We received this letter from one of our players named Mary Jane and we decided to help her out!
Let it be known that I’m a pretty good Blackjack player. I am! However, my husband is better. And it really wouldn’t bother me if he didn’t have such a big mouth about it. Every time he beats me or anyone we are playing with, he gets so annoying and I seriously need to shut him up. Please give me some advanced tips on how to beat him. He needs it! Not really, I need it!”
Dear Mary Jane, of course we are helping you out and we really hope our tips help you in your quest. Here are the strategies we suggest you implement:
Doubling, or Doubling Down as it is often called, is when you double your stake, receiving one additional card, and having no option but to stand on whatever your new total might be. It’s an option you should use conservatively – and always check the house rules before trying to Double Down, as it might only be permitted on certain hands. To give you some examples, doubling when you are holding a hand worth 11 is a good idea; double a pair of Fives too, unless the dealer is showing a Ten or Ace. When holding a hand totaling 9, consider doubling only if the dealer is showing a card worth Six or less.
If you are dealt a matching pair of cards, you often have the option to split your hand into two – you’ll be dealt a second card to each new hand, and must then play them through separately. Make sure that you always split Aces or Eights. That you never split Fours, Fives or Tens. Assure yourself that you split Twos, Threes or Sevens only if the dealer’s up card is a Seven or lower (otherwise, hit). Split Sixes if the dealer’s up card is a Six or lower (otherwise, hit) and split Nines unless the dealer’s up card is Seven, Ten or Ace (otherwise, stand).
There’s more to the Splitting strategy: if, after splitting, you are dealt another card of the same value as the first, you may be allowed to re-split that hand once more. Splitting in general can make weak hands strong, and strong hands even stronger, so by following the same rules as above, re-splitting can potentially increase your expected return substantially. Remember though, you will have to place a new wager – equal to your original stake – on each new hand formed by splitting, so make sure you don’t go beyond what you’re willing to risk.
Surrendering is a little more complex than the strategies mentioned above, and allows you to ‘fold’ your hand and receive half of your stake back. Do not surrender if: your hand is worth 15 and the dealer is showing Nine, Ten or Ace (where the Ace is part of a soft-17 hand that the dealer has stood). Do not surrender if your hand is worth 16 and the dealer is showing Nine (surrender if the dealer shows Ten or Ace) Do not surrender if your hand is worth 17 and the dealer is showing Nine, Ten or Ace (where the Ace is part of a soft-17 hand that the dealer has stood). If the dealer hits a soft-17 hand in play, and your hand is worth 15 or 17, consider surrendering.
It is also very important that you practice these tricks, of course we recommend you do so by playing Blackjack by yourself online with us. We certainly hope these tips help her beat her husband at Blackjack once and for all!