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Blackjack strategy 101: How to win at blackjack in 2023

Blackjack strategy 101: How to win at blackjack in 2023

Blackjack strategy 101: How to win at blackjack in 2023

Fri Mar 10 2023 02:00:00 GMT+0000 (Coordinated Universal Time)

Winning in blackjack requires more than just pure luck. You also need the skill and know-how of the basic blackjack strategy to boost your chances of winning. Learn about this in detail and discover new strategies worth knowing in this blackjack strategy guide. By the end, you'll know how to win in blackjack, whether playing multi-hand, single deck or other variations.

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What are blackjack rules?

Out of all the games you can play at a land-based or online casino, blackjack games have the easiest rules. The goal of the game is simple: to beat the dealer. It's only between the two of you, unlike other games where you compete against another player

So, how do you beat the dealer? By having a hand total higher than the dealer's but doesn't reach 21. That's why blackjack is also called 21. The same goes for other blackjack game variations. For example, in Spanish 21, you immediately win if you get 21, which is significantly harder to achieve since all 10s are removed in this version. 

But how do you lose? There are two ways: when the dealer is closer to 21, and when you go over 21 or 'bust'. To know if you've gone over 21, you must learn the value of each card. 

Every numbered card is worth its point value. A 2 is worth two points, and a 10 is worth ten points. On the other hand, all face cards are worth 10 points regardless of rank, meaning the King, Queen, and Jack are all equal.

The Ace is a unique card in blackjack because its value changes depending on the cards dealt to you. If one of your cards has a value greater than 10, the Ace is worth one point. If your card total is less than 10, the Ace is worth 11 points.

The value of a hand is determined by adding two cards. For example, if you have a Queen and a Jack, your hand value is 20.


Basic blackjack strategies you should do

Knowing effective blackjack strategies is the key technique to getting optimal play. If you apply a playing strategy like card counting and betting systems, you can increase the odds of your blackjack hand winning at a mathematical level.

Find these easy strategies you need to know to win real money below:

  1. Follow the blackjack basic strategy

Blackjack's basic strategy is a set of rules that help you decide when to ask for another card from the dealer (hit), stay with the cards you have (stand), double your initial stake (double down) and divide your first two cards (split). Following this dramatically increases your winning chances and reduces the house edge to around 0.5%.

Committing the blackjack simple strategy to memory needs deliberate practice. Plus, using it doesn't ensure a win. Regardless, it is the best way to play any hand in blackjack. Its core strategy is based on statistical probabilities, so following it can bring rewarding outcomes.

  1. Always split aces and eights

The number one rule in blackjack basic strategy is that when you have a pair of aces or eights on your hands, always split it. Splitting aces gives you two chances to hit 21, and you only need to get a 10 for each split hand. Also, always split 8's to improve your hand since 16 is a bad hand with high chances of busting and low chances of winning.

  1. Use betting systems to manage your bankroll

Apart from blackjack strategies, you can also master specific betting systems to broaden your winning method. These betting strategies dictate your bet size depending on certain outcomes in the game, which can help you manage your bankroll according to your wins and losses. They're based on different concepts and come with various pros and cons you need to consider before using them. 

The following are the most commonly used betting systems:

Martingale betting system

The Martingale System is based on doubling your bets when you lose and returning to your initial betting price when you win. It's a negative progression betting strategy. 

For example, you start with a 5 USDT bet. If you lose the first hand, you must bet 10 USDT on the next hand. This negative progression system will require you to double your bet until you spike a winning hand.

With this tactic, you'll eventually make money off each victory. Any losses from prior hands will be recovered along with one unit of profit bet. The main issue with this betting system is that, depending on the situation, it might require several hands to win, which can cost more than your initial bet.

So does the Martingale roulette strategy work? It does but only for short times when you can afford the increasing bets. It can get expensive to follow during losing streaks for longer periods.

Paroli betting system

The Paroli System is one of the most basic betting systems for blackjack. It's a positive progression system designed to maximise winning streaks. When they are winning consistently, players place high bets to increase their profits, and when losing, they place lower bets to reduce their losses.

You can see that the Paroli system does not involve chasing losses because you do not raise your bet when you lose. However, it's important to understand that using this system doesn't always assure a win when playing blackjack. It's only useful in managing your bankroll and preventing huge losses.

D'Alembert betting system

In this betting system, players must increase their wager by one unit when encountering a loss. The D'Alembert employs a strategy similar to the Martingale because both have negative progression systems. 

Compared to other systems, the D'Alembert betting strategy is safer since it increases bets more slowly. This reduces the risk of the stakes becoming too large. However, you may reach the established betting limits if you go on a prolonged losing streak. If this happens, you reduce your bet amounts, making it impossible to recover losses.

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  1. Consider making side bets

Side bets in blackjack are wagers made in addition to the main bets. These wagers let you bet on specific outcomes separate from the goal, like which cards the dealer will get. They carry a higher risk but can also grant a massive payout greater than your main stake. 

Below are the most common blackjack side bets:

  • Insurance bet 

The insurance bet is the most common side bet in a land-based or online blackjack casino. Placing this bet protects you from losing whenever the dealer shows an ace. No matter your cards, you have very little chance of success in this situation. The problem is that if you win, the insurance bet only pays 2:1.

  • Perfect Pairs

Another side bet is Perfect Pairs, which only involves the players' cards. You win this side bet if your initial two cards are a pair, meaning they have the same number, colour and suit. 

They're called a mixed pair if they match the numbers but differ in suit and colour. If they only match in colour, they're called coloured pairs. If all three match, they're a perfect pair.

  • 21+3 

The 21+3 is a common side bet you can make at the start of the hand that pays out when specific combinations occur when your two starting cards match up with the dealer's up card. You win if the three cards form a flush, straight, three-of-a-kind or straight flush. All winning side bets are paid out at a 9 to 1 ratio.

Without a doubt, blackjack side bets have both benefits and drawbacks. It allows you to place more than one wager and increases your chances of winning larger amounts. On the other hand, there is no guarantee that you will win every side bet. Because the results do not show the odds for each bet, the house has a higher advantage.

  1. Avoid the Insurance bet

Even though there are advantages to placing side bets, it isn't for everyone. Most players choose to avoid it, particularly the insurance side bet. According to the basic strategy, you should never buy insurance. Unless you are a skilled card counter, insurance will likely be a losing wager in the long run.

  1. Try card counting

Card counting is an advanced blackjack strategy commonly used by expert players to improve their odds of winning. Learning how card counting works in blackjack isn't difficult, but mastering it requires time and effort. 

The first step is to give each card a value. To classify a group of a few cards, use 'blanket values,' as shown below:

  • 2-6 = -1
  • 10, J, Q, K and Ace = +1
  • 7, 8 and 9 = 0

Next, keep track of the cards being dealt with and add their values to maintain a so-called 'running count.' The third step of the process involves settling the count per deck using the data you have gathered up to this point, referred to as the True Count. Finally, as the true count rises, use all the info you've gained to adjust your bets.

Experts claim to have won millions relying on this skill. The biggest drawback of card counting is that many casinos are wary of having players who use it because it gives them an advantage when used correctly.

  1. Maximise casino rewards and bonuses

One of the best ways to win at blackjack is to practise and play at an online casino like Bitcasino. This online casino offers the best blackjack variations, standard or live versions. You may enjoy the same fun and exciting experience as if you were in a land-based casino. One of the benefits of playing at Bitcasino is you get to enjoy all the rewards and bonuses.

Winning in blackjack is one thing, but getting additional rewards after winning is something else. That's what you can expect in Bitcasino rewards that honour punters with VIP prizes worth their status. Whether you're in the prestigious Bitcasino VIP Club or climbing through the Loyalty Club, you can expect luxurious prizes that improve your gaming experience.

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Blackjack odds with basic strategy

Knowing your odds in blackjack and acting based on them can make the difference between winning and trying again in the next round. Below is a table where you'll find the dealer's odds of busting and the player advantage or payout percentage based on the dealer's up card. Using it before placing your bets can help you make informed decisions and get a bigger payout in blackjack. 

Image from Live On Line Blackjack

The first column in the table shows which card the dealer has after the cards are dealt with. Based on each card, the table's second column displays the dealer's chance of going bust. Based on basic strategy theory, the final column displays the player's advantage and the odds of winning. 

Generally, if the dealer has high odds of busting, the player advantage is also high. As you can see, when the dealer has a 5 as an up card, he has a 43% chance of going bust. Simultaneously, the player has a 23% advantage. This is a good chance to double down on your bet. 

When the tens and aces appear, the player advantage becomes negative. This increases the player's chances of losing. When you have these kinds of odds, you can surrender if you can to avoid bigger losses. However, this still depends on how strong your hands are. Use blackjack charts to know what to do with your hands for every hand, both yours and the dealer.

Tips for following a blackjack strategy

Winning in blackjack starts with finding a reputable casino where you can find a lot of blackjack game variations with low house advantage and many rewards. Only then can you apply basic blackjack strategy and use the tips below that can help you bring your A-game:

  • Pick the suitable blackjack table - There are two common mistakes at blackjack tables: misunderstanding the table rules and selecting the incorrect table. It's essential to pick a table that fits your talents and your budget. Don't forget to check the minimum and maximum stake limits.
  • Set your bankroll - The recommended budget of your blackjack bankroll is determined by the size of your bets and the length of time you intend to play. Knowing how to manage the money required for a specific table allows you to play through bad beats while minimising losses.
  • Play different blackjack variants - Blackjack has many variations, and you should try at least all of them to find out which works best for you or which you prefer more as a player. 
  • Don't be distracted by other players - Blackjack is played against the dealer, but there can be as many as seven players at the table. Don't let their play distract you from yours. Only the sole gambler and the banker matters at the blackjack table. 
  • Increase your bet amount - Increase the amount of your stake only when you know you have better odds of winning or have winning streaks.

Use winning blackjack strategies at Bitcasino!

With these strategies, you can now master blackjack and win the game. Now, start playing your favourite casino blackjack game here at Bitcasino and put your skills to the test. Show them what you've got!

Blackjack basic strategies FAQs 

What is the house edge in blackjack with basic strategy?

The house edge is the profit the casino anticipates making on each version of a game in percentage form.

How to remember the basic strategy for blackjack?

Printing out the basic strategy for blackjack and keeping it next to you while practising blackjack is the best way to remember it.

Is online blackjack worth playing using basic strategy?

You can use basic blackjack strategy whether you're playing online blackjack or not. The format doesn't affect the strategy since it's based on the cards dealt to you and the dealer. This means its advantages also remain the same.

What is the best blackjack strategy?

One of the best winning blackjack strategies is splitting the aces because it gives a player two chances to hit 21.

Words by: Barbara Menorias

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Blackjack strategy 101: How to win at blackjack in 2023