Many factors go into becoming a successful blackjack player. There is the mastering of basic strategy. Card counting should be perfected. There are also other skills that a blackjack player must possess in abundance. These are skills that you might not necessarily associate with the game of blackjack. Don’t be misled. They are every bit as important as learning the mechanics of the game itself.
Always Have a Blackjack Plan
One of the most important skills you need before you play blackjack online or in a live casino for real money is a plan. If you want to play seriously with the goal of making money, you cannot just sit down at the blackjack table on a whim. That only works for Las Vegas tourists who want to see what the fuss is all about. Those tourists always lose.
What is a blackjack plan? It means knowing what your purpose is, what the desired outcome is, and how you will go about achieving that. Your purpose for playing real blackjack online should be to make money. Your desired outcome should be a specific amount of money that you want to win. How you will achieve that outcome includes the strategies and money managements that you will be using. When you put all these things together you have a plan.
A plan means that you aren’t just throwing money away without any direction. If you lose at blackjack, and sometimes you will, you can still take comfort in knowing that you stuck to the plan. Why? Because a good plan for playing profitable blackjack will always win in the long run. The short term results don’t matter as long as you are sticking to the plan that you have created.
The Skill of Sobriety
Ask anyone that plays blackjack professionally about alcohol and they will tell you that they save it for after the game. The same can be said for drugs. When you sit down to play blackjack either in a live casino or online from the comfort of your own home you need to be clear-headed. An altered state of consciousness means poor judgment.
The temptation to drink while playing blackjack in a live casino is overwhelming. The waitresses are always coming by with free drinks. The casino does this on purpose. They know that you cannot play at your best when you are drunk. They also have no problem kicking you out the door when your drunken attitude becomes a problem.
You might be thinking that you’ll just choose to play blackjack online at home and you won’t have a problem. Wrong. Just because you are drinking at home doesn’t change the fact that your decision-making process will be affected.
The bottom line: stay sober and win more money playing blackjack.
Blackjack Record-Keeping Skills
The successful blackjack player also needs to be a diligent record-keeper. The only way to measure your progress and development as a blackjack player is to record your wins and losses, and to study where you made mistakes. It is also vital that you keep records in the event that you are required to put your blackjack winnings on your taxes.
In regards to taxes, if you cash out large sums of money from an online or live casino then you may be subject to reporting to the IRS. If a casino reports your winnings then you will have to include them on your yearly tax return or face a harsh penalty for failing to do so.
There is some good news in this regard. If you are required to claim gambling winnings on a tax return, you can also claim gambling losses. But you can only do this if you have kept detailed records that can be presented to the IRS if you are asked to produce them.
In order to document your gambling losses you are going to have to make notes such as where you played, the dated and time you played, and the names of anyone that could verify your information. Writing down the names of the dealer, pit boss, or your friend that accompanied you to the casino can be helpful. Be sure to record how much you bought in for and how much you cashed out.
Know When to Walk Away
One of the most vital skills a blackjack player must have is the knowledge of when to walk away from the blackjack table. You have to have the discipline to leave a winner, or you have to know when to cut your losses. This is true for both live and online blackjack.
If you play too long at any one session you are going to lose. No matter what you do, the casino will always have a small edge at blackjack that guarantees them a profit in the long run. So, staying too long means that you will eventually give back all of the money that you have been fortunate enough to win. Never be willing to do that at the casino.
One of the reasons that we recommend playing online blackjack is that there is always a game available. You can play 24/7, 365 days a year without ever leaving home. There is no reason to keep playing when you are tired or when you are losing. Just stop for the moment and come back in a few hours to start fresh.
Are you ready to begin developing these blackjack skills? Sign up for an account with one of our recommended online casinos today and you’ll be able to practice blackjack for as little as $1 per hand. You’ll also have the chance to win real money. Some online casinos will even give you a bonus for signing up or match your first deposit.