The real essence of any Blackjack strategy is deciding what not to do. Some legendary players use this particular form to ensure that they are never on the losing side. With time, the strategies have changed. While some players stick to the classic scenarios, others love trying out new norms of the blackjack card.
Unlike Roulette or Slots, Blackjack is a game that revolves around a player’s grit and audacity. He can make a jackpot from ‘nothing’ cards or may fail to win even if he has the best combination. The way the game progresses depends on the player’s skills and the strategies they implement.
If you are curious about these, you are in for a great revelation. Buckle up as we bring you some basic and advanced blackjack strategies. Let’s begin:
Blackjack Strategy: When to HIT or STAND
Most of the chances you get in the game should be utilized by your ability to HIT or STAND at the right time. Though these are basic strategical moves, you need to be aware of them as they can come in handy during various game events.
When you choose to HIT, you instruct the dealer, requesting an extra card. You can indicate the action by either tapping the table or simply saying ‘HIT’.
Note that you are holding up your bets and ending your turn when you choose to STAND. You can perform this action by simply waving your hand to the dealer.
To HIT or to STAND?
It mainly depends on the cards of the dealers. When destiny is against you, the dealer might get an ace. When you recognize this, you should try your best to get a good hand of 17 or above. This is because the dealer will have a strong chance of Hitting the card with a value of 10 or above, like J, Q or K. Note that when the dealer’s card is of 10 values, you will still need a strong hand to beat that. If you have a card of numbers between 12 to 16 or 10, you have the chance of Standing on 17 or above. This is the moment when you should choose to get an extra card using the HIT option.
When the dealer is not so lucky and has a seven or nine, the possibility of him getting a Blackjack is at naught. In this case, you should not loosen up the strings. Keep in mind that the dealer can still get a hand better than you by Hitting 17 or more, for which you will need a more substantial hand. You should decide to HIT if you have nine or fewer cards or a total of 12 – 16. And you should use HIT if you are getting a total of 17 or more.
Also, you are in the game if the dealer has a card of four, five, or six. It would help if you avoided BUST in any case. Try Hitting on eight or less. You can use STAND if you have anything 12 or higher. If the dealer has three, you can HIT on any card below eight or 12. You should STAND if you have 13 or anything above that.
When the dealer has a card of two, you should HIT if you have nine or anything below that. Use STAND in this case if you have 13 or anything above that.
Blackjack Strategy: When to Double Down or Split?
Double down is the act of doubling your bet. A player can do this only after viewing his initial pair of cards. When doubling down, it is mandatory to draw an additional card.
Doubling down is helpful when the total hand value is 10 or 11. If you do this, you will have a 30% chance of Hitting another ten-value card, which will make you win the game. But players need to decide whether it is worth taking the risk or not.
You can use the action SPLIT if you get the two initial cards of the same value. After viewing your first two cards, you should indicate the move to the dealer as soon as possible.
When choosing SPLIT, your cards will be divided into two hands, matching your bet with a second wager. This means that you have the chance to double your winnings. However, you also become prone to dual loss by this move. As risky as it sounds, many players use the SPLIT Blackjack strategy to hit the best wins of their lives.
Once you get a good card combination, it is easy to get overridden by confidence and choose SPLIT. This is where you need to bet on your cards wisely. Players who take calculated risks are ahead of the game.
When you check for an online Blackjack strategy card, you will notice that it is always advisable to SPLIT when you get the Aces pair or a pair of eight. This is because the chances of grabbing 10 value cards increase when you get these cards. There is a good chance of hitting 21 in Blackjack when you SPLIT your ace or eight pair.
If you get nine, you may look to SPLIT if you think the dealer will have any card between two to six or eight or nine. Alternatively, you can STAND if you believe the dealer has a seven, an ace, or a 10.
When you get a pair of six and the dealer has the card between two and six, SPLIT is the ideal option in this case. When you have seven and the dealer has anything between two and seven, you can choose SPLIT again as you will get good odds of hitting the Blackjack.
If you have a pair of four and the dealer has five or six; SPLIT is again a good strategy. In this scenario, you can also choose HIT and take your chance with another card.
If you are dealing with a pair of two or three, you can SPLIT only if the dealer has any number between two and seven. If not, then you should use HIT and choose another card. When you get a pair of fours, and the dealer has five or six, you can also SPLIT.
What is a Blackjack Strategy Chart?
When you search for a strategy on the net, you might encounter charts or diagrams with blocks represented in different colors. Players use this strategy chart as a standard form of learning the game. The chart helps you determine the best time to choose your move from HIT, STAND, DOUBLE, or SPLIT. The chart usually considers strategies when the surrender move is not present.
In the left-hand column of the strategy chart, you can see the dealer’s hand combinations. The rest of the columns usually represent the chances of Hitting or Standing as per the card combinations.
Mistakes to Avoid
Blackjack is not all about making the luck turn in your favor. A Blackjack basic strategy is to avoid mistakes. While it is easy to boil down the game into one sentence of hitting the 21 numbers, several mistakes must be avoided. These include:
- Always take into account the minimum bet on the table. You may try looking for a minimum stake that you can find. This will help maximize your exposure to Blackjack. It will also limit the potential loss in the long run.
- As a player, you should use proper signals to address your move. Do not follow the TV commercials or movie scenes to vocab the dialogues ‘I will HIT’, or ‘I would like to STAY’. This doesn’t work in real casinos. When you use signals, you prevent any type of misinformation. Also, if you doubt your action, you can always seek the help of surveillance to check the actions.
- Always learn and remember the signals. Here are the ones you can use:
- HIT– Scratch the table using only your index finger
- STAND– Wave your hand gently over your cards
- SPLIT– Match your original bet and make a sign like V using the first two fingers of your hand
- DOUBLE DOWN- Place some extra money, not more than the original bet, on the table and flash the number 1 sign behind the cards.
- Forgetting the true value of an ace is a common mistake a player makes while understanding the Blackjack strategy. The ace has two values- 1 and 11. You can consider any value to create great combinations while using HIT or STAND.
- Many Blackjack experts consider taking insurance an inescapable mistake. Usually, when the dealer has an Ace, the player can buy the insurance. It is a type of side bet which costs half of the original bet, paying you 2:1. If the dealer’s hole card is 10, then the player wins the insurance bet. However, the wager loses if the second card is not a 10 card. One should avoid taking insurance. The numbers suggest that taking insurance indicates that a player is playing an already lost hand. This gives other players the edge, and the odds turn in their favor most of the time.
Blackjack is not rocket science. But it is not a child’s play either. The game has different levels, and you must practice a lot to learn everything. We hope that you will feel ready to try the game with a stellar Blackjack strategy by reading the above-curated content. Don’t forget that you should have played a few practice hands with fake money before going all in. If you’re quite new to the game, feel free to explore these Blackjack rules. Good luck.