BLACKJACK is a popular casino game that is widely accepted in the online and offline gaming communities.
Many online platforms, such as black-jack.com for example, are designed specially for that game. And why not? There is such a big Know How hidden behind the glamour of blackjack. On the first place blackjack is a simple game, but actually it requires the players to understand the basic strategies, tips, and tricks that will improve their chances of winning.. Basically, there are numerous blackjack strategies that are designed to give players an edge over the dealer and enable them to win big.
In this article, we will look at some tips and tricks that you need to know so that you can improve your game and become a better blackjack player.
Learn the Basic Strategy
Nothing is more important than learning the correct basic strategy, especially for beginners, before you start playing. The basic blackjack strategy is the optimal way to play so as to win and to also maximize your chances of winning. Blackjack strategy charts come in handy when you are in doubt since they tell the player how to act in every situation.
When determining when to split your hand according to the value of your pair and the face up card of the dealer, the following rules apply:
- Always split aces as this increases the chances of getting a solid or winning hand. Since Aces have the value of 1 or 11, a pair could give weak hands at the value of 22, 12 or 2. Splitting the pair will give you the chance to make a blackjack.
- Always split 8s no matter what. When you split a hand of two 8s, you increase your chances of getting a hand of at least one 10 value card.
- Split 2s and 3s only if the dealer is showing a card from 4-7.
- Only split 6s and 7s if the card of the dealer is 6 or below.
Similarly, there are pairs that should never be split. They include:
- Do not split a hand of two 10s. If you have a pair of 10, your total hand value will be 20. Hence, it is risky to split such a strong hand only to get a bad hand.
- You must not split a hand of two 5s. Splitting will double your chance of getting two hands that are both very weak.
Understand the Concept of Double Down
When you double down in blackjack, you simply double your original bet and receive an extra card. When you double your stake on strong positions, you can make the most of these positions and take the power away from the dealer. However, you may only be allowed to double down based on the value of your original hand. For instance, in some casinos, you may not be allowed to double down on 11 as this reduces their advantage.
In doubling-down, the rule of thumb applies to:
- Double down on 11 with the exception of when you are against an ace
- Double down on 9 if the dealer has 3, 4, 5 and 6
- Double down if your hand values 10 against the dealers 4, 5, or 6
It is always advisable to let the dealer know of your intention to double down so as to avoid confusions when the cards are drawn.
Review the Dealer’s Up Card
Make sure you check the dealer’s up card before you take any action. When you know whether it is good (7 all the way to Ace) or bad (2 through 6), you will be able to make an informed decision.
Know the Card Counting Strategy
Card counting is a strategy that is used by many advanced blackjack players in order to maximize profits and reduce losses. In the card counting strategy, high-valued cards like aces, face cards, and 10s count as -1, low valued cards like 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6 counts as +1 while 7, 8, 9 counts as 0. The trick is to sum up your cards according to where they belong in order to get the running count. This will help you count the real edge of the casino. While this strategy is simple to learn, it requires practice. You should also be careful not to get caught by the security staff as this could get you removed from the casino. Unfortunately, the card counting strategy does not work online since the decks are shuffled after every new hand.
Never Take Insurance
Do not play insurance unless you are an advanced player counting cards. Insurance is always a bad bet regardless of what your hand is or how much you bet. According to a gambling expert, an insurance bet gives the house a 6% advantage over the player. Basically, the dealer will get a blackjack under the ace from only 4 out of 13 cards. It is, therefore, wise and more profitable to risk losing your first stake than to try and guard it against the dealer with the blackjack.
Avoid the First Base Seat
Always avoid the first base seat and opt to sit further down. This way, you will have more time to review and check your card as well as the dealer’s up card.
There are many benefits that can be accrued from playing blackjack online. For one, it is cheaper since you don’t have to book a hotel or fill up your gas like when you play at the casino. You also won’t need to tip the dealer. What’s more, playing online can earn you great bonuses compared to playing at your local casino. Most online casinos offer welcome bonuses of up to 100% or 200% of your initial deposit.
Know the Rules of Blackjack Variations
There are many variations of blackjack, including progressive Blackjack, Perfect Pairs, Super 21 and many more. All these games have different rules with some having the option of progressive jackpots and side bets. Therefore, before you make any game selection, it is important to know the rules as well as the payouts of every game.
Know How to Play a Soft Hand
A soft hand in blackjack refers to the hand that contains an Ace. For instance, if you deal with Ace and a two, you would have a soft 13. A soft hand can’t bust in one hit like the hard hand. The reason for this is because an Ace has the value of either a 1 or 11. Therefore, soft hands are more favorable to have.
Know How to Play a Hard Hand
A hard hand does not contain an Ace. For instance, if you have a 10 and a 3, this would be hard of 13. Unlike a soft hand, a hard hand can burst in one hit with the exception of 3 and 4. Generally, hard hands are risky to have.
The tips above will help you maximize your profits and overcome the house edge in every possible way. From knowing when to double, when to split a pair, when not to split a pair and the basic play strategy, you will be more knowledgeable of the game and in a better position to win.