Jun

01

2017

# Doubling Down on Blackjack

If you play enough blackjack, sooner or later you’ll see someone try to make every possible play, for better or worse.

That includes doubling down on blackjack, a play most casinos won’t allow. That doesn’t stop players from trying, as a reader told me in this recent email:

“Weird thing at blackjack the other night. Some guy wanted to double down on blackjack when the dealer had a 6. The dealer told him it was against house rules to double on blackjacks. It became this whole big thing. The pit supervisor came over and told the guy sorry, they don’t allow it.

“The dealer busted, the player complained some more, but I told him we didn’t know if the dealer would have busted if the player had taken a card for his double.

“Just for discussion, how bad is doubling with blackjack vs. 6? Does it make a difference if blackjacks pay 3-2 or 6-5?”

I wrote back to tell there reader that doubling down on blackjack is a pretty bad play, one that diminishes the profitability of the hand.

Doubling on Ace-10 value vs. a dealer 6 brings an average profit of 53.6 percent of your original bet. So if you started with a \$10 bet and doubled down on blackjack, your average profit would be \$5.36. Sometimes you’ll win \$20, but sometimes you’ll lose your bet and sometimes you push. If you draw a 10 value, you’re left with an ordinary 21 that pushes if the dealer also draws 21 instead of having that blackjack that wins regardless of the dealer’s draw.

If you just smile and accept the payoff on you blackjack and take no more cards, your \$10 bet brings back a \$15 profit if blackjacks pay 3-2 and \$12 if blackjacks pay 6-5. Risking that to double down is not optimal, to say the least.

One Comment
Posted by RALPH v. on

WHY I DOUBLE DOWN ON A BLACKJACK WHEN THE DEALER HAS A 4-5-6-UP I DOUBLE MY MONEY, ONCE OR TWICE I HAVE LOST DOING THIS BUT CASINOS DONT ALLOW THIS BECAUSE THEY LOSE TO OFTEN, IT IS NOT TO THEIR ADVANTAGE.