Worst Blackjack Games in Las Vegas in 2019
Published on March 14, 2019
There are many great blackjack games in Las Vegas, even on the Strip.
However, there are also many tables that should be avoided.
Below is the list of the worst blackjack games in the market. This list has been compiled as part of my annual survey of Las Vegas table games.
There is some good news this year. There are only a few entrants into the list.
The worst games from last year are still on the wall of shame with only one new participant.
Golden Nugget takes the top spot for a second straight year.
It has a pit of four tables in the front of the casino where Bonus Spin Blackjack is spread. This $1 side bet is typically optional. At Golden Nugget, it’s mandatory. Even worse, the table only pays 6:5 on a blackjack. The minimum bet is $5.
The Bonus Spin side bet permits the player to spin a virtual wheel when a blackjack is dealt. I estimate a 23% house edge on the side bet as an ace dealt does get the bet back, something normally found in the rules. The blackjack game has a house edge of about 2%.
On a $5 bet, the player theoretically loses $0.23 on the side bet and $0.10 on the flat bet. This theoretical $0.33 loss per hand on a $5 bet puts the house edge at 5.5%. This is the worst blackjack game in Las Vegas.
There are several decent blackjack options at Golden Nugget.
For $10 or $15, you will find a 3:2 blackjack game with surrender and double down before and after splitting. For $50, you will find a double-deck game in high limit with double down before and after splitting.
Four Queens and Binion’s have their own version of Bonus Spin Blackjack.
Like Golden Nugget, the side bet is mandatory. However, the game pays 3:2 on blackjack. Signs proudly announce this rule change to draw players. Unfortunately, it’s a gimmick because players are better off playing any standard 6:5 game or even a video version on a Game King that pays even money on a blackjack.
The minimum bet is $5 at each of these casinos. The main bet theoretically loses $.0325 per hand. The side bet has an expected loss of $0.23. This puts the house edge at 4.38%, making it the second-worst blackjack game in Las Vegas.
Four Queens has one 3:2 blackjack table. It has a $25 minimum bet. It uses two decks. Double down after splitting is not permitted. Binion’s does not have any other 3:2 tables.
If you must play something at Binion’s, we recommend craps where the minimum bet is $5 and odds are five times.
Free Bet Blackjack has become a popular game in Las Vegas.
Unfortunately, every installation on the Strip and at Station Casinos pays 6:5. This puts the house edge at 2.4%.
There are still a few 3:2 Free Bet Blackjack tables in Las Vegas.
You will find them at Eastside Cannery, Golden Gate, Plaza, and The D. The house edge for this game is 1.03%.
Zombie Blackjack is a variant where the player can win on a busted hand if the dealer is showing a 7 through ace.
This game had a 3:2 payout when it was first released, even at Venetian and Binion’s. However, this game now has a 6:5 payout at Red Rock Resort. That is the only casino left that spreads it.
The house edge on 6:5 Zombie Blackjack with a 6:5 payout and perfect play is 2.39%.
Red Rock Resort has $10 3:2 double-deck blackjack games with double down after splitting. Try one of these tables instead.
The party pit blackjack at Caesars Palace pays 6:5. This is not that unusual. However, it also has more bad rules.
Eight decks are used. Players can only double down on 10 and 11. Double down after splitting is not allowed. Aces may only be split one time. Surrender is not allowed. The house edge for this game is 2.34%.
This game is not just found in the party pit. It is spread in every table game pit at Caesars Palace outside of the dome and high limit.
Caesars Palace offers 3:2 eight-deck blackjack under the dome. It allows double down before and after splitting, as well as surrender.
The dealer hits soft 17. For $100, this game stands on all 17s. Another $100 game is double-deck blackjack with double down before and after splitting. The dealer hits soft 17 here.
Knowing which blackjack tables to avoid in Las Vegas is useful. My list of the worst Vegas blackjack games in 2019 will help you steer clear of the tables offering the least favorable rules and conditions.
If you’re wondering where you SHOULD play, check out my list of the best blackjack games in Las Vegas this year. You can also check the full results of my 2019 Vegas blackjack survey for more information.
For any questions regarding this list of blackjack games, or my survey in general, please use the comments below or contact me on Twitter.