Blackjack decks

Summary of Blackjack Side Bets: 2 Decks
April 28, 2017 – 10:41 pm
Is decks of to be just: Cards

This post gives an overview of the relative vulnerability of the blackjack side bets I’ve written about in this blog. Some of these side bets have been spectacular one-time opportunities for APs. Others are ongoing income earners: moderately vulnerable, but not so weak as to be burnt out. And some are both popular and safe. The article covers blackjack side bets for a double-deck game, with the cut card at 75 cards (with one exception). I assume the AP does not wager on the side bet unless the system indicates he has the edge, and in this case he wagers $100.

As a benchmark for all of this, I include “blackjack as a blackjack side bet” (*) in this summary. With this reference point, I give a dollar wager for each side bet that gives an equivalence to card counting. That is, the AP beating the side bet at $100 per hand is equivalent to the AP card counting normal blackjack (Wonging in/out using the Hi-Lo system) at the given equivalent blackjack wager. Also, I note that each side bet I analyzed was available at one or more casinos at the time I wrote the blog article.

The following table summarizes blackjack side bets:


Note that Royal 20s (**) allows the AP to make a simultaneous wager on both the player’s and banker’s hand. This allows the AP to get double the value per hand, by placing $100 on each side.

Also, I include Slingo team play (***). An individual AP cannot accomplish this win-rate, but the magnitude of the edge a team can get demands this possibility be included. At the time I wrote the post about Slingo, it was down to one casino at a maximum bet of $10.

The following table gives the bet frequency, average edge and win per 100 hands (in units) for the AP using the system described in this blog.

It is interesting to look at blackjack’s place in this list. Next to Slingo, it has the highest frequency of a player-edge over the house. On the other hand, the average player-edge is the lowest of all the bets listed. This underscores the volatility inherent to card counting. For an ordinary blackjack card counter, it’s a coin flip for a long time. With a small bankroll, a solo AP is much better off playing against blackjack side bets.

Interesting facts

Gilles Andruet (born 30 March 1958, Versailles – 22 August 1995 near Saulx-les-Chartreux, Essonne) was a French chess player, International Master and France champion (1988). He is the son of rally driver Jean-Claude Andruet.
Andruet was a member of the French team at the 1982, 1984 and 1988 Chess Olympiad. In 1988 he won the French Chess...

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