Top 10 blackjack facts 

As one of the most popular casino games around, blackjack is often a little misunderstood. We’re going to take a look at 10 facts that you may not have been aware of. While some are just great to know, others may actually help you to improve your game. Let’s get started with our Top 10 Blackjack facts.

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Top 10 Blackjack Facts

1) Side bets are to be avoided – Blackjack facts

Players get carried away with the idea of side bets as they can lead to some fairly impressive wins. That being the case, you’ve probably noticed that each and every year brings an increase in the number of side bets that are available. You need to stop and consider why the casinos are doing this. Is it for the benefit of players? Well, probably not.

These side bets do little to help players. They take a game that has the lowest house edge and turn it into something that is no better than your average slot. Side bets can quickly see the house edge climbing up to the 9% mark so the best advice is to steer clear. 

2)  The payoff for a natural blackjack matters – Blackjack facts

A natural blackjack sees you being dealt an ace and a card that’s worth 10. This gives you the magic 21. For many years any player dealt a natural blackjack was rewarded with a payout of 3:2. Unfortunately, this has now changed.

Many casinos are looking to increase the house edge of this game. An easy way for them to do this is to simply take that 3:2 and change it to 6:5. Playing at this level sees the house edge increasing by 1.39%. Is that still a game that you want to play? We’d suggest sticking to games that honour the 3:2.

3) Card counting works – Blackjack facts

Card counting is something that is often referred to on TV shows and this may leave some questioning if it really works. The good news is that yes it does and it’s not quite as complex as the film Rain Man may suggest!

4) Yes it works but casinos hate it

So, we’ve established that card counting is a real thing and you know that it works in your favour. Unsurprisingly, casinos aren’t big fans of anything that reduces the house edge any further and you can be sure that they hate everything to do with card counting.

Casinos go out of their way to make card counting as difficult as possible. They’re also on the lookout for anyone practising this. Get caught and you may well find yourself leaving a little earlier than you’d planned. 

5) Card counting doesn’t work online

While card counting is a great way to increase your chances of winning, the bad news is that it doesn’t work while playing online blackjack. When you’re playing blackjack that is powered by random number generators (RNG), the decks are always shuffled after every hand. This means that card counting just won’t work.

There are some that suggest that you can card count while playing live online blackjack. However, the truth is that this doesn’t work either. Why? Well, just like with the RNG versions, the deck is shuffled after every hand. 

6) Blackjack is the oldest casino game 

Well, it’s certainly one of the oldest. It is first mentioned back in 1605. At this time the book Don Quixote appeared. Written by Miguel Cervantes, it is regarded as being the first western novel. Given that this was written around about the time of Shakespeare, you can perhaps understand just how old the game is.

As Cervantes was Spanish, he never used the word ‘blackjack’ itself. He did, however, clearly describe a card game where the aim was to make a total of 21. It would be many centuries later when the name blackjack took off. If you take the time to consider the description, there is no other game that Cervantes could have been referring to. 

7) Payouts for a blackjack seem to be ever declining 

If you take a look back to the time when blackjack first took off in the US, a blackjack paid off at 10:1. In time this changed to 3:2. The original, more generous, payout was there as a blackjack was harder to get. As well as needing two cards that totalled 21, you also had to have a blackjack as one of your cards. Given that there are only two in a deck, this was never easy to achieve.

Although 3:2 paid out less, it paid out more often and this encouraged players to play even more. This saw 3:2 becoming the standard. However, as we have seen, many casinos are now introducing a 6:5 payout.

8) In blackjack your choices matter

The majority of casino games are about one thing – luck. When you’re playing slots, your decisions have little to no impact on the game and you certainly can’t increase your chances of winning. Blackjack is different because the decisions that you make can have a direct impact on the house edge.

When you learn the strategies involved you’ll get to realize what good and bad decisions are. Making good decisions can lower the house edge significantly. Often you can bring it down to less than 1%.

9) The basic strategy is not set in stone

Blackjack games differ and we’ve already seen that rule changes can impact the house edge. These rule changes also have an impact on the blackjack strategy that you should be using. Before making a decision, some of the factors that you’ll need to consider include:

  • How many decks are being used
  • If the dealer hits a soft 17
  • The blackjack rules around doubling and splitting
  • Whether or not surrender is allowed
  • If the dealer is allowed to peak at the hole card

10) Blackjack isn’t the best game for bonuses

Online casinos attract new players by offering some great sign up bonuses. What you’ll often find though is that these can’t be used on blackjack. Given the low house edge, casinos are reluctant to allow you to play with bonus funds otherwise they end up simply giving money away. 

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