No longer do players have to choose between the excitement of the casino floor and the convenience of online gambling. With live dealer blackjack, players can enjoy real money blackjack games, with a real croupier and other players, all without stepping a foot outside.
Reasons to play
Can use strategies like card counting
Chat with other players
Statistical displays in the games
Track dealer and table history
More game customization
You can choose your dealer
Reasons to avoid
Reduced game speed
More expensive betting limits
Smaller game portfolio
No free games
Can be excluded from bonuses
When it comes to gambling online, live blackjack delivers an optimum experience to players compared to other online blackjack games.
Blackjack offers tons of fun, no matter where you play the casino game. Some players may wonder if there are any differences between live dealer blackjack and playing blackjack games in a land-based casino.
Live dealer blackjack games don’t come cheap. From the dealer’s salary ($31-61,000) to the game company fees, to operating costs — it all adds up. It’s simply too expensive for casino sites to offer free live dealer blackjack games.
Therefore, we recommend players use no deposit bonuses to get free practice on live blackjack games. Alternatively, players can use our free online blackjack games, with no download or registration needed.
Customization and convenience
The rules, gameplay, and aim in both versions of 21 are identical, but live blackjack takes the lead when it comes to customization and convenience. Choose your dealer, personalize your table, go at your pace — with live blackjack, you can make the game your own. Plus, you can still talk to the dealer and other players like you would at any land-based casino.
Live blackjack may look like a simple game between you and the dealer, but a host of staff and technology work backstage to bring this excitement to your screen.
A live dealer blackjack casino consists of three rooms: a live studio, a software room, and an analyst room. The live studio has camera people, croupiers, and a pit boss, while information technology (IT) managers preside over the games in the other rooms.
In the studio, a real dealer presides over a live blackjack game, which is live-streamed to players. Bettors can join live games virtually and make wagers using the interface on their screens.
Is live dealer blackjack rigged?
Rest assured, live blackjack games are genuine. Online casinos make considerable efforts to show players their live blackjack games are legit. Not only are they regulated by independent authorities, but online casinos use an array of technology to keep their live dealer blackjack games fair and random.
Every blackjack table is run by a gaming control unit (GCU), which scans and encodes every card on the table and the game’s video data to reduce human error. Trustworthy online casinos will not run live blackjack games without a GCU.
Live casinos use optical recognition technology (OCR) to convert hands into communicable data and display the cards and bets on the monitor. OCR gives players complete transparency about the hands and bets in the game.
Live blackjack can have up to three cameras on any one game at any time. This gives players an eagle-eye view of every action the dealer makes. To reassure players that live blackjack games are completely random and fair, live croupiers may also use machines to shuffle cards.
Now that you know the inner workings of live dealer blackjack, it’s time to learn the rules.
Good online casinos will have a chat-box or audio link where players can make calls or complaints to dealers and other bettors.
Behind the scenes, IT managers observe the game to ensure there are no technical malfunctions. Everyone works hard to ensure players have the most realistic blackjack game online.
Live dealer blackjack is very similar to other games of 21. Players will find the aim, card values, and blackjack rules are identical, with only a few minor differences in the betting and table format. Most online casinos use eight decks of cards in live blackjack. Unlike other games of 21, live blackjack tables can accept up to seven players per round.
Bettors that already know how to play 21 can head straight for the live casinos. For those feeling rusty on their blackjack knowledge, our short guide below will have you ready to take on the dealer in minutes.
When it’s your turn, place your bet.After the dealer takes all the bets, wait for them to deal the cards. The method the croupier uses to deal the cards will depend on the blackjack game.The dealer will then give themself either one card face-up or two cards face-up.Look at the value of your hand on the screen.If your hand totals 21, you have blackjack and win!If your hand doesn’t add up to the magic number, then you have five options:
Ask the dealer for more cards. Our blackjack strategy page has a chart that tells you when to hit or stand, depending on the dealer’s hand.
If your hand is close to 21, you can stick with the two cards.
Do you have two identical cards? You can split your initial hand into two separate hands. Each is worth the value of your first bet
Feeling confident? Then double your initial bet and receive one extra card.
If your hand is a dud, some live blackjack games will let you give up your hand in return for half your original bet.
7. After all hands have been dealt and bets collected, the croupier will play their hand.
8. Depending on your hand and the dealer’s cards, you’ll either collect your winnings or lose your bets.
Can you count cards in online live blackjack?
Card counting is possible in live blackjack, but online casinos will try to thwart players by various means. Live blackjack games have eight decks in the shoe, which some dealers auto-shuffle after every round. Others will replace the shoe after 50% of its cards are dealt. Some will go even further and burn cards before/after each round. GCUs can also track cards in the game, and alert dealers when a player’s betting pattern matches the count.
The fact that live dealer casinos work so hard to prevent card counting shows that it works. Players don’t need to be pros at counting cards to apply this skill in their live blackjack gameplay either. Just learning the basics of counting cards will help you reduce the house edge and make smarter bets.
Play better blackjack straightaway with our basic strategy guide.
Live Blackjack side bets
Not only do side bets add more heart-pumping excitement to a game, but they can result in decent payouts if players know the right circumstances to make them. The most common side bets in live blackjack are insurance bet, perfect pairs, and 21+3.
Most of these wagers, like insurance bet, have a substantial house edge. Others promise huge payouts or decent odds that can moderate the casino’s advantage for players skilled in these wagers. Start making smarter side bets in live blackjack with our rundown on these tricky wagers.
Gambling sites typically reward loyal players and entice new bettors by offering special live blackjack bonuses. These promotions give live dealer games more thrills and can help extend players’ bankrolls.
Check out the most exciting live blackjack bonuses casinos offer, and the top prizes you could win:
Casinos convert your gameplay and deposits into points. Earn enough to collect free credit or prizes through the casino’s loyalty club.
Pay a specific amount of cash into your account, and the casino will contribute a set sum or percentage too.
No Deposit Bonus
Register with a live casino and receive free credit, with no deposit required.
Like point rewards, casinos gift players free credit or prizes for spending a certain amount of time and money on their site.
Make a deposit, and the online casino will match it to a stated percentage or monetary amount.
High rollers can get more credit, bigger prizes, and invites to exclusive events for their time and money.
Loyalty Points Rewards
Casinos reward loyal bettors with points their players can convert into free credit or real prizes. LeoVegas has been known to award dream-car SUVs, Apple products, and free cash with its scheme.
Online casinos mainly use loyalty schemes and match bonuses to reward live blackjack players. Bettors can use general casino bonuses, but many casinos reduce the wagering contribution on live best live blackjack online blackjack games. On average, live games contribute 8-10% towards casino bonus wagering requirements. We suggest players learn about casino bonus terms to make these promotions work for them.
Blackjack apps can give users a more optimized mobile gambling experience than casino sites alone. However, many bettors will be surprised to learn that the best blackjack apps are those that offer a range of casino games.
Most dedicated blackjack apps only offer tutorials and free games. If you want to play best live blackjack online live blackjack for real money, you need apps managed by online casinos. The options below all work on iOS and Android devices, so everyone can join in the blackjack fun.
Play top blackjack games from Evolution and Ezugi with JackpotCity.
Immerse yourself in fun live blackjack games with Spin Palace.
Ruby Fortune offers a seamless experience with its blackjack games.
Europa gives players a huge variety of live blackjack games to enjoy.
Enjoy fun live blackjack games from Evolution and NetEnt with 22Bet.
Live dealer apps can be data intensive. Connect to a secure wi-fi network to stop the app from draining your data plan.
If you want to find the best live blackjack games online, you need to look at their creators. While dozens of software providers create live dealer games, only a handful can call themselves the best. These are the live dealer software providers you should be playing with:
Evolution offers over 700 studio tables that feature more customization options than any other software provider. With robust licensing and regulation, 24/7 live studio support for bettors, and complete transparency around the house rules and return-to-player percentage (RTP) of its games, Evolution is the leader in live blackjack. Betway, Party Casino, Unibet, and 888casino are just a few online casinos that feature live blackjack games from Evolution.
This game company is one of the heavyweights in online gambling. Players will find an extensive range of live blackjack games from PlayTech, with excellent video clarity. Not only are its games licensed and regulated, but its platform probity and security are audited and complaint too. Players can enjoy peace of mind with PlayTech’s games on BetFred, William Hill, and bet365.
This game company operates nine studios worldwide and works with over 100 online casinos. Like Evolution, Ezugi’s games are fully customizable to give players a seamless experience online, and it provides transparency around its games’ rules and RTPs. You can find Ezugi’s titles at LeoVegas, Ladbrokes Casino, and Coral Casino.
Players will recognize Pragmatic’s richly detailed and colorful live dealer games at any online casino. The game company offers fun features like statistics, betting history, and animations in its titles. Pragmatic Play is one of the most inclusive software providers supporting over 30 languages in its games. Casumo, 888casino, and Mr Green are just a few casinos that feature Pragmatic’s live dealer titles.
Bettors have an arsenal of strategies and card-counting skills at their disposal in live blackjack. However online casinos have a few tricks up their sleeves too. With only some minor alterations to a live blackjack game, casino sites can bolster their house edge. Stay one step ahead of the online casinos with our tips:
Learn blackjack game variations
Certain blackjack rules favor players over the dealer. For instance, games that require dealers to hit on a soft 17 instead of stand increase the house edge by 0.2%. Our blackjack house edge guide covers how to prevent this rule and others from draining your winnings.
Choose tables that display stats
Live blackjack games that track the table’s gameplay will help players follow hot/cold streaks.
Find live dealer games with a timer
This will help you calculate your average wins/losses per hour and keep to your betting limits.
Play live blackjack games with few decks
The smaller the deck in a blackjack game, the easier it is to count cards.
Refuse insurance bets
On average, players lose more than half their insurance bets. Online casinos know these wagers are tempting, but at 2:1 odds and with a house edge between 5.8-7.5%, players ultimately lose.