Blackjack is one of the world’s oldest card games in terms of gambling. People have always loved games of chance and blackjack is a fast-paced game with a new hand every couple of minutes. Now there is online blackjack which means you don’t need to leave the house to play it. If you play blackjack online, follow our tips and you can become really good at it.
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- 1 Blackjack basics
- 2 How to win at online blackjack
- 3 Where to play blackjack online
In online blackjack the dealer deals you two cards face up and takes two himself, one face down and one face up. The object of the game is to beat the dealer’s hand and come as close as possible to 21 without going over or going bust as it is known.
The values of cards in online blackjack are as follows:
- Ace – 1 or 10. It depends on the situation which value works best for your hand.
- J, Q, K – 10 points.
- 2 – 10 – all of these cards have their face values.
The best possible hand you can have is a blackjack. This is a 10 or picture card and an Ace.
Once the cards are dealt you will need to decide how to continue. There are five options, fold, hit, stand, split, or double down.
- Fold. This is when you throw away your cards and take no further part in that particular hand. As it costs nothing to take another card, it is very rare a player will fold in online blackjack, but it is another option.
- Hit. To hit is to take another card. There is no limit on the number of times you can hit, but if you go bust, you lose.
- Stand. This is when you choose to take no further cards as you are confident you have the best hand you can possibly have.
- Split. If you are a dealt a pair, you can split them to form two separate hands. You must place a bet on the new hand identical in size to your original bet.
- Double down. You can double your original stake to take one more card. Once this card is dealt, you cannot take any further action in that hand and must stand.
In blackjack, if you beat the dealer, you are paid out at odds of 1/1, except if you have a blackjack and then the odds increase to 3/2. In the event of a draw all stakes are returned to the player. A draw in blackjack is called a push.
How to win at online blackjack
Winning at blackjack is possible if you follow a few basic rules. There is something called basic blackjack strategy. It is a chart that shows you how you should play depending on your cards and the visible dealer’s card. Some of the best advice it gives you is to never split 10s but always split Aces.
Land-based casinos will give players a credit card sized guide to help them. If you are playing online blackjack, you can find a downloadable basic blackjack strategy guide on many gambling websites.
There is the option of taking an insurance bet if the visible dealer’s card is an Ace. This bet covers you in the event of the dealer having blackjack. You must stake 50% of your original stake at odds of 2/1 if you wish to play this kind of bet. It is not recommended that you ever do this.
It effectively turns the dealer’s blackjack into a push and you break even on that hand. However, statistically the dealer is likely to have blackjack in this situation less than 50% of the time and it is not a value bet.
The way to stake
The way you stake can help you win at online blackjack. If you start playing for £1 and you lose, then you can double up. This continues until you win. Then you drip back down to £1 again. Every time you start again, from your original stake you will have made £1. Beware though that sometimes you can lose several hands in a row.
If this happens, the tenth hand would cost you £512. This isn’t a problem if you have a significant bankroll, but the table limits in some online blackjack games might not allow it. Check the table limit before playing.
Counting cards is another way to help you win at online blackjack, although it works better in a live dealer online game. It’s not illegal and it gives you a slight advantage. You need to assign a value to every card you see played and keep a running total. The values of each card are as follows:
- 2 – 6: 1 point
- 7 – 9: 0 points
- 10 – A: -1 points
The higher the total of the count is, the more in a player’s favour the game becomes. You should bet higher, too. This is because there are theoretically a lot more 10s, pictures, and Aces left in the deck.
If the count is low or negative, then the advantage lies with the house. This is because the “good” cards are likely to have all been played and there is a lower chance of a player getting 20 or 21.
Where to play blackjack online
There are hundreds of casinos online. The great news is that every single one of them offers online blackjack in at least one form or another. They are usually video game versions, but you can also play against a live dealer at some casinos.
When choosing which casino to play blackjack online at, you should consider player comments and reviews to find out which are the most reliable and trustworthy. You should also check that the casino is legal to use in your country and that they are properly licensed and regulated.
Finally, choose a casino which gives you a good welcome bonus and then you’ll have a nice bankroll for playing online blackjack for real.