A Beginner’s Guide to Blackjack

Blackjack is the most popular casino game in the world. But before you begin to play it, you should understand some of its basics. For instance, you should know that the player with a hand of five-A has a soft 16 and the one with a six-card has a hard 12; if the player draws to the soft hand, the dealer is unlikely to bet on the player’s hand. In addition, the playing strategy for hard and soft hands is different. For example, you should play a hand of 10-6 (hard 16) differently than A-5 (soft 16).

Basic strategy

If you are a new player to blackjack, the best place to start is by learning the basics. You can find plenty of free resources online and in print. A common chart for blackjack strategy shows which card the dealer has and which card the player should take, as well as what the dealer will have up next. The majority of casinos will let you use a strategy chart on the blackjack table. Once you understand basic strategy, you will be ready to apply it to specific situations.

Side bets

Blackjack side bets are optional wagers that players can place. Some side bets are popular choices. For example, there is the Super Sevens wager, which focuses on the number seven. This is considered one of the most lucrative side bets. Other side bets include Over/Under 13, which involves predicting whether the first two cards will be over or under thirteen. This side bet is particularly profitable if the initial cards are aces. However, you should understand that there is a difference in house edge between the “over” and “under” options.


Blackjack insurance is a side bet that is placed on the dealer’s hole card. Although it is tempting, it is a sucker bet that is best avoided by smart players. As the name suggests, it bets that the dealer will have blackjack before he draws his next card.


Blackjack surrendering is an option available to players in many casinos and online casinos. Although it has some advantages, most players are not familiar with the strategy and fail to take advantage of it. It is best to ask a floorman or dealer if surrendering is available at your table. The rules for blackjack surrendering vary from casino to casino, so it is important to learn the basic rules before you start playing.


The risk of blackjack can vary from low to high, and can depend on the game and bankroll. Professional gamblers and those who desire a competitive edge will typically opt for games with the lowest risk. A recent study found that men who were sexually aroused were more likely to take blackjack risks.

Basic rules

In blackjack, each player is dealt two cards, a face-up card and a face-down card. The dealer also receives two cards, one face-up and one face-down. Afterwards, each player is dealt one more card, starting from the dealer’s left. The player who is satisfied with their hand can “stand,” while the player who wants another card must “hit.” Certain exceptions to these rules are listed in the rules of the game.

No-peek (European) blackjack

No-peek European blackjack is a variation of the popular American blackjack game. In this variation, the dealer deals two cards to each player, with one of them hidden and the other revealed. This gives the house a small advantage over the players. It also prohibits players from doing things such as splitting or doubling down on aces, or hitting on soft totals. The players have the option of standing in this variation if they are satisfied with their two-card hand. However, in European blackjack, the dealer can still show a face-up card, which can change the decision of the players.

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