Tips to Find the Lowest Blackjack Stakes in Vegas

Blackjack Hand With a Las Vegas and Dollar Sign Background

Most casinos these days require between a $10 and $25 minimum blackjack bet. Therefore, you can’t play cheaply in most gambling destinations.

Las Vegas, however, is a different story. Home to more blackjack tables than any other city in the world, it offers a broad range of stakes. You can even play games for as little as $1 per hand!

The only question is where you find these extremely cheap tables. The following guide covers where to look and the pros and cons to playing for the lowest-available stakes.

Head to Areas Away From the Vegas Strip

The Vegas Strip is perfect for staying at lavish resorts and enjoying the finest amenities. However, it’s not so great for cheap blackjack.

Many casinos on the Strip require a $25 minimum bet. These are the last places that you want to play as a low roller.

Instead, you should head to the notable areas located off the Strip. North Las Vegas and Downtown Las Vegas feature a solid number of $5 tables.

Of course, you should still be selective about which casinos you visit in these sections. This blackjack survey is a good guide for finding cheap games.

$1 and $2 Stakes Are Available in Rare Cases

You might think that dollar stakes are only reserved for online blackjack. However, a few Vegas casinos use $1 and $2 games as draws.

Lucky Club, Oyo, and Poker Palace all have tables that only require a dollar minimum bet. Poker Palace also features $2 tables.

You won’t find blackjack stakes this low anywhere else in the world. With that said, you might consider visiting one of these three casinos to play as cheaply as possible.

Closeup of a Blackjack Table Game

Here are the house advantages for each of these three establishments:

  • Lucky Club – 0.64% house edge
  • Oyo – 2.0%
  • Poker Palace – 2.79% on $1 tables; 0.41% on $2 tables

$5 Blackjack Is Fairly Common in Vegas

You don’t have to look any further than Poker Palace, Oyo, or Lucky Club for the lowest minimum bets. However, you also have to keep in mind that the same low-limit tables fill up fast.

If you happen to visit one of these casinos and can’t find an open $1 or $2 game, then you’ll have many options to choose from regarding $5 stakes.

Numerous Vegas casinos offer $5 minimum wagers. Here are some of the many Las Vegas casinos with these stakes:

  • Aliante (single deck)
  • Cannery (single deck)
  • Fiesta Henderson (single deck)
  • Sunset Station (single deck)
  • Arizona Charlie’s Decatur (double deck)
  • Downtown Grand (double deck)
  • Gold Coast (double deck)
  • Red Rock (double deck)
  • Suncoast (double deck)
  • Boulder Station (six decks)
  • Casino Royale (six decks)
  • Golden Nugget (six decks)
  • Plaza (six decks)
  • Rampart (six decks)
  • Silver Nugget (six decks)
  • Texas Station (six decks)
  • Circus Circus (eight decks)
  • Excalibur (eight decks)
  • Golden Gate (eight decks)
  • Planet Hollywood (eight decks)
  • Silver 7s (eight decks)

Advantages to Playing Low Stakes Blackjack in Vegas

Sin City is a frugal blackjack player’s dream. Below, you can see the main reasons why Las Vegas rules when it comes to playing on the cheap.

Low Theoretical Losses

You’re likely expecting to win when you enter a casino. Blackjack gives you one of the best chances of winning in the gaming world.

Of course, casinos are the ones who hold the advantage. Even with a low house edge, you need to consider the possibility of losing.

Low stakes reduce the amount of theoretical losses that you might suffer. Here’s what kind of theoretical losses you’ll be facing at different stakes:

$1 Minimum Bet

  • You play 75 hands an hour
  • 75 x 1 = $75 in hourly bets
  • The house edge is 0.064% (Lucky Club)
  • 75 x 0.0064 = $0.48 in hourly theoretical losses

$2 Minimum Bet

  • You play 75 hands an hour
  • 75 x 2 = $150 in hourly bets
  • The house edge is 0.41% (Poker Palace)
  • 150 x 0.0041 = $0.62 in hourly theoretical losses

$5 Minimum Bet

  • You play 75 hands an hour
  • 75 x 5 = $375 in hourly bets
  • The house edge is 0.55% (Aliante Casino)
  • 375 x 0.0055 = $2.06 in hourly theoretical losses

$10 Minimum Bet

  • You play 75 hands an hour
  • 75 x 10 = $750 in hourly bets
  • The house edge is 0.55% (Red Rock Casino)
  • 750 x 0.0055 = $4.13 in hourly theoretical losses

$25 Minimum Bet

  • You play 75 hands an hour
  • 75 x 25 = $1,875 in hourly bets
  • The house edge is 0.48% (Mandalay Bay)
  • 1,875 x 0.0048 = $9 in hourly theoretical losses

Make Your Bankroll Last Longer

Blackjack is supposed to be about entertainment first and foremost. However, you won’t have much time to enjoy yourself when losing everything within the first hour.

Low-stakes blackjack allows you to extend your gambling bankroll further. You can last for many hours with just a $20 bankroll under the right circumstances.

Here are examples that show just how long you can go on with low stakes:

$1 Stakes

  • You play 70 hands per hour ($70 wagered per hour)
  • The house edge is 2.0%
  • 70 x 0.02 = $1.40 in hourly losses
  • Your bankroll is worth $100
  • 100 / 1.4 = 71.43
  • Your bankroll will theoretically last for 71.43 hours

$5 Stakes

  • You play 70 hands per hour ($350 wagered per hour)
  • The house edge is 1.0%
  • 350 x 0.01 = $3.50 in hourly losses
  • Your bankroll is worth $100
  • 100 / 3.5 = 28.57
  • Your bankroll will theoretically last for 28.57 hours

$25 Stakes

  • You play 70 hands per hour ($1,750 wagered per hour)
  • The house edge is 0.5%
  • 1,750 x 0.005 = $8.75 in hourly losses
  • Your bankroll is worth $100
  • 100 / 8.75 = 11.43
  • Your bankroll will theoretically last for 11.43 hours

Cheap Food and Side Entertainment

With lots of money to spend in Vegas, you can enjoy some of the world’s finest restaurants, nightclubs, and shows. Of course, if you’re seeking $1 blackjack stakes, then you’re probably not interested in spending money in these areas.

Instead, you’re likely looking to get good food and enjoy yourself at bargain prices. The same casinos that offer $1, $2, and $5 blackjack feature Sin City’s cheapest food and entertainment.

Burger, Fries, Soda, Fast Food

Sure, you’re not going to see Cirque du Soleil and eat at Restaurant Guy Savoy in North Las Vegas. But you could at least get some meals for $10 or less in the cheaper areas.

Drawbacks to Playing for Low Stakes in Vegas

Everything covered so far might outweigh the downsides for you when playing low-stakes games. Nevertheless, you should at least keep the following aspects in mind before playing at cheap tables.

High House Edges

Casinos don’t offer $1 and $2 blackjack with the expectations of making profits. Some don’t even make any money off $5 games when factoring in the dealers’ salaries.

Instead, they’re just trying to draw players with these tables. Such casinos are willing to take a loss so long as they attract enough gamblers.

In order to reduce their losses, many casinos include unfavorable rules at low-limit tables. These rules can push the house edge over 2%.

Here are some house advantages for various low-stakes games in Las Vegas Casinos:

$1 Tables

  • Lucky Club – 0.64% house edge
  • Oyo – 2.0%
  • Poker Palace – 2.79%

$2 Tables

  • Poker Palace – 0.41%

$5 Tables
Blackjack and Money

  • El Cortez – 0.30%
  • Arizona Charlie’s Decatur – 0.46%
  • Jerry’s Nugget – 0.46%
  • Main Street Station – 1.16%
  • Gold Coast – 1.16%
  • Aliante Casino – 1.70%
  • Santa Fe Station – 1.70%

$10 Tables

  • Rio – 0.29%
  • Palms – 0.55%
  • Aria – 0.58%
  • Silverton – 0.58%
  • Golden Gate – 1.02%
  • Venetian – 1.84%
  • Caesars Palace – 1.97%
  • Mandalay Bay – 2.40%

As can be seen, Lucky Club offers a wonderful dollar game. You’ll only be facing a 0.64% house advantage on Lucky Club’s $1 tables.

By and large, though, you’re not getting a great deal when playing the cheapest stakes. The high house advantage somewhat diminishes the low minimum bet.

Crowded Tables

You’re not the only one who’s looking to risk next to nothing when playing blackjack. Countless other low rollers visit Sin City every year.

They want to experience the thrills of live dealer blackjack without losing much money. Not surprisingly, gamblers flood $1, $2, and $5 tables on a daily basis.

I’m not saying that you won’t find an open seat in these games. You shouldn’t be surprised, though, when you have to wait or go somewhere else.

Less Glamorous Casinos

Lucky Club, Oyo, and Poker Palace aren’t exactly mentioned in the same breath as Aria, the Bellagio, MGM Grand, and the Venetian. When you visit low-roller casinos, you have to lower your expectations compared to the Vegas Strip’s mega-resorts.

These establishments are home to $5 lunches, basic swimming pools, and subpar hotel rooms. They rely on casino games first and foremost to bring people through the door.

Provided you’re okay with a low-roller atmosphere, then you should by all means play at these casinos. Just don’t expect to watch any world-famous shows or dine at five-star restaurants in the process.

Our Final Thoughts

Only online blackjack can match the kind of low stakes that Vegas offers. Multiple casinos feature $1 tables, while one also offers $2 tables.

You may not be sitting in the lap of luxury while playing these games. Nevertheless, you’ll get to enjoy live blackjack as cheaply as possible.

$5 tables are a nice alternative for when you can’t find any $1 to $2 blackjack. They’re much more prevalent around the city.

Before playing any of these low-limit games, though, you should always check the house edge. After all, some of these tables can feature a really high house advantage.

Lucky Club boasts the best dollar game (0.64% house edge) in the city. Poker Palace, meanwhile, offers $2 blackjack with a reasonable 0.41% house advantage.