One of the most profitable casino games these days is Blackjack. It offers one of the lowest house edges of any table game offered. While most games give a player terrible chances at winning, Blackjack only has a 1.6% house advantage. With simple strategy and basic knowledge of Blackjack rules, you can decrease the edge even further. In some cases, you can shift the odds in your favor.
If you are new to Blackjack and feel intimidated by the rules and have never played the game, we will walk you through every rule and even supply you with a basic Blackjack chart. Once you know the rules, which only take a few minutes, you’ll be on your way to winning and having more fun than ever.
Basic Goal of Blackjack
The goal and overall concept of Blackjack is to get as close to 21 without going over and beat the dealer’s hand. You also automatically win if the dealer goes bust (over 21).
Before any cards are dealt, all players must place their bet on the table. At brick-and-mortar casinos, each table has a minimum bet. Sometimes there is also a maximum bet. You may play more than one hand so long as there are empty seats at the table as well.
The dealer deals all players 2 cards, including the dealer. The dealer’s cards however, are dealt one up and one down, so that you can only see one.
Once all cards are dealt, the players make the decision to hit (take another card) or stay, (not to take any cards). You may hit as often as you like as long as you do not go over 21. Once over 21 your hand is ‘bust’ and you lose your bet. If you feel your hand is close enough to 21 that you may beat the dealers, you then stand and wait for the dealers hand to play out.
After all players have made their hands, it’s the dealers turn. The dealer will have the same choices as players, as far as hitting or standing with some guidelines that they must follow. If the dealer’s cards do not total 16, they must hit until they do. Once over 16, the dealer must stay regardless of what the players have. For example if the dealers first 2 cards are a 5 and a 9, they have 14 and must take a hit. The next card is a 5 making for a total of 19. The dealer must now stay and pay out any player who has higher than 19 and take all bets form those who have busted or are lower than 19.
This is a basic Blackjack rules guide, and once you are familiar with it, you could start playing Blackjack right away. There are other rules which we will now cover below. These are simple little nuances of the game such as splitting and doubling down betting options. These are very easy to understand and will only further increase your experience while playing.
If the dealer gives you cards between 9 and 11, you can do what’s called “doubling down”. You would announce you want to double down and place an extra bet out identical to your original one. You then get one more and one more only. You cannot hit regardless of your new total.
The goal of using this betting option is to pick an optimal time when the dealer has a good chance of busting due to a bad card showing. You will win double the money if it works and if used correctly can show great profits.
Some casinos may have different rules as to when you can double down. Some may allow you to do it on any 2 cards others only certain ones. Make sure to read the rules before playing.
When a player receives 2 of the same cards, you can split them and make 2 totally new hands. Let’s say you are dealt two Aces. You would have the option to split them by placing a bet identical to your original and you would have 2 Blackjack hands which to play. Both hands will abide by the original rules of the game. You can hit as often as you like on both stay whenever you choose.
If the dealer is showing an Ace, you have the option of buying Insurance. You must place a bet the size of your original on the table to take the insurance. If the dealer has 21 with his first 2 cards, you will get paid usually 3-2 on your bet. I won’t go into too much detail about this bet, because it should NEVER be used! It is a sucker bet and will never win you money in the long run. Avoid taking this bet every time.
Now that you know all the rules, you’re ready to get playing one of the classics and start winning some money. For a basic Blackjack strategy chart or a printable Blackjack strategy chart, do a quick search online. This will outline exactly what to do in every scenario. If the dealer has an 8 showing, the chart will tell you what to do base on your cards. It’s simple to follow and as long as you follow the chart you should be using an optimal plan.
If you’d like to test out your new skills and learn the rules of Blackjack, you can play it for free online and then jump into the real money blackjack games to really get your blood flowing.