A Brief on American vs European Online Blackjack

The American and European online blackjack differ in a number of ways, but the game’s main objective remains intact. Just as any blackjack, you are required to beat the dealer with a value close to 21 without going past the same value to avoid a loss otherwise known as busting.


European Vs American Blackjack

The main difference that arises from the 2 online blackjack games is a single card. One card can seem nothing major, but its significance to players in the game is quite huge.

American Online Blackjack

This variant is played using a 6 to 8 standard deck of cards in the shoe.

In the American version, the dealer will get one card facing up and the other will face down. Should the dealer’s hand contain an Ace that faces up, then you need to take a look at their hole card. This is advantageous to the player since they can make decisions based on the dealer’s card including splitting, doubling down and such.

You can decide less conservative or aggressive however you choose when splitting bets, doubling down or staking on side bets. It also protects players from increasing their bets and eventually losing more than the starting bet.

If the card’s value is a face card, King Queen or jack, or a 10, then the dealer will have a blackjack. This means that you lose the game and you’ll lose your bet as well.

The House Edge

The American online blackjack offers quite favourable house edges compared to other variants. The rules are also friendly to players in cases of doubling hand totals making a late surrender. Some of those rules include:

  • Late surrender: house edge drops by 0.08%
  • Doubling hand totals: house edge drops by 0.23%
  • Doubling after splitting: house edge drops by 0.14%
  • Double Down Rescue: house edge drops by 0.10%
  • Resplit Aces: house edge drops by 0.08%


The payout handed on a regular is the 3:2 odds. There is also the 2:1 odds for a Blackjack and even money (1:1). A winning insurance bet will payout at 2:1 odds.

European Online Blackjack

In this version of online blackjack, the game is played using double decks with a shoe instead of the 6 to 8 offered by the American version.

Also, the dealer will only get a single card and the second card will be dealt once all players at the table have made their final decisions or stood or any other decision for that matter.

For this reason, the European version of online blackjack is referred to as a No Hole Card game or without a hole card. Since the game misses a hole card, it is not possible to establish whether the dealer has a blackjack or not. This means that you are blind-sided in terms of what cards form the dealer’s hand and eventually hampers your decisions.

The House Edge

The house edge is considered favourable by many players thanks to the 2 decks used because players can keep track of the cards that remain. However, this version contains less favourable rules as follows:

  • No Ace re-splits: house edge goes up by 0.18%
  • Double on a hand total of 9, 10 or 11: house edge goes up by 0.09%
  • No double after splitting: house edge goes up by 0.14%
  • No Hole Card Game: house edge goes up by 0.11%

Rules that favour the player:

  • Double decks: house edge drops by 0.19%
  • Dealer stands on Soft17: house drops by 0.22%


For a Blackjack, the payout stands at 3:2 odds while all other winning hands get paid at even money and the insurance bet will be paid at 2:1 odds.

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Name: A Brief on American vs European Online Blackjack

Posted On: 24/08/2018

Author: Darren Henley