Online blackjack has multiple perks that allow it to stand out amongst the most popular digital versions of casino games, but one key element missing is the feeling of playing at a live brick-and-mortar table. Several Philippine friendly offshore blackjack casinos have addressed this by implementing legal online live dealer blackjack games. These games function similarly to a brick-and-mortar table game because there is an actual dealer conducting the game via live camera feed. Now you can take your online blackjack action to the casino floor with licensed offshore live dealer blackjack in the Philippines. Live dealer games are popping up in more online casinos and are becoming a go-to variation of tried and true online casino games. We here at legalonlinecasinos.ph strive to provide accurate and updated information on legal online gambling platforms for Filipino residents. This page focuses on live dealer blackjack games and has everything you need to know.
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BetOnline is one of the most highly trusted online casinos in the gaming market. They offer high-quality live dealer blackjack HD 24/7. In the live casino, there are always multiple live dealers to choose from and table limits range from $5 - $5,000 (USD). There is usually one table that has unlimited players, but the majority of the live dealer blackjack tables only allow 7 players. Players can choose their seats at the table and put down a bet as soon as they log in. Live Dealer Blackjack HD offers the live casino feel at the convenience of the player.
Is Live Dealer Blackjack Legal In The Philippines?
Filipino residents are legally allowed to play live dealer blackjack if done through a site that is both properly licensed and regulated. Philippine gambling laws permit the use of licensed online gambling operators if they are located offshore. Domestically based online gambling sites are not allowed to accept Philippine residents. This puts licensed offshore sites as the best available option residing within the legal confines of local gambling laws.
How To Play Live Blackjack
Live dealer blackjack is simpler than it may seem. You can navigate to the live dealer section of the online casino through the casino tab in the menu. You will see a varied selection of live dealer games including blackjack, roulette, baccarat, and more. Click the live dealer blackjack tab to enter the appropriate game lobby.
Most live dealer blackjack games accept 7 players—some more, some less. You can find an available seat by looking at the icons corresponding to each seat at the table. You will often see “Open Seat” displayed across an icon if there is a seat available. Once the seats are filled, the game will move into “Place Your Bets” mode, which is self-explanatory.
There are 3 total betting areas to look out for. These are the top, middle, and bottom betting areas. We’ve broken down the levels and their corresponding wagers below:
- Top betting area (usually marked by “M”) is reserved for placing your Main bet.
- Middle betting area (usually marked by “P”) is used to place your Pairs side wager.
- Bottom betting area (usually marked by “R”) is for placing Rummy side wagers
No players will be allowed to place wagers once the dealer draws the first card. 2 cards will be placed in front of you, face up. The dealer draws 2 more cards for themselves, one face up and the other face down. The face-down card is placed on the left and the face-up card will be on the right. Players will then be prompted to make an action based on their cards and the cards on the table. Action starts with the player in Seat #1 and progresses all the way around the table. Some live dealer games allow you to “Choose Ahead,” meaning you can make your move before it is your turn. This speeds up the game process and in turn, leads to more hands. The player actions you can take are:
- Hit: add another card to your hand—you will bust if your total hand value exceeds 21
- Stand: keep your hand as is; do not get another card from the dealer
- Double: place another bet that is equal to your original bet; players will receive another card and then have to stand
- Split: splitting your hand into 2 individual hands; can only happen if you have 2 equal-value cards; requires another bet to be placed
- Surrender: forfeit hand and sit out round; a player will receive half their wager back; Surrender option not available if dealer holds the ace and 10-value card
The dealer chooses their own move after everyone else and hands are compared. The winning hand(s) are paid out.
Live Dealer Blackjack Side Bets
Just like in brick-and-mortar blackjack in a casino, Philippine residents can place side bets while at the live dealer table. The most commonly found side bets are Insurance, Pairs, and Rummy. We’ve provided a brief explanation of each side bet below:
- Insurance: If the dealer has an ace as their visible card, they will check to see if they have blackjack. Before this happens, players have the option of taking insurance. This is when you break even as opposed to losing. Obtaining insurance costs half your original wager and will pay 2/1 when the dealer has blackjack.
- Pairs: This is where the middle “P” betting area comes in. A Pairs side bet occurs when you have a pair as your initial. To clarify, a pair is 2 cards of the same rank. Payouts for successful Pairs side bets are 11/1.
- Rummy: The bottom betting area is reserved for Rummy side bets. This type of side bet pays out if your first 2 cards and the dealer’s up-card are a Rummy run. There are 3 types of rummy hands that constitute a winning side bet. These are:
- 3 cards of equal rank
- 3 cards of consecutive rank
- 3 cards of the same suit
*Bear in mind, payout levels may fluctuate based on the licensed offshore live dealer blackjack site you use.
Live Dealer Blackjack Rules
The rules for live dealer blackjack games can be found in the live dealer casino section of the site. These rules will likely change from site to site, but with only subtle differences. The main ones to watch out for are dealer actions (like if and when a dealer will hit on a soft 17,18, or 19) and splitting aces. We’ve provided a template for rules you may come across below:
- 6 decks are used and shuffled manually by the live dealer (can be seen via camera feed)
- Blackjack pays out at 3/2
- If a player does not choose an action in their allotted timeframe, an action will be chosen for them based on simple blackjack strategy (for example, the computer would have you stand on 18)
- Players can split once per round. Split Aces allows you one more card and then the player must stand
- The dealer will hit on soft 17 hands
- You can double any 2 cards, even after you split
- Can play multiple seats at a single table; some sites put a cap on the number of seats you can fill
Philippines Live Dealer Blackjack FAQs
How Do Live Dealer Games Work?
Live Dealer Blackjack games utilize a camera feed that shows you an actual dealer in a brick-and-mortar gambling establishment. Players can communicate with the dealer and other players via a chat feature. The dealer will answer back using their voice on camera. Player actions are made by clicking the appropriate icon on your screen. You will also see a digital rendering of the table so you can get a better glimpse of the spread.
Do I Have To Tip The Dealer In A Live Dealer Game?
Tipping the dealer is an option just like in brick-and-mortar games. It is considered a professional courtesy. Players can choose to tip the dealer by pressing the “T” button on the game dashboard.
Are There Bonuses For Live Dealer Blackjack Games?
Yes. Live Dealer Blackjack games come with bonuses for player use. These put additional funds in players’ accounts at no cost to them. Look out for match bonuses, cryptocurrency bonuses, and special tournament bonuses. Be sure to pay attention to the terms and conditions, as these can affect when you are eligible for withdrawal.