The origins of this phenomenal card game remains a mystery to this day, but a widely agreed upon theory is that real money blackjack evolved from Vingt-et-un, immensely popular card games online that was played during the 16th century in France. During the 18th century, Vingt-et-un was introduced to North America by French colonist where it was renamed to 21. When it was first introduced to America, a hand containing a Jack of Spades or a Jack of Clubs, along with an Ace of Spades, provided a jaw-dropping pay out of 10 to 1. Even though this payout is no longer available, it helped real money blackjack to quickly gain popularity across the United States.
The next big chapter for real money blackjack arrived with the introduction of the internet, allowing the card game to expand even further, attracting thousands of players from across the globe. The first online casinos could only offer a standard version of the game, but thanks to its unmeasurable popularity, it didn't take long for players to enjoy a plethora of online blackjack variants, each providing unusual features, innovative side bets, and different rules to make the game even more appealing.
In this article, we are going to take an in-depth look at the basic rules of real money blackjack, provide every betting option you'll encounter while playing online, and give you tips and strategies to increase your chances of winning when you play blackjack online.
Basic Rules of Blackjack
The rules surrounding real money blackjack is very simplistic and there's plenty of opportunity to incorporate high strategy. The biggest reason players prefer to play blackjack online over any other casino game is the low house edge of 1.5%. Before registering an online casino account to play real money blackjack, it's vital that you first grasp the main objective of the game, the card values, the difference between hard and soft hand, and the betting rules to play blackjack online.
The Main Objective
Most players are often mislead when it comes to playing blackjack online main objective. Most players believe that you need to obtain a hand value of 21 or at least get as close to 21 as possible and this couldn't be further from the truth. Your primary objective when you play blackjack online is to simply beat the dealer's hand. You can achieve this by obtaining a hand total which exceeds the dealer's hand or by ensuring you don't exceed 21 when the dealer's hand does.
All cards will count their face value in a game of real money blackjack. The Ace will either count as 11 or 1, while all picture cards will contribute 10 points towards your hand total. Your total will always be the sum of all card values you hold in your hand. For instance, if your hand contains 7-6-5 you will have a total of 18 and a hand that contains King-7 will give you a total of 17. The Ace will always count as 11 unless you exceed 21, in which case it will revert to 1.
Soft Hand vs Hard Hand
A soft hand is essentially a hand that contains an Ace counting as 11. For instance, A-7 will be a soft 18, A-6-2 will be a soft 19, and A-2-5-2 will be a soft 20. A hard hand is essentially a hand that doesn't contain an Ace, or if your hand contains an Ace, it will count as 1. For instance, K-8 will be a hard 18 and A-6-10-2 will be a hard 19. Understanding the difference between each hand is vital, especially when you incorporate strategy during play.
Blackjack Betting Rules
Play blackjack online on a semi-circular table, seating up to a maximum of 7 players. You will notice a circle, or usually a square box, referred to as the betting spot, located in front of each player. The betting spot is there to place your chips when you wish to make a bet. In a land-based casino, the dealer will deal cards, pay winning wagers, collect losing bets, adhere to strict protocols, and keep the overall play at a reasonable pace. In an online casino environment, everything is controlled by casino software and a random number generator.
The basic rules of blackjack also apply to the dealer, regardless if you're playing online or at a land-based casino. Since dealers pay out winning wagers, they are unable to take insurance. They are also not allowed to Double Down, Surrender half their wager, or split their hand. Dealers will also be limited on how they stand or hit. In most blackjack variants, the dealer is required to stand on 17 and hit on 16.
Blackjack Betting Options
Most players, especially those looking for new and exciting card games, will often be confused with the various betting options located on the screen. It's for this reason that we included every single betting option in a game of play blackjack online to ensure you feel comfortable with the layout even if it's your first time playing blackjack online.
Chip Denominations: With online blackjack, players are required to use the plus and minus arrows to determine how much they wish to bet per round. Alternatively, players can hover their mouse over a specific chip value to place a wager in the betting spot in front of them.
Deal: Once you placed your chips, you simply need to click the 'Deal' button to start a new round. The dealer will draw two cards for you and two cards for them, one being face down and one face up. Depending on the where to play blackjack online the variation you are playing, you will then need to make one of the following decisions:
- Stand: When you are satisfied with your hand value from your two initial cards, you can choose to Stand. This will indicate that you don't require any additional cards to be dealt to your hand.
- Hit: When you are not satisfied with your hand value from your two initial cards, you can choose to Hit. This will inform the dealer that you require additional cards to be added to your hand.
- Split: When you are dealt two of the same card values, also referred to as a Pair, you will get the opportunity to Split your hand, creating two new hands. Your original wager will be doubled and the dealer will draw two additional cards for each hand. This gives you an additional hand in an attempt to beat the dealer's hand.
- Double Down: After you receive your initial two cards, you can choose to Double Down. This means you wish to double your bet in exchange for one extra card. Betting will end after choosing to Double Down which means you can't receive any additional cards. This betting option is extremely popular as you will receive double your original wager should you win.
- Surrender: Play blackjack online will offer this betting option which can be used when you predict that your hand won't win against the dealer's hand. Taking this option will forfeit half your original wager while the remaining half will be returned to your bankroll.
- Insurance: Should the dealer display an Ace with their face up card, the Insurance betting option will come into play. This betting option is there in case the dealer has 21 or blackjack. If the dealer has blackjack and you decided to take insurance, you will receive a payout of 2 to 1. Please also keep in mind that this is considered a side bet and won't include your original bet.
Blackjack Tips & Strategies
Play blackjack online, whether you're gambling in Canada or enjoying a few rounds on your vacation in Bora Bora, this incredible card game can be played from anywhere in the world. Thanks to the internet, you will also find a wide variety of play blackjack online variations, ranging from blackjack online multiplayer mode to real money blackjack with a progressive jackpot up for grabs.
To instantly make the game more enjoyable, and to increase your chances of winning, we included a few tips and strategies that you can incorporate on your next online session. Firstly, it's highly recommended that you locate a game with the least amount of decks. The less decks are used in a game, the lower the house edge will become.
Secondly, it will greatly benefit you to first study the table before sitting down. Evaluate the payouts, ensure you can surrender when the dealer has a more powerful hand, and most importantly, check that the dealer needs to stand on any 17 instead of drawing on a soft 17 which will ultimately make the casino more money. Lastly, come prepared with a good play blackjack online strategy that you practiced on free real money blackjack variants online and wager small amounts to prolong your gaming session instead of placing large bets which could cause your gaming night to end much earlier than expected.