Three card blackjack is a simple variation of the classic game of blackjack. It is played with a single deck of 52 cards. To begin the game, players must place an ante bet, and at this point can also choose to place an optional Ace Plus side bet. The player and the dealer are dealt three cards each, with one dealer card face up and the other two face down and all three player cards face down. Players must make the best blackjack hand they can out of their three cards. The player must then choose to fold (at the cost of his ante bet) or raise an amount equal to his ante bet. The dealer then reveals his two face down cards, compares them to the player’s cards and the player is paid out accordingly.
Winning at Three Card Blackjack
In order to understand blackjack odds in three card blackjack, you need to understand the possible outcomes of the game. The dealer needs a minimum of 17 points to open.
- If the dealer can’t open and the player holds blackjack, you are paid out 1 to 1 on the ante bet and the raise will push.
- If the dealer can’t open and the player does not hold blackjack, the ante and the raise will push.
- If the dealer can open and the player has blackjack, you will be paid out 1 to 1 on the ante bet and the raise, even if the dealer also has blackjack.
- If the dealer can open and the player does not have blackjack, then the higher hand wins. If the player wins, ante bet and the raise pay out 1 to 1. If the dealer wins, the ante bet and the raise lose. If the dealer and the player hands tie, the ante bet and the raise push.
The Ace Plus Side Bet
The Ace Plus side bet only pays according to the player’s hand. The Ace Plus side bet is a bet that the player will hold a three card poker hand that includes an Ace. The payouts for this side bet may seem tempting, but it is important to understand the odds to determine the risk.
The Ace Plus side bet pays out as follows:
- AXX 1:1
- ATX 3:1
- ATT 5:1
- AAX 15:1
- AAT 25:1
- AAA 100:1
The house edge on the ante bet in a game of three card blackjack is 3.42%. The house edge for the Ace Plus side bet is 2.75% which is quite low for a side bet. On the other hand, the element of risk for the ante bet is worked out at 2.09% which is relatively low and is lower than any pay tables on the side bet. That being said, it is least risky to bet only on the ante bet when playing three card blackjack, despite the fact that the house edge is quite low and the payout ratio look attractive.