Return to player (aka RTP) is something slots fans will see frequently whenever they’re reading reviews or playing a game. But what does it really mean for you? And should you take notice.

The short answer is, yes, you should take notice of the return to player in slots. The long answer? Well read our eight simple facts about RTP and they’ll you’ll soon find out what you need to know.

1. Return to player is the amount a slot pays out over time

Based on thousands, if not millions, of spins, the return to player is the amount a slot pays out to players over a long period of time.

2. RTP is always expressed as a percentage

RTP is expressed as a percentage. As we all know, the casino is designed to make money, so they’ll always take a cut of some sort. So that means the percentage is always less than 100%. For example, if you’ve got a slot with a 95% RTP on average, for every $100 players bet, $95 is paid back out in prizes and $5 is kept by the casino.

3. Online slots usually pay out between 91% and 97%

It can be tricky to get your head around what RTP you should expect. But on average, online slots tend to be in the range of 91-97%.

4. Online slots have better RTP on average than land-based slots

As if you need another reason to play online, you should know that real life casinos tend to have a lower RTP. This makes sense because they have to physically house the machines, it all costs more money than just having online slots. But exactly how much of a difference is it…?

5. Land-based slots RTP usually ranges from 70% to 90%

As you can see, that’s quite the difference in return to player percentages compared to their online slot cousins.

6. Variance and return to player are totally different beasts

Slots players often talk about variance and they also discuss RTP a lot. They are both related to payouts, yes. But they aren’t actually linked. As previously discussed, RTP is about the amounts over time. Meanwhile variance is about the size and frequency of the average payouts. For example, a low variance slot pays out small frequent amounts. And a high variance slot pays out bigger, but infrequently. Both could, in theory, have the same RTP, but different payout structures.

7. Return to player isn’t necessarily the most important thing when playing slots

Any slots player should know that you should never play slots to make money. And the money you gamble with, you should be prepared to lose. Think of it as your fun money. You pay for the experience and thrill of playing, not as an income stream. That’s just dumb. And, to be honest, dangerous.

So while RTP can give you a good general idea of what you should expect to lose over the long term, it’s not the only thing to keep in mind. You should play the type of slot you feel like playing. Whether it’s a fun themed slot (we love Ancient Greece) or one with a whole pile of wacky wilds, bonus features and progressive jackpots or a traditional slot or a brand new one, it’s up to you.

As long as you’ve had fun playing, that’s the important thing, regardless of what RTP it is.

8. Bet365 has a great selection of slots with good RTPs

If you’re on the hunt for a selection of truly fun slots with great RTPs, one of our favorite online casinos is bet365. As well as the brilliant selection, they’ve also got cool special offers from time to time like this Walking Dead 2 bonus. Plus you can use this bet365 bonus code when you sign up.