If you’re a blackjack player, then you know that the key to winning is making smart decisions with every hand. But even the smartest players can make mistakes – and no matter how much you think you know, there’s always more to learn.
That’s why you need some expert advice from someone who’s been playing blackjack for over 20 years!
Today, I will provide you with some blackjack tips and hacks that I wish I’d known when I first started out.
Whether you’re a beginner, intermediate, or experienced player, I’m confident these will help you improve your game and increase your chances of winning.
Simple Blackjack Tips for Beginners
Blackjack is a game that can be learned relatively easily, but it still takes time and practice to become a master. In this section, I will provide some tips for beginners so you can get started on the right foot.
Start by Learning the Rules of Blackjack
This sounds obvious, but you’d be surprised how many new blackjack players jump straight in without knowing what they’re doing.
Needless to say, you can’t play the game if you don’t know the rules of the game, and how it is played! So take some time to learn them before you start betting.
Our beginner’s tutorial on how to play blackjack is like a quick start guide that will help you get started in the fastest possible time.
Then check out the complete rules of blackjack to fill in the gaps and gain a complete understanding of all the rules and terminology you’ll need.
Don’t Play When Under the Influence
We all know how casinos can be, with their free drinks flowing and the fun atmosphere. If you’re playing in Vegas you’ll even get comped free drinks at the table while you play (and with the beer prices there at the moment, it’s hard to say no!)
However, it’s important not to allow alcohol to cloud your judgment.
It’s easy to get caught up in the moment and start betting more than you can afford, or making rash decisions. So if you’ve been drinking, it’s best to step away from the table.
This applies when you’re playing on the internet or on your mobile as well. If you’ve had a drink at the pub or at home, stay away from gambling altogether until the effects have worn off.
Stick to a Budget
When you’re playing blackjack or enjoying any other sort of gambling, it’s important to set a budget and stick to it.
Decide how much money you’re willing to lose before you start playing, and then stick to it. If you start losing money, don’t try to recoup your losses by betting more – that’s a surefire way to end up in the red.
Know When to Quit
The most important thing to remember when playing blackjack is that it’s a game of chance.
There’s no guaranteed way to win every time, even when using the advanced tips I’m going to share later (although these will mean you win in the long term).
And the longer you play, the more likely it is that the house will win. So if you’ve lost the money you set aside to play with, it’s best to walk away and try your luck another day.
Don’t Take Insurance
When the dealer’s upcard is an Ace, they will offer insurance to the players.
This is a side bet that pays out 2-1 if the dealer has a blackjack. While this might sound like a good deal, it’s actually a bad bet that you should always avoid.
The reason is that the dealer’s odds of having a blackjack are only about 9%, so you’re better off just taking your chances and hoping they don’t have one.
Practice Playing Blackjack Online for Free
One of the best ways to improve your blackjack game is to practice. You may have heard that it makes perfect, right? Well, that’s certainly true here.
Some (but not all) casinos will now allow you to play blackjack for free without even registering for an account.
This will allow you to try out different strategies and perfect your skills without risking any real money.
Once you feel confident, you can start playing for profit at one of our recommended real-money blackjack apps.
Play at Reputable Online Casinos Only
If you are planning to play blackjack online, you will find that you have a huge, and sometimes overwhelming choice of casinos and blackjack sites to play at.
But do not make the mistake of assuming that all online casinos are the same.
It’s important that you only play at reputable casinos that offer fair games and good odds. We only recommend casinos that have been thoroughly vetted by our experts.
Further Tips for Intermediate Players
Once you have the basics down, there are a few more things that intermediate players should keep in mind when playing blackjack. In this section, I will outline some of those tips to help you begin to improve your game.
Don’t Play Unfavorable Tables
The house always has an edge in blackjack. But some tables are more favorable to the player than others.
You should always try to find a table with as many of the following rules as possible:
- Blackjack pays 3/2 not 6/5
- The dealer stands on soft 17
- You can double down on any two cards
- You can re-split pairs
- You can surrender your hand
If you can find a table with all of those rules, you’ll be giving yourself a much better chance of winning.
Choose a Good Seat Position
In blackjack, where you sit at the table matters.
The best position is typically “third base” – the last seat on the dealer’s right-hand side. From this position, you’ll be in a better position to implement basic strategy, because you will not be vulnerable to other players making the wrong moves after you’ve played your hand.
If the table is full and you can’t get the third base, don’t worry – any seat at the table is better than no seat! You can always move to your left if another seat becomes free later on.
Learn Basic Strategy
Basic strategy is a set of rules that tell you the best way to play every possible hand in blackjack. Our tutorial explains it in full.
It’s based on statistical analysis and takes into account things like the number of decks being used and the dealer’s upcard.
Memorizing basic strategy will take some time and effort, but it’s well worth it if you want to improve your chances of winning.
You can always print out a pocket-sized cheat sheet to carry around with you until you learn all the moves by heart.
Learn Table Etiquette
Blackjack is a social game, so it’s important to know the proper etiquette when playing. This doesn’t make the difference between winning and losing, but it will make the game more enjoyable for everyone involved – including you!
Obviously, this doesn’t apply when you’re playing online or mobile blackjack, but if you plan to play at a real casino then it’s worth spending a few minutes acquainting yourself with our blackjack etiquette tutorial before you go.
Avoid Betting Systems – They Don’t Work
You might have seen people using betting systems like the Martingale system when playing blackjack.
But the truth is, these blackjack betting systems don’t work. They’re based on the false idea of the gambler’s fallacy, the assumption that you are more likely to win if you have lost the previous hand, or that you can get on winning or losing “streaks.”
This is nonsense, and will only lead to you losing more money in the long run.
So save your money and avoid betting systems. There’s only one reason to increase your stake, and that’s when the true count is significantly positive.
Not sure what that means? Then read on for the only real way to beat the dealer long-term…
Advanced Blackjack Tips for Experienced Players
If you’ve been playing blackjack for a while, know all the rules and etiquette, and have a good grasp of basic strategy, then it’s time to take your game to the next level.
Intermediate players can sometimes get lucky and win money, and at worst they have the skills and knowledge to make their bankroll last as long as possible. But experience, pro players actually expect to win money because they know they can get an edge over the casino.
Here’s how they do it…
Learn Card-Counting Techniques
Card counting is a technique that advanced blackjack players use to keep track of the cards that have been dealt.
This information is then used for betting and playing decisions, in order to increase the player’s chances of winning.
Counting cards is the one and only strategy that, when implemented properly, will give you a statistical edge over the casino. It does not guarantee you will win every hand, but it does mathematically guarantee that you will make a profit long-term.
There are many different card-counting techniques to choose from. Some are easier to learn but less effective, others more complex but give you a greater edge.
If you’re just starting out, don’t worry about learning card-counting techniques. Just focus on perfecting your basic strategy and building up your bankroll.
But if you’re looking to take your blackjack game to the next level, then learning how to count cards can be the most valuable skill you learn.
Last Updated on October 12, 2022