One of the most famous card games in the world, Blackjack is a popular casino game that is played against the dealer. The aim is to create a hand of cards that scores higher than the dealers, without exceeding 21 points and going bust.
Thanks to online operators such as 777 casino, Blackjack has seen a resurgence in popularity in recent years, as more and more people discover this simple, but exciting game of skill. Simple to learn and accessible to play online at any time, this classic card game has found a whole new audience.
History of Blackjack
‘Vingt-Un’, or ‘Twenty One’, is regarded as the pre-cursor to the Blackjack that we know today. There are references to the game that date back to the 17th century, but it wasn’t until it reached America in the 19th century, that it was first called blackjack.
This thrilling game has been featured countless times in blockbuster movies, including James Bond, and its transition to online platforms has seen a further boom in its popularity worldwide. Thanks to technology and the internet, a game of blackjack is no longer the preserve of land-based casinos and is widely available to all.
Top Blackjack Tips
If you’re new to the game or just a casual player, here are our top tips to increase your chances of winning.
Learn the terminology:
It’s important to know the basic phrases involved in blackjack if you want to stand any chance of winning. So, it’s a good idea to learn the common terms you will hear when playing.
- Bust: Any hand that exceeds the value of 21 is bust.
- Cut: Splitting the card decks after shuffling but before dealing.
- Dealer Peek: The dealer can check for blackjack if their up card is an ace or a ten.
- Double: An optional bet where a player can double their initial stake and receive one extra card.
- Hit: To have another card dealt to your hand.
- Hole Card: The dealer’s face down card that is received on the first deal.
- Resplit: To split a hand following an initial split (see below).
- Split: When dealt two cards of equal value, players can ‘split’ their hand and create two new hands by matching their initial stake.
- Stand: To receive no more cards from the dealer – also known as ‘Stick’.
- Surrender: To forfeit or fold a hand.
- Up Card: The dealer’s exposed card received on the first deal.
It’s impossible to win every hand, no matter what game you are playing, so losses will be inevitable at some point. Before you start, make sure you set yourself a budget or ‘bankroll’ that you can afford to lose and stick to it.
Once your bankroll is gone, it’s time to walk away.
If you are new to blackjack or still learning the ropes, it’s a good idea to start small when it comes to wagers. As your confidence and understanding increases, you can increase your bets accordingly.
Avoid first base
Another simple but great tip, is to stay away from the seat closest to the dealer. By sitting further away you gain more thinking time, and allow yourself to make clear and well thought out decisions, and not be rushed into potentially costly mistakes.
Do not play insurance
This is a crazy bet unless you’re an expert card counter. It is a new bet with more money, that is based on whether or not the dealer has blackjack. Avoid at all costs.
Check out the dealer’s up card
Before you make a decision on how good your hand is, be sure to check out the dealer’s up card. Is it bad – showing a 2, 3, 4, 5 or 6? Or is it good, and showing a 7 and up?
Play basic strategy
There are numerous basic playing strategies that when applied to your hand, will help reduce the house edge and improve your chances of winning. It’s well worth checking them out before you start playing in order to maximise your chances of success.
By memorising these strategies, and knowing when to hit, stand, split, and more, the better your chances of winning. Basic strategies include:
- Always split Aces and 8s.
- Hit or double Aces through 6.
- Stand when your hand is 12-16 when the dealer has 2 through 6.
- Hit when your hand is 12-16 when the dealer has 7 through Ace.
- Double 11 versus the dealer’s 2-10.
- Never split a pair of 5s or 10s.
If playing online, a strategy card is a useful tool to keep handy.
Remember to have fun
The most important tip is to remember that playing blackjack is a fun way to spend some time. By following our tips you’ll increase your chances of winning and maximise your enjoyment. If you’ve never tried blackjack before, why not be like 007 and give it a go?