Blackjack Side Bets - Are they worth it?


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Blackjack is a pretty simple game for those who are well-versed in basic strategy. By following a blackjack strategy table, you can lower the house edge to 0.5% - or even less if rules permit.

But for many players, this extremely low house edge isn't enough and they want a quicker way to make profits. This is where blackjack side bets come into play because you can win a large amount of money with a single wager. Due to the potential for huge payouts, many players like to try these bets. However, you may change your mind after taking the house edge into account, which we'll discuss now.

Good Variety, Bad Idea

There are a lot of different types of blackjack side bets available. For example, the Lucky Ladies side bet pays out a maximum of 1,000-to-1 if your first two cards are both a Queen of Hearts. Now the 1,000-to-1 payout sounds great! Unfortunately, this is a sucker bet because the house holds a 17% edge on Lucky Ladies - or higher depending upon the rules.

Things don't get a whole lot better as you move to other side wagers such as Royal Match (1,000-to-1 payout, 5.7% casino edge), In Between (30-to-1 payout, 13% house edge) and others. So from a pure house edge standpoint, players are much better off avoiding these side bets because they could lose lots of money on average.

Get Rich Quick

We don't advise that you get involved with blackjack side bets because of the large house edge. But those who are only into gaming for the big payoffs might consider making a side bet every now and then.

After all, side wagers can be a nice way to add excitement to online blackjack. Furthermore, some players are going to get lucky and earn a windfall. For instance, if you were making $5 wagers on the Royal Match or Lucky Ladies side bet, you'd earn $5,000!

But it's important to understand that your chances of winning big with side wagers aren't very good. That said, you need to decide whether or not the excitement and big payoff potential is worth the risk.