How to Deal 21 + 3

A Vegas Aces Guide


21+3 is a normal blackjack game with a 3 card poker side bet that allows the player to play two popular games at the same table.

Placing a Wager

Before the cards are dealt the player has two choices as to where they can place their bet. The first bet is mandatory and it is the blackjack bet. The second choice is optional and this is the 3 card poker side bet. The 3 card poker side bet cannot be played by itself. The player must have a minimum blackjack bet in order to play the 3 card poker side bet.

The 3 card poker side bet is played first and once the hand is determined and the bet is paid the game will continue as a normal blackjack game.

Playing the Side Bet

The initial cards are out and the dealer is determining the hand

The player will receive two cards. Combine these initial two cards with the dealer’s up card to see if you won the 3 card side bet.

If the combination of the three cards equals a straight flush, 3 of a kind, straight or flush then the side bet will be paid immediately.

Take & Pay Procedure

Start from the right hand side and going left take all of the losing bets first. Place them in the rack and then pay any winning side bets.

Some houses will want you to pay the winning side bet by pushing the winnings into the original side bet and towards the player. Make sure you prove the winning amount to the cameras before handing it off to the player.

When all of the side bets have been paid, proceed to dealing a normal blackjack game. Make sure that there are no winning side bets left on the table before continuing with your houses normal blackjack procedures.

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Continue Playing Blackjack

When you are done with all of the 3 card side bets, don’t forget to continue dealing the blackjack portion of the game.

If the dealer receives an ace up card, pay the 3 card side bets as normal and after all of the side bets have been paid, turn the ace sideways, ask for insurance and then continue the blackjack game as normal.

Tipping the Dealer

If the Player wishes to tip the Dealer with a 3 card side bet tip, then the player will place that tip to the right of the 3 card side bet. If the Player wishes to tip the dealer with a blackjack bet tip then the player will place that tip in front of the blackjack betting circle.

Different Versions

There are different versions of this game that affect the payout of a winning side bet. Every house is different, so different casinos might have different payoffs. Make sure you know your house rules.

The normal version pays 9 to 1 for each winning combination regardless of the ranking. In order to figure out the payout, take the amount of the side bet and times it by 9.

The “21+3 Extreme” version offers a gradual pay scale based on the rank of the hand.

Poker Rankings

What a Straight Flush looks like

A Straight flush is any 3 consecutive numbers that all share the same suit. An example would be a 5, 6 and 7 of hearts. A Straight Flush pays 30 to 1. Times the bet by 3 and then add a zero.

What a Three of a Kind looks like

A 3 of a kind is any 3 cards of the same rank. An example would be a 5 of clubs, 5 of spades and a 5 of hearts. The ten value cards must be all the same rank as well. This means that J, J, J is a winning hand while 10, K, J is not a winning hand. 3 of a kind pays 20 to 1. Times the bet by 2 and add a zero.

What a Straight looks like

A Straight is any 3 consecutive numbers of a different suit. An example is a 10 of diamonds, a Jack of spades, and a Queen of clubs. A Straight pays 10 to 1. Take the amount of the bet and add a zero.

What a Flush looks like

A Flush is any 3 cards with the same suit. An example of this is a K of clubs, an 8 of clubs and a 4 of clubs. A Flush pays 5 to 1. Times the bet by 5 or, a second way to do the math is you could add a zero to the bet and then divide the bet by 2 or half it.

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