How to manage your slots bankroll and bet size?

Slots are fun to play, but you’ll want to be smart with your bankroll management to make sure you get good value for your money. It is possible to prolong your bankroll and even come out ahead with the right strategy.


Before you start playing, determine how much money you are comfortable setting aside strictly for slot entertainment. Make sure this is an amount you afford to lose without impacting your overall finances. Many experts recommend setting a slots bankroll of no more than 1-5% of your total income. When just beginning to play slots, start with small bets. Many machines allow bets as low as a penny or nickel per spin. This allows you to get familiar with the games without risking too much. Conservative bet sizing also helps your bankroll last longer. With slots, the denomination refers to the value of each credit wagered. On a penny slot, the minimum bet is 20 credits X a penny per credit = 20 cents. Higher denomination slots require more money per spin. If your bankroll is small, stick to penny and nickel slots to make it last.

Use max bet carefully

While the excitement of hitting a big jackpot is alluring, betting the maximum on every spin quickly depletes your slot bankroll. Max betting is best reserved for when you’re ahead and want to take advantage of hot streaks. Don’t make max bets out of desperation to try and get even. The paytable shows the payouts for each slot game and is key to determining bet sizes. A general rule is the higher the maximum payouts, the lower your long-term expected return. Check for paytable differences between versions of the same game. Higher returns justify larger bets. Many online casinos offer welcome bonuses that match part of your initial deposit. This instantly increases your bankroll, so take advantage. But make sure to understand playthrough requirements before accepting a bonus. Some have restrictions on games and amounts per bet.

Use free play

Most online slots today offer a free play mode alongside real money games. Use this to your advantage to test out new titles risk-free. Get a feel for variance and payout frequency before betting real cash. Free play also extends your enjoyment when your slot budget runs low. When sitting down at a new slots game, start with minimum bets during your first 30-60 minutes of play. This allows you to gauge hit frequency and the size of wins versus your stake. Based on volatility, you then adjust your bets accordingly. More volatile games warrant lower bets. An important principle of bankroll management is determining when to walk away. Visit if you want to learn more.


Keep a record of your slot play sessions, including total bets, wins/losses, and duration. Over time you analyze this data for insights on optimizing your bankroll strategy. If you play online, use tools to track your historical play statistics.

  • Peter Nolette

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