Definitive Guide to Playing Online Blackjack in 2023

You full guide for the game of Blackjack: We teach you how to play the game, which rules apply, and what key terms you must know. Our Blackjack guide will provide you with a complete rundown of all types and variations of the game, basic and advanced tips for gameplay, best online casino sites to play the game at, and much more.

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Overview

Blackjack is probably the most popular card game in the world, whether we are talking about live or online casino gaming. The game is sometimes called 21 and it offers a ton of excitement and opportunities to gamble it up and come out a big winner through the use of strategy and with a little luck.

There are many different aspects of the game of Blackjack that appeal to players at large. The first definitely comes down to the simplicity of the game, which allows anyone to learn how to play it in just minutes. The goal never changes, as making a hand as close to 21 as possible is always the ultimate end. Thanks to these simple rules and gameplay, Blackjack is a game that can be easily played in both online and live casinos, and the game always remains the same. This is what makes it one of the most widely available casino games in the world.

Despite its simple nature and basic rules, Blackjack is a deeply strategic game that takes a lot of learning to master. You can play Blackjack without knowing the strategies, but understanding the odds and probabilities allows you to play the game with a higher chance of success. Blackjack is just as much about skill as it is about luck, despite what it may seem like. If you can refine your strategy and understand all the angles, you can even “beat the house” in some scenarios, such as with using the card counting techniques. The ability to possibly win in the long run makes Blackjack a game every gambler wants to master.

The final reason for Blackjack’s popularity is the number of different variations of the game that are available. European, American, Super Fun 21, Pontoon, and many others are just a few versions of the game of Blackjack you can try out. Each of these versions offers slightly different rules and payouts, although it all revolves around the magical number 21.

Online Blackjack is just as popular as the live version of the game. Thanks to that, there is hardly an online casino out there that doesn’t have a lobby loaded with dozens of different Blackjack games. Online Blackjack games are carefully crafted and offer spectacular graphics, animations, and sounds. While it is true that the social interaction of live casino games can never be fully copied in online casinos, software developers do a great job of creating games that carefully mimic it.

On this page, we are going to go deep into every aspect of the game of Blackjack. We will take a tour through the history of the game and talk about all the positive and negative sides of all the different Blackjack games you can play online. We will teach you the basic strategies and give you the tips you need for success at the tables. With a little luck and these strategies, you should be able to hold your own against any casino dealer out there. Let’s start out with some basics and find out all there is to know about Blackjack.

Pros & Cons

Pros
You can claim valuable online casino bonuses
Play quickly and enjoy multiple hands at once
You can play for very low stakes in online casinos
Cons
Online casinos are not as interactive as live casinos
You cannot gain any edge by counting cards
Casino bonuses can have very unreasonable wagering requirements for Blackjack players

Blackjack History

The history of Blackjack starts quite a long time ago. A French card game by the name of Vingtetun (Vingt-et-un stands for 21 in French language) was probably the first version of the game from which Blackjack later came to be. The game was invented in France but brought to America by European settlers who mover there. Over the many years, Blackjack changed in quite a few ways and took inspiration and different details from various card games coming from all parts of the world, from Italy to the Far East.

The name of the game originally came from the French words for the number 21, but it changed over the years as the game evolved in America. Modern day Blackjack is quite a bit different from this original version and the rules have been changed to make the game more exciting and playable. The name Blackjack came from an original rule that required the player to hold the Jack of Spades (the Black Jack) in his hand to make Blackjack. The payout for such a hand was originally 10:1, but this rules was abolished over time.

The big revolution for the game of Blackjack came during the days of the Great Depression, when the State of Nevada decided to legalize gambling. The Nevada government was hoping to make some extra tax revenue this way, but the legalized gambling became a massive thing and spread across the state like wildfire, quickly expanding to the rest of the USA as well.

While Blackjack was originally French, everyone saw the game as an American invention now, and it soon spread across the globe as such. The development of the internet and mobile technologies helped bring Blackjack even closer to players who could now play it from the comfort of their homes or on the go, using their mobile devices and connecting to the internet. The game remains the same, but the access has never been easier.


Blackjack Lingo

Blackjack has gone through several phases in its evolution and development before it reached it current state. Today, the game uses a specific terminology that has been heavily Americanized due to the huge impact of Las Vegas and US gambling on its development.

Blackjack: A starting hand that involves one Ace card and one picture card (a ten, jack, queen, or king). Blackjack immediately wins you a 2:1 payout.

Double Down: A play which allows you to receive only one more card, but also doubles your bet on the hand. If you can win, you will double what you would have originally won.

Bust: A hand that exceeds 21 and is therefore a losing hand in all cases.

Hit: Ask the dealer for another card and hope you don’t bust your hand.

Push: You and the dealer have the same hand value, therefore splitting the pot.

Soft Hand: A hand that involves and Ace and can be counted two ways (Ace counts as 1 or 11)

Hole Card: The dealer’s second card which is not exposed at the start of the hand. In some versions of the game, the dealer will look at the hole card before anyone has a chance to act, looking for a Blackjack.

Upcard: The first card that the dealer receives and which is exposed from the start.

Stand: The simplest play in Blackjack. Don’t take anymore cards and let the action go to the next player or the dealer.

Split: Whenever you are dealt a pocket pair, you can split your hand. If you decide to split, you will have to match your bet and you will be playing two separate hands for the same value. Splitting can be extremely beneficial, especially if you are dealt a pair of Aces.

Insurance: If the dealer is holding an Ace as their up card, you may ask for insurance. If the dealer happens to have Blackjack, you will receive a payout of 2:1. If not, you will lose your insurance bet and proceed with the hand as normal.

Surrender: In many versions of Blackjack, you have the option to surrender. If you surrender, you will get back half of your money, while the other half will be forfeit. According to basic strategy, there are some situations in which this is the optimal play.


Rules and Gameplay

The main objective of Blackjack is to make a hand with a value as close to 21 as possible. Yet, going past 21 means you lose. You will always be playing against the dealer and if you can make 21 before he does, you win. Aces count as 1 or 11 in Blackjack, while all pip cards count for their face value. All face cards count for 10 points.

To get the game started, each player must place a bet. The dealer then gives each player two cards and also deals two cards to himself. The dealer’s second card, called the hole card, is not revealed before players at the table have acted on their hands. Each player gets to play their hand and request more cards if they so desire. Doubling and splitting, as well as surrender and insurance are allowed in some versions of the game. The dealer will stop taking more cards if he reached 17, but you don’t have to.

The game allows you to win or lose a hand, but also to tie if yours and dealer’s hands are the same value. In this case, the hand will be a tie, and you will get your bets back. If you can make a Blackjack with your first two cards, you will be paid immediately with the payout standing at 3:2.


Strategy Tips

If you are only just learning how to play Blackjack, there are a few basic concepts you need to understand before you learn advanced strategies. The first thing you must learn is when to ask for more cards and when to stand even with a marginal hand. In some cases, even doubling down on your cards or splitting your hand can make a lot of sense.

Always remember that the casino has a slight edge in the game. Yet, you can play optimal strategy and get very close to breaking even in the long run.

Blackjack is all about odds and chances. You will need to understand the combinations of cards and your odds of getting each card and outcome. You must also keep a sharp focus if you want to win in the game. For the most part, you should never ask for more cards if you have 17 or higher, while combinations between five and 16 usually warrant a hit. Yet, there are quite a few other options involved and you need to learn the basic strategy by heart before you can start winning.

Tips & Trickes

Here are some useful tips and tricks that will surely make you a better Blackjack player if you apply them:

Your First Steps

By now we are sure you are interesting in playing some real money online Blackjack, so let’s take a look at some quick steps you need to take to get into the action:

1 Choose your operator

The first step in starting to play online blackjack is picking an online casino to play at. There are a great number of operators who can provide you with a safe gameplay within a confines of a licensed gaming space. You can choose between all these casino sites and find the best online casino bonuses and the widest selection of Blackjack games for yourself. Our online casino reviews should be able to help you make the right choice in this regard.

2 Explore the game

Now that you have picked an online casino to play at, you will need to get completely familiar with the game itself. Start with learning the most basic Blackjack rules and explore the different strategies and tips we have given here. Also try a few different Blackjack variants before you find one that you like the most.

3 Start the game

Once you have found the right casino and game to play, you can join the table and get into the game. Online Blackjack has many advantages, and being able to play at any time and for any stakes you choose is certainly one of them.

4 Make your first bet

You can choose your bet size and place your first bet now. Take your time and start with small bets as you learn the game and explore the different betting and gameplay options.

5 Explore the paytable

Blackjack is a fairly simple game in terms of payouts, but there can be some differences depending on the game you choose. Make sure that you are playing at a table that pays 3:2 instead of 6:5 for a Blackjack and one that does not offer any excess house edge to the casino.

Glossary

If you have been around Blackjack tables in live casinos in the past, you will have certainly heard quite a few phrases and terms you maybe didn’t understand. If this is the case, you should keep reading and find out what each of these terms mean in our detailed Blackjack glossary. Getting the hang of the lingo will help you get around the game easier and more comfortably.

Blackjack Dictionary

Different Versions of Blackjack

It is interesting that a game with simple rules like Blackjack has so many different versions. Yet, there are many different types of Blackjack you can play in online casinos all around the world, so let’s take a quick look at some of the most popular variants:

Classic Blackjack

Classic Blackjack is the simplest version of the popular card game. The goal is as simple as getting as close to 21 as you can without busting, and this game is offered in every single online casino out there, with many tables usually available.

Spanish 21

Spanish 21 has rules that are very similar to regular Blackjack, except for the fact it is played with a 48 card deck (Spanish deck) instead of the 52 card deck we usual instead of the 52 card deck we usually see. Also, you will be paid anytime you get to 21, even if the dealer makes 21 as well. You cannot tie with 21 in Spanish 21.

Big Five Blackjack

This game uses five decks of cards that are always shuffled after a deal. The dealer must hit on soft 17 and you can make an early surrender if you so choose. The game is otherwise the same as Classic Blackjack.

Vegas Strip Blackjack

In Vegas Strip Blackjack, you will play with four decks of cards which are shuffled every hand, and you will be facing a dealer who has one significant advantage. If the dealer’s first card is an Ace or any face card, he will get to peek at the other card for a Blackjack. If he has 21, you lose right then and there.

Live Blackjack

If you have always been fascinated by the allure of real-world casinos, than live Blackjack is perfect for you. The game allows you to play against a real live dealer who deals the cards in a casino studio in a remote location. All the action is streamed in real time via the internet, making the game extremely exciting and very interactive.

Blackjack Switch

The big difference between Blackjack Switch and other Blackjack games is that you are dealt two separate hands and you may switch one card from one hand with one card from the other. This allows you to apply various strategies and give yourself the optimal results.

Triple 7s Blackjack

This game puts the game of Blackjack into the next hear with the addition of a valuable progressive jackpot. You still want to make 21, but you can win huge bonuses with certain Blackjack hands. You will have to make a side bet to enjoy the Triple 7s jackpot.

Vegas Downtown Blackjack

You may be surprised to see multiple Las Vegas Blackjack games, but Vegas Downtown Blackjack is a unique game in its own right. You get to play up to five hands on each deal and each hand plays for itself. You can take insurance if the dealer’s upcard is an Ace, giving you some security against Blackjacks.

European Blackjack

European Blackjack is basically Classic Blackjack with a very small twist. Instead of dealing a hole card at the start, the dealer will only deal his second card once all players have acted, which means he won’t be able to make Blackjack right away. Also, players can only double down on 9, 10, or 11 in European Blackjack.

American Blackjack

As the game suggests, this version of Blackjack was invented by the American casinos. The main difference between American Blackjack and Classic Blackjack is that dealer will deal himself a hole card at the start as well, and may make a Blackjack before you do.

Zappit Blackjack

Another very fun variant of Blackjack, Zappit Blackjack allows you to “zap” your original two cards and replace them with brand new cards, which is a major advantage. However, you won’t be able to make Blackjack on your second hand, but will rather only have 21 and have to showdown your cards versus the dealer, receiving a 1:1 payout if you win.

Super Fun 21

Super Fun 21 is one of the most player-friendly casino games out there. The game allows players to double or hit their split aces or to surrender the hand once a double down has gone poorly. Pairs can be split up to four separate times in Super Fun 21. You will also automatically win if you get up to six cards in the game, due to the Six Card Charlie rule. Super Fun 21 is really super fun to play.

Infinite Blackjack

If you want to make even more side bets than you do in Perfect Pairs Blackjack, Infinite Blackjack is an ideal game for you. Side bets like Any Pairs, Hot 3, Bust It, and 21+3 are all available, allowing you to win extra cash on the side with various combos. The Six Card Charlie rule is also in play, which means you win anytime you have six cards and don’t bust your hand.

Pontoon

The British version of Blackjack, Pontoon is very similar to European Blackjack, but the words and terms used in the game are quite a bit different. Instead of the dealer, Pontoon makes one of the players a banker, making that player the dealer for the hand. Making 21 as the banker will make you eligible for Pontoon, collecting all the bets other players have made.

Atlantic City Blackjack

Atlantic City is one of the world’s Blackjack capitals, and it’s no wonder a game like AC Blackjack exists. In Atlantic City Blackjack, the dealer will have an option to see if they have Blackjack before they deal any cards to other players. The dealer is also allowed to stand on all 17s. As a player, you can split your hand up to three times.

Perfect Pairs Blackjack

Perfect Pairs Blackjack is yet another interesting variant of Blackjack which uses the same set of rules as Classic Blackjack in almost all ways. However, the game offers an extra betting slot where a side bet called “Perfect Pairs” can be made. If you make this side bet, you will win fixed amounts if you are dealt pairs, same cards, and other interesting card combinations. v

Ante Up 21 Blackjack

This game merges Blackjack and poker and makes for a fun little mix. In Ante Up 21 you will get to make side bets and play some two card poker against the dealer on the side, while still playing Blackjack with your initial bet as well.

21 Duel

If you love playing poker, than 21 Duel is the pefect Blackjack game for you. Two segments of the game are offered, with one being similar to Classic Blackjack, and another to Texas Hold’em Poker. You will get to use two community cards from the table in mix with your own hole cards to create your hand and beat the dealer.

Progressive Blackjack

Progressive jackpots are always a lucrative proposition, and Progressive Blackjack is a game that revolves around it. Make a side bet every time you play to have a shot at a massive progressive jackpot accumulated by thousands of players across online casinos.

Blackjack Surrender

Blackjack Surrender is a very simple version of the game, which uses all the same rules as traditional blackjack, but allows you to surrender once you have seen your first two cards. If you surrender, you can get half of your bet returned to you.

Lucky Blackjack

In this Blackjack version, you won’t get any cards at all. Instead, you will get to bet on how close to 21 the dealer will get. Unlike regular Blackjack, this game allows you to win up to 19 times your bet. This game has a significantly higher house edge than regular Blackjack.

Double Exposure Blackjack

Double Exposure Blackjack is yet another Blackjack variant in which you get to see both of the dealer’s cards before you act on your hand. For this edge, you will not get the 3:2 payout on your Blackjacks, but rather an even money payout.

Chinese Blackjack

This game comes with several different names such as ban-luck and ban-nag. While Chinese Blackjack is very similar to Classic Blackjack, there are some significant differences. If you get two aces dealt initially (ban-ban), you will immediately beat all other hands. If you have an ace and a picture card (ban-nang), you will beat all hands except ban-ban.

Double Attack Blackjack

Double Attack Blackjack gives you a chance to see both of the dealer’s cards and make your bet accordingly. However, your Blackjacks will pay 1:1 in this game as a result of this extra edge you have.

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FAQ

All you need to start playing is to open an account with online of the top Blackjack online casinos, which is very easy to do and can be done on any desktop computer or mobile device you may own.

Playuing online blackjack is very simple. Once you join the game, you will need to place a bet and the first hand starts. You will receive two cards. You can ask for another card by clicking hit or click on stand to keep your current hand. Other options like split, double down, and insurance will also become available in various situations, and your goal is to make a hand as close to 21 as possible without busting it.

You will not be penalized in any way for trying to count cards in online Blackjack. However, online casinos shuffle the decks after every hand, which means that counting cards will be completely futile. In fact, you will probably be getting counterproductive results if you try to count a deck that’s being constantly re-shuffled.

You can play many different versions of Blackjack in online casinos without ever depositing a single coin. Free play versions of the game allow you to play with practice money and learn how to play the game without any risk. You won’t be able to win anything while playing like this, but you won’t be risking anything either.

There are many different combinations you can get in Blackjack and all come with differing odds. Some interesting odds to know are that drawing any specific card value comes at 7.69%, while drawing a picture card worth 10 points will happen 30.7% of the time.

Absolutely not! Online Blackjack, if played at licensed and regulated online casinos, is 100% fair and safe to play. All you need to do is make sure that the casino operator you are playing with operates under a proper gaming license from a reputable gaming regulator.

This depends heavily on the exact version of the game you are playing. However, for the most part, online and live Blackjack are the same in nearly all regards. Some online casinos offer Blackjack games with slightly more favourable rules, while also allowing you to play faster and get casino bonuses which can help boost your playing bankroll.

For the most part no! Most modern day online casinos offer instant play versions which you can access on their websites. This even includes the mobile versions of the casinos, which means you will never need to download any app if you don’t want to. Some online casinos also offer downloadable apps that may offer a slightly better quality of gameplay for some Blackjack games.

All gambling games, including Blackjack, rely on luck and chance. However, by playing strategically optimal game you will increase your winning chances and decrease the house edge to a bare minimum, which gives you an upper hand over other players.

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