Looking for the best blackjack sites involves more than simply finding which online casinos offer the game. Every casino on the internet has real money blackjack, and many have multiple variations of the game. The key to finding the best places to play the game is to take a big picture approach; we want to find casinos that not only offer blackjack but that also display the other important qualities necessary for a positive experience.
Many online blackjack sites claim to have the best software, biggest bonuses and most reputable history.
We only list safe and reputable online blackjack sites on this page. Years of first-hand experience and routinely talking to other players have influenced our rankings.
So what makes one blackjack site better than the next? Well, the most important thing is the safety of your funds. Without security, nothing else matters. The best online blackjack sites keep your funds safe while you play and then honor your cashouts when it’s time to withdraw.
Now, let’s take a closer look at what makes some sites better than others for online blackjack. The main things I like to look for are blackjack variations, the stakes offered, deposit bonuses that are compatible with blackjack, the reputation of the gambling site, banking methods and long term promos for loyal customers.
Blackjack Games and Variations and Stakes
We’ll get into those other qualities in a minute, but let’s start with blackjack itself. Some online casinos go to much greater lengths than others to cater to blackjack players. Standard blackjack is easy to find but that’s just the tip of the iceberg. There are dozens of other variations such as Spanish 21, Pontoon, Perfect Pairs, Double Bonus Blackjack and many more. If you like to switch it up, you’ll want to find a casino that spreads these other variants.
Minimum and Maximum Bets
Another thing to consider is how much you’d like to bet. Most online blackjack starts will let you get started for as little as $1 per hand. However, maximums vary greatly, ranging from $100 to $5,000. Some casinos make exceptions for high rollers, but you should find out in advance before signing up. You don’t want your money caught up at the wrong casino and having to wait for a withdrawal before you have it in hand again to deposit it elsewhere.
The house advantage is something else to keep in mind. Even minor changes in the rules have a major impact on the house edge. Does the healer hit on soft 17? Is early surrender allowed? Does blackjack even pay 3 to 2? Some gambling sites treat blackjack players with respect while others simply try to extract every penny they can from players.
Super Fun 21 Blackjack
Sup Fun 21 is a variation with numerous player-friendly rules that make it easier to win against the dealer. These liberal rules are offset by regular blackjacks only paying even money instead of 3:2. Here’s what makes Super Fun 21 different than regular blackjack:
- Dealer hits on soft 17 at most casinos
- Player may double down after splitting
- Player may double down on any 2-card hand
- Player may re-split up to four times
- Player may take late surrender after any number of cards
- The player automatically wins if he has 6+ cards that total 20 or less
- The player automatically wins a 2 to 1 payout if he has 5+ cards that total 21
- Player blackjacks beat dealer blackjacks
- Player blackjacks consisting of diamonds pay 2 to 1
Spanish 21 Blackjack
The biggest difference between Spanish 21 and regular blackjack is that Spanish 21 only uses 48-card decks. In this game, all the 10s have been removed. That is a bad thing for the player, but Spanish 21 makes up for that with a number of player-friendly rules. In many cases, Spanish 21 has a lower house advantage than traditional blackjack.
This game is also sometimes called “Match Play 21 Blackjack.” Additional rules:
- Player blackjacks beat dealer blackjacks
- Doubling down is allowed on any starting hand
- Doubling down is allowed after any number of cards
- Player may double down after splitting
- Player may re-split up to 4 times
- Late surrender is allowed
- Double down rescue is allowed. This means that the player may surrender after doubling. The original bet is lost but the double-down bet is returned to the player.
- A five-card 21 pays 3 to 2
- A six-card 21 pays 2 to 1
- A 7-card or more 21 pays 3 to 1
- A 21 made out of 6-7-8 or 7-7-7 (made out of different suits) pays 3 to 2
- A 21 made out of 6-7-8 or 7-7-7 (made out of the same suit) pays 2 to 1
- A 21 made out of 6-7-8 or 7-7-7 (made out of spades) pays 3 to 1
- If the player makes a 21 out of 7-7-7 of the same suit while the dealer is also showing a 7, the player receives a special bonus payout. The bonus payout is $1000 if the original bet was less than $25 and it is $5000 if the original bet was $25 or more.
Note: the above special payouts are not given if the player has split or doubled.
Atlantic City Blackjack
Atlantic City Blackjack got its start in the casinos of Atlantic City and has now become its own variation. This variant is similar to traditional blackjack except with a few changes that make the game better for players. This gives the game a lower-than-normal house advantage.
- 8 decks are used in all Atlantic City blackjack games
- Late surrender is allowed
- Dealer stands on totals of 17 or higher
- Player may double down any starting hand
- Player may split any starting pair
- Player may double after splitting
- Player may re-split up to 3 times except when splitting Aces
- If the player and dealer are both dealt blackjacks, the hand is a “push” and no money is won or lost
Perfect Pairs Blackjack
Perfect Pairs is more of a side bet than an actual variation. The normal rules of blackjack are employed, but the player has the option of placing a side bet at the beginning of the round. If this bet is placed, you get special payouts if your first two cards are pairs.
- A pair that does not share color or suit (example – Qh and Qs): 5 to 1
- A pair that shares color but not suit (example – Qh and Qd): 10 to 1
- A pair that shares both color and suit (example – Qh and Qh): 30 to 1
Doublet Blackjack is based on traditional European Blackjack with a few minor tweaks and a couple of additional bonus bets. This blackjack variation has an extremely low house advantage (down to about 0.1% and sometimes even 0%). Unfortunately, Doublet Blackjack is hard to find.
- Doubling is allowed at any time, even after splits
- Hands can be re-split up to 3 times
- The player is not allowed to surrender after the first 2 cards, but players can surrender after doubling
- The player has the option to take an even money payout if he has a blackjack while the dealer is showing an Ace
- Bonus bets are optional and are placed before any cards have been dealt
- Blackjack Bonus Bet: The player gets a 19:1 payout if he hits a blackjack
- Sevens Bonus Bet: The player gets an 8:1 payout if his first card is a 7. That payout increases to 40:1 if the second card is also a 7. That payout increases to 250:1 if the third card is also a 7.
Blackjack Surrender is not its own blackjack game; it is just an option added to other blackjack games. It’s quite common to find regular blackjack games that offer the surrender option.
In short, surrender allows you to forfeit the hand after you have received your first 2 cards and have seen the dealer’s up-card. If you surrender, you immediately lose half your original wager but you get to keep the other half.
People choose to surrender when they are dealt a particularly bad starting hand and when the dealer has received a scary up-card. For example, you might want to consider taking the surrender option if you have a total of 16 while the dealer is showing an Ace. The line of thought is that it is better to lose half your bet now than 100% of your bet later.
Triple 7’s Blackjack
Microgaming first developed Triple 7’s Blackjack and the game has caught on among online gamblers. The game itself uses normal blackjack rules, but you are required to place a side bet at the beginning of each hand.
This side bet gives you the chance to win a large progressive jackpot and bonus payouts when you are dealt 7s over the course of play. First, let’s begin with the basic rules of the game:
- Player may split and re-split
- Doubling down is allowed on totals of 9, 10 and 11
- Dealer stands on all totals of 17
- No doubling after splitting
- Player must place a 1-unit side bet at the beginning of each hand
Now, here’s what happens with the bonus payouts:
- First card is a 7: You get a 5 to 1 payout on your side bet
- First 2 cards are 7s of different suits: 25 to 1
- First 2 cards are 7s of the same suit: 50 to 1
- First 3 cards are 7s of different suits: 250 to 1
- First 3 cards are 7s of the same suit: 1000 to 1
- First 3 cards are 7s of diamonds: You win the progressive jackpot
California Blackjack first appeared in California casinos and card clubs in order to get around a state law that outlawed games of 21. There is no standard set of rules for California Blackjack, so you’re likely to find different variations depending on where you play.
Some variations of California Blackjack make the objective to hit 22 instead of 21. Other variations include jokers in the deck that are used as wild cards. In wild card California Blackjack, two jokers is considered a natural blackjack but not an Ace and a Face (which counts as 21, but not as a natural).
House-banked games are illegal in California, so all variations of California Blackjack allow the players to take turns banking the game. When it is a player’s turn to act as the banker, that player is responsible for paying out winnings, but gets to collect the other players’ losses.
Banking can get expensive if things go poorly, so California card rooms allow you to choose how much money you want to risk as the banker. So let’s say put up $100 as the banker. That is the most you can win or lose. If there is more than $100 worth of action at the table, then another player steps in and covers the rest.
That other player is called the “corporation” because he is usually backed by a different casino. California card rooms are known for making special arrangements to act as the “corporation” for each other. This is all done to get around laws that make it illegal for the house to bank its own game.
In Blackjack Switch, you are dealt two hands during each round of play. Your goal is to beat the dealer’s hand with each of yours. After you get your cards, you are given the option to switch the second card between each hand. This gives you great flexibility and makes it easier to beat the dealer with both of your hands.
This switch feature would normally make blackjack a very beatable game, but there are two tradeoffs in blackjack switch. First, a dealer 22 results in a push against every hand except blackjacks. Second, blackjacks only pay 1:1.
Ante Up 21
Ante Up 21 combines the best of blackjack with the best of poker in one game. You start each game of Ante Up 21 by placing two different bets. One of these bets is used for the blackjack portion of the game and the other bet is used for the poker portion.
After the bets have been placed, you get two cards just like you would in blackjack. Then, you’ll play a regular hand of blackjack complete with hitting, splitting and doubling. After that part of the game, your first two cards are compared to the dealer’s cards to see who has the best 2-card poker hand.
Double Exposure Blackjack
This blackjack variant gives the player one major advantage: both of the dealer’s cards are dealt face up. Naturally, that makes it significantly easier for you to employ correct hit/stand strategy. The casino makes up for that advantage with 2 special rules:
- Natural blackjacks pay even money
- Players lose all ties except blackjacks
- Only one split is allowed
Vegas Downtown Blackjack
Vegas Downtown Blackjack employs a number of rule variations that make it a good game for the player. There’s nothing completely unique or gimmicky about this game; it’s still blackjack. The reason it has its own name is because players like the game and it was once found primarily in the downtown casinos of Vegas.
- 2 decks are used
- Dealer checks for blackjack immediately after dealing if an Ace is showing
- Players may re-split up to 3 times
- Doubling after splitting is allowed
- Players may double on any starting hand
- Dealer hits on soft 17
The name “Pontoon” can refer to several different games. In some parts of the world, Pontoon is the same game as Spanish 21. Online casinos also have their own version of Pontoon which is described below:
- 2 decks are used
- Deck is shuffled after every hand
- The dealer wins all ties
- The player wins with any 5 cards that total 21 or less
- Dealer hits soft 17
- A 2-card 21 is called a “pontoon” and pays 2:1
- If you achieve 5 cards worth 21 or less, you get a 2:1 payout
Diamond Blackjack is a variant with most of the regular rules in play, but with a few twists on payouts, when the player can hit, when the player can double and how ties are handled.
- Player may double after any number of cards
- Player may double after splitting
- Player may surrender after any number of cards
- Player may surrender after splitting
- Player may re-split up to 3 times
- A blackjack consisting of diamonds pays 2:1
- All other blackjacks pay 1:1
- The “no house edge” version of this game increases payouts to 15:2 for blackjacks consisting of Ace and King of diamonds and 4:1 for all other diamond blackjacks
Diamond blackjack also has two other optional bets that can be placed. The first is a blackjack bet that pays an instant 19:1 on the bet if you are dealt a natural. The second is a “7s” bet that offers the following payouts:
- If your first card is a 7: 8 to 1
- If your first 2 cards are 7s: 40 to 1
- If your first 3 cards are 7s: 250 to 1
European Blackjack is the name given to a specific set of traditional blackjack rules. This is not a wildly unique or odd blackjack game. If you know how to play blackjack, you already know how to play this variation.
Here are the rules for European blackjack:
- Dealer stands on soft 17
- You may double on hard totals of 9 to 11
- Only one card is dealt after splitting Aces
- If you get an Ace and a Face after splitting, it counts as 21 but not as a blackjack
- You may re-split up to 3 times
- You may not re-split Aces
- There is no surrender
- Dealer does not check for blackjack
Vegas Strip Blackjack
Like some of the other blackjack variants on this page, Vegas Strip Blackjack isn’t really a unique form of blackjack with radically different rules. It’s just a specific rule set that is commonly found on the Las Vegas Strip. You’ll see different formats everywhere you go, but the following rules are common:
- Dealer checks for blackjack if an Ace or 10-value card is showing
- You may re-split up to 3 times
- You may double down after splitting
- You may double down on any two starting cards
- Dealer stands on soft 17
- Aces may only be split once
- You receive exactly one more card after splitting Aces
- If you receive a 10-value card after splitting Aces, it is considered a 21 but not a blackjack
Three Card Blackjack
Three Card Blackjack is a combination of traditional blackjack and 3-card poker. This game has some elements of blackjack, but it doesn’t allow any hitting or splitting. You place your bets, get your cards and then decide if you wish to continue. At the end of the hand, you have a showdown with the dealer for the best blackjack hand and the best 3-card poker hand.
There are two different bets in 3 Card Blackjack: the obligatory ante bet and the optional Ace Plus bet. After those bets are placed, you and the dealer each get three cards. Two of the dealer’s cards are dealt face-down and one is dealt face-up.
Your original three cards are the only cards you will get. After looking at your cards, you decide to either stay in or fold. If you fold, you lose the original ante wager but the Ace Plus wager stays (if you placed it). If you stay in, you must place one more raise wager equal in size to the original ante wager.
Next is the showdown. You reveal your cards and create the best possible blackjack hand using 2 of your 3 cards. If you have a blackjack, you get a 1:1 payout on both your ante bet and your raise bet. In all other cases, the dealer must qualify with an 18 or better. If the dealer qualifies, the best blackjack hand wins.
The Ace Plus wager offers payouts if your 3 card poker hand meets the following minimum requirements. In this wager, there is no contest against the dealer and the outcome of the blackjack hand has no effect. The following payouts are offered if you have any of the following hands:
- No Aces: You lose your bet
- Ace and any two cards: 1 to 1
- Ace-Ten and any other card: 3 to 1
- Ace-Ten-Ten: 6 to 1
- Two Aces and any other card: 15 to 1
- Ace-Ace-Ten: 25 to 1
- Three Aces: 100 to 1
Double Attack Blackjack
Double Attack Blackjack uses standard blackjack rules with a few interesting twists. One major twist is that this game is played with eight 48-card decks (52 cards minus the four 10s). Here’s a quick list of the rules:
- You may double your bet after seeing the dealer’s first card, but before you get your cards
- Blackjack pays even money
- Dealer checks for blackjack
- You may double after splitting
- 3 re-splits are allowed except on Aces
- Aces can be split once, but only one card is dealt after splitting Aces
- You may double at any time
- You may surrender at any time
There is also an optional side bet that you can place at the beginning of the hand. If you place this bet, you receive one of the following payouts if the dealer busts on his third card.
- Dealer busts on a ten-value card: 3 to 1
- Dealer busts on a 9: 6 to 1
- Dealer busts on an 8: 8 to 1
- Dealer busts on a 7: 10 to 1
- Dealer busts on a 6: 15 to 1
- Dealer’s final hand includes suited 8s: 50 to 1
- Dealer’s final hand includes three suited 8s: 200 to 1
Deposit Bonuses and Clearing Requirements
There are a couple of things you want to be aware of when it comes to deposit bonuses and blackjack games.
Deposit bonuses and blackjack have a dysfunctional relationship in the world of online gambling. You need to proceed with caution whenever you plan on claiming a new player bonus and intend to clear it with blackjack.
Always take a look at the terms and conditions associated with any deposit bonus. The majority of casinos don’t view blackjack as equal to other casino games. This game has such a low house advantage that most welcome bonuses cannot be cleared by playing blackjack. Or if you can clear the bonus with blackjack, you’re asked to place a much larger sum of wagers before the money is released. In some cases you’ll be asked to roll over your bonus two to four times more than what’s required for other games.
Read through the terms of any offer and understand how that bonus works with blackjack. How many times over do you need to wager the deposit + bonus before you can withdraw any winnings you might have? This can vary from 1 to 50x.
If you deposit $100 with a rollover of 25x, you could very well have to wager $5,000 (($100+$100)*25). Your goal should be to find the lowest rollover required. That’s assuming the bonus even works with blackjack in the first place.
The last thing you should look at is the size of the bonus. That’s because it won’t matter how big your bonus is if you can’t play blackjack to complete it, or if it has some ridiculous clearing requirement like 100x. Also, be aware of the percentages. A 150% bonus is usually going to be better than a 100% bonus since each dollar of yours will go further. That’s assuming all other variables are equal, of course.
Sometimes you’ll find blackjack sites that offer special bonuses designed specifically for blackjack players. These bonuses tend to be smaller and less impressive than those huge offers you see splashed all over the front page of the website, but you can actually clear them within a reasonable amount of time.
A good support team goes a long way in providing for a good blackjack experience. An online blackjack site that invests in a quality support team shows that the brand cares about its customers.
If you ever do have a problem or question come up, customer support makes all the difference in how that issue gets resolved. We have seen horror stories posted online in which players have waited weeks for withdrawals while receiving vague answers from support staff.
We have also personally experienced top-notch support from gambling sites. It says a lot when someone personally answers an e-mail with specific answers to my questions. You can always tell the difference between a personal response and a canned, auto-response answer.
Quality of Software
Most of the major blackjack betting sites use high quality software. As long as the graphics look good and the interface runs smoothly, your experience will be positive.
Security is the main thing to look for in online blackjack software. However, that’s already covered by the reputation and history of the brand. If an operator has a history of security breaches or deviations from statistically random results, you won’t see that blackjack website listed anywhere here at OnlineCasinoSites.com.
Honesty and Fairness
This should go without saying, but there are just too many reputable casinos for you to even consider casinos with questionable reputations. The blackjack casinos recommended at the top of this page are all backed by longstanding reputations for honesty and fairness.
One thing that signals a fair casino is a casino that is regularly audited by an independent testing company. Yes, there are companies out there that specialize in running in-depth audits to make sure the games are indeed truly fair. These companies dig into the casino’s software, algorithms and processes to determine if their games are 100% random.
A license from a reputable licensing jurisdiction also goes a long ways in ensuring a casino is a safe place to play. The world’s most reputable licensing authorities require access to the gambling site’s finances, demand random audits and have the ability to shut down the casino if evidence of unethical behavior is found.
Before signing up to an online casino you’ll want to take a look at the banking options available. After all, it’s not going to do you any good to sign up if you can’t deposit your money. Or worse, if you can’t get the money back off when you’re done gambling.
You might also want to consider banking limits. A $100 minimum does no good if you only have $50 to deposit. On the other hand, a $500 maximum does no good if you want to play $1,000-per-hand blackjack. Each brand will be different regardless if they’re on the same network, use the same processors or software providers. Keep that in mind.
Withdrawals are important too. Ask, what methods are available? How fast can they get my money to me? Established gaming sites are usually pretty good about making quick payments to winners. Some of the more popular options include Neteller, Skrill and instant eCheck.
Live Dealer Blackjack
Ever wanted to play with real dealers and other people but didn’t feel like visting the nearest casino? Now we finally have it: live dealer blackjack online.
It’s a simple but brilliant idea. Take a real blackjack dealer, a real blackjack table and point a webcam at it. Then, give the players a live video feed so they can watch the action in real time. Now that much of the world has a reliable internet connection, live dealer blackjack is practical.
As the player, you can watch the action on your screen and then use your mouse to send commands to the dealer. You can place your bets, hit, stand, split and so on with your mouse. The dealer sees what you wants to do and takes the appropriate action.
You can learn more about it here:
Promotions and VIP Programs
Promotions and VIP programs add extra value and pad your bottom line over the long term. Things like deposit bonuses, reload bonuses, tournaments and VIP programs all make for a more rewarding blackjack experience. What does the casino do to attract and keep your business?
Bonuses are so hit and miss, especially if you play at a casino that doesn’t allow you to clear bonuses with blackjack. As nice as bonuses may be, I wouldn’t focus too much on deposit or reload bonuses. Look at blackjack bonuses as nice little surprises when they come around.
What’s more useful is to look at the casino’s VIP program. You’re likely to find cash back rewards, free entry to blackjack tournaments (rare), higher-than-standard table limits and free gifts. VIP levels are usually determined by how much betting handle you accrue. The more you wager, the higher your VIP status and the better the rewards and incentives.
Note: Many VIP program operate similarly to deposit bonuses in that playing blackjack will contribute less than other games when it comes to earning VIP points. You’ll have to play more to earn the same number of points that you would playing less slots or keno.
How Online Blackjack Works
Blackjack is played under the same ruleset online as it is in the real world. If you have any experience playing blackjack at a brick-and-mortar casino, you’ll be right at home when you play online. The only major differences are cosmetic things. Instead of playing with a human dealer, you’ll play with an automated dealer that follows the same rules, for example.
There are two reasons why blackjack is the most popular table game in every casino in the world. First, the game is relatively simple to learn. The basic idea is to get closer to 21 than the dealer without going over. Second, blackjack is one of the few games where you can make decisions that actually affect the outcome of each hand. There’s a lot of strategy that can be applied to blackjack to help increase your odds of winning.
But before we get into learning how to beat blackjack, we first need to cover the basic rules. Although blackjack is a fairly simple game, there are some advanced bets that can appear confusing at first. We’ll cover all those later in this article but first, let’s start with the basics.
Objective of the Game
Your goal in blackjack is to get closer to 21 than the dealer without going over. Each card is worth a certain number of points and you can draw as many cards as you wish in order to get as close to 21 as possible. The caveat is that if you draw too many cards and go over 21, you automatically lose the hand.
Blackjack is played at a table with anywhere from 1 to 8 players and a dealer. The players all compete individually against the dealer and don’t actually have any interaction with each other, other than conversation. When you play online, it’s just you and the dealer.
Card Values In Blackjack
Each card in blackjack is worth the following number of points:
- Numbered cards (2-10) are worth the same number of points as the card value. A 7 is worth 7 points, an 8 is worth 8 points and so on.
- Jack, Queen and King are worth 10 points each.
- Aces are worth 1 point or 11, whichever gives the player the best score.
How to Play Blackjack
The players begin each hand of blackjack by choosing how much they wish to bet and then placing a wager on the table. After the players have all placed their bets, the dealer gives one card face up to each player and one card face down to himself. The dealer then deals a second card face up to each player.
This is where you get to make your first decision. When it comes to your turn, you can signal for the dealer to give you more cards (this is called “hitting”) or you can tell the dealer you don’t need any more cards (“standing”). You can take as many cards as you want but be careful; if you go over 21 (“busting”), you lose your wager.
After all the players make their decisions, the dealer takes another card and reveals his hidden card. The dealer then plays his hand out according to preset rules. At most casinos, the dealer must draw cards with a 16 or lower and he must stand with a 17 or greater.
Winning Hands In Blackjack
There are several ways the hand can turn out:
- You get closer to 21 than the dealer. Your original bet is paid off at 1:1.
- The dealer gets closer to 21 than you do. You lose your bet.
- The dealer goes bust. If you didn’t also bust, your original bet is paid off at 1:1.
- Any time you bust, you lose your bet, even if the dealer also busts.
- You are dealt a natural blackjack in the first two cards. This means you received an Ace and a card worth 10 points for an instant 21. This is an automatic win and you will be paid 3:2 on your money. If the dealer also gets a blackjack, the bet is a tie and you neither win nor lose any money.
Optional Blackjack Side Bets
There are also several other bets players may make while playing blackjack.
- Double Down At Blackjack:You may double down if your first two cards total 9, 10 or 11 without any aces. When you double down, you may double your original wager but after you double down, you must receive exactly one more card and that’s it.
- Splitting Hands In Blackjack: When you receive two cards of the same rank, you may split those cards and play them as two separate hands. You also place a separate bet on your second hand.
- Taking Blackjack Insurance: Insurance is generally considered a bad bet but some players still take insurance if they feel unlucky. If the dealer’s up card is an ace, you may take insurance which costs half the original wager. If the dealer ends up having a blackjack, you will be paid 2:1 on your insurance bet. If the dealer does not have a blackjack, the insurance bet is lost.
- Surrendering Blackjack Hands: Surrender is an option where you may forfeit half your bet and quit the hand early. This is useful if it looks like you’re going to lose the hand. There are two types of surrender: early and late. Early surrender is offered before the dealer checks for blackjack and late surrender is offered after the dealer checks for blackjack.
In many ways, finding the best blackjack casino is no different than finding the best all-around casino. You want to find a casino that is safe, trustworthy, has multiple banking options (especially if you’re American) and that offers rewards.
However, when it comes to qualities that separate one casino from the next in terms of blackjack, you want to keep in mind the variations you want to play, the terms and conditions for the bonus and clearing requirements. These are the things that will make the most difference to blackjack players and separate the best blackjack casino sites from the rest.