Can systematically raising the stake in blackjack result in big wins at the online casino? Find out at Springbok Casino!

Progression betting systems are all the rage – at the online casino and the B&M gaming halls in Vegas.  As a tactic, they allow for the recovery of losses.  They can also pump up the gains… or so the story goes.  In principle that may well be true.  On paper, the claims are less convincing…

Betting Progressively at the Online Casino

What are progression betting systems?  They are betting techniques where you systematically raise the stake.  In some systems – known as positive progression systems – you increase the bet size after each win.

In others – the negative systems – you raise the chip value following a loss.  You continue with that strategy until you get back to winning ways.  In most systems, both positive and negative, the general rule of thumb is to double the bet each time!

Advocates of progression betting claim it can temper the impact of losing streaks.  How can raising the stakes do that?  According to the architects of these systems, all that is required is one big win and you are in the clear.

The idea is that when you do finally hit 21 or beat the dealer, you are deep in the money.  Payouts are greater by virtue of the fact the bets have been raised.  What you win will be enough to cover all the previous bets.

In the best-case scenario, you may even end up with significant gains.  That is the word on the street, at least by the very same people who are punting these types of betting systems online.  That said, it is not only blackjack that is targeted for special betting treatment.

Players of online casino games like roulette, Caribbean Holdem and Jacks or Better video poker routinely implement progression betting.  The fact that it is a remarkably simple concept is one attraction.  The compatibility with and ease of integration into multiple online casino games is another.

Why the negativity?  There are a few issues with blackjack progression betting that should be taken into account.  The easiest way to flag potential problems is by way of example.

The Real Cost of Progression Betting Systems

Take Blackjack 21 by Real Time Gaming (RTG), for instance. At Springbok Casino, the available chip values in this game range from R2 to R200.  Even when you are betting at the lowest available stake, here is what will happen after seven straight losses:

  • Bet 1 – R2 (total loss R2)
  • Bet 2 – R4 (total loss R6)
  • Bet 3 – R8 (total loss R14)
  • Bet 4 – R16 (total loss R30)
  • Bet 5 – R32 (total loss R62)
  • Bet 6 – R64 (total loss R126)
  • Bet 7 – R128 (total loss R254)

Start the betting with stakes of R10, R20, R50 or more and the risk increases exponentially.

Before adopting this kind of system, what is the key question you have to ask yourself?  First off would be to consider whether you have sufficient gaming funds to outlast a protracted losing streak.  If the answer is no, you don’t, then this type of tactic is not for you.

After all, there is no guarantee you will only lose seven hands in a row.  You may end up with a 12-round cold streak.  That is where the danger lies.  Remember, this is a betting system and not a proven mathematical strategy that can genuinely increase your chances of winning.

On the flip side, what happens when you get a favourable outcome?  If you do end up winning the seventh bet, the picture isn’t all that rosy.  As for why, it boils down to numbers and figures.  By that time, you would have accumulated R254 in losses!

If you were to achieve a favourable outcome on your 7th bet – taking into account that you only win even money for beating the dealer – the payout is this scenario is R256.  Subtract that from your losses up to that point, and you’re left with a meagre gain of just R2… effectively leaving you right back where you started!

That is the first issue.  When you use progression betting systems at the online casino, you have to be prepared for two things:

  1. The mandatory outlay of lots of money
  2. Getting a nominal return

The Impact of Doubling and Splitting

The second major drawback is unique to online blackjack.  In this online casino game, you have the option to split two cards of a matching rank.  Thereafter you play the hands separately.  You can also double down on the first two cards.  You usually do that when you think you only need one more card to beat the dealer.  Both instances require one or more additional bets.

If you are playing blackjack with rules that allow you to split any number of times, you can land up in a pickle. Truth be told, you can easily end up with three or four times the initial bet on the table.

Similarly, when you double in blackjack, you typically double the bet.  At some online casinos, you can double after the split too.  With a progression betting system in-play, an initial bet of R4, R8 or R16 can easily become five or six times that!

Then there is that little matter of table limits.  At Springbok Casino, the minimum and maximum limits in Blackjack 21 are R1 and R500, respectively.  That means you can only maintain the system until the eighth straight loss in a row.

That of course is only when you are playing blackjack online at the lowest available chip value.  Once you reach the table limit, you won’t be allowed to increase your stake.  That kind of defeats the whole object of progression betting in the first place.

Again, there is no way of knowing how many back-to-back losses you will have to endure.  What you can bank on is the fact that you will, at some point, rack up successive losses.  Doubling the bet each time is not the smartest idea.  In fact, it is the quickest and easiest way of busting your bankroll.

The Verdict

Is progression betting in online blackjack a good or bad idea?  As you have no doubt learnt, it is not something you should add to your gambling repertoire… ever! On the other hand, human beings are naturally curious and it’s in our nature to want to try new things.  So, it couldn’t hurt to give it a shot, or two, either!

What we can recommend with the highest of confidence is our mobile, download and instant play online casino.  When you sign up, you’ll have access to some of the best real money gaming around… not to mention an endless selection of online casino bonuses, promotions and perks!