Most people enjoy playing blackjack because it’s so easy. You have only a few decisions to make, and with some basic blackjack strategy, you can narrow the already thin house edge even further.
As with many casino table games, some variations of blackjack offer side bets. These are chances for the more adventurous players to have an extra wager or two on the outcome of the hand.
Players will be used to putting their bet in the dedicated place in front of them. If side bets are available, they will show up in smaller spaces alongside.
So, how do side bets work in blackjack? You will be adding additional chips to make a side bet before the cards are dealt, and wagering on making a winning hand blackjack side bets from your first two cards or a combination of yours and the dealer’s face-up card.
The most common side bets are 21 + 3 or Blackjack Perfect Pairs. Gamblers love side bets as they offer the chance of blackjack side bets payout. However, strategic blackjack players might avoid them because side bets are purely based on luck.
Unlike your main blackjack bet, where you simply get a 1:1 return if you win the hand (unless you made a blackjack), with 21 + 3 you can get much more by piecing together a decent three-card “poker” hand from your own two hole cards, and the dealer’s face-up card.
The better your 21 + 3 hand, the higher the return. And, best of all, you will win regardless of the outcome of the main action. So, you can go bust and lose your original bet, but still gain much more back on a side bet.
21 +3 requires you to make one of these three-card combinations:
Flush: Three cards of the same suit. It’s the most frequent winner and, as such, pays out 5/1.
Straight: Three cards with a numbered sequence, like 6, 7, 8. An ace can be high or low. Returns are 10/1.
Three-of-a-kind: All three cards (your two and the dealer’s face-up card) must be of the same number or face card value. Payout 30/1.
Blackjack straight flush: Three running numbers of the same suit. 40/1 odds.
Suited three of a kind: All three cards must be the same number and the same suit (remember, blackjack uses many decks). It’s the highest payout at 100/1.