When do Online Casino Dealers Check for Blackjack?

By John Crawford

You might think that checking for blackjack is a largely universal process but, as a matter of fact, there are two ways that blackjack dealers can check for blackjack and offer insurance to their players. These rules aren’t just exclusive to land-based casinos either, they can be adopted by live dealer casinos too.

Blackjack - Pexels

Checking for blackjack is something that happens via high-definition (HD) live streams at slotscalendar.com blackjack casinos which also offer a string of live-streamed blackjack game variants, including Blackjack Surrender. These two scenarios for checking blackjacks are ingrained in the gameplay of all kinds of live blackjack, but all too often players are unaware with how their dealers are required to handle their own hole cards.

To offer some clarity on the rules for checking blackjack with live casinos, we’ve gone into more detail on the two possible scenarios you could be faced with:

The “no peek” blackjack rule

The “no peek” blackjack ruling is synonymous with most European land-based and online casinos. If the dealer pulls an ace from the deck as their up card, they will immediately ask players at the table whether they would like to take insurance. However, they will continue to deal cards to all active players at the table, allowing them to make decisions on their hands such as splitting or doubling down before a dealer’s blackjack can be revealed. Lasvegasadvisor.com discussed this and revealed that the “no peek” rule results in the house having a greater edge over players worth 0.62%.1)Editor note: See comments.  The ENHC rule is worth 0.11% to the house. A rule that is still bad for the player.  The 0.62% is for the entire casino (house) edge over the player for this example. That’s because the house can take the player’s additional chips for splitting and doubling down, on top of their original bet, before a dealer’s blackjack is announced.

The US-style blackjack rule

Wherever possible, players should try to find live blackjack tables that abide by the US-style “peek” rule of checking blackjack. In most US online and land-based casinos, the dealer will peek at their face-down card before players are given any cards. If the dealer does have blackjack, they will display it to the table and immediately take all the original bets from the players. This can save you money and prevent you from committing to doubling down or splitting a hand in the no-win scenario of the dealer having blackjack.

Blackjack - Pixabay

It’s a similar case in live blackjack with surrender too. Some live casinos will allow players to surrender their hand if the dealer’s up card is an ace and their other card is drawn face down. In other cases, live casino dealers may only draw one card face down for themselves, with the other remaining in the deck until all players have decided how to play their hands. In this instance, players will be offered what is known as “late surrender”, crucially offered after the dealer has checked for a possible blackjack. The issue of surrender is a hot topic on quora.com among players, reinforcing the challenge of rules not being the same in one casino as the next.

Ultimately, the rules on live casino dealers checking for blackjack and offering insurance will depend on whether your chosen live casino adopts the European or US blackjack format. It’s a good idea to be mindful of this before you sit down at a live dealer table, so that you can plan for both eventualities.



1Editor note: See comments.  The ENHC rule is worth 0.11% to the house. A rule that is still bad for the player.  The 0.62% is for the entire casino (house) edge over the player for this example.

5 thoughts on “When do Online Casino Dealers Check for Blackjack?”

  1. In my experience of online live dealer blackjack games the dealer abides by the US rules of peek with an ace up, but there is no peek when dealer has a ten up. Although no insurance is offered in the latter case, the basic strategy should be altered as most charts reflect the US land based casino rule of peeking under the ten up. Thus it seems the online live dealer games are a mixture of both US and European rules. Not very good!!!!

  2. You have the numbers wrong in this article. The “No Peek” game like you name it, is the ENHC rule (European No Hole Card) and is only worth 0.11% to the casino, contrary to what you wrote (0.62%).

      1. Well… The 0.62% house edge assume that you can only double on 9-10-11, which isn’t the case throughout Europe, as in Italy or France to name just a few. I thought it was important for readers not to think the ENHC game is so disastrous as its cost is “only” 0.11%

        And last, beside Schlesinger and many others, even Snyder himself quote the 0.11% for ENHC in books like “The Big Book of Blackjack” and “Blackbelt in Blackjack” 🙂

  3. So, let’s be clear: each different rule, such as six decks, S17, DAS, double 9-11 only, and, finally, ENHC (lose all doubles and splits to a dealer’s natural) carries a value. While the global value of all the preceding rules may be 0.62% in favor of the house, the negative component of that attributable to ENHC alone is only 0.11%, which isn’t really clear from the above article.


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