Live Blackjack vs. Online Blackjack
If you’re new to blackjack, or are an existing brick and mortar blackjack player, you might be wondering what’s so great about online blackjack. You might ask yourself, are there any differences between online and live blackjack, and if so, which is the better option?
Those are the questions I aim to answer in this article. Read on to learn more.
10 Differences Between Online and Live Blackjack
1. You can’t count cards online.
It’s not possible to count cards online. Online blackjack games are created in such a way that you cannot keep track of the shuffle. The cards are shuffled every hand, too, removing deck penetration from the equation. Many (if not all) games are created to be infinite decks, as opposed to a limited number of decks. This means that you’re don’t have 52, 104 or 208 cards to keep track off — you have (technically) millions. Casinos have created their games in this way to prevent card counters, as well as to simplify maintenance and repairs.
2. You can switch casinos in seconds online.
One of the biggest perks to playing online blackjack is that you can switch casinos in a matter of seconds, assuming you have accounts at each casino already. Even if you don’t, though, it doesn’t take but 5 minutes to make an account and deposit.
That’s not possible live. It takes anywhere from 10-30+ minutes to go from one casino to the next in Las Vegas. It would take much longer to go from a casino in Las Vegas to a casino in Reno, or Reno to Atlantic City.
3. Smaller limits are available online.
Online casinos have smaller overhead costs. They’re not limited on space, and they don’t have the expenses of staff (dealers, servers, etc), electricity, rent, insurance, and so on. Because of this, online casinos are able to offer their games at a much lower price. You can go online and play blackjack for $1 a hand. You’ll be lucky to find blackjack for $5 per hand at a brick and mortar casino.
4. Bonuses are offered online.
Out of all the live casinos I’ve been to, I’ve never been offered a deposit bonus. However, online I’ve been offered a deposit bonus every time I’ve created an account.
Deposit bonuses are (usually) free money bonuses where the casinos offer to match your deposit 100% or so, up to so much money. For example, a common bonus is 100% up to $1,000. So for every $1 that you deposit, the casino will match you $1.
Granted, live casinos do have comps. But from my experience it’s much harder to earn the rewards (free food, hotel, shows, etc) compared to online.
5. You can play next to other people in live games.
The internet in general is very secluded. You can easily sit in your house all day, roam the internet and never talk to anyone.
It’s a paradise for loners and introverts.
But if that’s not for you, a benefit to playing blackjack in a brick and mortar casino is that you get to socialize and play with other people. That may not always be the case, since casinos do have slow periods. But if you go during the evening or weekend, you’ll always have blackjack buddies to play with.
6. You can experience lights, sounds and people in live casinos.
Like #5, live blackjack delivers on the true casino experience. People screaming (in fear, because they won or lost, etc), lights flashing, cha-chings of slots paying players, shows, music and more. If you want an experience, and not just to kill some time at the tables, then you got to go to a live casino.
7. Live casino pay instantly.
When you win online and want to cash out your winnings, it can take several hours, days and even weeks to receive your money. It depends on the casino and banking method you use. That’s not taking the fact that if you’re participating in a bonus or promotion that you may have to wait until you’ve spent so much money before you can even request a payout into consideration, either.
However, in a brick and mortar casino you’re paid instantly. Everywhere you look you can find voucher kiosks for your video poker and slots winnings. For everything else, you can go to the main cashier where they’ll hand you cash on the spot.
8. You can always find a blackjack table online.
Online casinos can run an infinite number of tables if they need to. So you should have no problem finding a blackjack table with room for one more.
The exception to this if you want to play blackjack tournaments. In this case games can be too full, so you’d have to wait for the next one to start. However, depending on the popularity of the casino, type of day, etc, that can either be minutes or hours.
Live casinos are clearly the opposite. They only have so much room, and so many tables and chairs. If all the blackjack tables are full, you have to wait until someone leaves.
9. Online blackjack is more trustworthy.
Online blackjack games are ran by an algorithm, with the exception of live dealer games. These are programmed to randomly deal cards.
What this means is that you don’t have the same risks of human error or cheating that you do in live games. The dealers can’t cheat online, players can’t cheat and no one is able to make a mistake.
The only exception here are rogue casinos. But you shouldn’t be playing at those types of casinos anyway.
10. It’s harder to cheat at online blackjack.
It’s harder to cheat at online blackjack. You have to know somebody on the inside, or have found some kind of hole in the software.
That’s a good thing though (unless you’re a cheater). That means the games are safer for everyone.
Which is Better: Live or Online Blackjack?
That depends on your personal preference.
Online blackjack is more convenient and cost effective. You don’t have to travel anywhere to play blackjack, so you save money on airfare, car rentals, hotel rooms and food. The games are cheaper online, too. The only real cost is your internet.
You also eliminate long lines, smoke, crowds, noise and the like.
So if cost, time and annoyances like the above bother you, then online blackjack is the way to go.
However, some people aren’t bothered by the noise, smoke, crowds or nuances of traveling. In fact, they enjoy it. So live blackjack is the way to go for them.
It’s also possible to like both. I fit in that camp.
Like I said, it just comes down to what you want to experience, spend and do. There is no right or wrong answer. In fact, online blackjack is a great way to fill in the voids of when you’re not traveling to the brick and mortar casinos.