Wacky Ways to Play 21: Blackjack Switch Online

Online blackjack switch rules and odds for beginners.

Online Blackjack Switch RulesA couple of weeks ago, I told you about a unique game variant called European Blackjack Redeal, one of the strangest variants of 21 I’ve ever come across. Then I thought, hey… why not make a theme out of it? In the coming days, we’ll look at some other highly unique blackjack games. On today’s menu – Blackjack Switch.

As implied, switching things up is the name of the game here. A player’s starting hand may not be a reflection of his or her ending hand. I should say “hands”, actually, because you’ll be playing two of them at once. There’s a distinct advantage in this, giving players the option to switch their top two cards. Let’s take a closer look.

Online Blackjack Switch Rules

The object – as in any blackjack game – is to achieve a hand total higher than the dealer without busting. In this game, you’ll be trying to do that with two hands. That means there’s greater potential to win twice as much, lose twice as much, or break even. Not to mention the possibility of doubling and/or splitting. So you’ll want to know exactly what you’re doing before you get started.

Here’s how it works. You place two equal bets in the corresponding betting circles for each of your hands. Three hands are dealt – two player hands (both yours) and the dealer’s hand. Your cards are dealt face up. The dealer’s top card is also face up, giving you a glimpse into at what he may be holding.

At this point, the dealer will peek for blackjack. If he has it, it’s game over. You lose both bets, unless you have blackjack. That hand will push. Otherwise, you have a decision to make. Do you want to continue, playing both of your hands as they are, or switch the top two cards?

Decisions, Decisions…

Remember, you may only swap out the second card dealt to each hand. For example:

Hand One: 5-K
Hand Two: 10-6

These are terrible hands! Totals of 15 and 16. No one wants these hands… but wait! What if you switch the second card on each? Now you have…

Hand One: 5-6
Hand Two: 10-K

You’re looking at 11 and 20. Depending on the dealer’s up card, you may want to double down on that first hand, too.

Here’s a more extreme situation to show just how beneficial it can be to play blackjack switch online.

Hand One: A-A
Hand Two: J-Q

I’m sure you see where this is going…

Hand One: A-Q
Hand Two: J-A

Double blackjack?! Not so fast, that’s actually two hands of 21, not natural blackjack. Still great hands, but there are two very important amendments to the rules. That’s right, there’s a catch…

Blackjack Switch Online – The Catch

Don’t look so disappointed, of course there’s a catch. Casinos don’t offer games with a ‘player edge‘. Since this game has a major advantage for players, certain rules have been adjusted to drive the payout percentage back into their favor. The following blackjack switch rules create a house edge is just 0.17%.

The two biggest rule variations are:

Blackjack Pays Even Money: I usually avoid games with anything less than 3:2 blackjack pays, but considering the rules and odds, it’s not that unreasonable.

Dealer 22 Push: If the dealer’s hand totals 22, he will not bust. Instead, it will push against any player total except blackjack. So those 21/21 hands you switched for above? They could both end in a tie.

Other common rules include:

– 6 decks
– Dealer hits soft 17
– Dealer peeks for blackjack
– Double on any two cards
– Double after split
– Resplit up to 4x


  • Trevor Hallsey

    Passionate webmaster, devoted card game enthusiast, and proud son of the Great White North. With over a decade of iGaming experience, Trevor has launched numerous web portals to share his passion for game theory and all things Canadian gaming. With this site, he acts as a fact checker and mostly writes at the intersection of gaming and finance. He aims to offer statistical insights and unique information that you might see lacking in similar sites.

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