What is the Labouchere System?

You could suffer some big losses in online casinos and gambling if you try to play without any casino strategies or rules. It’s advantageous to have several strategies on the note before playing casino games.

So, today, we will tell you about the renowned Labouchere System or Cancellation system. As the name suggests, the strategy is a bit complex. To know what is Labouchere system is and how to use the Labouchere system, just scroll below!

What is the Labouchere system?

The Labouchere system is not ideal for those looking for an easy betting strategy. Known by various names, including the Split Martingale, the Cancellation System, and American Progression, it is one of the more complex systems and requires some time to get accustomed to.

The Labouchere system, created by avid roulette enthusiast Henry Labouchere (1831–1912), was specifically designed for use at the roulette table, particularly for even money outside bets like red or black, or odd or even. However, it can be applied to any even money proposition, including other casino games like blackjack and baccarat. It can also be used for sports betting.

Despite its complexity, it remains a popular choice. As a negative progression system, Labouchere involves increasing your stakes after each loss. The principle is to gradually recover losses through several wins rather than attempting to win back everything in one go. This is similar in concept to the Martingale system, another negative progression strategy, but unlike the Martingale, the Labouchere spreads the recovery of losses over multiple wins.

How Does the Labouchere system work?

The Labouchere system is designed to recover losses gradually through multiple wins rather than a single large win, unlike the Martingale system. Here’s how it works:

  • Define Your Goal: First, decide on the total profit you want to achieve. Break this target down into a sequence of smaller numbers that add up to your desired profit. For instance, if your goal is INR 1000, you could choose a sequence like 100, 200, 300, 400.
  • Write the Sequence: Note down the chosen sequence of numbers. These numbers will guide your betting amounts.
  • Make Your Bets: To determine your first bet, add the first and last numbers of your sequence. Using the example sequence 100, 200, 300, 400, your first bet would be 100 + 400 = INR 500.
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Win or Lose:

  • If You Win: Cross off the first and last numbers of your sequence (in this case, 100 and 400). Your next bet will be the sum of the new first and last numbers (200 + 300 = INR 500).
  • If You Lose: Add the amount of your losing bet to the end of the sequence. So, if you lose your first bet of INR 500, your new sequence will be 100, 200, 300, 400, 500.
  • Repeat: Continue the process of betting, crossing off numbers when you win, and adding losing bet amounts to the sequence until all numbers are crossed off. When all the numbers are crossed off, you've achieved your target profit.
  • Adjust and Restart: If desired, you can start a new sequence and set a new goal once you finish the current one.

Simple Example of the Labouchere System

Here is an example to make things more clearer for you:

  • Round 1: You bet INR 4 (1 + 3) on red. Let's say you win.
  • Result: You cross off 1 and 3 from the sequence. The new sequence is 2.


  • Round 2: There's only one number left (2), so your next bet is INR 2. You bet INR 2 on red. Let's say you lose this round.
  • Result: Since you lost, you add the amount you lost (INR 2) to the end of the sequence. The new sequence becomes 2, 2.


  • Round 3: Now the first and last numbers are both 2, so your bet is 2 + 2 = INR 4. You bet INR 4 on red again. Let's say you win this round.
  • Result: You cross off both 2s from the sequence. The sequence is complete (empty), signifying you achieved your goal of winning INR 500 (winnings from rounds 1 and 3).
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Should You Use the Labouchere system?

A notable advantage of the Labouchere system is its flexibility. You can customise the initial betting sequence to match your preferred level of risk and potential reward.

For instance, starting with a longer sequence of higher numbers can lead to a larger profit if you complete the chain.

However, this approach comes with a downside: your bets will escalate quickly if you encounter several losses. To mitigate this risk, you can incorporate zeros into your sequence. This adjustment makes the system considerably safer.

Tips for Labouchere system

So, you have now understood the gist of the Labouchere system and how it works. But, there are certain things that you need to keep in mind, as listed below:

  • Start with a Realistic Goal: Decide on a profit target that you can realistically reach based on how much money you have and how much risk you're comfortable with.
  • Keep Your Sequence Manageable: Begin with a relatively short sequence of numbers to make it easier to manage your bets and track your progress.
  • Balance Risk and Reward: Adjust your list of numbers so you're not betting too much or too little. You want to make sure you have a good chance of winning without risking too much money.
  • Use Zeros into Your Sequence: Add zeros to your list to help control how much you bet, especially when you're losing. This can help prevent you from betting too much too quickly.
  • Know When to Stop: Set limits for how much you're willing to win or lose, and know when it's time to stop betting for now or start over with a new plan.
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