How to Play a Hand of Online Blackjack
If you’re new to online blackjack, you needn’t worry about facing a steep learning curve. Blackjack is really simple to learn. Here’s a quick guide to how a hand plays out.
- First, place your bet. In online blackjack, you’ll be up against the dealer only, so your goal is to have a higher hand than the dealer without going over 21.
- Once betting time is over, the dealer will deal two cards face up to you and two cards to themselves, with one card face up and the other face down.
- Assess your hand value. Number cards carry their own face value, face cards are each worth 10, while Aces are worth 1 or 11, depending on which is more advantageous. If you receive an Ace and a 10-point card, that’s a natural blackjack. Here, you would win the round immediately, unless the dealer also gets blackjack by hitting 21. In this situation, the result is known as a ‘push’, and you would simply get your stake back.
- If you don’t get blackjack, it’s time to decide your next move. You can ‘hit’ and ask for another card, or ‘stand’ to keep your current hand. Most versions of blackjack also allow you to ‘split’ (separate the cards into two separate hands if they are a matching pair) or ‘double down’ (double the bet and take one more card only).
- If you choose to ‘hit’, you can continue to do so until you get a hand value that you’re happy with, or until your hand exceeds 21. If this happens, you ‘bust’ out and lose.
- If you decide to stand, the dealer will reveal their face-down card. Whether the dealer ‘hits’ or ‘stands’ depends on the blackjack variant, though the most common rules dictate that the dealer stands on 17 or more.
- If the dealer doesn’t bust, the winner is whoever has the highest scoring hand. As with natural blackjack, if you and the dealer tie or ‘push’, your bet is returned to you.
That’s really all there is to playing blackjack, though different online blackjack sites may have their own subtle variations on things like how many cards the dealer is obliged to draw, and what additional bets are available. This makes it wise to play free blackjack demo games to ensure you understand any nuances before you put any cash on the line.