Blackjack is a game of chance and strategy, but the right play can lead to big wins. The game is played with a single deck of cards and involves players betting money against the dealer. The rules are easy to understand and can be learned quickly. The key to winning is learning basic strategy and mastering the charts.
Blackjack Rules & Charts
A good rule of thumb is to learn one blackjack chart at a time, and use that one until you become comfortable with it. It may take a while, but once you have that one down you will be able to refer to it easily when playing blackjack at a casino.
If you’re just starting out, I recommend sticking with basic strategy as it will give you the best possible chance of making the correct decisions and minimizing the house edge. Once you feel confident with the basics, you can move on to perfect strategy, which will allow you to maximize your wins and minimize your losses.
The first thing you should do when you sit down at a blackjack table is to look at the felt and read the rules. This will help you know what is expected of you and the dealer before you begin playing.
You should also ask the dealer for any side bets that are available. These are usually very profitable for the house, so be sure to check these out before you play.
If you want to bet a small amount of money and increase your odds of getting a hand that is closer to 21, you can purchase insurance. This will cover your initial bet and pay out two to one if the dealer’s face-up card is an Ace. It’s a great way to win when you have a good hand but aren’t sure if you will beat the dealer.
If a player is sure that they will lose their hand, they can surrender their hand by removing half of their bet. The other half will be returned to them if the dealer has a blackjack and will go back into the bankroll.
Occasionally the player will have a hard hand that is unlikely to win and it’s better to simply surrender the half of their bet before checking for blackjack. It is especially helpful when you have a weak total against the dealer’s up-card, such as 12.
If you have a strong first hand that you are certain you can beat, you can stand and stay. Alternatively, you can hit and get another card.
If your hand is fairly weak, you can split it and play two separate hands. You must make your wager before the deal of your second hand starts.
The dealer must then reveal their face-up card and the players can either take more cards or decide to stop playing.
Some casinos have a rule that allows you to double down after splitting, which is great for card counters.