The Nevada Gaming Control Board approved a motion that would limit the capacity when casinos reopen. Buildings can only have 50% of the posted capacity. The new health and safety policies from casinos will also limit the number of people that are allowed at each blackjack table. We recently touched on this when looking at the blackjack games at Bellagio and New York-New York.
Half Capacity Blackjack Tables
It looks like Las Vegas casinos will be reopening with only 3 seats at each blackjack table. The designer of this plexiglass contraption that is set to be tested at El Cortez will have to reconfigure the unit so it allows room for three people, not four people.
Playing blackjack with only three players can be better or worse for recreational gamblers. Not all recreational blackjack players are the same.
There’s a pace to blackjack that changes when a table has fewer players. The number of blackjack hands dealt to the players each hour will increase with fewer players. Having said that, fewer players per hand would mean that more hands of blackjack can be dealt to the players. Mathematically, the casino always has a house edge in blackjack.
Since the casino has a mathematical advantage, they should see more money each hour on a from the players regardless of the rules. Some blackjack players try to stick with the best blackjack games with a low house edge. When playing with the perfect basic strategy it’s usually easier to walk away win more money than we started with when playing blackjack games with a lower house edge.
There are also recreational blackjack players that don’t care about the rules, house edge, and payouts. They just want to play any game, any time, anywhere. The player who doesn’t care about the rules has a chance of losing faster than ever since there will be more hands of blackjack dealt every hour with fewer people at the table.
Reminder About The Difference Between Blackjack Payouts
It’s always important to check the rules of a blackjack game before sitting down. A blackjack game with better rules for the player should help keep your money in play longer. The longer your money is in play, the better the chance of hitting a hot streak and walking away with more money than you started.
The first blackjack rule to look out for is what the casino pays for a natural blackjack. The preferred payout for this is 3:2. However, many casinos only pay 6:5 for a natural blackjack. This doesn’t seem like much of a difference at first:
- $10 3:2 blackjack pays $15
- $10 6:5 blackjack pays $12
The $3 difference isn’t much for one hand but it adds up quickly. A $10 bettor at a 3:2 table will receive $52.50 from the average 3.5 blackjacks per hour at a full table. That same player will only receive $42 from the same number of blackjacks at a 6:5 player.
That’s almost a $10 difference per hour. The difference is essentially giving away an extra hand of blackjack every hour when playing at a full table. When there are more hands dealt, the player will lose even more money each hour.
Multiply all this by the number of hours of blackjack played during a trip to Las Vegas and the losses playing 6:5 blackjack instead of 3:2 blackjack add up quickly.