Common questions answered with our detailed Blackjack FAQ. Here is a guide to the most commonly asked questions about blackjack, both online blackjack that can be played at Bovada and live blackjack in land based casinos.
How do I choose a Blackjack table?
Before you start playing Blackjack, you must choose an appropriate table. If you are a beginner, you should learn a few important things. The most important factor is a betting limit. Both the minimum and the maximum allowable bets should be visible on the Blackjack table-top. In many casinos, the colors of tables stand for minimum allowable bets: red for $5, green for $25, and black for $100. You should make sure that the table you've selected is actually a blackjack table and not some other card game. Another thing to consider is the number of decks used in the game. You can also try out some blackjack for free or real money online. Check out Bovada Now.
Basic rules of Blackjack
The main goal in the game of Blackjack is to draw cards until you come as close as possible to 21 without exceeding this number, and to come closer to 21 than the dealer. You compete only against the dealer – you don't care about other players.
What is the value of each card?
In Blackjack, the card values are the following:
- Ace : 1 or 11
- 2-9 : the value is the same as a given card's number
- 10, J, Q, K all equal 10
The total cards value is simply the sum of the values of all cards in your hand, e.g. (5, 7, 9) makes 21. Ace can be counted as 1 or 11, and the value is always chosen to your advantage. For example: (Ace, 6). If you stand on this, it'll be counted as 17. If you hit and draw 3, it makes 20. But if you hit and draw 8, it will make 15 (and not 25), because the Ace will be counted as 1.
If you have an Ace counted as 11, it is a so-called soft-hand. For example, (Ace, 6) is a soft 17, because you can draw another card without any risk that you may exceed 21. On the other hand, (Ace, 6, 10) is a hard 17, because Ace is counted as 1.
What do all the abbreviations in Blackjack mean?
Number of decks – the number of decks that will be used in the game.
Dealer hits or stands on soft 17 – the principle specifying if the dealer must stand on any 17, or if they should hit on so-called soft 17 and stand on hard 17.
Soft 17 – a 17 with an ace in the hand that is counted as 11; For example, an ace + 6 is a soft 17.
Hard 17 – a 17 with an ace counting as 1; For example, an ace + 6 + 10 is a hard 17.
Doubling allowed – some casinos allow doubling of any two-card hand; other casinos allow doubling only when the player has a total higher than 9, 10, or 11.
DA2 – double any two cards
D9 – double 9, 10, or 11 only
D10 – double 10 or 11 only
DAS – double after split
When do I have a Blackjack?
When the first two cards add up to 21. The payout for a Blackjack is 3:2. Be sure any Blackjack table you play on has a 3:2 BJ payout, do not play on 6:5 BJ payout games.
When can I surrender?
A decision to surrender in Blackjack must be taken before drawing a card (except for the two first cards). This option is available only in some casinos. If you feel that your two cards will not beat the dealer, you can surrender – you lose only half of the bet.
There are two kinds of surrender: early and late surrender. Early surrender when a blackjack game offers it can be declared when the dealer is checking his cards for a blackjack. Late surrender can be declared only after the dealer has shown his cards; if the dealer does not have a blackjack, we keep half of the bet.
Hit and Stand
Hit means drawing another card. Stand means that your satisfied with the cards in your hand and don't want to draw anymore.
Doubling down is usually allowed only after drawing the first two cards. Most Online casinos like Bovada allow doubling of any two-card hand; other casinos allow doubling only when the player has a total higher than 9, 10, or 11. Doubling down allows for doubling the bet and drawing an extra card.
Splitting pairs is an option of splitting two cards of the same value. The Blackjack player plays with two separate hands, playing his right hand out before proceeding to his left hand. If two Aces are split, you can draw only one additional card to each of them and drawing 10 does not make a blackjack.
The insurance bet is offered when the dealer's face-up card is an Ace. The dealer asks the players if any of them would like to take insurance. You can take it if you feel that the dealer might draw 10, which would give him a blackjack. Taking insurance, you must place another bet, which is equal to half of the original wager, and if you're right (i.e. the dealer draws 10), you are paid 2:1. If you're wrong, you lose your insurance bet. Insurance is merely a side bet – you still have to beat the dealer to win money on your initial wager. Here is the best Blackjack tip. NEVER TAKE INSURANCE.
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