Blackjack Side Bets
There are a variety of side bets that you can play when you are at a blackjack table. Typically, there is just the choice on whether you want to place a side bet and for how much. Side bets at blackjack tables require no skill and no strategy for the most part.
The side bets typically have a higher house edge, but they can help you swing back to profit during a bad session. For the most part, you should play side game that you find most interesting and not worry too much about the house edge. Below we have some of the more popular side bets available online with live dealers.
This is a simple side bet to understand. Any time your first two cards are a pair, you will be paid out 11:1. The probability that you will be dealt a pair in an unused six card deck is 23 ÷ 311 = 7.4% or roughly once every 13.5 hands. This side game can be found at the Bovada Casino (U.S. only casino), the Bodog Casino (Canada only casino), the Bet Online Casino and the Sportsbetting.ag sportsbook.
This is a popular side bet found at many land based casinos, it can also be played online at the 888 Casino (U.S. restricted casino). Just like the regular Pairs side bet, you will win whenever your first two cards are a pair. There are different payouts depending on whether it is a mixed, colored or a perfect pair. For this side game, the more decks the better, because you will have a much better chance in getting a perfect pair in an eight-deck shoe when compared to a four-deck shoe. FYI the 888 Casino does use an eight deck shoe.
A perfect pair is a pair of cards in the same suit. This will pay out 25:1. In an eight-deck shoe, your chances of getting a perfect pair are 7 ÷ 415 = 1.7% or about one in every 59.3 hands.
A colored pair is a pair of cards with the same color, but not suited. For example, a hand that has an ace of spades and an ace of clubs would be a colored pair. Your chances on any given hand to be a colored pair is 8 ÷ 415 = 1.9% or about one in every 51.9 hands. Colored pairs pay out 12:1.
A mixed pair is any pair with different colors. For example, a queen of hearts and a queen of clubs would be a mixed pair. The payout for a mixed pair is 6:1. You can expect to get a mixed paid around 16 ÷ 415 = 3.9% of your hands or about one in every 25.9 hands.
A winning rummy side bet will pay out 9:1. This side bet can also be called 2 plus 1 in some casinos. For this side bet you will use your first two cards and the dealer's up card to make a hand. There are three types of hands that pay, all of which pay 9:1. You will get paid when you have three of a kind,
a three card straight and a three card flush.
In a six card shoe, you will get a three of a kind (23 ÷ 311) x (22 ÷ 310) = 0.5% of the time or about onc in every 190.5 hands. A flush will happen (77 ÷ 311) x (76 ÷ 310) = 6.1% of the time or about onc in every 16.5 hands. A three card straight will happen (720 x 63) ÷ ((312 ÷ 3) x (311 ÷ 2) x 310)) = 3.1% or about one in every 32.2 hands. The rummy side game can be found at the Bovada Casino (U.S. only casino), the Bodog Casino (Canada only casino), the Bet Online Casino and the Sportsbetting.ag sportsbook.
21 + 3 Side Bet
The 21+3 side bet uses the first two cards plus the dealer’s up card. This side bet can be played at the 888 Casino, which uses a 8 deck shoe. This is one of the few side bets available, that have the ability to pay out big when you win.
You will get paid out 100:1 when you have suited trips, 40:1 when you have a straight flush, 30:1 when you have a regular three of a kind, 10:1 when you have straight and 5:1 when you have a flush. Suited trips will happen (7 ÷ 415) x (6 ÷ 414) = 0.024% or about once every 4091.7 hands.