Tips for Effective Blackjack Play

Nearly everyone understands the basic idea behind blackjack, whether or not they have ever tried to play. The idea of the game is to beat the house with a score of 21 or as close as possible without going over, but players must exercise caution in order to win.

Playing for Money

When it comes to playing blackjack for real money, people must understand that the game is often not as simple as they once thought. There are mathematical strategies that many players use to their advantage, though the dealer is forced to hit and stand based on house rules. As such, following a strategy chart that corresponds with the type of blackjack being played is incredibly important as this can help players make the best decisions in any situation.

Basic Tips

• Regardless of the dealer's up-card, always hit on 5, 6, 7 or 8
• Double on 9 when the dealer has 3-6; hit if the dealer holds any other card
• Double on 10 or 11 if the dealer has 2-9; hit if the dealer holds any other card
• Hit on 12 if the dealer has a 2 or 3, stand if the dealer has 4, 5 or 6, and hit if the dealer has 7 or higher
• Hit on 13, 14, 15 and 16 if the dealer has a 7 and above, but stand if the dealer has 2-6

Common Misconceptions

• Strategies guarantee wins. This is not true. Following a strategy will never guarantee a win because the house edge is always higher than the player edge.
• Players will win over a longer period of time. The odds favor the casino even more in the long run, so play short sessions to maximize profits.
• The only fun is in winning. Again, this is not true. Blackjack should be enjoyed, win or lose.

Blackjack is a game of skill that people all over the world can enjoy as long as they are willing to follow a few simple guidelines. While no win can ever be guaranteed, players will win more often when following a sound strategy.