Online Blackjack | OUSC’s Complete Guide
Online blackjack is one of the most popular casino card games of all time. Players have a much better house edge when compared to many other games. It is a straightforward game to learn, but with strategy and hard work, you’ll have an even better chance to come out on top. This complete blackjack guide from the experts at OUSC will cover all aspects of the game.
We’re going to help you learn how to play. You’re going to learn basic strategy, where to practice for free, and find blackjack charts to help you hit, stand, and split. Even if you want to start advanced tactics like counting cards, you’ve come to the right place.
The Rules of Blackjack Online
The rules of online blackjack are just like playing in person. If you haven’t had the opportunity to play before or just need a quick refresher, here’s a step by step guide on how to play online blackjack for beginners.
We’re going to teach you the goal of the game, the card values, and what choices you must make during a hand.
The Main Objective
Sometimes the game is called 21 since that’s the best hand you can get. When any hand goes over 21, that is called a bust. The goal of blackjack is to beat the dealer and not bust. You can do this in two ways:
- Have a higher hand than the dealer
- Don’t go over 21 when the dealer does
All of the face cards and 10’s get a value of 10. Aces can be 1 or 11 depending on the situation. Every other card is worth its face value. If you have a seven and a six, you have a total of 13.
A blackjack is when you have an Ace and any 10 valued card. This combo is also known as a natural 21.
Hard Hands vs. Soft Hands
As you know, an ace can be either a 1 or 11. A hard hand is any hand without an ace, or where an ace counts as a 1. A soft hand is any hand with an ace that counts as an 11. For example, when you have an ace and a six, you have a “soft 17.”
During the game, players will have to make decisions about their hand before the dealer progresses. Don’t get overwhelmed by all of the blackjack terms you may have heard. The options include:
Usually, you’ll look at all your options in order. First, determine if you want to surrender. Then, check for an opportunity to split or double down. Finally, take extra cards by hitting before eventually deciding to stand.
Rule Variations to Lookout For
Blackjack has many rule variations depending on the casino or even which table you choose. Each one either helps the player or the house in one way or another. Here’s an explanation of the most common variations you should look for and which are best for the player.
Does The Dealer Hit or Stand on Soft 17?
The dealer either has to hit or stand when they have a 17 with an Ace counting as 11. This rule frequently changes from table to table. You may even find both options at a single online casino. It is almost always listed directly on the table, so you can quickly see how the current game operates.
Is Surrendering an Option?
The variation of this blackjack rule is whether or not the player can surrender. Not all games have this option, but it’s advantageous to players if the game offers a surrender. If you almost definitely have a losing hand, you can recoup some of your bet with a timely forfeit.
When Can You Double Down?
The option to double down is available at almost every blackjack table, but some places restrict it. Common restrictions include only doubling on your first two cards or doubling only on 9, 10, and 11. The best rules for the player are when you can double on any two cards. Some tables also let you double down on splits.
Can You Always Split a Pair of Cards?
Most online blackjack games let you split any pair on your first two cards. Some tables even allow re-splitting of pairs created from a previous split. Lastly, some tables restrict the re-splitting of Aces. The more freedom a player has to split pairs, the higher their edge on those rare hands.
Push on 22
You may see the term “push on 22.” In several blackjack variants, when the dealer busts with a 22 and the player has a score of 21 or less, the outcome is considered a push.
Blackjack players will come across many forms of the game at the top-rated online casinos. In some titles, the option to place a side bet may be available. A side bet is essentially an additional wager in the game. Side bets vary based on the game you are playing, and are a smart choice when the odds are in your favor.
Pagat has a good overview of the rule variations available at online blackjack tables.
How to Play Blackjack
Once you know the rules of the game, playing a hand is pretty simple. It’s good to know what to expect from the dealer and other players in advance. Gameplay will be the same for online blackjack or a brick and mortar casino. Next, we’ll look at how a blackjack hand progresses step by step:
Place The Initial BetEach player places a bet on the table before the cards are dealt. This wager goes in a small circle in front of the player’s chip stack called the betting area. Each table has a minimum and maximum bet size.
The Dealer Deals The CardsAfter all the bets are on the table, the dealer gives each player two cards and also deals two cards to themself. Player cards are both dealt face up while the dealer cards are dealt one face up and one face down. The face-down card is called the hole card.
Players Make Their DecisionsAt this point, each player decides what they want to do with their hand. This step is where you choose to stand, hit, split, double, surrender, or take insurance.
The Dealer Plays Out Their HandOnce all players are done making decisions, the dealer plays their hand. They have no playing options and must follow the table rules. If their hand is less than 17, they must hit. Some casinos have different dealer rules for soft vs. hard 17.
Winners & Losers Are DecidedIf the player beats the dealer, they get a 1 to 1 payout. If a player wins with a natural 21, the payout is 3 to 2. When a player busts, they lose. When a player doesn’t beat the dealer, they lose. If the player and dealer have the same total, the hand is called a push or a tie. In the case of a push, no money is won or lost.
Playing Blackjack Online
The internet is useful for many things, including the ability to play blackjack online. You no longer have to travel down to the local casino or jump on a plane and travel to Las Vegas. Try your hand at a game of 21 right from the comfort of your home.
Simply log into your favorite online casino and start playing in seconds. Even if you’ve never played online before, it only takes a couple of minutes to get started.
Best US Online Casinos To Play Blackjack
You already know the rules of blackjack and how to play. Next, you’ll want to find a gambling site that suits you. OUSC goes to great lengths to review and recommend only the best gambling sites.
The following casinos are available to players in the US, and all blackjacks pay 3:2. Additionally, their sites are mobile-friendly right in your phone’s browser. Here is a list of the best online casinos that offer blackjack:
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|#1||BetOnline||100% up to $3,000||Games: 23||Play Now!|
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|#4||Bovada||100% up to $3,000||Games: 9||Play Now!|
|#5||Slots.LV||100% up to $3,000||Games: 9||Play Now!|
Test Your Blackjack Skills
MyBookie Casino is one of the best blackjack sites available. Try your hand at one of their tables below. Do you have what it takes to win?
Ready to Play for Real Money?
Online Blackjack Bonuses
Every online casino offers bonuses and promotions to entice new players to try their games. Players should read the terms of each offer carefully. While the casino may offer a welcome bonus, you want to make sure you can play blackjack with it.
Some bonuses are available for a range of games, but some titles have higher rollover and wagering requirements. As long as you know the conditions of each offer, you should be fine. If you have questions, don’t hesitate to contact customer service at the casino site.
Find exclusive bonuses for online blackjack players here.
Ways to Play Blackjack Online
Online casinos give players more options when it comes to blackjack. For a little more flexibility, you should try either of the following styles of gameplay.
Blackjack Game Variations
There are a ton of casino games and variants online. Blackjack software developers have come up with some new and creative versions. Some have side bets, or just a new look and feel. Others may have different rules altogether. Below are just some of the blackjack titles you will find at the top-rated online casinos:
Online Blackjack For Real Money
Playing blackjack for real money online is exciting because when you win, you get to keep the prizes! You can sit at a cash table on both desktop and mobile in the US. When you’re ready, simply log in and choose a variant you enjoy or find a live table.
Become a Better Online Blackjack Player
Now you know how to play the game in its most basic form. What’s next? How do you get better at blackjack, beat the casino, and win money? Aside from managing your bankroll, There are three main ways gamblers hone their skills. Check out the following pages:
Strategies & Charts
Take your blackjack to the next level with some basic strategies. We have an easy to use blackjack chart that helps you make the right player decisions every time.
Blackjack For Free
Want to play a few hands before you decide to wager real money? Online casinos make it easy to practice playing blackjack for free. Get all the info you need here.
Counting cards is considered an advanced strategy, but it isn’t tricky to learn. Learn about the tactic so strong that casinos watch for players using it, and remove them.
You’re Ready For Online Blackjack
Now you’re ready to start playing blackjack online. You know the rules, how to play, and have all the resources you need to become a top-notch player. What’s the next step?
Go sign up at an online casino and start practicing. Maybe study some strategy or how to count cards at a live dealer table. Make sure to have fun whatever you do. If you still have questions, check out our blackjack FAQ page.