How to Play Blackjack: A Beginner's Guide
Want to know how to play blackjack?
Blackjack is one of the most popular casino table games, but it can be hard to learn how to play.
There are a lot of blackjack experts out there who want to teach you how to play. But when you look at their explanations and instructions they use confusing words and complicated math that’s hard for beginners to understand.
But don’t worry! Keep reading as our simple guide breaks down every step of blackjack into simple terms so anyone can learn this game without getting frustrated or confused.
Let’s dive into the blackjack tips:
What Is Blackjack?
Blackjack, also known as twenty-one, is a card game played between players and the dealer. Although it has some similarities to other games like poker and baccarat, blackjack is unique because you play against the house rather than any other individual player.
The objective of blackjack is simple: get your cards close to 21 without going over (or “busting”). Face cards are worth 10 points; aces can be worth 1 or 11 at your discretion.
Once everyone at the table has either busted or folded (i.e., given up), whoever has the highest card total without busting wins!
How Many People Can Play?
While most casinos limit tables to six players, you can also find tables with as many spots as the casino has open. If you’re looking for a game, ask the dealer how many spots are available before committing to play.
While two people can play, the most popular way to play is with at least three players. Having more than six makes it difficult for the dealer to shuffle and deal. Furthermore, as you’ll see below, certain strategies work better in a group of four or more.
What Are the Objectives?
Blackjack has two main objectives: (1) to get as close to 21 as possible without going over and (2) to beat the dealer’s hand. To do so, players make two decisions: how much to bet and which cards to take.
Many people think blackjack is all about luck. This isn’t the case, though luck does play a role in determining the winner. In order to have a better chance of winning, you need to adopt a strategy and learn when to hold ’em and when to fold ’em!
What Is the Dealer’s Role?
The dealer serves two main functions: (1) determine who gets new cards if they don’t bust and (2) deal each player with their cards. The dealer’s role is pretty straightforward; it’s the players’ decisions that make the game interesting!
How Does Betting Work?
At blackjack, bets are placed by making chips equal to either the minimum or maximum bet. Houses typically limit maximum bets to $100–$500 per hand; however, at online casinos, you’ll typically be allowed to bet up to $5–$500 (or more). Some will even let you set your own limits.
Where Do I Sit?
After joining the table and placing your bet, take a seat based on two criteria: first, where is everybody else sitting? And second, where does the dealer position herself? The dealer will typically stand in the middle of the table, and players will sit to her left and right.
What Are the Basic Rules?
Now that you know how to play blackjack, it’s important to understand a few key rules:
- In order to stay in the game, you must make an equal bet or raise the previous bet.
- If you go over 21 points, you bust and lose your bet.
- Winning hands are paid 1:1 unless they include a blackjack, which is paid 3:2.
- You can double down after splitting (assuming both cards are of equal value), but you cannot hit on split aces (i.e., receive another card).
- You may split up to three times, but you cannot hit on split 10s (i.e., receive another card).
- Dealer hits on soft 17 (i.e., if the dealer has an ace and 6 total points).
- When splitting, only the original bet is played; wins or losses are calculated based on that bet alone.
- You must stand when you have two cards totaling less than 7 points; otherwise, you may hit as many times as you wish until reaching 7 points or busting.
What does “blackjack” mean? An ace and any ten-point card makes for a blackjack, which is paid 3:2 (triple your bet) instead of 1:1.
What Are the House Rules?
Although blackjack rules are the same across casinos, some may have different policies surrounding doubling down, hitting split aces, standing on 7 points or lower, and more.
It’s important to know what kinds of situations you’ll run into while playing so you know how to respond.
How Does Hi/Lo Work?
Cards 2 through 6 are worth their face value. Tens, jacks, queens, and kings are worth 10 points. The ace can be worth either 1 point (low) or 11 points (high).
After receiving cards, players may choose to “split” if both cards are of equal value—in this case, they get another card on each card to form two separate hands.
If either hand goes over 21 points, it is considered “bust” and the player loses the bet. At the end of the game, any player with a score less than 21 will win one-and-a-half times their bet.
Any player with over 21 but under 36 will win only what they bet, and anyone with 36 or more points will lose their bet.
Where Can I Play Blackjack Online?
You can find the best online casino sites that offer blackjack across all major browsers in addition to mobile devices. Google Play and iOS apps are widely available as well in most countries.
Blackjack is one of the most popular casino games in the world, enjoyed by both novice and experienced players. In order to play blackjack, you first need to understand the basic rules.
This guide will teach you how to play blackjack like a pro, from placing your bet to understanding when to hit or stand.
Once you’ve got the basics down, you can move on to learning about the different variations of the game. For example, some blackjack games offer special side bets that give you a chance to win bigger payouts.
Or, if you’re feeling lucky, you can try your hand at a progressive jackpot game where the potential rewards are as high as they get.
10 Tips to Help You Win at Blackjack
Playing blackjack for the first time may be a little overwhelming. Here are 10 blackjack strategies to help you win at blackjack quickly:
- Don’t be afraid to ask questions.
- Pay attention to what other players are doing.
- If you’re breaking the bank, step away from the table; this is no fun if it’s not a fair game!
- Make friends at the table—competition can raise tension and cause poor decisions.
- Have an idea of your pre-existing strategy before sitting down (i.e., don’t just wing it).
- Know when to place big bets and when to cash out (and never bet more than you can afford to lose).
- Keep track of what cards have been played so far—this will help you figure out the odds of other players getting good hands.
- Stay disciplined, and never chase your losses.
- Seek professional help if you’re addicted to gambling (gambling addiction is a real thing!).
- Have fun! Gambling should be enjoyable, not nerve-wracking.
Now that you have a basic understanding of how to play blackjack, it’s time to put your skills to the test! Don’t overthink it, just enjoy the game.
Are There Other Card Games Similar to Blackjack?
Yes! Jack is actually a variation on blackjack. Players are dealt two cards and must make a decision on whether to hit, stand, double down, or split before the dealer reveals their card. If the player’s total is closer to 21 than the dealer’s, the player wins. If not, they lose. Other popular variations of blackjack include pontoon (UK), casino war, and sic bo (Hong Kong/Macau).
With this beginner’s guide to blackjack, you will now know how to play blackjack like a pro. From card counting and the rules of play, we cover all aspects of how to win at blackjack in our blog. If you want more information about your favorite casino game or need help with strategy tips for winning at card games such as poker or baccarat, head over here now!
Also, don’t forget to share this article with anybody you may know who is looking at investing time and money into playing blackjack for the first time!