You can also reach us by email:

What Is Insurance in Blackjack: The Ins and Outs

May 5, 2023

Ordinarily, insurance is a contingency tool or plan. It is regarded as a sound plan to mitigate the negative impact of an unfortunate event relating to the insured health or property. They are a hedge against foreseen risks.

For beginners, the blackjack insurance bet is a basic concept that might appear strange, but it is one of the various strategies skillful players leverage to beat the dealer. In this article, thus, we take a deep swipe into how the approach works, when to use it, its advantages, plus a few other techniques you may take advantage of.

So loosely, by definition, “blackjack insurance” is a side bet independent of the player’s initial wagers. This special wager is, however, exclusively available when the dealer’s revealed face-card/upcard is an ace. In general, this wager gives you the chance to predict whether the dealer’s hand is natural (21). Let’s find out more about how it works.

Common Blackjack Cards

How to Use Insurance Bet in Blackjack

The concept might be new to you and you’re wondering: “What does insurance mean in blackjack?”. Never worry, we will bring you up to speed with the concept, and in no time you can leverage it at the King Billy Empire.

To begin with, you must acquaint yourself with blackjack insurance rules. Besides, it is important to note that insurance betting in blackjack is considered an afterthought. It is half of the original wager. Ideally, it gives the player a chance to gamble that the dealer’s hand would garner the coveted natural 21.

If the prediction turns right the player wins the side bet, but forfeits the main wager. Nevertheless, they can win both main and side stakes, but ordinarily, this rarely happens as it requires the player to also have scored the natural 21.

On the flip side, if the house croupier does not reach the natural 21 combo, the player loses the side stake but still stands the chance to win the main stake. So, it is a unique wager with many moving parts that you ought to keenly master.

How Are the Odds of Insurance Bets in Blackjack Work?

Blackjack strategies are mainly mathematical. As such, prior to making any move, calculative considerations ought to inform your decision. As regards, the insurance in blackjack, we have some affixed odds depending on the insurance decision you partake in.

If the house hits the natural 21, the player by default loses the primary wager. Nevertheless, they stand a chance of winning the insurance wager at 2:1 odds.

What Are the Benefits and Bottlenecks of Insurance Betting

If you wonder: “What does insurance do in blackjack?” to warrant its use, here are some of the benefits.


  • Blackjack insurance bet offers player protection against the dealer’s score of natural 21. Remember the main aim of this card-comparing contest is to get the natural combo or a figure close to it. Thus, if the croupier has a 21 combo, the player will lose their initial stake but, still stand a chance of winning the 2:1 side stake odds, thus mitigating the net loss of the original hand.
  • Chance to win bigger prizes. Ordinarily, the insurance path in blackjack is a way of enhancing the player’s profit. Suppose they score the natural 21 and also win the side stake with a 2:1 ratio. Although it rarely happens, there is a mathematical chance that players can win both bets under a single hard.
  • Loss minimization. The insurance route in blackjack is a brilliant idea to minimize foreseeable losses. For instance, when the dealer’s face-up combo has an Ace and it happens that a player’s hand is weak, the insurance option provides the much-needed window for the player to give their hand a shot in the arm or wait for the player to show what their hole-card brings to the table.


Despite the fact that a blackjack insurance bet can mitigate losses, the strategy has some disadvantages.

For instance, it can be costly in the long run. Remember, it is separate from the main stake, meaning you will have to dig deeper into your pocket every time you partake in it.

Also, given the numerous moving parts of insurance decision-making, it can lead to less optimal or a loss-making move. For instance, a player not sufficiently knowledgeable about the concept’s ideal scenarios may use the approach even when they have a relatively stronger hand. The net effect of such non-strategic decisions is a decrease in their potential profits.

When to Use Insurance

Blackjack insurance is not a basic game step that you engage in every time you are gambling. Its placing is based on calculated moves given the dealer’s hand.

The blackjack insurance bet seeks to predict that the dealer’s hole card (face-down card) is worth 10. i.e, King, Queen, Jack, or 10. Ideally, these cards would give the croupier better chances of scoring the natural 21.

Thus, your decision to use insurance should be based on your estimation of the remaining 10-value cards in the deck. In cases where you’re playing from multiple-deck shoes, it is advisable to keep a track of the cards dealt to determine on average how many 10-value cards are remaining.

If, in your estimation, there are many cards of this rank remaining, the odds of the croupier garnering the natural 21 are high, hence advisable to place the insurance wager. Blackjack insurance thus has some elements of value counting.

Also, if you are competing in a blackjack tourney, the insurance option can give you a hedge over other competitors. The side wager gives the chance to win the primary and insurance stakes in extremely lucky outcomes. Nevertheless, this is a high-risk move.

Blackjack table with Insurance side bets paying 2:1

Avoid Using Blackjack Insurance in These Circumstances

From the start, we are emphatic that the use of this strategic decision at the King Billy Kingdom should be calculative. It is, therefore, imperative to avoid its use under the following scenarios.

  • In instances where the dealer’s upcard is not an Ace. Always remember that the insurance is ideal if the dealer’s upcard is an Ace because this increases the chances of hole cards being 10-value.
  • When you have a relatively strong hand. For instance, if your hand is natural 21, or 20, there is no need to engage the insurance wager. You already have better winning chances and using the insurance option would lower the expected profits.
  • When there are relatively fewer 10-value cards remaining in the deck. This means the dealer’s chances of getting natural 21 are minimal. Remember, from the onset, insurance betting positive outcome is significantly dependent on whether the croupier’s hole-card is 10-value.

Remaining at the Top of Your Skills with the Best Blackjack Strategies

Whether a blackjack beginner or a seasoned enthusiast, His Majesty King Billy Guardian of the Players gives you the ideal atmosphere to practice basic card strategies and complex ones like blackjack insurance. It is the coolest place to play the best blackjack variants for free fun or real money wagering.

As such, although this article addresses the blackjack insurance meaning and where applicable, it is important to note also, other strategies you may leverage to broaden your chances of beating the croupier when playing in the land of King Billy.

Blackjack 52-card deck

We briefly explain some other options that may complement the insurance wager below.

  • Blackjack Splitting. It involves splitting cards that have been dealt to you so that you have two separate hands. It is an ideal move when your hand is a pair or has cards of equal rank.
  • Doubling down. It means you will double your stakes and thus, you qualify for an extra hand.
  • Surrender. Surrendering should be your last resort when the foreseeable chances to win are extremely slim. It means you are opting out of the hand and you are ready to forfeit half your wagers irrespective of the outcome.


What is insurance in blackjack betting and when to use it?

Blackjack insurance is a strategy for leveraging side bets when the dealer’s face-up card is an Ace. It is a special stake giving the chance to predict whether the croupier’s outcome is natural 21 and win on 2:1 odds.

What is the cost of insurance side wagering in blackjack?

Insurance in blackjack comes at an extra cost from the original wagers. When playing at King Billy, the betting range is dynamic and you can always play within your budget. You may visit the site at your convenience and test the side betting option and see how things turn on your side.

Is it advisable to use the insurance bet when gambling in blackjack?

It all depends on what is in the croupier’s hand. If it is an Ace, then you are good to proceed with the insurance. Besides, blackjack insurance is tied to card counting. If, in your estimation, there are many 10-value cards remaining in the deck, it is the ideal time to take advantage of this approach.

How risky is it to engage in insurance betting in blackjack?

Well, gambling is essentially a risky undertaking. With blackjack insurance, you are minimizing the risk aspects in a bid to boost the payout. Quantifying your risk at this moment depends on how calculative you’re and your observation of the dealer’s hand plus the remaining 10-value cards in the deck.

< Back to the blog

We use cookies to improve your experience. By using our website you are accepting our Cookie Policy Cookie Policy