Mastering 3 to 2 Payouts for Blackjack

min read
A blackjack dealer dealing out cards on a purple blackjack table.
BetMGM Aug 11, 2023, 8:57 AM

Blackjack is hands down the most popular recreational gambling table game. Also known as Pontoon or 21, this banking casino game is enjoyed by millions of players at friendly home games, charity functions and land-based casinos worldwide. It’s also the most played of all strategic online casino games, with every possible variation you can think of, from Vegas Strip to Atlantic City blackjack, at your fingertips.

One reason players enjoy blackjack so much is that it has a relatively low house edge or, if you prefer, a high RTP (Return to Player) percentage. What this boils down to is that blackjack offers frequent chances to win, which makes for the kind of satisfying gaming experience that keeps recreational gamers entertained.

The most gratifying moment in blackjack, of course, is when you’re dealt a natural 21. Not only do you beat the dealer, but you also get the highest payout on the table, which is 3 to 2. This ratio can be confusing when you’re getting started with online blackjack, so here’s a handy guide to help you calculate your winnings quickly and easily every time.

Blackjack Table Payouts

There are two basic payouts that are always “on the table” in a blackjack game. (Side bets — made “off the table” — offer many more, depending on which variation you play.) The most common is a straightforward win, which happens when the dealer goes bust or your hand is closer to 21 than theirs. On average, the player’s odds of achieving this are almost even, provided they apply basic blackjack strategy (the key to winning more often at blackjack.) These odds are reflected in the 1 to 1 payout for a standard win. If, for example, you started the game with a $10 bet, you’ll get your bet back plus $10 profit. You might also hear the dealer say, “Winner, winner, chicken dinner!” This phrase recalls the days when the most common blackjack table bet was $2, which happened to be the same price as a three-piece casino chicken dinner.

It’s easy to calculate a 1 to 1 payout, but what about blackjack? If you’re fortunate enough to be dealt an ace and a 10-value card (a 10, jack, queen or king,) then you have a natural hand that’s impossible to beat. Unless the dealer also has a natural (in which case the result is a push,) you have earned yourself the top payout, which is traditionally 3 to 2. So if you started out with $10, your bet will be matched and you’ll get a bonus of $5 on top of that. But what if you bet $5, $8 or $15? It can be tricky calculating some numbers in your head, but don’t worry. There’s a simple, sure-fire way to work it out, as detailed below.

Be Your Own 3 to 2 Payout Calculator

Here’s how to calculate 3 to 2 payouts for blackjack without fuss. Simply multiply each digit one and a half times and add them up. Say your bet is $18. This number breaks down as 10 plus 8. One and a half times 10 is 15 and one and a half times 8 is 12. Add 15 and 12 to reach the total: 27.

Want another example? Assume you place a bet of $38. That’s 30×1.5 (45) and 8×1.5 (12,) which comes to a payout of 57.

As you can see, the above method works very smoothly for even numbers. Odd numbers, however, can be trickier. Say you bet $111 dollars. Suddenly, this method doesn’t seem so easy, does it? Most people would need to use a calculator. The way to go here is to break the number down into three parts: 100, 10 and 1. Then apply the method to each part, so you get 150, 15 and 1.5, for a total of 166.5. It may take some getting used to at first, but it’s the quickest way to reach a result, short of whipping out your phone.

Blackjack Payout Chart

To make things easier for yourself (and quicker,) learn numbers 1–9 on the 3 to 2 blackjack payout chart, as follows:

Bet Payout

1 1.50

2 3

3 4.50

4 6

5 7.50

6 9

7 10.50

8 12

9 13.50

If you have these numbers at your fingertips, you’ll soon be able to calculate your 3 to 2 payouts just as quickly as an expert blackjack dealer.

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Actress Vanessa Hudgens flipping casino chips next to the text "The King of Casinos"
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Our BetMGM editors and authors are sports experts with a wealth of knowledge of the sports industry at all levels. Their coverage includes sports news, previews and predictions, fun facts, and betting.

Our BetMGM editors and authors are sports experts with a wealth of knowledge of the sports industry at all levels. Their coverage includes sports news, previews and predictions, fun facts, and betting.