Blackjack is a card game the object of which is to be dealt cards having a higher count than those of the dealer up to but not exceeding 21. Learn to play blackjack online, with all the rules and betting tips to help you reach your full potential. Whether you simply need a refresher, or it’s blackjack for beginners that you’re after, we’ll take you through the gameplay, provide key blackjack strategies, and discuss the odds to improve your chances of winning. This is everything you ever wanted to know about how to Play & Win Blackjack like a pro but were too ashamed to ask.
How a Traditional Deck of Cards Works
Here’s what you need to know about a traditional deck of cards. Let’s start with the suits. A traditional deck of cards has 52 cards total, but they’re of 4 different suits:
As you can see, the clubs and spades colored black while the hearts and diamonds colored red. Every card of each suit includes the symbol for that suit. For example, all the cards that are designated “hearts” have a heart symbol on them. On the other hand, all the cards that are designated “diamonds” have a diamond symbol on them, and so on. A traditional card has 13 ranks.
All the cards shown here are clubs, but each suit contains one card of each rank. So there’s an ace of clubs, of diamonds, of hearts, and of spades in every deck. There’s also a two of each suit, and so on. The number or letter in parenthesis after each ranking is the shorthand form that’s used to describe that card when writing about blackjack. The ace is the “1”, but it also often considered the highest card in the deck. It’s not just a “1”, in other words—it’s an ace! The jack, queen, and king are all called face cards. Source: GAMBLINGSITES.org
Play & Win Blackjack: How to Play Blackjack for Beginners
The goal of reaching 21 is fairly easy to get to grips with, but there are still a few rules you need to know about before you play for real cash. To use them, we recommend playing for fun first. Let’s walk through a typical game so you know how it all works:
STEP 1: Join a Table
You’ll join the blackjack table. Once all players are ready, each one is dealt two cards face up. The dealer also receives two cards – one of them face-up, the other face down.
STEP 2: Decide whether to Hit or Stand
Work out the value of your hand, as well as that of the dealer, to get as close as possible to 21 without going bust. You can use your instinct.
Ask the dealer for another card. Do this when, based on the current value of your cards, either you’re sure that the next card won’t cause you to go bust, or you’re willing to run the risk of the dealer getting a better hand.
Ask the dealer to move on to the next player and deal you no more cards. You’ll probably do this when the value of your cards is quite high already (e.g. over 17), and you’re can’t be sure whether the dealer’s hand will beat yours.
Play & Win Blackjack: STEP 3: Your Hand Value
As a result of the move you just made, you’ll probably have a new hand value. You’ll remain in the game if your hand valued at 21 or anything less.
STEP 4: Dealer Reveals Their Cards
After all players at the table have made their decisions, the dealer will reveal their facedown card.
STEP 5: See Who is Closer to 21
If your hand is closer to 21 than that of the dealer, you bust the dealer and win. If the dealer has 21 or a closer score to 21 than any of the other players, the dealer wins. The dealer will issue your winnings if you’ve been lucky. Your payout amount will depend on the type of bet that you placed.
Basic Blackjack Rules to Remember
Now we’ve covered the essential steps to playing a standard game, there are a few other basic rules you’ll need to keep in mind. It’s always worth knowing what payouts you’ll receive in various blackjack scenarios, and which moves to make depending on your hand. Take a look at the additional rules below:
- Regular wins pay 1:1 – This is when the value of your cards is closer to 21 than those of the dealer
- Blackjack wins pay 3:2 – this is when your cards equal 21
- 16 and below – Dealer must hit on any hand valued at 16 and below
- Hit or Stand – Players have the basic choice of adding a card to their hand (hitting) or not (standing) to reach a final hand value of 21, or closest to it. They can also double down or split…
- Split – Turn your hand of two into two separate hands, for an extra chance to beat the dealer. This is an option when you have two cards of equal value.
- Double Down – You can choose to double your bet mid-hand, but you’ll receive just one card and you won’t have the option to take another.
- While it’s not necessarily your best move to double down on anything other than a 10 or an 11, some casinos will let you double down regardless of what you’re holding. However, some online casinos limit the option.
Play & Win Blackjack: Advanced Betting Options
In addition to the basic rules, more experienced players should also take note of the following advanced rules to take their blackjack game to the next level:
- Insurance – If a dealer shows an Ace as their face-up card, they’ll invite players to take insurance. This protects you in case the dealer has a card valued at 10.
- Surrendering – In some online casinos, you can surrender half your bet if you don’t like your hand. The option varies from casino to casino.
- Soft 17 – A soft hand is a hand that has an Ace in it. It’s called soft because the hand has two values – either 1 or 11, plus the other cards. Some blackjack casinos require the dealer to hit on a soft 17 while others require that they stand. Make sure you check the rules before you play.
- Taking even money – If you hit a blackjack but the dealer is showing an Ace, you’ll push (tie) if he also happens to have a Blackjack. If you don’t want to risk not winning, you can choose to take even money. Instead of getting paid 3:2, you’ll get paid 1:1.
How to Win at Blackjack for Beginners
Our blackjack strategy guide will give you lots of pointers as to when you should hit and when you should stand or double down. However, to start, here are two quick pointers to keep in mind whenever you sit down at a blackjack table, either online or in a brick and mortar casino:
Play & Win Blackjack: Blackjack Tip 1: Never Split Two Face Cards
This is a common mistake made by rookie players, who think that splitting face cards and tens can double their profits. In fact, statistically speaking it is never a good idea to split face cards, as you are swapping the high probability of winning with a 20 for the risk of losing twice your money if the new cards you draw aren’t the ones you want.
Blackjack Tip 2: Always Split Aces & 8s
This is a no-brainer, or at least it should be! A pair of 8s gives you the dreaded 16, and by splitting these you are banking on at least one face card showing up to give you a good hand. Even a 1, 2, or a 3 are all good cards to draw to an 8, meaning that you have plenty of chances to make a winning hand. Likewise, a pair of Aces gives you an unfriendly hand value of either 2 or 12. So, it’s a much better idea to split them and hope that 7s, 8s, 9s, and 10s show up.
Play & Win Blackjack: Important Blackjack Tips
It is easy to burn through your money at an online blackjack table if you don’t play smart, but follow our advice and you’ll soon be playing like a professional. Blackjack offers some of the best value in the casino to the player, but only if you use the correct strategy and play with your head and not your heart. It’s well worth trying online blackjack for free first. So, you get a feel for the game and can put any strategies to the test. Here are a few quick tips which everyone should take into consideration before approaching the virtual blackjack tables, but you can find some more in-depth blackjack tips in our guide:
1.Don’t bet money you can’t afford
Never throw good money after bad. Set a budget for yourself before you come to the table, and stick with it.
2.Memorize a basic strategy
As you begin to play make sure to keep your basic strategy guide open on a separate window so you can refer to it quickly.
3.Never bet more than half your stack on a single bet
This is reckless play, and no one wants to see half their pot disappear in one go. Always bet responsibly.
4.Hold your nerve
Sometimes the cards just don’t seem to be with you, and it can be tempting to give up on your strategy. In the long run, following a strategy is the only way to have the best chances of winning.