Push Your Luck Blackjack Side Bet: Rules and Strategy

The Push Your Luck, or more commonly called by players, the Tie Bet Blackjack side bet, is a post blackjack play side bet that pays when the player and dealer both end up with the same total without going over 21.  Most blackjack side bets are settled prior to the actual game of blackjack being played, whereas the Push Your Luck side bet is settled after the hand is complete.

Push Your Luck has been around now for over 10 years.  It has stood the test of time because of it’s ease of play, simple premise and very low house advantage.  Originally distributed by Ten Stix Gaming, rights have now been transferred to AGS for worldwide distribution.

How to Play

The Push Your Luck Blackjack side bet is placed prior to the deal of the cards.  At most casinos the side bet may not exceed half of what the main bet is.  The player is wagering that the house and the player will end up with the same total at the completion of play, without either busting.  To accomplish this, both the player and the dealer will need a matching total of either 17, 18, 19, 20 or 21.  Any player total of less than 17 can not end in a tie with the dealer because all casinos require the dealer to hit until a total of at least 17.  If the player and dealer do tie at the end of the hand, the player’s main bet will be a push and the Push Your Luck side bet will pay 10-1.

Because of the excellent payout for a tie, Push Your Luck is one of the rare side bets that can have a major affect on the main game of blackjack.  Players tend to hit on hands they might normally stay on in order to set themselves up for a possible tie.  Serious blackjack players will generally avoid a table that has the Push Your Luck side bet on it due to this sub-optimal and out of the ordinary play by some players.

House Advantage

The Push Your Luck side bet has a low 1.18% house advantage.  This being the case, for roughly every 11 hands played, the player will push with the dealer one time.  If a player can run hot for a little while playing this side bet, there is the potential to win some pretty decent money pretty quickly.  On the other hand, a cold streak of 20 or 25 hands can put a dent into any bankroll.