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Card Counting: Section IV - Bits and Pieces

As promised, we’ve pocketed a little extra truth here at the bottom of our Blackjack extravaganza, just to keep you that much more on the cutting edge. Before we were talking about insurance and even money and whether you should go with them. Well, the answer is, unequivocally — MAYBE.

If you haven’t mastered counting yet, you’ll ultimately lose with insurance because about a third of the time the odds are against you. A similar concept is at work for even money, as well, inasmuch as you only gain from it if you know that the next card down the shoe is bad news. Meanwhile, casinos know—since let’s face it, they’re not idiots—that you’d have to be counting to win at these bets. So take a tip: use them ONLY to throw the counting equipment off through losses.

Now, a graphic breakdown to show you why insurance, like in the non-poker world, doesn’t actually pay:

 

Score Player buys insurance Player does not buy insurance
Dealer: blackjack
Player: no blackjack
Player loses the original bet, but wins 2:1 on his insurance bet, which was 1:2 of the original bet.
Losses and gains even out to 0.
Player loses 1:1.
Dealer: no blackjack
Player: wins
Player wins the original bet, but loses the insurance money.
The player wins 1:2 of the original bet.
Player wins 1:1.
Dealer: no blackjack
Player: same as the dealer
Player loses the insurance money.
The player loses 1:2 of the original bet.
Player pushes.
No loss or gain: 0.
Dealer: no blackjack
Player: loses
Player loses the original bet, and loses the insurance money.
The player loses 3:2 of the original bet.
Player loses 1:1.
Even money
Dealer: blackjack
Player: blackjack
Blackjacks even out, but the player wins 2:1 on the 1:2 of the insurance money.
The player wins 1:1 of the original bet.
Player pushes.
No loss or gain: 0.
Dealer: no blackjack
Player: blackjack
Player wins the original bet at 3:2, but loses the insurance bet of 1:2.
The player wins 1:1 of the original bet.
Player wins 3:2 of the original bet.

 

Card Counting - Blackjack

 

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