How to Play Blackjack Variation Perfect Pairs: Rules, Strategy & Odds
Perfect Pairs is a typical blackjack game with an optional twist. The blackjack game itself follows the exact same rules of Vegas Strip Blackjack, but offers an elective bonus side bet that is won if the player’s first two cards are a pair. The side bet payouts range from 5 to 1 up to 30 to 1, depending on the type of pair received.
We’ll talk more about the Perfect Pairs side bet in a moment. For now, let’s go over the exact rules of the standard blackjack game.
Variations in the rules of Perfect Pairs Blackjack include the following:
- Players are permitted to double down on any two cards, except a natural blackjack, before or after splitting. To double down, the player must place a second bet, equal to the first. They are then dealt one extra card which will automatically stand on the total (if it doesn’t bust). Doubling down is allowed once per hand.
- Splitting is allowed on any pair or two cards of the same value. This means that any two 10 valued cards can be split, even a 10 and face card, or a jack and king. However, we do not recommend splitting a hand of 20, and neither would any perfect pair blackjack strategy chart. When spitting, the player must place another bet of equal size on the second hand. Aces may be split, but will only receive one card on each new hand and must stand thereafter. A 2-card hand of 21 on split Aces is just 21, not a natural blackjack. Splitting is allowed up to 3 times per hand.
- The dealer will accord to the following rules: The dealer must stand on any 17, even a Soft 17 (any hand of 17 with an Ace valued at 11). The dealer’s hand is dealt one card face-down, the other face-up. If the face up card is an Ace or 10 value card, insurance will be offered and the dealer will peek for blackjack.
- Insurance bets cost half of the original bet. If the dealer has blackjack, insurance bets are paid and all other bets are instantly lost unless a player has blackjack as well. A player’s natural blackjack ties the dealer’s; a push. If the dealer does not have blackjack, insurance bets are lost and the hand continues.
Perfect Pairs Blackjack Pay Table
Natural Blackjack Pays 3 to 2
Insurance Pays 2 to 1
Beating the Dealer Pays 1 to 1
Perfect Pairs Payouts
A player can bet any amount within the table limits on the perfect pair side bet. This bet is determined the moment the player gets his first two cards and has no bearing on the standard blackjack hand. If the player is dealt a pair with their first two cards, the bet is won. If not, the bet is immediately lost and the hand continues.
Perfect Pair (Exact suited pair; i.e. 7 of hearts + 7 of hearts) Pays 30 to 1
Colored Pair (Same color suited pair; i.e. 9 of clubs + 9 of spades) Pays 10 to 1
Mixed Pair (Different colored pair; i.e. King of clubs + King of hearts) Pays 5 to 1
Note that all Perfect Pairs Blackjack rules and payouts detailed above are standard, but may vary slightly from one live or online casino to the next.