Blackjack Strategy – How does it work?
Your blackjack strategy will depend on the kind of card you receive and the cards of your dealer. Depending on the probability of your cards being a winning hand or a losing hand, you should make your move accordingly. Let’s understand how to manoeuvre between steps, with the goal of beating the dealer.
Hit and Stands: Your choice of whether to stand or hit should be decided on not just the dealer’s cards but other factors like the number of decks being used. You can use the outline below to assist your strategy:
1. Do not take the risk of hitting a ‘stiff’ hand. A ‘stiff’ hand is when you have a score that can exceed 21 by drawing just one card. It is more sensible to ‘stand’ and let the dealer take the risk of making a bust.
2. You can make an exception to the rule above when the dealer has an upcard of 7 or above, and you have a hard 12. Here you have less likelihood of busting and more probability of drawing a card that gives you a more competitive score of 17 or above.
Surrender: The word ‘surrender’ makes it sound like you are losing or retreating when you opt for it. But you have to be practical with your cards too, and sometimes you get cards that just have the worst chances of winning. But the ‘surrender’ option is not completely ‘losing’ because you get half your original wager back. Here’s an overall idea of when to ‘surrender’:
1. If the dealer has an Ace, you can surrender a hard 5 to 7.
2. If the dealer gets a 10, you can surrender a hard 14 to 16.
3. If the dealer gets a 9, surrender a hard 10 or a hard 9, but not an 8.
Splitting pairs: This move can be an added advantage or can ruin your chances too, depending on how you use the option. You should not split every time you have a pair. Here is a general pattern you can follow:
1. If it’s a single-deck game with no double-down after a split, always split a pair of 3s if the dealer has a 7.
2. If the game has multiple decks and allows double-downs, you should break a pair of 4s if the dealer has a 5. If the game does not allow double-downs, do not split.
3. If it’s a six-deck game, you can break a pair of 9s if the dealer also has a 9.
Doubling-down: Your casino may allow different variations of this rule. But if you utilize it correctly, it gives you much more profitable returns, or you stand to lose double the amount of the original betting price. Here is how you should use this options:
1. In a single deck game, if you have a hard 17 that has a 9, and the dealer’s face card is a 2, that is a good time to double-down.
2. If it is a double deck game, and you have a hard 17 with an Ace, and the dealer has a 6, you can double-down.
3. Do not double-down in 4,6 or 8 decked games when the dealer has an ace.