At Counting Edge we get emails all the time from new blackjack players. Many of them have seen the game played in casinos and on television and want to give it a try. All of them want to receive some basic blackjack advice for new players. We are happy to oblige. Here are some pointers that you can use the first time you play blackjack online or in a live casino.
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Cutting the House Edge in Blackjack with 5 Simple Tips
A recent article in Business Insider about blackjack provides some important advice for the blackjack rookie. The advice was given by John Marchell, a blackjack and gambling games expert. Marchell begins by addressing five simple plays that every new blackjack player should make.
The first tip is stand on totals of 12-16 when the dealer shows a 2-6. Sure, there are exceptions to this standard blackjack rule, but you’ll do better as a beginner sticking with this approach. The reason for this is that a dealer is weak when his upcard is a 2-6. You are better off standing on your own weak hands and hoping for the dealer to bust. It happens often.
Next, you should be hitting totals of 12-16 when the dealer shows 7-Ace. One of the most common mistakes that can be observed in online blackjack is a player standing on a total of 16. They do this because they have a “hunch” that the dealer might bust. Here is the reality. With a 16 you are dead in the water. You have nothing to lose by hitting this hand when the dealer shows a power card. Always assume that the dealer has a ten in the hole.
Your next step should be to always split aces and eights. Always. Yes, the experienced player knows that there are times when not splitting these hands is advantageous. Remember, you are a beginner. You will have a better time lowering the house edge when you always split these hands.
Some blackjack strategy will tell you to always double down on 11. The beginner should double an 11 versus a dealer upcard of 2-10. Do not use the double down option if the dealer shows an ace. You should simply hit the hand instead of doubling down.
Finally, you should hit or double down on a hand of A-6. This means that you have a soft 17. There is no card in the deck that will bust you, but there are a lot of cards that will help you. 17 is not the greatest total in blackjack and it will not win very many hands. Try to improve it whenever you can.
Buy Yourself a Basic Blackjack Strategy Card
John Marchell goes on to say that you should invest in a basic blackjack strategy card when you are at the live casino. You can also order one of these cards and use it to play online blackjack. These laminated strategy cards have a simple strategy table that will help you make the right play on every hand.
Do not feel bad about using a basic blackjack strategy card. No one at the live casino is going to give you a problem about using it. Also, don’t be pressured into making quick decisions when you don’t need to. Take you time, read the card, and make the correct blackjack play for new players.
What About Blackjack Insurance for Beginners?
There is a bet that is offered at the blackjack table that you may or may not be familiar with. It is called insurance, and it is available to you anytime the dealer shows an ace as his or her upcard. To make an insurance bet you are required to place another bet that is equal to half the amount of your original wager.
If the dealer has a blackjack, you will win the insurance bet at 2-1 but you will lose your original wager. This means that you will break even on the hand. If the dealer does not have a blackjack you will lose the insurance bet but still have a chance to win your original wager. It sounds attractive, but insurance is almost always a bad bet for those who do not know how to count cards.
The house in blackjack has about a 6% advantage on an insurance bet. This is why the bet is there. The casino will win most of these bets and cost you money. Stay away from the play unless you are a card counter and know where the deck stands.
Other Beginner Blackjack Tips
Marchell concludes his blackjack advice for beginners by providing a few more basic tips. Among these are not sitting in the first base seat and starting small with your bets. Counting Edge would like to include one other newcomer tip for blackjack: play blackjack online.
Playing blackjack online has become a favorite way for many people to enjoy the game. They can play from the comfort of their own home on a computer, phone, or tablet, and they can also bet for less money than they would spend in a live casino. Many online blackjack hands begin at just $1 per hand.
Counting Edge has recommended many online casinos for you to choose from. Some of them accept Bitcoin as a form of deposit . Most will give you a bonus when you make your first deposit. You should consider this way to play before you decide to play in a live casino.