It is important to understand the concept of payouts in any gambling game, like blackjack for instance. Payout is expressed as a ratio of two numbers, for example 5 is to 8. This is often written as 5:8. This payout means that if the player wagers $5 and wins then he will win $8.
Blackjack payouts vary with the type of bet and hands dealt. If the player loses he forfeits his bet. If the player and dealer tie then the rules of blackjack come into play. In most casinos ties result in the player gets his wager back. But in some casinos the blackjack rules are that the dealer wins ties. In this case the blackjack player loses his bet on a tie. This adversely affects the player-s chances and players should avoid blackjack tables where this rule is in force.
In usual circumstances the blackjack payout for a player winning is 1:1. This implies that if a player bets $1 he will win $1. The “blackjack” hand results in higher payouts. A blackjack hand is a two-card hand consisting of an ace and a card of value ten. The payout for the blackjack hand is 3:2. This implies that if a player bets $2 he will win $3.
There are two blackjack moves that pay out at 1:1 but are played differently. The first of these is the double down. If after seeing his two dealt cards the blackjack player feels that he has a good chance of winning then he has the option of doubling his initial wager, with the condition that he can take only one more card. If the player-s initial bet was $1 then he has to wager and additional $1. If the player wins the blackjack deal then he wins $2. If the player loses the blackjack deal then he forfeits both his initial and additional wager. The double down bet in blackjack does not increase the payout but increases the chances of the player winning. The other blackjack move is the split. If the player is dealt two cards of identical value then he can split the hands into two by placing an identical bet on the second hand. The player then plays both blackjack hands as independent hands, with the payouts as described in the preceding paragraph.
A blackjack hand that is not played in all blackjack casinos is the insurance. If the dealer is dealt an ace the player can place a side bet, equal to his initial wager, on the dealer getting a black jack. The blackjack payout for this bet is 2:1. If the dealer does not get a blackjack hand then the player loses the side bet and is paid out on the main bet as described above. If the dealer gets a blackjack the player loses the main bet but wins the side bet, which has a greater payout. Hence he ends up a net winner.