Las Vegas Blackjack
For the past few years we have conducted an annual survey of Las Vegas Blackjack, giving players information about the various styles of the classic casino game being offered in the world’s second-largest gambling market. In our annual blackjack survey, we take a look at blackjack on the Las Vegas Strip as well as Downtown Las Vegas, looking at the 40 different casinos and the assorted games.
Because casinos hold the advantage in blackjack games, it is important for players to select the best games that maximize player odds of success. We have done a lot of the legwork for you by taking a look at every blackjack table in Las Vegas, and can tell you the best games to play and the tables (and casinos) to avoid.
Las Vegas Blackjack Guide
The rules tend to be loose on higher limit games, as opposed to $5 minimum bet games. That is not always true, but it is a good rule. The bigger the bankroll that you bring to Las Vegas, the better the blackjack game you will be able to play. A player that can afford to play $100 minimum blackjack will be able to play in most casinos’ high limit salons. These are luxury areas walled off from the rest of the casino. Comps are earned very fast in these areas, and many casinos offer additional services to high limit players. Players in high limit salons can enjoy six deck shoes with double anything, double after the split, surrender and resplit aces. The dealer will almost always stand on all 17’s in high limit six deck shoes.
Another high limit game offered by several MGM properties is a $50 minimum Double Deck Blackjack game. In this game, players may double anything, double after the split, and the dealer stays on all 17’s. This game can be found at MGM properties Aria, MGM Grand, New York New York, Mirage, Bellagio, and Luxor. It is rare to find this game outside of high limit, but it can be found open during many peak hours at Aria, Bellagio and Mirage.
Single Deck Blackjack is a poor game in most Las Vegas casinos. Most Single Deck Blackjack games pay 6-5 on blackjack, not the standard 3-2. Players looking for a good Single Deck Blackjack game must visit El Cortez, Binion’s, or Riviera. The 3-2 single deck blackjack games only allow a double down on 10 or 11 and do not allow doubling down after the split. The dealer hits a soft 17 in all Single Deck Blackjack games.
There are also some very poor blackjack games in Las Vegas. Most of these blackjack games can be found on Caesar’s Entertainment properties. Bad blackjack games can also be found at Casino Royale, Monte Carlo, Binions, Four Queens and Luxor. It is also safe to assume that any blackjack game found in a Party Pit on the Las Vegas Strip, which typically have scantily clad women, is going to be a game with unfriendly rules. The worst casino for blackjack in Las Vegas is The Quad. All of their blackjack games pay 6-5 on blackjack, even out of their eight deck shoes. Other Caesar’s Entertainment properties with bad blackjack rules include Harrah’s, Margaritaville, Flamingo, Bill’s Gambling Hall, Bally’s, Paris and Caesar’s Palace. Planet Hollywood is the only Caesar’s Entertainment property that offers 3-2 on all shoe blackjack games. Keep in mind that most Caesar’s Entertainment casinos use eight deck shoes as opposed to six deck shoes that are used in all other Las Vegas casinos. Casino Royale also deserves a mention for having the worst blackjack in Las Vegas.
Some casinos will have playable blackjack scattered among 6-5 blackjack games. This is especially true for Caesar’s Entertainment properties. It is important to read the placard at the table or ask the dealer what the rules are. A few questions upfront can prevent you from playing on a poor blackjack table.