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Beginners Guide to Blackjack – Basic Strategy and Tips
If you’re new to Blackjack, you probably have a lot of questions. If you don’t want to leave the table empty-handed, there are a few things you should know. This stuff is too simple for the pro’s, but every beginner should read this article.
The basics of blackjack
The goal of the game is for your hand to equal 21, called a Blackjack, or have the highest hand closest to 21 without going over. If you go over, you “bust” and lose. And if you have only 13 for example, but the dealers busts, you win. To “hit” means you want the dealer to give you another card. If you don’t want another card and wish to stay where you’re at, you are choosing to “stand.” There are other strategies to playing blackjack such as doubling down, splitting, insurance and surrendering, but those are beyond the basics of blackjack.
Who wins in a tie, me or the dealer?
In almost all casinos, a tie is called a “push,” and the player will get their money back. Nobody loses their money. There are casinos where a tie in Blackjack might result in a loss for the player, but these rules are rare. Make sure you check house rules for tables games wherever you’re playing. If the dealer wins in a push, you shouldn’t be playing at that casino.
What are my odds of winning in a game of Blackjack?
The house usually has an advantage of about 8%. This happens because they are the last player to lay down their card, which gives all other players a chance to bust before it’s the dealers turn. These odds can be reduced by effectively learning the game at an advanced level and understanding the probability of busting based on the cards in your hand and what could still be in the dealer’s hand or the deck. For example, only 30 percent of the deck is worth 10, making the old strategy of assuming the dealer has a 10 useless.
How much money do I need for an afternoon playing Blackjack?
The amount of money you want to spend depends entirely on your budget and the minimum bet of the table you’re playing. Dealers are fast and you can probably fit in about 25 hands in 15 minutes at a full table. At a $5 table, that’s $125 at least. Of course this isn’t taking into consideration any wins. If you just want to play and are looking to get in some decent playing time, consider playing a $1 table, where $50 can have you playing for about a half-hour if all your hands are losses. Obviously, wins will increase your playing time drastically.
What the heck is the dealer saying after I cut a new deck?
This one is funny, because even many experienced blackjack players don’t understand what the dealer is saying when they split a new deck. It happens so fast and casinos are noisy. The dealer is actually calling out “shuffle check” to the pit boss, which indicates that the cards have been cut. This ensures that the deck is not rigged.
A basic strategy to get you started
This is a basic strategy to help you get started understanding blackjack. If your hand equals 12-16 or the dealer has 2-6, it’s called a “stiff” hand. If you and the dealer both have a stiff hand, you should stand. If you have a 17 or better, or the dealer has a 7 and an Ace, it’s called a “Pat” hand. If you have a Pat hand, you should stand. If you have a stiff hand and the dealer has a pat hand, you should hit.
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