casino games is fun, but what does RTP mean in gambling? You've probably seen this term and may be wondering what it means. RTP stands for Return to Player, which is simply the percentage of funds returned to you from a slot game and is one of many ways a casino can attract players.

Is it just a gimmick? No.

Today we'll talk you through RTP, what it is and more importantly, what it means for you. We can show you what is considered a good RTP and a not-so-good RTP so you can make better decisions next time you play.

What Is RTP (Return to Player)?

The RTP (Return to Player) gambling meaning can sound confusing, but in a nutshell, it is merely a term that online casinos use to calculate the amount you have wagered on a slot game that will be paid back to you over a long period.

One of the most important things to remember when calculating your RTP is that it is calculated over many spins and gaming sessions, not just over a few spins!

Ultimately, a game's RTP could influence your decision about whether or not you will play it. So, it's essential to understand what RTP is and how it works. If you're thinking of becoming a serious casino player, you'll need to look at RTP in more detail, and that's where we can help you today.

As you read through our blog today, you will see that most games have an RTP between 95% - 97%. Mathematically, this means the game will return between this amount for every dollar that is bet.

What Is a Good RTP and How to Calculate It?

Although we will start with the industry standard RTP of 96%, we will consider any slot machine with RTP over 95% a good machine. This is the percentage we all would expect online slots to feature; however, some slots fall short of this percentage, and of course, you will find slots with a higher percentage, too. In some slots, RTP may even go as high as 98%; slots that fall under 95% can be classified as low RTP.

Despite how it may sound, RTP is calculated using a relatively simple formula: the total amount you can expect to win over a specific, usually incredibly long, series of spins. If you want to work out your RTP over a long period, you'll need to start tracking your stats.

However, this doesn't mean to say you will get that return every time; this is why the actual term RTP refers to the theoretical average return to player.

Let's give you an example to make it easier to understand, and we'll base this example on slots, as with other games, it gets a bit more tricky:

If you are playing a slot with a 90% RTP valued at $1 each, you should expect to receive $90 in wins. However, as we previously said, the final percentage figure is based on a theoretical, albeit specific, number of spins. In other words, you shouldn't expect to win back $90 once you have spun the machine for the hundredth time in a row.

Knowing how to navigate through RTP figures will help you make better gaming decisions and increase your chances of winning. However, if you're new to slots, make sure to catch up with these details and have fun first. Your knowledge of and ability to use RTP to your advantage will gradually broaden as you grow your slot experience.

How Does RTP Work in Online Casinos?

RTP can be seen as the house edge - the casino's profit margin - in reverse, so it's as crucial to the casino as it is to you.

Given that RTPs are calculated over long rounds, the more you play at a casino, the more your game results will reflect the stated RTP. For instance, if you play Blackjack, chances are you could do 10,000 hits and receive the calculated return, but if you're playing slots, RTP will be calculated over a much longer series of spins.

Some casino games are more complex, with RTPs calculated using algorithms. Regardless of their complexity, online casinos will always state the RTP of every game, so players know what to expect.

In other games, like roulette, for example, RTP is much easier to calculate; even an average person could do it using simple math.

RTP meaning gambling

What Are Volatility and RTP?

RTP is just a fraction of how a slot machine works. We also need to consider variance, often known as slot volatility. Volatility describes how frequently and how much money a slot machine pays out and is one of the crucial parameters to consider when choosing an online slot and the bankroll you're willing to put out.

If you pick low volatility, wins will likely be smaller, but they will be more frequent, too. On the other hand, if you pick a high volatility slot, you'll get fewer wins, but when you do win, the provider promises you'll be in for bigger wins. So, if you're setting out with a small budget, you'll need to be careful playing high variance slots; chances are, it'll drain your balance quickly unless you fall lucky!

Finally, there are medium variance slots. These slots fall somewhere in between, balancing out the frequency of wins.

Volatility can be deceiving, so when picking your next slot, always keep your budget in mind and arm yourself with a lot of patience.

What Does RTP Stand for in Slot Machines?

Slots with a good RTP will give you more play for your money, but how you choose to deal with RTP is up to you.

You can be a player who exclusively looks for RTP every time you pick an online slot, or you can play your favourite games and not consider it at all, even though you should know that a slot machine payout is entirely dependent on its RTP.

This doesn't mean that games with higher RTP will always pay out more than games with a lower RTP because probability will always be a factor here!

Learning the RTP of a specific game should be easy. All you need to do is launch the game and look at the specs. If you live in the United Kingdom, this is a requirement by the UK Gambling Commission.

Now let's take a look at some of the slots with the best RTP:

  • Ugga Bugga Slot - 99.07%
  • Book of 99 - 99%
  • Mega Joker - 99%
  • Jackpot 6000 - 98.8%
  • Blood Suckers - 98%

Games like these have an exceptionally high RTP but remember, it is improbable to see the stated return to player materialise during a single playing session.

Highest RTP in Casino Games

You'll see above that we have already listed some industry slots that attract you with the highest RTP. Still, we should also consider games like American Roulette, European Roulette and Blackjack Online.

Slots are far more volatile than table games, but table games work according to RTP percentages, too, so let's take a look:

  • American Roulette - 94.74%
  • European Roulette - 97.30%

When we look at Online Blackjack, this is slightly different as casinos offer different variations, so this naturally means different RTPs.

Premium Blackjack has a theoretical RTP of 99.67%, while Classic Blackjack has a 99.4% RTP when played with optimum strategy. Even with the worst strategy, though, RTP in Blackjack should stay within 95%.

Does RTP Matter in Practice?

It depends on you! If you are a serious slot player, pumping loads of bets over a long period, then RTP becomes important. It's a good idea to gather such information to give you the best chance of picking suitable games in the long run and minimising losses.

If you're an occasional player, RTP may be something that appeals less to you. After all, we're talking about a return to player over hundreds of thousands of spins. If you don't intend to spend that much time on slots, the RTP does not have much relevance to you.

So, what does all this mean for you?

If you are in this for the long haul, finding games with good RTP will give you the best chance of winning more often. However, if you're not in it for the long run, keep the statistics from getting you down and go and have fun!