Blackjack is a globally popular card game. Players play against the dealer instead of other players. Like other card and casino games, blackjack is a game of strategy and luck. As you try your luck to get your cards to add up to 21, here are advanced rules to observe to increase winning odds.
Rule # 1 Never Swear by Insurance Bets
Insurance bets equal half your stake and payout 2 to 1 in wins. In other words, insurance bets promise higher payouts, but the winning odds are lower. You might enjoy some shield against losses when the dealer has a blackjack. You might also win handsome amounts when you get a blackjack. However, the algorithms have never favored insurance bets. Besides, the long-term expected value of insurance bets is zero, regardless of the punter’s luck and experience.
Rule #2 Double Down when Your Total Cards Equal 11
If the total value of cards equals hard 11, double down. When you’re holding 11, you’ve better chances of hitting the blackjack or getting closer to 21 if you pick another card. However, doubling down 11 won’t be a good idea when the multi-deck game rules require the dealer to stand on soft 17.
Rule # 3 Hit 12 Against Dealer’s 2 or 3
The truth is, whether you hit or stand on 12 against a dealer’s 2 or 3, you’ll lose money over time. However, you can cut the losses by hitting 12 against the dealer’s 2 or 3 up cards instead of standing on 12.
Rule #4 If the Dealer has an up card 9 or Less, Double Down 10
If you’re dealt a 10, and the dealer has an up card valued at 9 or less, double down. Holding two 10 cards boosts your chances of hitting the blackjack and winning the bet.
Rule # 5 Avoid Playing 6 to 5 Games
In a 6-5 blackjack game, the house edge is increased by 1.45 if you bet on a single-deck game and 2% betting on a multi-deck game. That’s quite a margin considering the risk you’re making. Expert punters will tell you that a 6-5 game is never a go zone if you want to maximize your profits playing a blackjack game.
Rule # 6 Avoid Side Bets
Side bets are fast, fun, and easy to play. The rewards are undoubtedly high when luck is on your side. However, they are too risky and unprofitable in the long run. The stakes when playing side bets are pretty low compared to main games, but the casino has a higher edge. Considering the fun and easy-to-play part of the game, you’re likely to play more and lose more over time.
Rule # 7 Never Chase Losses
A popularly known but widely abused blackjack rule is never to stake more, trying to recover lost stakes. True players will always emphasize betting responsibly and only staking what you can afford to lose. However, the addictive nature of blackjack may push you to heights you never expected. You could find yourself spending more and more trying to recover the money you lost. Before you chase your lost stakes, remember that blackjack is a game of luck, and luck won’t always be on your side.
Rule #8 Hit when you Have Soft 17 and Stand With Soft 19
Soft 19 comes when you’re holding an eight and ace. In many instances, standing with a soft 19 or higher will lead to a win. Taking another card will most likely leave you with a lower total, decreasing the possibility of a win. Likewise, when you have a soft 17, hitting increases the dealer's odds of getting winning hands. On the other hand, standing with a soft 17 increases a player's chance to beat the dealer.
Rule #9 In case the House Rules Require the Dealer to Hit Soft 17, Do the Following:
Whenever the dealer has an ace, double down on hard 11 or double soft 19 while the dealer has 6. These are the same rules you should observe when playing an H17 game. If the rules seem not to work for you, follow expert surrender strategies to avoid losing and maximize wins.
Rule # 10 Know When to Split
Expert blackjack punters recommend splitting only into two main instances. Splitting when you’re dealt two aces enables you to create big hands. Aces are the only hands that allow you to get blackjack. When you split the aces, you make double chances of creating a blackjack, doubling the odds of winning the bet.
The next best instance to split is when you’re dealt two8’s. However, splitting 8’s should be in adherence to the table rules. You want first to consider the dealer’s stand. Splitting often gives you double hands, which are strong as well. But don’t be blind to the table rules and the game rules.