How to Play Blackjack

The Ultimate Guide for Blackjack Beginners!

What is Basic Blackjack Strategy?

What’s the major difference between good and great blackjack players? The great ones use a blackjack strategy. You’ve probably heard all about the famed card counting technique. While that’s a system meant for advanced blackjack players, you can learn a basic blackjack strategy to start your promising career.

A basic blackjack strategy will reduce the house edge of the game and help you become a better player. In the simplest terms, it’s a pattern you need to follow under certain conditions in a game of blackjack in order to improve your winning odds. The popular card game has great odds for players who know the blackjack rules by heart. But, why not drop them further below when you can?

Strategies are not a cheat sheet for blackjack. You’re completely free to use them unlike card counting. If you want to be successful in online casinos, you must set limits and think of your gambling as a form of investment. And, what do you do with investments? You protect them. That’s where a blackjack strategy comes in.

mougle.com will tell you all you need to know about the best basic betting strategies out there and how to use them on blackjack. Stick to one and you will find yourself in a much better position winnings-wise than before.

How to Play Blackjack

Blackjack is one of the oldest and biggest games in casinos both offline and online. Since the arrival of online casinos, the card game became even more popular thanks to the number of new variants that hit the market.

The goal of the game is for the player’s cards to add up as close to 21 as possible without going over it. This is called a bust. You’re playing against a dealer at the table and whoever gets to 21 first wins the game. At the beginning of each round, both of you get 2 cards – this is called a hand. You take a look at those and learn the value by looking at the cards.

Card Values in Blackjack

Face cards in blackjack count as 10 while aces are ‘worth’ 1 or 11. All other cards have their face value. Thanks to this, you can tell what your hand count is without much effort. The two cards you get initially are dealt face up from a shoe that contains 4, 6, or 8 standard card decks. When it comes to the dealer’s hand, only one of his cards is face up. He also gets the (unfair) advantage of acting last.

If you’re a very lucky player, you’ll hit a natural on the first two cards. The rules of blackjack say that it’s a combination of a 10 and an ace. In this case, a player gets a 3:2 payout on his bet in most online casinos. Some pay 6:5, but that’s a marketing trick to attract you to a table. The 3:2 variants are better.

Blackjack card value chart

When both the dealer and player get a natural, the game ends in a push. In simpler terms, it’s a tie without a win or a loss. The simplest blackjack strategy is to stay as close to 21 in order to win. Of course, this never happens that easy. There are many caveats you need to keep in mind and of course, you need to learn the basic rules by heart first and get a few expert blackjack tips as well.

Learn Blackjack Rules First

If you want to be successful at any casino card game you must learn its rules first. This is not a tip nor a strategy – it’s just common sense. You can’t use a basic or advanced blackjack strategy without knowing the rules. We’re gone through them in the previous paragraph. If you want them to stay in your head after a while, though, we suggest practicing the game for free first.

That’s the beauty of online casinos – you can try most games for free. Playing for fun may not sound like something a pro does, but remember – mougle.com’s guide is for beginners. If this is your first foray into the world of blackjack, free variants are a must.

The cool thing about playing for fun is that you get to try out more than one blackjack strategy and get to know the rules. Only in this way you’ll allow yourself to learn all the tips and tricks and become the player you always dreamed to be.

Winning Blackjack Strategy

Here’s an unpopular opinion – there’s no such thing as a winning blackjack strategy. One could make a case for card counting, but it is widely considered illegal, not to mention that it’s highly complex. This is why you’re better off with a basic strategy. They are meant for beginners and will help you learn more about the game and become a better player.

Our basic blackjack strategy guide will give you all the tools to make yourself a much better player. You will learn when to hit, stand or double down and when you should split or go another way. There’s your winning strategy right there. Knowing the rules of splitting and what you should do in every situation will drastically improve your chances of winning a round of blackjack.

The fact that online casinos give you a free ride makes our guide even better. You can apply the tips and tricks we share and try the most basic blackjack betting strategy to see if it works. You’ll learn the ropes much faster and get ready for the real money challenges ahead.

Blackjack Tips and Tricks

In order to enhance your gameplay and bet more effectively, you must learn a few blackjack tips and tricks first. Blackjack odds are among the best in online gaming, yet you can drop them even further if you learn from the pros. mougle.com’s experts have created a list of the top blackjack tips’n’tricks you should keep in mind if you want to get better at the card game.

From controlling your bankroll to the Insurance bet and using the right strategies, these tips can have an immense effect on your blackjack success. Read expert tips below if you want to get good at the game fast.

  • Manage your bankroll: bankroll management is key for all online casino games, not blackjack only. Playing blackjack without a set bankroll or limits can have a devastating effect on your cashflow. As a general rule, you should never bet with money you can’t afford. We advise you to set a maximum amount you are comfortable to spend before you start playing. Never chase your losses – it’s a strategy that doesn’t work.
  • Understand the house edge: the house edge of blackjack is around 2-3% (depending on the variant) when you don’t use a strategy. Using one will get it closer to 1%. For those who don’t know what it is, the house edge represents the amount in percentage the house is likely to win over time. If you can get it below the general blackjack house edge, you should definitely do it by using strategies.

Blackjack table image with house edge 3:2

  • Never take the insurance bet: the Insurance bet is present at almost any blackjack table online. On the surface, it looks attractive with the 2:1 payout. However, you should never take it because it’s incredibly hard to get right. This side bet is for more experienced players, not casuals or beginners. Our advice would be to skip it and stick to the more common bets.

Insurance bet image

  • Always come prepared: if you’re planning to be successful at blackjack, you can’t do it without doing your homework first. Always come prepared when you sit at a real money table. The good thing about online blackjack is that you can try the games for free before you splash the cash. This will give you a chance to try out different strategies and see what works best for you.
  • Use different betting systems: there are plenty of excellent blackjack betting systems and strategies that can work wonders for you if you follow the plan carefully. We’re not talking about simple strategies such as learning to split. Advanced betting systems such as the Martingale can turn you from a loser to a winner and have been widely recommended by pros. While there’s no bulletproof strategy you can follow, experimenting with different ones and practicing for free will give you an idea of what to expect.

Of course, before you even start playing, you should learn the rules of blackjack. If you don’t know them, strategies won’t have the desired effect. Practice for free to become a better player then hit the real money tables at the recommended casinos at mougle.com and try to make a killing.

Best Blackjack Betting Strategies

Casual blackjack players rarely use strategies since they often play with small sums of cash. If you like to be a pro and take things to the next level, though, you’ll need to start using a blackjack strategy. Below you will find several blackjack strategies recommended by our experts. Use them properly and keep in mind the tips and tricks from above and you will soon become a master blackjack player that will hopefully win loads of cash.

Martingale

The Martingale betting strategy is commonly used in roulette. However, it can also be applied to blackjack. This strategy is excellent for players who are a bit more aggressive with their betting. As such, it is popular with high rollers and those who want to spend a bit more.

With the Martingale blackjack strategy, your goal is to double your bet every time you lose. Yes, it sounds crazy (and probably is), but with it, you will cover your losses on every round. If successful every time, you will eventually cover everything you’ve lost on the table. Of course, you will most likely lose it all if you don’t know where to stop.

The Martingale blackjack strategy is not something you would use in the long run. If you’re lucky to cover your losses, you need to take your money and leave if you want it to be successful. If you don’t know where to stop, you will find yourself in big trouble.

d’Alembert

A unique strategy designed for numerous casino games, the d’Alembert betting system can work great on blackjack too. Invented by French mathematician Jean le Rond d’Alembert, it was influenced by the Martingale system that was popular in France at the time. Of course, both systems work in online variants as well and can be easily implemented.

To put it simply, the d’Alembert blackjack strategy requires you to raise your bet by 1 unit when you lose. When you win, you should reduce your bet by one. One of the biggest disadvantages of the d’Alembert system is that you may eventually run out of money before you even hit a winning hand. It’s not the perfect blackjack cheat sheet, but then again, no strategy is.

The d’Alembert is one of the negative progression betting systems with which you increase your bet when you lose in order to cover up your losses in one instance.

1-3-2-6

Unlike negative progression systems, positive progression betting systems require you to follow a certain pattern by betting a string of units. You start with 1 unit, then raise it by 3, 2, and 6 respectively if you win each hand. This blackjack strategy functions best on smaller units like a fiver. If you bet 100 pounds per round, chances are you’ll burn through your bankroll quickly.

By keeping your bets small, this blackjack strategy can help you win big sums of cash. Should you lose, you start over at the beginning (1 unit). Losing in the sequence means you’re not throwing away a lot of cash, making this betting strategy pretty rewarding.

Of course, luck plays a big part in it and you should also be disciplined and follow the pattern. The 1-3-2-6 blackjack betting system is meant for more experienced players, but beginners can have luck with it as well. Just stick to a small bet and you will find it profitable soon.

Oscar’s Grind

Positive and negative progression systems will work sometimes but are not 100% bulletproof strategies. Players have been looking for ways to optimize their profits on online blackjack tables since forever. There have been many attempts to create an ideal betting system that functions as a bit of a mix of positive and negative systems. One of the most notable examples is called Oscar’s Grind.

The goal of this blackjack strategy is to win just one unit. You start with 1 unit, then bet one more after any win. If you lose, you go back to the beginning – a 1 unit bet. The idea behind the Oscar’s Grind strategy is to stay in the game for longer without spending a lot of cash. It’s pretty easy to follow too with one exception – you should never place a wager that will result in a win that exceeds one limit.

Stick to the 1-unit profit and raise your bets by 1 unit when you win, go back to 1 unit when you lose. Follow the betting strategy properly and you should be able to turn a profit.

This blackjack strategy combines the best of the negative and positive progression systems. With it, you will be able to play for longer sessions without busting out. A shorter string of wins can cover your losses without losing a lot of cash. This is also a perfect blackjack strategy to try out on free online blackjack variants.

Fibonacci

Based on the famous Fibonacci sequence which is said to exist in nature, this blackjack strategy follows the sequence completely. You start by betting 1 unit, and then increase it by 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55, 89 and so on. To cut things short, your next bet on a win is the sum of the previous two bets combined.

When you win, you cross out the last two numbers in the sequence. It’s a very aggressive blackjack betting strategy which also requires knowing the rules of blackjack properly. In this way, you will be able to keep track of your bets with ease.

The Fibonacci betting system is more suitable for experienced players and high rollers. If you hit a string of wins in a row, you will have to bet higher sums so it’s not exactly ideal for beginners. Playing recklessly and without a bankroll limit can burn through your bankroll quite easily.

If you are experienced and know the blackjack rules by heart, though, it can be very profitable in the long run. Make sure to keep your bets small with this blackjack strategy for the optimal result.

Labouchere

If you ask many players what the ideal blackjack strategy is, they might answer the Labouchere system. An advanced blackjack strategy that requires you to keep count of your bets, it is a complicated system that might not be suitable to new players. When you use the Labouchere blackjack strategy, you need to raise your bet after losses and decrease it after wins.

In the beginning, you must choose a sequence of numbers to bet on. For example, you can go 1-2-3-4-5-6. You then make a bet that is the sum of the first and last number in the sequence. In this case, that would be 6+1=7. Bet 7 units and wait for the outcome. If you win, you cross out 1 and 7 from the sequence. Your next bet would be the sum of the first and last number again – this time, that’s 2 and 5. Bet 7 units and if you win, you cross out 2 and 5.

If you lose, the lost bet (in units) is added to the end of the sequence. For example, if your 2+5 bet loses, you add 7 to the sequence at the end. Your next bet in this case would be 1+7=8.

The Labouchere blackjack strategy is a bit more complex. It requires players to know the rules of blackjack properly and have substantial knowledge of the game of 21. New players will likely be confused by it. The good news is that mougle.com’s list of casinos features a wide range of classic blackjack variants you can try for free. Practice this blackjack strategy and you should be more comfortable with it.

This betting system is a bit slow, but the continuous increase in bets can bring nice profits. The main disadvantage is that you might get locked in long series with huge losses that can burn through your bankroll.

Paroli

Another positive progression betting strategy, the Paroli system makes the best use of hot streaks. You start with a minimal bet and double it, then go back to the original bet when you lose. When you use this blackjack strategy, it’s very important to keep your bankroll in check. If you bet large sums of money, a hot streak will see you double your wins a lot which could lead to massive losses.

With the Paroli betting strategy, going small is of vital importance. You get to ride a hot streak and win substantial sums of cash without breaking the bank. Go big, however, and you will find yourself stripped of cash before you know it.

Just like all other progressive betting systems, the Paroli blackjack strategy relies on hot streaks. That could be a problem for new players, so high rollers will have more luck with it. With this system, it’s very important not to get frustrated and abandon it. If you’re so lucky to hit a hot streak, it could be quite lucrative.

Parlay

Also known as the “Let it Ride” betting system, the Parlay blackjack strategy is very similar to the Paroli system. You double your bet after a win and revert to the original bet after a loss. Just like the Paroli system, it relies on hot win streaks.

Due to this, use the Parlay blackjack strategy with caution. If you get frustrated after a series of losses and abandon it, you could lose your bankroll in a flash.

What is Card Counting?

You’ve probably heard all about card counting up until now. A controversial yet winning technique, card counting has been widely used in posh Vegas casinos in the 1970s and 1980s. It was quickly banned afterwards since people used it to their advantage to win millions of dollars.

Blackjack card counting chart

Widely known as the ultimate blackjack strategy, card counting is pretty complex and therefore not very reliable for new players. If you’re a skilled player, though, you can apply it to get a better idea on what’s on the table. There’s one thing to remember, though – it is not a bulletproof winning strategy and won’t make you win each round against the dealer.

You do card counting in your hand instead of on the table. While no one can meddle into your mind and learn that you’re using it, it is considered cheating both offline and online. Counting cards in online casinos is even harder, but not impossible.

How to Try Card Counting

  • Assign a value of +1 to cards 2-6; 0 to 7-9, and -1 to the ace and the 10.
  • Now, start keeping a running count when the dealer pulls a card out of the deck with those values.
  • If your count is accurate, you will be able to monitor the value of the remaining cards.
  • When the count is negative, you raise your bet. If it’s positive, lower it.

As mentioned, card counting is a very complex technique. Keeping count of the values is pretty hard online, but if you can do it in your head and you know the blackjack rules properly, this is a blackjack strategy that works.

One of the great thing about online blackjack is that you get to practice each strategy for free. You can try card counting and see if it works when you decide to play for cash. Whatever you do, don’t use card counting software. It is illegal and if you get caught, you’ll be banned from the online casino and your profits frozen.

Does It Work Online?

As mentioned, card counting is pretty complex, especially when you take into account that online blackjack variants are controlled by a Random Number Generator. These games use randomized decks of cards shuffled each around which can make it hard to keep a running count.

Since there’s no law that makes card counting a criminal activity, though, you’re welcome to try it. Be wary, though. This blackjack strategy requires your full patience and focus. You should only use it when you’re confident in your capabilities and you must also be discreet and keep an eye on your bankroll.

If you want to improve your chances at winning, we suggest learning the rules of blackjack by practicing for free and trying one of the recommended strategies from above.

Blackjack House Edge and Odds

If you ever played the game of 21 online, you are surely familiar with the term house edge. You’ve probably met it along with terms such as ‘probability’ and ‘math’. They all work together to determine the odds of the game of 21.

In the simplest terms, the blackjack house edge is a statistical way of measuring the casino’s advantage over a player. In blackjack, the house edge is around 2% and lower than 1% when you use a basic blackjack strategy. With that house edge, blackjack is one of the most favourable games for players. It means that the blackjack odds are pretty great from your perspective.

Many factors have an impact on the blackjack house edge. For example, how long you play has an impact and the variants themselves are different too. By using one of the strategies we examined above, you can bring the house edge down pretty low, but you also need to learn the rules properly. If you don’t use a blackjack strategy, the house edge is lower and your odds to win are therefore lower too.

Is It the Best Online Casino Game?

Math-wise, blackjack is one of the best online casino games. Many will make a case for poker, but you can bet more at blackjack and win more as well. Of course, it’s not a game where you will win each hand. Using strategies, however, or counting cards, can make you a much better player and help you win more.

When playing blackjack online for real money, you must always play with a strategy. There’s no perfect blackjack strategy, but at the end of the day, if you don’t use one, you’re better off playing for fun.

While on the subject of playing for fun, it’s a perfect way of learning the rules of blackjack and trying out different strategies. That’s one advantage online blackjack has over its land-based sibling. Remember that there’s no cheat sheet you can use. You just master a strategy and try your best to beat the dealer to the race to 21 and improve your profits.

FAQ

Where can I play blackjack online?

You can play different variants of online blackjack at the list of recommended casinos at mougle.com. All of them have RNG and live dealer variants of the game of 21 you can try for free or cash.

Do I need to download any software?

It depends. Some casinos have a mobile app, while others use a mobile mirror site. While apps are generally better, mobile blackjack sites allow you to play directly through your mobile browser.

Can I play online blackjack on my phone?

Yes, you can play online blackjack variants on the go. You can do it for fun or play for real money to win cash.

What’s the best blackjack strategy?

We leave that decision up to you. Check out the recommended strategies in mougle.com’s guide and try them while playing for fun to see what works best for you.