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Blackjack 101: Insurance Betting

Blackjack 101: Insurance Betting


Blackjack is a fun game with simple rules. You place your bet, wait for your hand, and hope that you draw blackjack before anyone else. You’ve probably seen movies portray blackjack to be a dead end game where players end up betting their house, car, and all the other things they can bet. This simply isn’t the case when you play blackjack in real life.

Blackjack plays 3:2 if you get a blackjack or if you beat the dealer. There are many different strategies you can use to play this game without having to be on the losing end. Among the many techniques used in blackjack, only the brave choose to place insurance bets. Learn more about what insurance bets are and how to use it to your advantage.

What is an Insurance Bet?

Insurance bets are side bets offered to players when the dealer draws an Ace. Insurance bets are worth half the amount of your original bet. These side bets work by betting that the dealer will draw a 10-value card after drawing an ace, resulting in blackjack.

Before the dealer reveals their hole card, they will ask the players if they wish to place an insurance bet or to play even money. Insurance bets are worth half of your original bet and pay 2:1. 

Many players believe that taking even money and placing an insurance bet is the same thing, but it’s not. Even money is offered to players who have blackjack while insurance bets are offered to all the players in a blackjack table. By taking even money, you are guaranteeing yourself a 1:1 payout. This means that you’re guaranteed to keep your bet, but you won’t get more than that.

It’s not the same with a blackjack insurance bet. There are two possible outcomes in blackjack insurance betting. One, if the dealer has blackjack, you don’t lose your initial bet and you also win your side bet. If it’s the other way around and the dealer doesn’t have blackjack, you lose the side bet but continue to play your hand.

Simply put, if you place an insurance bet of $5 and the dealer draws a 10-value card on top of their Ace, you win $15. This is particularly advantageous if you have a strong hand or a blackjack. Having a strong hand means that you have a chance of beating the dealer later on once the game continues.

Why should you place an insurance bet?

Casinos offer a standard blackjack stack consisting of six to eight card decks. If you sum that up, a standard blackjack deck would have 312-416 cards. In a single round, 120-160 cards are valued at 10. This means that once a dealer draws an Ace, there’s a pretty high chance that they’ll draw a 10-value card, resulting in them having a blackjack.

Blackjack is a simple game that pays big if you know how to plan your game. Luckily, there are strategies you can use to make the most out of your blackjack insurance bet. They’re strategies that you already know because they’re generally used in the game, but using them increases insurance bet advantages.

Blackjack Insurance Tips

Insurance bets are most useful when your hand’s value is over 17 or if you have a blackjack. The chances of a dealer drawing a 10-value card are lower than drawing a regular card. If the dealer doesn’t draw blackjack and draws a card with a lower value than yours, you win 3:2.

Another way to make the most out of an insurance bet is card counting. Card counting works by checking on what cards have been dealt with each player, including the dealer. It involves keeping tabs of high cards (Ace, King, Queen, Jack, 10), low cards (2, 3, 4, 5, 6), and neutral cards (7, 8, 9). Players use the statistics of each category to come up with probabilities of which cards left will come out. It may sound a bit complicated, but knowing how to use this technique will significantly lower your chances of losing both your original bet and insurance bet.

Another technique to make your insurance bet count is by splitting your hand. The most beneficial splits you can make while an insurance bet is placed is by splitting your aces and your eights. If you are dealt two aces or eights in one hand, splitting them and getting one new card for each hand raises your chances of getting blackjack. With an insurance bet and split hands, beating the dealer is more possible.

Finally, this last tip is usually underrated and overlooked, but placing an insurance bet is good when you have blackjack. Placing an insurance bet when you have a blackjack ensures your win against the dealer because if the dealer doesn’t draw blackjack, you still beat the dealer and win 3:2. If the dealer happens to draw blackjack, a push happens, and you win both your original bet, as well as your insurance bet.

The Final Verdict

Winning doesn’t always have to rely on luck. By the end of the day, making the right decisions during the game is the most practical way to win. These tips help you understand how to use insurance bets and how to make the most out of it. Blackjack insurance betting raises your chances of winning the game if you know how to use it to your advantage.

Think you got all of it down? It’s time to apply what you learned! Play One Touch’s Blackjack Classic and Yggdrasil’s Dr. Fortuno Blackjack, place insurance bets, and see where it takes you!

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Blackjack 101: Insurance Betting
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