How to Play Blackjack for Beginners Rules, Strategy, Tips

blackjack rules

At the straight side of the table, there is an area that is meant for the dealer and the card game equipment. In general, the items that are found in this area, such as the chip rack, the deck of cards and the discard tray will not move. However, cards and chips that are required in the current card game may be moved. Or just bring one along to your Blackjack game, it’s not cheating – some casinos even sell the charts.

  • The 2 through 10 cards are worth their face denomination.
  • But before you hit the tables and do your best to win big, make sure you fully understand the rules that govern Blackjack.
  • Players with a blackjack win a bet plus a bonus amount, which is normally equal to half their original wager.
  • Understanding the distinction between a hard and a soft hand is a game-changer in blackjack.
  • Splitting also has restrictions when it comes to being dealt aces.
  • When the dealer’s upcard is an ace in blackjack, you have the option to take an insurance bet.

Taking insurance will likely result in long-term losses unless you’re an experienced card counter. That said, hitting is usually the way to go if your hand is 11 or lower. ” in these situations allows you to get closer to 21 without going bust.


Your score in Blackjack is the sum of the value of your cards – not one point less than that. We include these measures to ensure you don’t lose wagers due to misclicks or errors. However, while we don’t recommend it, these warnings can be turned off. You can choose to do so when issued a warning by our software.

blackjack rules

The players’ initial cards may be dealt face-up or face-down (more common in single-deck games). Most casinos will have multiple blackjack tables where players can enjoy the game. This section will only provide information about the environment at the blackjack table, more information on the whole casino environment can be found here. Of course, if you are playing at online casinos you’re as close as your PC, tablet or mobile phone. One to seven players typically play against a dealer with players placing their bets before the deal. The dealer deals cards from his left to his right, one card at a time.

Resplitting Aces

In most varieties of the game, a player receiving two cards of the same rank may split them, receiving a second card for each, and play the two hands independently of each other. Another common rule is to allow “doubling down” with two cards that total 11 (in some variants 11 or 10)—the player doubles the bet, turns up the cards, and takes one more card facedown. In some games a player wins extra by getting five cards without “going bust” (going over 21). Any Pairs is an optional side bet offered on certain Blackjack tables.

Number cards count as their number, the jack, queen, and king (“face cards” or “pictures”) count as 10, and aces count as either 1 or 11 according to the player’s choice. If the total exceeds 21 points, it busts, and all bets on it immediately lose. You and fellow players are dealt two cards each whilst the dealer is dealt one face up.

European Blackjack

A good guide on how to play Blackjack online should provide some advice on one of the hardest parts of the game – knowing when to hit and when to stand. So, let’s take a look at this crucial aspect of basic blackjack strategy now. That’s not to say you won’t learn quickly, or you won’t learn to play well. Even a basic blackjack strategy can see you beating your buddies round the kitchen table or cleaning up in online casinos. There are lots of regional variations, so you’re likely to have to compromise on the ins and outs. Some say twos and jacks should not be mixed, while some believe that if a player cannot go, they must keep picking up until they draw a card that can be played.

  • It does however win against an ordinary 21 made of more than two cards.
  • The number-cards (two to ten) all have a value that equals the number shown, and the face cards (jack, queen, king) have a value of 10.
  • Get started and decide when you’re going to stop, double your bet or draw two equal cards.
  • Double after splitting (DAS) on a hand is allowed in many casinos but usually only in shoe games.
  • Each blackjack game has a basic strategy, the optimal method of playing any hand.
  • If your first two cards are an Ace and any ten-value card, you have Blackjack.

Typically, a blackjack table can accommodate up to seven players. But what if all seats are taken, and you want to join the action? On the other hand, a late surrender occurs after the dealer checks, and you also lose half of your bet. Still, a late surrender can be a strategic move if your chances of winning are slim. Every casino establishes its guidelines dictating how the dealer approaches their blackjack hand, such as directing them to hit on a soft 17 (an ace and a six). Are you ready to stake your claim at the blackjack table?

Fully Automated Table Game Rules

Splitting 4s and 5s means you end up with two separate hands, each with a low value. Casinos can ask suspected card counters to leave the table or ban them from playing in the casino. A more conservative approach is a wise blackjack strategy, as the dealer’s hand is disadvantaged.

If you are closer to 21 than the dealer, you win and are paid an amount equal to your original wager. If the dealer’s hand “busts” or “breaks,” you win as well. Ties are a standoff or “push” and your bet remains on the table. Buster Blackjack (BBJ) is a side bet that allows players to bet on whether the dealer will bust. The higher the number of cards in the busted hand, the higher the payout – which can be anywhere from 1 to 1 for three cards, to 200 to 1 for eight or more cards. In bonus blackjack, the player can bet on whether the player, dealer, or both will land a natural blackjack, and win a 15 to 1 payout.

Blackjack rules and strategy for beginners 2023

The cards 2 through 10 have their face value, J, Q, and K are worth 10 points each, and the Ace is worth either 1 or 11 points (player’s choice). If you finish with a total closer to 21 than the dealer’s you win and will be paid even money. If you and the dealer have the same totals you have a stand-off, you neither win nor lose. You must hit if thepoint total of your cards is 11 or less. The dealer, in the normal dealing process, will offer a “Freebet” to the customer on a 2 card total of 9, 10 or 11.

In some variants the dealer must stand on a soft 17, while in others the dealer must hit. In all Blackjack games, the dealer will hit on any hard or soft total of 16 or under. The combination of an ace with a card other than a ten-card is known as a “soft hand,” because the player can count the ace as a 1 or 11, and either draw cards or not. For example with a “soft 17” (an ace and a 6), the total is 7 or 17.

  • Start the count to 21 – play online blackjack games for real money at William Hill.
  • You can’t go bust with a soft 17 – in fact, there’s a reasonable chance of ending up with 21.
  • Players with blackjack will tie (“push”) against the dealer’s hand, and all other players will lose their bets.
  • Little did they know that this simple pastime would lay the foundation for the blackjack we know today.

Your first step to winning at blackjack is the mastery of basic strategy and an understanding of the effect of rule variations. As a card counter you will be referring back to basic strategy about 75% of the time. At best, a good card counter can only hope to win between 1 and 1.5% of all the monies wagered across the table. A few basic strategy errors here and there will completely wipe this advantage out. Refer to the blackjack basic strategy section of this book for further details.

Roulette Vs. Blackjack

The side bet is resolved at the start of the player’s turn. It’s possible to find high-stakes or VIP blackjack tables even in online casinos. The minimum bet in these games is $100, while the maximum bet range is $50,000 to $100,000 or even higher. If your hand score is higher than the dealer’s, you win. Otherwise, you lose, and the chips/money you wagered goes to the casino.

While the popularity of Blackjack dates from World War I, its roots go back to the 1760s in France, where it is called Vingt-et-Un (French for 21). Today, Blackjack is the one card game that can be found in every American casino. As a popular home game, it is played with slightly different rules.

The History Of Blackjack

Blackjack (also called 21 or Pontoon) is an incredibly simple and popular playing card game. It’s a fairly easy card game to grasp, and – as long as green baize, casino atmosphere, and money on the line are your idea of a good time, it’s one of the best card games in the world. Whether or not the dealer must hit on a soft 17 (a hand of 17 containing an ace being counted as 11) differs from casino to casino. There might even be blackjack tables with different rules within the same casino.

blackjack rules

If your first two cards have the same point value, you may ask the dealer tosplit your hand, to form two separate hands, by betting an amount equal to the original bet. You are only allowed tosplittwice per box forming three hands per playing area. As you can see, there are many decisions that you must make when playing blackjack. If you play your hand properly you can reduce the house edge to less than 1 percent. To do this you must learn basic strategy, which is a mathematically proven method to determine when to hit and stand.

Blackjack Basics

In handheld games, the cards are dealt face down and players are allowed to pick up their cards. In a shoe game, the cards are dealt face up to the players, who are not allowed to touch them. If the player wishes to wager on the free bet options, the dealer will use a gold coin that represents the value of their original bet. Blackjack borrowed elements from popular European games like Vingt-et-un, seven-and-a-half, and one-and-thirty. By blending rules and objectives, blackjack emerged as a thrilling and strategic card game players can’t get enough of. While various betting systems claim to give you an edge in blackjack, many are primarily based on misconceptions and superstitions.

  • This section will only provide information about the environment at the blackjack table, more information on the whole casino environment can be found here.
  • So, assess your hand carefully before you ask for another card.
  • Understanding the rules allows you to adapt your strategies accordingly and make informed decisions at the table.
  • The higher the number of cards in the busted hand, the higher the payout – which can be anywhere from 1 to 1 for three cards, to 200 to 1 for eight or more cards.
  • The house edge for side bets is generally higher than for the blackjack game itself.
  • On the other hand, you’re breaking up a strong hand and risking ending up with two weaker hands when you split a pair of 10s.
  • He continuously played eight hands at the same table and placed enormous bets of $250,000 on each round.

You decide how much of your chips you will risk to win big. Your wager is a direct reflection of your confidence and strategy. More decks in a blackjack game add an extra layer of excitement. Face cards (jack, queen, and king) are ten-value cards that share an equal value in blackjack.

Blackjack Challenge

Thereafter, a second card will be dealt with all players, and the dealer and the game will start. In almost all games of blackjack, one of the dealer’s cards will be face up (the “up-card”), and one card will be face down (the “hole card”). This is done so that players cannot see the exact value of the dealer’s cards, but they can make an estimate based on the card that is placed face up. The 2 through 10 cards are worth their face denomination.

The following outline explains the basic rules of standard blackjack (21), along with the house rules most commonly featured in casinos. Players should bear in mind, though, that blackjack rules vary from casino to casino, and check for local variations before playing. You may double your original bet on any hand with a total of less than 21 made up of two or more cards (excluding Pontoon). If you elect to double, you place an additional bet up to equal to your original bet.


Wagers are collected or paid as the hands are being evaluated. After all, hands have been evaluated the cards will be collected by the dealer. If a player did not bust and had chosen to stand, the hand and the wager remain at the table until the game is finished. When all players and the dealer have finished their hand, the result of the hand is known. This can be done if the first two cards dealt to you are identical. You can ‘split’ them, and play on as if you have two hands.

You’ll just need to activate your online account using your Grazie Rewards account number and PIN.

Even if the casino offers RSA, you’re only allowed one additional card on each resplit ace, and doubling-down isn’t allowed. If the player’s hand total beats the dealer’s score, they’ll receive a 1 to 1 payout. But if a player’s hand exceeds 21, that hand is ‘bust’ – meaning they lose that round and their wager, even if the dealer busts too. It’s almost identical to classic Blackjack, but the 10 cards are removed. A side bet option is also available where you win if the 2 initial cards are a pair. You can split multiple times unless you have a pair of aces, then, you can split only once.

Understanding Blackjack Payouts

However, in European Blackjack, the dealer receives one card, dealt face-up, and only receives their second card once the players have acted. In American Blackjack, the shoe will have between 6 and 8 decks. Players are allowed to double on any hand regardless of its value, even after splitting. Late surrender is also possible if the dealer’s face-up card is worth 10 or 11, but only after he checks for blackjack. When a player chooses to hit, one extra card will be dealt with the player and the total value of the hand will be increased by the value of the card that is dealt.

Blackjack Rules

If the cards of a post-split hand have the same value, most games allow the player to split again, or “resplit”. The player places a further wager, and the dealer separates the new pair dealing a further card to each as before. Some games allow unlimited resplitting, while others may limit it to a certain number of hands, such as four hands (for example, “resplit to 4”). The dealer has a blackjack less than one-third of the time. In some games, players can also take insurance when a 10-valued card shows, but the dealer has an ace in the hole less than one-tenth of the time.

When a player’s hand signal disagrees with their words, the hand signal takes precedence. Blackjack’s immediate precursor was the English version of twenty-one called vingt-un, a game of unknown (but likely Spanish) provenance. The first written reference is found in a book by the Spanish author Miguel de Cervantes. Cervantes was a gambler, and the protagonists of his “Rinconete y Cortadillo”, from Novelas Ejemplares, are card cheats in Seville.

Double Down On 10 Or 11 Unless The Dealer Has A 10 Or Ace

As for the ace card, it’s up to the player to decide whether an ace they hold will count as 1 or 11 – this is known as a ‘soft total’. A variation where players can place a side bet on their hand. The cards you are dealt must make 1 of 3 possible pairs – Mixed pair (pays 5/1), Color pair (pays 10/1) Perfect pair (pays 30/1).

A general rule of thumb is that the fewer the number of decks the more advantageous it is for the player. An Ace in the initial point total of any double always has a point value of 1 not 11. You may, after receiving the additional card, elect to forfeit. You may forfeit your original bet to the house but retain the amount that you placed for the double and take no further part in that round of play. To indicate to the dealer you wish to forfeit, simply move your finger in a scratching motion towards you.

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