Basic Blackjack Strategy

Having existed in one form or another since the beginning of the 1600s, it is clear that blackjack is not going anywhere. Where roulette removes control from the equation for many players, blackjack is a game where you can call more shots. To help you get started, we have prepared an informative guide for basic blackjack strategy, specifically for UK players.

Learn How to Play Blackjack

The simplest of the rules to explain is that you combine the value of playing cards to try and finish on a higher value than the dealer, all without going above 21. When player and dealer finish on the same value, each will get to take back their stake. What you need to bear in mind is that you stand no chance of beating the dealer if you finish higher than 21 and go “bust”.

In building a blackjack deck, an online casino will commonly draw from eight virtual decks. After placing an entry stake, you will be dealt two cards by the dealer. On the numbered cards, the value of each will be its number. For aces, you can choose for the value to be either one or 11. All of the face cards (jacks, queens, kings) are worth 10.

After being dealt your first two cards, the decision that you make can include the following:

  • Stand – You choose to stick with your two cards and make no further moves. A score of 16 upwards could lead to you making this decision.
  • Hit – Another common decision is to decide that you want another card. However, you will go bust if your new card causes you to go beyond 21.
  • Double – Double the size of your opening stake against the dealer. The caveat of making this decision is that you only receive one more card.
  • Split – Having two of the same card will entitle you to split the hand into two. You will then play on with two hands, but some sites will not let you select the double option.
  • Surrender – You choose to keep half of your stake and sacrifice the other after receiving your first two hands. This is not a guaranteed option in all blackjack games.

Blackjack rules UK are generally quite similar to those found at US casinos, with sites only making minor adjustments in some of the finer rules. The main differences will come if you play variants like pontoon or Spanish 21.

Winning at Blackjack

While even a first-time gambler can go on a good run, there is only so far that luck can carry them. Knowing how to win at blackjack is important if you want to become a long-term player. This is why you need to understand basic blackjack strategy.

A major component of the strategy is determined by mathematics. As a result, this is why most online blackjack games require for the dealer to hit until they hit at least 16. This is important to remember because there are times when you can win on 16 or 17 just because the dealer is forced to hit and then goes over 21.

Another fundamental is that hitting on anything above 16 represents a major risk. There is a myriad of outcomes in blackjack, so just bear in mind that you’re taking an unnecessary risk in hitting on 17 or higher, as there are few cards that can help.

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Now you can have the confidence to get out there and start playing blackjack.