Blackjack is a popular table game that attracts players for a number of reasons. First off, this game is easy to learn and just as easy to play.
In addition to this, if you make the right bets at the right time you can win plenty of money. With that being said, you should never think that blackjack is easy money. If you have ever played this game, you know that nothing could be further from the truth.
The game of blackjack favors the dealer; if both you and the dealer bust (i.e., exceed 21), you lose. Still many people win money at the 21 tables, and there are as many experts on the subject as there are people willing to listen to them. If you want to prolong your ride at the table, the following elementary rules may prove useful.
- Find a table whose minimum is no more than 5% of you total stash. In picking a table, consider rule variations that help the player like the option of doubling down on any two cards, or the dealer having to stand on soft 17. Even if you don’t completely understand them, these rule variations can work to your advantage.
- Start with the basics: Since the dealer has to hit (take a card) on any hand 16 or lower, you’ll never win with less than 17 unless the dealer busts. Take a hit on any hand below 17 when the dealer shows ace, K, Q, J, 10, 9, or 8, cards that are unlikely to make the dealer bust. Stand on any hand above 11 when the dealer shows a 4,5, or 6, cards that will lead then dealer to bust more than 40% of the time.
- “Doubling down” involves doubling your bet and receiving one additional card when your suspect strongly that you will beat the dealer by doing so. This is the player’s chief advantage, so don’t ignore this option. Doubling with 10 against a 9 or lower and with any hand of 11. Rules permitting, double with 9, or with “soft” hands (hands that count an ace as 11) of 13-17 against a 4, 5, or 6.
- If you are dealt two cards of the same value, you may “split” them, doubling your bet and playing two hands. Never split 10’s or 5’s. Always split 8’s or 7’s against a dealer’s card of equal or lower value. Always split 2’s or 3’s against a 4, 5, or 6. Always split aces. Never split face cards, 10’s, or 5’s.
- Tip (or “toke”) the dealer, Some advantage players wince at the thought of tipping the dealer, but there are reasons to tip the dealer beyond just being a nice guy. A player who tips the dealer generously might get a dealer who shuffles up a little later in the game than he might do otherwise, which is a boon to any card counter. And friendly dealers just make the game more enjoyable. By tipping the dealer, you help to make sure that your dealer stays friendly. And if one of your advantage play techniques is trying to take advantage of dealer tells, you might find that a generously tipped dealer suddenly has more obvious tells.
- Never play until you are sure of every rule. This holds true when playing blackjack, as well as every other casino game. If you do not know the rules you will find it difficult to win and understand both the ups and downs. Luckily, as mentioned above, blackjack is not a difficult game to learn.
- Build up the amount that you bet. You never want to place large bets until you are comfortable doing so. Instead, stick to low limit tables that will allow you to get your feet wet. If you are going to lose, you might as well do so when playing with as little money as possible. As you gain confidence in your skills, you can then step up the amount of money that you bet.
- Take advantage of every possible learning opportunity. This includes asking questions of other players, reading online, and practicing with friends at home. The more that you learn about blackjack, the more comfortable you will feel playing and placing large bets.
If you are in search of a simple card game that is easy to learn, blackjack may be right for you. This is the most popular table game at most casinos, and once you learn the basics you will be able to play no matter what establishment you walk into. We hope that these general blackjack tips help you become a better blackjack player. They’re not anything profound or deep, and these blackjack tips aren’t as important as learning basic strategy. But they should help you get into the right mindset.