Enjoy your time at Springbok Casino
At our mobile casino for South Arica, the insurance bet allows players to potentially cut their losses when playing blackjack online. It is a controversial side bet that may seem like a great idea at the time… but is it? Here is all you need to know about insurance betting in blackjack.
The insurance bet is an unassuming part of the virtual blackjack tables at Springbok Casino. Unless you know the finer points of playing blackjack online, it is the kind of betting component that is typically overlooked.
The insurance blackjack bet is similar to the insurance you take out on your house, your car and even your life. Rather than providing cover for losses incurred from a burglary, motor vehicle accident or death event, it pays out when the dealer gets a natural two-card blackjack.
It is an optional side bet that is only available when the dealer shows an ace. What kind of premium do you have to pay as protection against a dealer blackjack? At our mobile casino for South Africa, the standard rate of half the value of the main bet applies across all our online blackjack games.
Assuming the dealer’s hole card is a 10-value card, you are paid out at odds of 2:1 for the side bet but you do lose your main bet. What that essentially means is you break even for that particular game round. No wins but no losses either…
That depends on a number of key factors, chief of which is the number of decks in the virtual shoe and, by extension, the number of 10-value cards in play. Clearly, a greater percentage of 10-value cards implies there is a higher probability of the dealer holding a natural blackjack.
At Springbok Casino, we feature online blackjack games developed by Real Time Gaming (RTG). The standard number of decks in each game is six. As a result, there are 96 cards that can generate a dealer blackjack and 312 cards that can’t.
That may well be the case but when you whittle down the numbers, like the odds, probability and house edge, all point to a betting option that is best put on the back burner… for good. Let’s take a closer look at the stats.
In nearly all the online games at our top ranked mobile casino for South Africa, the odds are a reasonably close match to the probability of that particular outcome occurring.
In European Roulette, for instance, the straight up numbers bet – where you have to correctly predict the winning number – pays at odds of 35:1 and has 1 in 37 chance of winning. That is a factual statistic.
Similarly, the outside bets in roulette only have two possible outcomes – red or black, odd or even or high or low. As expected, these are as close to 50/50 bets as you can get. As such, they pay even money, which is 1:1 in the terms of the odds.
As we have already ascertained, the insurance bet pays at odds of 2:1, and that implies you have 1 in 3 chance of winning. Yet, in reality, the actual odds are markedly different. They are in fact 9:4.
How are the actual odds calculated for the side bet? Of the 13 card ranks in a single deck of playing cards – ace through to king – four are 10-value cards and nine are not.
Notwithstanding how the payouts are presented for the insurance bet at Springbok Casino, the dealer hits a natural blackjack less than one third of the time. On average, that means the side bet wins 30.77% of the time. Would you consider that to be a good bet over the long term?
In addition to the skewed odds, there is a little matter known as the house edge to consider. The edge is yet another statistic that proves the insurance bet is to be avoided at the mobile casino for South Africa, with one exception, which we will come tell you about in a bit...
When taken in totality, online blackjack has one of the lowest edges at Springbok Casino. Shine the spotlight on the insurance bet and the converse is true. Rather than the 0.54% edge ascribed to the main online blackjack bet, the advantage to the house is a whopping 7.39% for the insurance bet.
That tells a story all of its own. When you take the insurance bet in six-deck blackjack, which is the norm for the RTG online casino games at our mobile casino for South Africa, you do so at your peril!
That said, there are times when hedging one's bets in online blackjack is not necessarily a bad thing. Not all of us chase the odds. We play for the fun of it. If that is your playing style, you may want to adopt a tactic that is used by some recreational players when they are ahead of the game.
When the dealer is on a winning streak and you have a gut feeling there is a concealed 10-value card with the ace, there is no harm in following your instinct and placing the insurance side bet. The worst that can happen is you lose both bets. Don’t make a habit of it though… As we have covered comprehensively in the article, the numbers speak for themselves!
If you haven’t yet, sign up at Springbok Casino and enjoy our cherry-picked selection of “21 games”, available on demand, in your palms, at the best mobile casino for South Africa!