Blackjack Side Bets
In an effort to encourage more people to play blackjack in a more immersive environment, many land-based and online casinos have begun to introduce a range of side bets on their blackjack tables. It's common knowledge that blackjack has a low house edge, and with relatively easy-to-learn playing strategy, it is one of the most popular casino games in the world. On top of this, the more advanced player who has studied the game with the help of our blackjack e-book can use a number of additional bets in an attempt to try and boost their winnings. These bets often consist of a small wager, and often have very high pay-outs (often much larger than the standard blackjack win. Here at Ladbrokes Casino, we will be going through the different side bets that you may find on our online blackjack tables, so you know exactly what you're up against whenever you play one of our many variants of online blackjack.
The 21+3 blackjack side bet is based on the player's first two cards and the dealer's upcard. If the three cards form a flush, straight, three-of-a-kind, or straight flush, the player wins. The original 21+3 side bet standout for each winning hands was a 9:1, leading to a house edge of 3.24%. However, new pay tables are being introduced that have higher house edges and greater volatility. It is necessary to keep track of the number of cards in each suit that remain in the shoe, in order to give the player a bit of an edge. There have been a range of 21+3 variations around the world, with fluctuating house edges from 2.78% all the way up to 13.39%. The payouts for 21+3 depend on what hand you receive, and the theoretical RTP is 95.38%.
|Suited Trips (e.g. Qs-Qs-Qs)||100:1|
|Straight Flush (e.g. 7d-8d-9d)||40:1|
|Three of a Kind (e.g. 3d-3h-3s)||30:1|
|Straight (e.g. 9c-10d-Jh)||10:1|
|Flush (e.g. 2h-6h-10h)||5:1|
The Royal Match side bet is offered at both single-deck and multi-deck tables both online and offline, and is one of the most common wagers found across the world. If you make this bet, and your first two dealt cards are suited (known as an Easy Match) the pay-out will be 5:2. However, if you also have a Royal Match – a suited King and Queen, then the pay-out will be 25:1. This is probably one of the safest bets to make, as the pay-outs are far more player-friendly with the house edge being 3.7%. In a single-deck version, the payoffs are 3:1 for an Easy Match and 10:1 for a Royal Match. The Royal Match is one of the oldest side bets which is still available, and research on beating this bet dates back to the 1990s. There is also a third version of royal match, which pays separately for a suited blackjack at around 5:1 depending on the table.
This pair of side bets pay even money (meaning the bettor stands to lose or win the same amount of money) if the player can correctly bet if the sum of the player's first two cards will be over or under 13, with the Ace counting as 1. In most variants, the total of 13 will always lose. The house edge for the over 13 wager is 6.5% and the Under 13 is 10%. The Over/Under 13 side bet is very simple to play which is what makes it so popular, but with a high house edge on both sides of the bet, you may find that you will end up losing more money than making it. However, there have been several professional players such as Arnold Snyder and Stanford Wong that have published a counting system for Over/Under 13 in order to help teach blackjack players the best ways to reduce the house edge of the side bet. The general payout is around 10:1.
In Super Sevens, the idea is to get as many 7s in the hand as possible, and the side bet is generally based around a matter of luck. If the player's first card is a 7, then the pay-out is 3:1. If the first two cards are 7s, then the payoff will ultimately depend on whether the two cards are suited or not, with suited cards paying out 100:1, and unsuited cards paying out 50:1. It is when there's more than two 7s where the pay-outs begin to get interesting. If the third card is also a 7, but they are unsuited then the pay-out is 500:1. However if they are suited, then the payout is around 5000:1 depending on the table. In some land based casinos, if the player has two sevens, but the dealer has a blackjack, they will not deal a third card and if this is the case then the house edge is approximately 12.6%. If the casinos do not play by this rule and they will deal a third card, then the house edge will drop to 11.4%. This exciting side bet is one of the most popular due to the lack of strategy involved (although there is a card counting system that can be used). The only downside to this bet is that normally, the maximum amount that you are allowed to wager on this bet is £1/$1.
This is a simple bet, where players will wager that their first two cards will total 20, with the Lucky Ladies being two queens. The top payoff is 1000:1 if the player manages to get two queens of hearts and the dealer has a blackjack. However there are a range of payouts depending on the cards that the player gets. For example, if you only have two queens of hearts, it will pay 200:1, a matched 20 (same rank and suit) pays 25:1, a suited 20 pays 10:1, and any unsuited 20 pays 4:1. The house edge is 17%, but the Hi-Lo count can help players to get the edge on this side bet.
In Pair Square the player will win the side bet if their first two cards are the same rank, for example a pair of 6's. This is a simple wager consisting of luck, although there is a card counting system that can give the player the edge. An unmatched pair for example an 8 of clubs and an 8 of hearts, pays 10:1. A matched pair, such as a pair of sixes of hearts will pay 15:1. The house edge is 10.6%.
Insurance is possibly the most well-known side bet in the world of blackjack, and protects the player against the dealer having a blackjack. With this, the player will put down half of the original wager as the insurance, and if the dealer does have a blackjack, the player will win 2:1 on the insurance wager.
There are a number of different side bets that you will find across our range of blackjack variants here at Ladbrokes Casino. Some players have begun to try and implement strategies to help give a better edge on the side bets such as through negative and positive progressive betting systems so they can beat the dealer and be a winner. Try out some of these blackjack side bets on our range of blackjack tables offered by Ladbrokes Casino.