How To Beat The Dealer In Blackjack

Blackjack is one of the most popular casino games of all, and for good reason. It is one of the few games that involves skill in determining the outcome. Furthermore, with one of the lowest prospective house edges of all casino games, the odds of winning are good, if you follow the basic winning strategies.

  1. Don’t Focus On 21

One of the most common mistakes in blackjack is to try and go for 21. The game may literally be known as Twenty One, and it is the highest number you can have in the game. This is true. However, always remember that it is also just one number away from going bust. Furthermore, one only needs to beat the dealer’s hand in order to win. Therefore, going for 21 is both a dangerous and unnecessary distraction, and should be avoided.

  1. Learn & Utilise Basic Blackjack Strategy

The basic rules of blackjack have largely remained unchanged for hundreds of years. This has given some very smart people a lot of time to figure out the best strategy of play for practically every type of hand, versus the dealers, that you may encounter in a game.

You can find detailed charts and documentation on basic blackjack strategy readily available on the internet. Keep in mind, however, that this will not ensure a win with every play, but rather an improved average of wins over time, if you stick to it.

  1. Avoid Side Bets & Insurance

Commonly known as “sucker bets”, the side bets in blackjack, with the allure of bigger payouts, tend to only increase the risk for players, and therefore lead to loss. Likewise, the insurance bet, though an attractive option in some cases, e.g. if the dealer’s up-card is an ace, is statistically most likely to be a losing bet in the long run.

Experts at card counting, a blackjack strategy that is highly discouraged by casinos but otherwise legal, can potentially use the insurance bet to maximum effect by keeping careful track of the cards. However, even still, there is no guarantee.

  1. Find The Best Table

Generally, you will have a far easier time of winning when you play a game or table where the dealer stands on a soft 17. A “soft hand” in blackjack is where the dealer’s ace counts as an 11. A “soft 17” is therefore an ace-11 and, e.g. a six. If the dealer gets this hand, they are required to stand and go no higher. This greatly reduces the house’s chances while giving the player a valuable advantage.

  1. Practice With Low Stakes & Free Games

The old adage of “practice makes perfect” certainly holds true in blackjack. While learning each and every aspect, method, rule, and strategy of the game, one needn’t spend, or lose, lots of money in the process. For this, there are plenty of low-stake casual games to play.

Even better, if you play online, there are an abundance of free games readily available at, and at mobile app stores, to practice, and experiment with strategy, at your leisure, and without expense.