However, if you’re in the latter camp gaming is about so much more than just having fun, it’s an opportunity to show off your talents and win, win, win. If you’ve recently got into blackjack and want to take that winning attitude to the classic card game, then this is the article for you.
Read on to find out the tips and tricks that will revolutionise the way you play blackjack and put you on track to rake in some tidy winnings.
Can you beat blackjack?
Before we get into discussing the great blackjack strategies that you can use to win more often, it’s important to understand something called ‘house edge’. Every casino game in the world has a house edge, which is to say that the dealer has an advantage over you.
The house edge is a statistical way of measuring the dealer’s advantage and in blackjack the edge is usually between 0.5% and 2%. This article isn’t a guide on how to eliminate the house edge, rather it is a guide on how to reduce the house edge as much as possible.
The average blackjack player is so bad that the house edge usually hovers at around 2% or higher, but by reading this article and using the tips included you’ll be able to get it down to 0.5% and thus, boost your chances of winning big.
Tip #1: Knowledge is power
Blackjack is an incredibly simple game especially in comparison to other popular casino games like baccarat and poker. However, don’t be tricked into thinking that you can just jump into a game of online blackjack and pick up the rules as you go along.
Spend some time reading up on the game online, figuring out the rules and maybe even practicing with your friends or on a free site before playing with real cash. You don’t want to be learning as you go along because that’s a sure-fire way to burn through money.
Make sure you read up on the terms and phrases that are unique to blackjack too as otherwise, blackjack strategies can be confusing and hard to understand.
Strategy #1: Always double down on a hard 11
Henry Tamburin is one of the best-known blackjack experts in the world and one of the best players on the planet. He is also the author of ‘The Ultimate Blackjack Strategy Guide’ which is a must-read for anyone wanting to get better at the game.
One of the best and easiest strategies to follow in Tamburin’s guide is his advice to always double down on a hard 11. Tamburin posits that you will always win more money if you follow this strategy against any dealer’s up card rather than hitting.
The only caveat to this rule comes when you are playing a game with a multi-card deck where the dealer can stand on a soft 17. Otherwise double down, double down and double down some more to boost your chances of beating the dealer.
Tip #2: Skip Insurance
The majority of online casinos and traditional bricks and mortar venues are fond of offering blackjack players insurance bets. These might seem tempting when the stakes are high or when you’re on a losing streak, but you have to remember, when you place an insurance bet the house edge soars to 6%.
Even if you end up having blackjack when you place an insurance bet, you’ll only win your original bet. Insurance is a trick the casinos play to make you place an extra bet that has a lower chance of winning.
Strategy #2: Always hit Ace – 7 when the dealer’s up card is 9, 10 or Ace
18 sounds like a pretty good number to have when you’re playing blackjack, but if you hit a soft 18 and the dealer has a strong up card you are the underdog no matter what you do. By hitting though you improve your chances of hitting blackjack, especially if a low card is next out of the pile.
Also, there’s no chance of you going bust with a soft 18 so metaphorically speaking, it’s safe to roll the dice.
Tip #3: Read the dealer’s up card
Far too many blackjack players get tunnel vision at the table and focus on what they have and how they can get to blackjack. What they fail to remember is that they ONLY have to beat the dealer, they don’t have to hit blackjack.
Always pay attention to the dealer’s up card so you can tailor your approach accordingly.
Strategy #3: Chuck hard 16
There’s no way round it, a hard 15 or a hard 16 are the worst hands to get in blackjack and they are even worse when the dealer has a strong up card. Cut your losses when the card Gods throw hard 15 or 16 your way and mitigate your losses.
If you do this consistently, you’ll save yourself money in the long run which you can then reinvest when you have a strong hand.