Loved by many for its simplicity, high RTP, and low house edge, blackjack is more than just a game of luck. Instead, this game will test your skills, tenacity, and psychology, which explains why there is so much charade and etiquette, especially in brick-and-mortar casinos. This can be very intimidating, especially for the uninitiated.
As one of the world’s oldest and most popular table games, it is governed by a set of rules. Depending on the variation of the game you choose to play, there might be a slight difference in these rules which can change many things about the game. However, one common thing in all types of blackjack is the game’s objective.
The goal is to go head-to-head with the dealer and ensure that you emerge victorious. To do so, you must have a hand of cards with a total of 21 or blackjack or be closest to 21. When your hand is lower than that of the dealer, you lose. Attaining this winning hand depends on your move after receiving the cards. Likewise, the player’s move is a function of what is acceptable in the type of blackjack in play.
Certainly, it is an exciting game to play. However, if you want to understand the game’s nitty-gritty, you have come to the right place. This compilation includes the basic and advanced rules of the game as it applies to the most popular variations. We have also included some expert tips and strategies to help you reduce the house edge. So, if you want to improve your chances of winning, you are welcome to explore Blackjack Gambling Rules.
Popular variations of Blackjack
Below is an inexhaustive list of the most popular variants you will most likely find in any casino.
- American Blackjack
- European Blackjack
- Vegas Strip Blackjack
- Super Fun 21
- Spanish 21
- Multi-Hand Blackjack
- Blackjack Switch
- Double Exposure
American Blackjack is arguably one of the most popular variants of the game. Usually, each player receives two cards, including the dealer. However, the defining moment is how the dealer’s cards are served. The dealer is dealt one card face up (upcard) and the other (hole card) face down. This changes everything about the game, including the rules that guide the player’s moves. For example, the player can opt for an insurance bet if the dealer’s upcard is an ace. This is one of the many rules that define a player’s move. So, you can check our detailed expert review of American Blackjack gambling rules and tips to improve your odds against the dealer.
This game is just as popular as the American variant. The objective, as always, is the same. However, the player gets two cards dealt face down while the dealer receives one card face up at the start of the game. The dealer gets his second card only after the player has made a move to stand, hit, double down, split or surrender. The limited options for splitting and doubling down in European Blackjack are a notable variance in the game rules. The same restrictions are applicable when it comes to doubling down. European Blackjack only allows this for selected high-value cards, whereas there are no restrictions for American Blackjack when the player decides to double down. Check our detailed review of European Blackjack for more details.
Vegas Strip Blackjack is slightly different from the standard blackjack. At the beginning of each round, the dealer passes two cards each to every player on the table. The player’s cards are exposed, while the dealer receives two cards, but only one is exposed. The game’s objective remains unchanged: to beat the dealer with a stronger hand. However, how you do this in Vegas Strip Blackjack is a function of the game rules, which we have covered extensively in the dedicated section.
Super Fun 21
Super Fun 21 is also called Blackjack Super 21 or just Super 21 in some casinos. The most popular setup is a 6-deck shoe, even though this can vary from 2 to 8 from one casino to the other. The players receive two cards dealt face up while the dealer gets two cards, an upcard and a hole card. Afterwards, the player decides on the next move after carefully examining his hand and that of the dealer. The player can place side bets as allowed by the respective casino. Insurance bet pays 2 to 1 and this is a typical side bet for Super Fun 21. This happens if the dealer’s upcard is an ace and the dealer offers the player insurance before checking the hole card for a blackjack. There are many other moves that the player can choose to make depending on the card values compared to the dealers.
Spanish 21 is owned by a US-based company known as Masque Publishing. In this variant, all the 10s from each deck are removed. This leaves the player with 48 cards against the standard deck size of 52, which changes everything about the gameplay. The court cards (Ace, Jack, King, and Queen) still retain their place in each deck, but with the 10s out, it’s a new game and strategy. As compensation for the high house edge and the absence of 10s in the card deck, the game has a super bonus payout of up to $1000 on wagers between $5 to $24. The bonus payout increases to $5000 on wagers from $25 and above. However, this offer is not available to players in any case of a doubled hand.
Multi-Hand Blackjack is an extension of standard blackjack. However, just as the name implies, players can have multiple hands. In the regular blackjack game, the player only bets one hand against the dealer, which has nothing to do with split hands. Picture a standard table of seven players, and there are just two at the moment. A player can occupy the remaining slots up to five hands, which is the difference. The hands are independent, meaning the player can apply all the same rules to each hand independently of the other. This includes splitting, double down, standing, hitting, and so on. Indeed, with multiple hands, you can win more. However, you must be sure that you get the moves right, and we have compiled a list of the game rules and best tips to help you lower the house edge.
What if you could switch cards between two independent hands? What if you could strengthen a weak hand to improve your chances of winning? This is a cheat move in many other types of blackjack. However, in Blackjack Switch, players can switch cards depending on the casino rules. The player must bet on two independent hands and can only switch their second cards. Geoff Hall was the first to introduce this type of blackjack in 2001. He had a time playing the standard game as he wished he could switch cards to form a stronger hand. Geoff created the first land-based variant installed at Harvey’s Casino in Iowa, now the present-day Harrah’s. Since then, Blackjack Switch has continued to gain popularity. The game rules are similar to traditional blackjack, but you need the right strategies to make the best switch. Check out our expert simple, advanced switching strategy for the best outcomes.
Face Up 21 or Double Exposure Blackjack
Face Up 21, or Double Exposure Blackjack, also focuses between the dealer and the player, irrespective of the number of players involved. Usually, the dealer is dealt two cards exposed. This explains why the name is “double exposure blackjack, ” which changes everything about the game. With the dealer’s cards exposed, the player is at an advantage. You know your hand and what you need to win, making this game very simple and one of the most popular. Unfortunately, the double exposure effect also exposes the players to many dangers. So, it is crucial to learn the game rules and have multiple strategies to help you succeed.
Above all, you don’t need in-depth knowledge of every variant before you can start playing. While there is a subtle difference, the game’s objective remains the same. As always, it is vital to ensure that you verify the type of blackjack and the house rules before you start playing. With our searchlight beam always looking out for the latest tips and tricks, you must stay connected for the latest info about the different blackjack variants.
Popular casinos to play Blackjack
Here is a list of websites that we can recommend where you can find the best new casinos with blackjack: