When you visit a casino to play blackjack, you must understand that the dealer is not the only one you are up against. The combat measures for your loss begins even before you take a seat at the casino. It has been revealed that there is a game behind the blackjack game and it involves getting you to the table and ensuring you stay put. The fact is that your commitment to the idea of winning is increased while your chances of winning are reduced.
The dealers are just pawns and the casinos are the real foes you’re up against in your bid to win. The casinos are the ones who hire the dealers, train them, and monitor them. They just do the jobs for which they are paid, and must do it perfectly to avoid being fired although the dealers are always on the lookout for some fun and good tips in the process. Here are some measures put in place by casinos to ensure you’re disadvantaged once you’re at a table.
1. They Pretend To Be Your Friend
It’s a no-brainer that you’ll receive warm welcoming at a casino with your tips being received in a gracious manner. If you observe carefully, this treatment goes out of the window when it becomes obvious that you won’t be tipping. For the ones who decide to tip at a table, once you’re down and out, the friends vanish immediately. Dealers only become your acquaintances when you’re at the table, once you’re away from the table, you are on your own. Tip: Only tip if you are winning and at the end of a session.
2. The Fake Optimism Method
Dealers must create the impression that the casino has been designed to ensure that you win when you’re at a table. They give the impression that you have arrived at a happy place where your chance of leaving with some cool cash is realizable.
Well, this is eventually not the case most times. Some online casinos offer more winnable options and are the go-to in recent times for casino gamers. As an example, try your hands at casimba.com for realistic winnable options that will be on offer. Regardless, the dealer at a land-based casino has been hired to welcome you, offer some small talk and give you hope that all things are possible with regards to winning. You would do well not to fall for this on your next visit to a casino to play blackjack.
3. They’ll Keep the Drinks Coming
Do you take alcohol in the midst of a serious business conversation or when you’re involved in a major productive activity that involves your mental capacity? I guess your answer is No, and rightfully so. The liquid only serves to reduce the validity of your thoughts.
That is what the casino aims for when they keep offering you free drink after free drink to affect your judgment and decisions. This will increase the possibility of bad decisions from your end and sees you ending up on the losing side frequently. They really don’t need your money at the bar but at the table. Tip: Don’t drink and gamble.
4. The Tip Whoring Method
Casinos want players, as your loss is their reward which helps them to keep running and cater to their staff. You unknowingly help them out in catering for their staff in the form of tips. You may ask how? Well, when you smash them with wins, they expect a share of the spoil, but when you end up losing, they suggest that you’ve not been a good tipper. Regardless, it’s all a ploy to reduce your chances of a successful night. Do the dealers tip you when they win big?
5. Hiding Bad Blackjack Rules
In recent years, casinos have been changing blackjack rules to the detriment of players. The biggest change in rules has been the payoff for a natural – a ten valued card and an Ace on your first 2 cards. This should be paid at 3 to 2, however, to increase casino profits many casinos have changed this payoff to 6 to 5. To make matters worse, some casinos don’t even inform the customer of the change or they have the rules written in very small letters on the table. Tip: Don’t play at casinos that only pay 6 to 5 at blackjack.
Well, these aforementioned tips shouldn’t surprise you as both dealers and casinos are looking to make money. Therefore, it’s advisable for players to be on the lookout, know when to deal, and protect their money.
You might think that checking for blackjack is a largely universal process but, as a matter of fact, there are two ways that blackjack dealers can check for blackjack and offer insurance to their players. These rules aren’t just exclusive to land-based casinos either, they can be adopted by live dealer casinos too.
Checking for blackjack is something that happens via high-definition (HD) live streams at slotscalendar.com blackjack casinos which also offer a string of live-streamed blackjack game variants, including Blackjack Surrender. These two scenarios for checking blackjacks are ingrained in the gameplay of all kinds of live blackjack, but all too often players are unaware with how their dealers are required to handle their own hole cards.
To offer some clarity on the rules for checking blackjack with live casinos, we’ve gone into more detail on the two possible scenarios you could be faced with:
The “no peek” blackjack rule
The “no peek” blackjack ruling is synonymous with most European land-based and online casinos. If the dealer pulls an ace from the deck as their up card, they will immediately ask players at the table whether they would like to take insurance. However, they will continue to deal cards to all active players at the table, allowing them to make decisions on their hands such as splitting or doubling down before a dealer’s blackjack can be revealed. Lasvegasadvisor.com discussed this and revealed that the “no peek” rule results in the house having a greater edge over players worth 0.62%.1)Editor note: See comments. The ENHC rule is worth 0.11% to the house. A rule that is still bad for the player. The 0.62% is for the entire casino (house) edge over the player for this example. That’s because the house can take the player’s additional chips for splitting and doubling down, on top of their original bet, before a dealer’s blackjack is announced.
The US-style blackjack rule
Wherever possible, players should try to find live blackjack tables that abide by the US-style “peek” rule of checking blackjack. In most US online and land-based casinos, the dealer will peek at their face-down card before players are given any cards. If the dealer does have blackjack, they will display it to the table and immediately take all the original bets from the players. This can save you money and prevent you from committing to doubling down or splitting a hand in the no-win scenario of the dealer having blackjack.
It’s a similar case in live blackjack with surrender too. Some live casinos will allow players to surrender their hand if the dealer’s up card is an ace and their other card is drawn face down. In other cases, live casino dealers may only draw one card face down for themselves, with the other remaining in the deck until all players have decided how to play their hands. In this instance, players will be offered what is known as “late surrender”, crucially offered after the dealer has checked for a possible blackjack. The issue of surrender is a hot topic on quora.com among players, reinforcing the challenge of rules not being the same in one casino as the next.
Ultimately, the rules on live casino dealers checking for blackjack and offering insurance will depend on whether your chosen live casino adopts the European or US blackjack format. It’s a good idea to be mindful of this before you sit down at a live dealer table, so that you can plan for both eventualities.
It appears everyone in the industry is preparing to reopen their casinos and/or cardrooms. One thing for sure, from the reopening procedures that I have seen, there really is not an established set of procedures that anyone is required to do. Base on all my research in COVID-19 and my knowledge of casino and cardroom operations, the following procedures need to be the “core” procedures to reopen.
Temperature checked at the door before entering.
Mandatory face masks wore while in the casino.
Mandatory sanitizing/washing of hands upon entrance to the casino; sanitizing as they enter a table game.
Some casinos are not making the customers wearing of face masks mandatory, and they are going to have some problems keeping a safe environment for both customers and employees. Of all the COVID procedures, wearing a face mask at all times is the most important. Social distancing is important, but social distancing needs diminish if everyone wears a face mask.
Temperature checked when entering the building to work.
Mandatory face mask wore while working on the casino floor and near other employees.
Mandatory sanitizing/washing of hands before they enter a table game to deal, and then again when they leave the table (for break or game rotation).
COVID RNA testing is important, but resources are limited. This procedure can be treated as “optional” until test resources become available.
If management does not make the customers wear a face mask at the table, the dealers need to be assigned protective face shields, and it is highly recommended that the dealers be given N95 face masks. This will keep the infection to the employees at a minimum. Sanitizing surfaces and equipment:
All surfaces need to be wiped down on a regular basis; when the customer leaves a game, and/or once an hour.
Playing cards deal face-down to the customers need to be replaced every few hours, or as needed.
Casino chips need to receive cleaning/sanitizing once a day (table and cage).
Following is an excellent article on how COVID-19 is infectious to the human body. The article goes on to explain how COVID-19 is transferred from one person to another (primarily through aerosol droplets). This article gives the reader a true understanding as what to fear and prepare for when dealing with safety issues in the casino/cardroom environment https://www.erinbromage.com/post/the-risks-know-them-avoid-them.
Over the past month I received mostly questions regarding table games and the effect that COVID, and game restrictions due to social distancing have to do with table game profitability and safety. Following are a few of these emails.
Question #1: Just wondering if you know of any safeguards being used or suggested for live poker play? Since everyone touches the cards and chips, how can a casino provide any protection for the players or dealers? Thank you for your thoughts.
Reply: The issue in live poker (hold’em, seven-card-stud, etc.) is not that the players touch the cards and chips, it is the number of players allowed at the table. Under many of the jurisdictions’ reopening guidelines the game cannot have more than four players at the table (based on social distancing requirements). Normally, games with 8 to 9 players are considered strong games, 6 to 7 players considered weak games, and 5 or less players will break down. You might be able to spread five handed games for less rake/collection, but it might not be worth the space if you are also allowed slots and other table games. I doubt you could keep a four handed game going regardless the rake/collection. I have advised several of my clients to hold off opening poker for now and wait until social distancing requirements have relaxed.
BTW, infection from touching cards and chips is quite low (known as fomite transfer). The big infection vehicle is droplets released from an infected customer’s nose and mouth during sneezes, coughs, and even through normal conversation. If you make it mandatory that the customers wear a mask at all times, and that they have to wash/sanitize their hands on a regular bases (as well as employees), then you still will be safe to change the decks once every couple of hours, and sanitizing the chips used once a day. If wearing a mask while in the casino is not mandatory, then you’re asking for trouble, and your employees and customers will be in an unsafe environment.
Question #2: Thanks for the update and I hope you’re well. Following up on your risk factors I have a question. In an effort to reduce as many touch points as we can, I would like to offer UTH as a face up game where the guests don’t touch the cards at all. I’ve looked online to see if there’s anything on how much of the house edge we would be giving up and haven’t found anything official other than some comments on reddit and other blogs. If the game were dealt in this manner would it become beatable? I’m sure you’re getting inundated with emails/messages with all the casinos closed but if you have time for an opinion, I’d appreciate it.
Reply (first time): If you have been intending to make a game change to face-up UTH, then go ahead, but don’t make this change because of COVID. Right now you will have too many issues on your plate to make a game change. A game change is something you don’t want on your plate right now.
I would conduct a risk assessment on your geographic area. If the number of infections cased to population in your area are low, I would deal the games as normal with the exception of social distancing of one player every other seat (like the other games). If your risk is high because there is an elevated infection level in your area, I might not open alternative “touch” games at all (or any touch games). Remember, playing cards and casino chips have the same issue. If you find it’s too dangerous to touch the cards, it’s too dangerous to touch the chips. Doing your geographical and demographic risk assessment is the first step.
By doing a risk assessment you will be in a better position to know what you have to do to keep the customers and staff save. The important step in the next month is to reopen as safely as possible, and then expand from there. It won’t be like it used to be, not for many months, possibly never again.
Reply (second time): I wanted to follow up on your questions. I’m hearing that regulators in some jurisdictions will not allow card games where the players touch any of the cards. To answer your original questions; the games you mentioned, UTH, should be fine to deal the player’s original cards (hole-cards) face-up. The rule of thumb when looking for possible customer card information collusion is to gain knowledge of a total of 35 or more cards before making a decision. For example; Caribbean Stud Poker is open to collusion since a 7-spot game allows the “advantage players” in collusion to know the value of 35 cards plus the dealer’s exposed card (total 36 card information). Even if you allowed players to wager on all possible table spots, UTH would not provide enough card information knowledge to give up an advantage. Just be sure to keep the dealer’s cards unexposed (and protected) until they need to be exposed. If you have any questions, please let me know.
Question #3: I was hoping you could answer a question or point me in a direction of resources. We are debating on whether to open with table games. We are looking at 3 spots per table. What would be the minimum bet at each game type to make profitable? We currently have class II and class III games. Class III is only blackjack. Class II is blackjack and carnival with a house take of the drop. Appreciate any information you can provide.
Reply: I hope you are staying safe. The question you ask is somewhat complex. Attached is a spreadsheet I designed for BNP’s Cutting Edge presentation in LV. The spreadsheet is used to illustrate what minimum bets are needed to cover the cost of a dealer and a portion of the floorman’s cost. There are several yellow cells where you can change the variables. These variables include average wager, number of hands wagered, house advantage (H/A%), rounds dealt per hour, and labor cost. By changing some of the variables, you will be able to develop a good idea what the revenue, related labor costs, and whether the game can produce a positive gross profit. Remember, this gross profit will later be reduced by equipment costs, promotional cost (think comps), and other operational costs related to that table game.
The H/A% to the right of the model are estimated H/A% for the different games you offer. The estimated H/A% takes into consideration any side bet. The average bet per customer would then take into consideration any amount wagered on side bets. Also, remember to use only the amount of money that is on the layout at the time the dealer starts dealing the game. Do not include any additional funds used to place call bets or other bets placed after the round begins and before a decision is made. I didn’t include side bet affect in BJ since the side bets vary and the amount/frequency varies greatly as well. Play with the model a little bit, and if you have any questions afterwards, feel free to email me and ask. Good luck with your project and casino reopening.
I even received an email from a casino executive who had something other than a COVID-19 related question:
Question#4: Recently at one of our casinos poker rooms a dealer was stealing chips from the pot at a 9 handed NL game. What he would do is while making change during the course of action he would shortchange the pot to the eventual winner by $1. He would make the incorrect change and leave the stolen dollar in his chip tray. Once he accumulated $25 worth of stolen chips, he would remove the $25 chip by palming it and placing it in his sock. Eventually a player at his table noticed and notified our poker manager. Which I believe is what we are hoping for, the players to monitor the amount they receive when winning a pot. I was wondering if you knew of any additional steps, we can implement to stop this from happening again? Our dealers do not bring their own chip tray to the table.
Reply: Stealing in poker usually happens by shorting the pot during the process of making change (I imagine changing a $5 chip and spraying only four $1 chips back into the pot), or by collecting the pot rake and jackpot amount, and stealing a dollar or two as the collection and jackpot amount is dropped. In the first example, the dollar comes from the player winning the pot, and in the second example the dollar comes from the house. Since your dealer was converting 25 dollar chips to a green check, he was probably working on the theft collection for over an hour.
The best way to catch this type of stealing is to have someone in surveillance conduct special operations of each dealer once every one or two months. The surveillance operator watches the dealer over a period of several downs to see if they are stealing. Once your operator gets some experience looking for these steal moves, they become easy to spot. You really need to catch three or more incidents before acting, which means termination.
When I was working as a consultant at a Southern California cardroom, I had surveillance run a sweep of all the poker dealers every three or four months. Then when we caught a dealer stealing, we made a big deal about it so the other poker dealers would see we were watching. The other dealers would be “good boys and girls” for several months. Then several months later, we would run another surveillance sweep until we caught someone else.
Scheduled Seminars and Workshop
World Game Protection Conference in Las Vegas – Tropicana – October 5th thru – 8th
The WGPC 2020 might have been pushed back to fall, but it will still be a great conference. The theme this year is a look back over the past twenty years. Willy Allison and I will be collaborating in a two-hour session that will look at the most sophisticated twenty casino scams that occurred in the last twenty years. The World Game Protection Conference is always a casino game protection “eye opener” so do not miss it!
There is a vast list of great speakers, and the schedule of events is absolutely incredible! Willy and Jo Allison always put on a terrific show. There is plenty of time to register. If you contact WGPC, ask for Jo! She is great to work with.
Table Games Cutting Edge Conference in Las Vegas November 16th thru 18th
How Does Table Game Mathematics Work for Me?
Monday November 16th, 2020 – Paris Resort – Las Vegas Nevada
I will be presenting on the first day of the Cutting Edge Table Games Conference. I like to present at this conference. This year’s session covers a lot of the information presented over the last several years, including mathematics on electronic Table Games (ETGs). I always like to update my information and slip in topics that I feel need to be covered regarding the operation of table games. The theme this year is “How Does Table Game Mathematics Work for Me?” During the first portion I expose several situations where the knowledge of table game math would have saved the uninformed casino executives thousands of dollars! The conference will be held at the Paris Resort in Las Vegas, November 16th through 18th. For more information please go to the website www.tablegamesconf.com/ . I hope to see you in Las Vegas in November.
On the Move
Since I’m sheltering in place right now, I’m not on the move. No one’s on the move. I will have plenty of time starting in June or july to conduct work. Call or email me! 702-423-5734, and [email protected].
I’m always available to answer your questions. If you have any questions on gaming; don’t hesitate to contact me through email. I answer emails about gaming every day! [email protected]. I really am here to help.
The casino scene has long been lauded of one of glitz and glamour, with many of the biggest and most famous casinos in the world becoming millionaires’ playgrounds. Of all of the forms of casino players, however, few are held in such high prestige as the blackjack player.
Poker players can be scruffy and play against fellow poker players, those on the slot machines sit and wait for jackpots, and roulette and craps are all about the thrills of luck. Blackjack, however, is one person taking on the casino directly, using skill and strategy to come out on top.
Thanks to movies like 21and the James Bond movie Licence to Kill, we know that blackjack players dress well, are intelligent people, and are incredibly suave. Licence to Kill may be rated as one of the worst James Bond movies, but it still showcased the legendary agent flexing his intellect at the blackjack table for the first time in the movie franchise.
So, we’re going to break down how you can pull off the blackjack style: from attire and persona to becoming the peoples’ champion at the table.
Appearances matter a great deal in blackjack
As we all know, the right fashion sense can take you a long way. Luckily for blackjack players, the classy casino scene all-but demands that its attendees dress well. When it comes to men’s fashion, the suit is often the epitome of hot looks, which helps anyone trying to achieve that blackjack lifestyle as the suit is the go-to getup for blackjack players.
Wearing a nice-fitting suit automatically gives you a confidence boost, as does wearing your best dress for such an occasion, which is needed for a blackjack player. The persona of someone who frequents glamorous venues is that of confidence, being somewhat smug in your superior ability of the card game, and, of course, being as suave as humanly possible.
Nail all of this, and you’ll almost be ready to hit the tables, look the croupier right in the eye, and set about taking on the casino. There’s just one more key skill-set that you need to hone: your blackjack skill.
You need to be able to walk the walk
As you would assume, a key part of living the blackjack lifestyle is sitting at the table and taking on the casino. You can look and act like a legendary blackjack player as much as you’d like: but if you can’t play the game, you can’t pull off the lifestyle. 1)Of course, if you are a proficient card counter you don’t really want to look like a legendary blackjack player. 🙂
For most novice players looking to hone their skills and then live the blackjack lifestyle, going into a big or even a small casino can be daunting. You’re effectively putting your reputation on the line early without knowing the ins and outs of the game. This is why so many people turn to online blackjack Canada online as there are many different games, bonuses to use for additional game time, and all the games can be played from your phone or computer.
A lot of one’s blackjack ability comes from experience and practice, which is very easy to gain now that blackjack is such a prominent online game. Playing blackjack online in games with varying deck counts in the shoe works as good preparation for the in-person experience.
If you want to experience the glitz and glamour of the blackjack lifestyle, you need to nail the look, the persona, and, most importantly, the card game itself.
Blackjack has been one of the most enduring casino games ever invented. Instead of being overshadowed by high-tech games in the online casino era, it has continued to reign supreme. Blackjack is popular because it is easy to learn, but players can gain a level of mastery which can improve their chances of winning. Scandinavia is a growing sector for the gambling industry, with a lot of developers targeting players there. The fact that blackjack is still the most played table game at their online casinos suggests that the classic card game will carry on going strong for many years.
There are various casino portals in Scandinavia which recommend the best sites to play at in terms of bonuses and what games are on offer. Comparison sites such as these tend to advertise what the majority of players are looking for, and the fact that there is a heavy focus on blackjack shows how popular the game is in the region. Some review sites put people’s enduring love for the game down to its simplicity. The rules of the game are described by norgecasino.com in 9 steps, outlining just how easy it is for anyone to play the game with minimal knowledge.
Online casinos in Scandinavia aim to attract players by offering deposit match bonuses. This free money can be used to play table games, with blackjack being one of the most commonly played offerings. Judging by some of the other bonuses, slots are also hugely popular in the region. Many of the sites that aim to bring in Scandinavian players have free spins bonuses along with the deposit matches.
NetEnt is one of the biggest developers in the business, and the dominant studio is from Sweden. The rise of the company which creates online casino software has helped draw more attention to the growing market in the region. The company, which has developed technology for the industry since 1996, has recently stated that one of its main focuses moving forward in 2020 will be to improve its live casino offerings. This includes live links to blackjack games with real dealers, which are designed to bring the real-world casino experience to players in their own homes.
Sweden has been ahead of the times in Scandinavia when it comes to legislation, and has been the most open of the countries in the region when it comes to gambling online. But in Norway and Finland, the legalities surrounding online gaming have been slightly stricter. Laws are becoming less stringent, though, as the governments have realized that a large section of the population want to play at online casinos. This is another reason why developers are targeting players in the region with their offerings.
The fact that live casino developments are the main focus for casino software developers shows just how popular blackjack is in Scandinavia. With there being few actual land-based casinos, players need to get their fix by playing online. Blackjack is the most popular table game due to its simplicity, but also because it is one of the most exciting offerings to play.
The history of blackjack is a bit fuzzy. But one thing that experts agree on is that it’s been around for a long time.
Most believe that blackjack started in French Casinos as long ago as the early 1700s. Vingt-et-un or twenty-one seems to be the original French name – obviously, the rules and game-play were slightly different, but it seems to be the closest relative, along with Pontoon. Other historical evidence points to Veintiuna was being played in Castile (Spain) at the very beginning of the 17th century, so 1600 … perhaps even the last couple of years of the 16th century as a short story by Don Quixote written way back in 1601 mentions the card game.
As the game developed over the years, it hit a fever-pitch in the 1930s when Vegas “opened” for business in 1931. Back then it was still called twenty-one in English and the Casino owners offered some pretty fantastic odds to entice players to sit at the tables. Enter the term blackjack. Certain casinos would give ten to one odds for pulling the Ace of Spades and either black Jack to land on 21. These exceptional odds didn’t last for very long, but the name stayed: Blackjack.
In the 1950s, blackjack became known as one of the few Casino games that with some practice and skill, could be nearly the same amount of advantage for the player as it does for the house. Card counting hit the scene. At the time, casinos were still running games with one deck. After Edward O. Thorp’s book, Beat the Dealer became a mainstream success in the early 1960s, the casinos had to figure out a way to combat the fairly easy systems invented to keep track of the cards left in the deck and remove the house’s edge. So, they simply added a deck. This made keeping track more difficult, but not difficult enough. So, they added two more decks and made most standard games, 4-deck blackjack. Using Thorp’s Ten-Count, instead of dealing with 16 tens and 36 non-tens in the single deck, card sharks had to deal with 64 tens and 144 non-tens in 4-decks. So, only the greatest minds could do it effectively. Nowadays, we have 8-deck games and casinos shuffle the shoe earlier to severely reduce the risk of effective counting and retain their edge.
In the early 1990s, we saw the first online blackjack and poker games. Then in 2006, we saw the advent of live online blackjack with live dealers. Back in the day, they would just throw a webcam over the table and what you got was a live dealer experience, but horrible resolution and a ton of lag. Nowadays, they do it all in a custom studio room, so you get a crystal clear image and an experience that is close to sitting at the actual table.
But where are the best blackjack sites?
When you review the best sportbooks, you find that they have a handful of different online blackjack games, including single-deck and double-deck games. They have high-quality live dealer tables – upwards of 36 at any given moment and most have $10 minimum and $500 max. But there are also $5 tables with $100 limits, $15 and $750, $25 tables with $1000 limits, and $100 tables with $2500 limits as well.
Bovada takes US players. It was previously difficult to find a reputable place to sit at an online table because of the taboo nature of online gambling in the United States. Now that the legalization of sports betting and games of skill and chance are getting favorable legislation and it’s becoming easier to play your favorite table game online. Depending on the state you are in, you may have more options than others.
For example, Oregon has moved to fully operational online gambling and sports betting, so there are plenty of options in such a state. Bovada, BetOnline, and Vegas Casino are all online options that are A-rated and trustworthy. You might be thinking that you can grab a game of blackjack at famous sites like PokerStars but unfortunately, traditional twenty-one has been removed from their product list.
Blackjack is as much a game of skill as it is of chance, and this is one of the reasons why it has consistently remained so popular. From measuring your bet to calculating the odds and far more, the elements which make up a good strategy are wide and varied.
In this article, we want to look at how you as a player might balance all of the available factors so you can maximize the daily expected value you can get from the game. Follow these simple tips, and you’ll be well on your way to a better gaming experience.
Before we can even think about helping you pursue the best value, we first need to be able to define exactly what, in your mind, counts the most. For some players, value is all about being able to place a wide range of bets, from small bets to huge investments. For others, the value lies in being able to enjoy the experience for as long as possible, regardless of the winnings on the table.
In order to move on, you need to decide what counts as your value. Some of these tips might not apply for your game style, or in other instances, they all might be equally important.
EDITOR NOTE:Expected value(EV), as defined in Dalton’s Encyclopedia of Blackjack, is the theoretical outcome per wager and a measure of how much the player (or casino) can expect to lose (or win) in a particular game. For a basic strategy player, your EV is usually negative. Card counters and advantage players strive for positive EV when playing. This article looks at an alternate definition of EV from the gambler’s perspective. For the gambler, EV can be a combination of how much one enjoys playing, the ability to play longer, the quality of bonuses and comps given, etc. To someone who is not an advantage player (AP), expected value has nothing to do with a theoretical return on investment.
Bang for Your Buck
For players who wish to spend a long time at the tables, it can be difficult to track down the experience which is best catered to you. Even in the cases where you can find a table which enables low bets to be placed, not all are created equal.
Take a regular brick and mortar casino for example. For these locations, you’ll be playing with your money all day, and this can limit even the most contained spenders. Compare this to the online betting opportunities available which often come with enormous bonuses. These bonuses like deposit matches are found on many websites and can keep you engaged on the service’s dime far longer than any older casino could manage.
If you’re in it for the long-haul, note that online casinos will always have the edge in this regard.
Learn Your System
While we can’t recommend turning to card counting as a way to get ahead, at least in this instance, we absolutely recommend becoming familiar enough with your systems that they become second nature. Every player has their own tendencies, but those who wish to really make their mark are those who understand the statistical realities of the game.
There are a lot of different strategies you can use here for multi-deck, double-deck and single-deck. Players already intimately familiar with the game will undoubtedly already have their preference for game type picked out, but even in this case, it can be a good idea to widen your horizons.
In some places, your preferential type of blackjack might not be available, so being able to rely on a strategic fall-back can ensure a more sustained level of play.
If you do use blackjack strategy cards, then we understand it can be annoying to have to consult them every time, but after just a short while these concepts and numbers will easily become second-nature.
The final component we need to look at is the surrounding environment of where you choose to play. Our environment often affects our mental state, so uncomfortable or frustrating surroundings can cause us to lose focus, or otherwise growing tired prematurely.
It’s not just decoration and noise which needs to be taken into account either, as food availability, comfort, and fellow players also need to be considered. Some players out there might be lucky enough to live in areas with a lot of options from which to choose, which can be great for these random elements.
For the rest of us, it can be useful to instead create our own little corner haven for online play. Remember, live casino games are also available online for those after a more visual experience.
Only by examining all of these aspects together should you be able to generate some idea of how you might get the best daily value out of your blackjack experience. If you’re not yet sure or haven’t experienced all that this world has to offer, then it might be a good idea to go and see some of these options for yourself.
Wherever you settle, there are no wrong answers. Do what is right for you, and your experience will be all the more valuable for it.
For many players, the attraction of blackjack is the simplicity of the rules and the bets placed. However, for some, these are a big disadvantage of the game. Some players are not satisfied with the even money game and want a little more excitement, and potential profit, from their game play. This is why many casinos now offer blackjack side bets to enhance the action and add some variety to the game play.
Blackjack has been played for centuries, with the first mention of ‘trente-un’ appearing as early as 1440. Players back then could never imagine how competitive the world of casinos, both brick-and-mortar and online versions, would one day become. Blackjack side bets are a way for casinos to attract new players with new ways to win at the oldest of card games.
What is a blackjack side bet?
These bets are predictions based on the initial cards dealt to the player and the dealer. They have nothing to do with the main game, and there is no skill or strategy involved, although it is theoretically possible to count cards to make your predictions more accurate. For most players, however, it is simply a matter of guessing which cards will be dealt.
Blackjack side bets offer a far greater potential return than the main game, but they also come with a much higher casino edge. In the main Blackjack game, the bet pays even money, or 2:1, for a blackjack, with a casino edge of just 0.5%. Side bets, on the other hand, can pay anything up to 5000:1, but the casino edge is also significantly higher, often over 10%. So, while you may win more in the short term with side bets, over time you will inevitably lose.
Typical side bets
The side bets available will vary from casino to casino, but here are a few of the more common varieties of wagers.
Insurance – This side bet covers the player against the dealer making blackjack if their card on show is an ace. You bet half your stake, and it pays 2-1 if the dealer does indeed have a blackjack.
Perfect Pairs – This bet predicts that you will be dealt a pair with your first two cards.
5-1 for a mixed pair of the same value
12-1 for a matching color pair
25-1 for a perfect pair of identical cards
21+3 – This bet predicts the combination of all three upturned cards from the player and the dealer.
5-1 for a non-consecutive flush
10-1 for a non-suited straight
30-1 for three of a kind
40-1 for a straight flush
100-1 for three identical cards
Over/under 13 – This bet predicts the total value of the player’s cards will be more or less than 13. It is an even money bet, with the house collecting all bets if the sum is exactly 13; however, some casinos take bets that pay around 6-1 for this outcome.
Royal match – This bet predicts the suited cards in the player’s hand and returns 25-1 for suited kings and queens and 5-2 for other suited cards.
Lucky ladies – This bet predicts that the total of the player’s cards will be 20. It pays 4-1 for an unsuited 20, 10-1 for a suited 20, 25-1 for a matched and suited 20 and 200-1 for two queens of hearts. This increases to 1000-1 if the dealer has a blackjack.
Super sevens – This bet predicts that the player will be dealt sevens and pays 3-1 for one seven, 50-1 for two mixed sevens, 100-1 for two suited sevens and 500-1 if the third card is also a seven. If all three sevens are the same suit, you will hit the jackpot with a 5000-1 payout. (Note—some casinos will not deal a third card if the dealer has a blackjack, so check their policy before placing this bet.)
A shot in the dark
At the end of the day, the cards you are dealt in blackjack are no more predictable than the final resting slot for the ball in roulette. This means that side bets are just as much down to chance as picking a number at random from 1-36. But if you are after a little extra fun on the side of your serious blackjack strategy play, then they could be just what you are looking for.
It should be known by now that the Chelsea FC’s best captain, John Terry has agreed on a deal to be BK8.com’s brand ambassador. Besides that, John Terry has become BK8.com’s first ever brand ambassador. The deal and appointment were announced on February 2019 in Manila, Philippines.
John Terry appointment news has leaked out as soon as Entourage Sport & Entertainment, John Terry’s commercial agent has agreed to collaborate with Samson Sport Consultancy.
In an interview upon his appointment as BK8.com’s brand ambassador, he said “I’m excited to begin this partnership with BK8.com! They share my great passion for football and I’m looking forward to playing a role in their many future plans to promote the brand to new and existing players throughout Asia.”
In the agreement, BK8.com will own the authority and rights to use John Terry’s image in all kinds of marketing campaigns and advertising platforms regarding BK8’s businesses all across Asia.
Throughout the past 3 months, John Terry has been a part of several BK8’s marketing campaign. For example, Chinese New Year Ang Pao campaign and BK8 Thailand Songkran campaign. It was proven that John Terry’s appointment has significantly helped BK8.com to grow its brand visibility. In the recent Songkran campaign that was targeted to regions in Thailand, BK8 Thailand has gained a great number of traffic to their site. We believe with the addition of John Terry, BK8 will have even more room to grow and develop as the best online casino in Asia.
John Terry is by far the best and most successful captain for Chelsea FC in the club’s history. He is leading every player in his position who have played for Chelsea FC in terms of titles achievement and also football stats. John Terry has led the Blues to accomplish amazing achievement by winning a UEFA Champions League title, 3 League Cups, 1 UEFA Europa League title and also 5 Barclays Premier League titles.
BK8.com is one of Asia’s biggest and most trusted online casino brand that have attracted millions of players to join and play. BK8.com also provides a number of Asia’s top Casino, Lotteries, Game brands and Sportsbook for its customers to choose and play in. Besides that, BK8’s customer service and support team will be available and online for 24 hours daily, to provide help and assistance.
We have designed this ultimate guide for all blackjack lovers looking for trusted online websites to play this game for real money. It’s a difficult task to find the best one, so read through the following information to learn the basics of blackjack, and get valuable tips on choosing the casino of your dreams. We will also provide you with some of the most reliable casinos that we found on AllHighRollerCasinos.Com. So, sit back, relax, and let’s go!
The industry of online gambling is wide-reaching as it slowly yet effectively attracts more players from land based casinos. There are thousands of websites which offer various games from all-liked shiny slots to skill-demanding poker to luck-driven lotteries. Online casinos attract millions of users all over the world because of great convenience and comfort. Online players can enjoy favorite games without spending their bucks on trips to Las Vegas or Macau.
To understand the industry scale, let’s check the comprehensive study by Financial Times, which reveals intriguing data. According to it, there were 51% of the UK gamblers, who accessed casinos via mobile phones and tablets in 2018. At the same time, the UK Gambling Commission revealed that it had issued 888 licenses for online operators. And it’s only one country out of 193 UN members!
Things will look even brighter for web-based casinos, Juniper Research claims. In its recent report, the team predicts that there will be 61 million online gamblers who will bring casinos more than $1 trillion revenue in 2022. Without doubt, a solid portion of this money will come from blackjack tables.
Let’s start with the very basics. This section will be especially useful for newcomers who don’t know how to play blackjack or want to discover something new. Further, we want to guide you through the major rules of traditional blackjack versions and reveal some extra game variations available at online casino websites. It’s obvious that basic rules are similar for both brick and mortar and web-based gambling facilities but additional options may vary, so pay attention to games you choose. Without further ado, welcome the blackjack 101 course!
Key Blackjack Rules
Blackjack is a card game where gamblers confront a dealer. Basically, all players and a dealer blackjack get cards from the common deck (there can be from 1 to 8 combined decks), calculate their scores, and compare them. The main objective here is to get the total value of as close to 21 as possible. Hands with 21 always win, though you always lose if you exceed this amount. The game combines 50% of luck with 50% of strategy and math.
Ultimately, the classic version features three stages. During the first one, participants wager money, then they receive two cards each, and define scores. Gamblers can see only their hand cards and one dealer’s card while others are hidden. Finally, each player can make a move: to hit (take a card), to stand (do nothing), to double (double the bet and take one extra card), to split (separate cards to create two hands) or to surrender (return half of the bet and end the game). Knowing these rules is enough to start gambling, but we will cover more hints and strategies later.
Remember also the rules related to cards’ values:
● Aces can cost either 1 or 11 points depending on other cards ● All face cards cost 10 points ● Number cards cost as much as indicated on them
If you want to know more about specifics of blackjack casino games, check the related articles in Wikipedia or Dalton’s Encyclopedia of Blackjack. This huge encyclopedia covers everything from the origins of the described game to the least known exotic variations.
The Game’s Versions
Gambling websites list different variations of blackjack to meet the demands of different users. Some of them stem from the early brick and mortar casino offerings, while others are modern inventions. Usually, you will find from 2 to 10 versions on a single website. Below are the most popular ones (we mention only variations from the classic version). Note that the mentioned types are also available as live dealer games.
Aces count as 1 only, and the winning hand is slightly different as you have to build a three-card combo with an ace and two 10-valued cards.
21 Face Up / Double Exposure
In this variant, both of the dealer’s cards are exposed to gamblers. Some exotic versions require that all participants show their cards, as well.
21 Match Play
This game is played without 10-valued cards. Instead, you can make use of several bonus hands which vary across casinos.
In addition to removing 10s, this variant has extra rules: ● Gamblers can surrender anytime ● Gamblers can surrender after double down ● Gamblers can increase bets at any hands ● Gambler’s 21 beats the dealer’s 21
21 Super Fun
Here, the player’s 21-valued hand also beats the dealer’s one. Plus, participants can split hands 4 times – the hand with 6 cards and the total value of 20 win automatically.
As the name suggests, this variation lets you have five hands simultaneously, instead of only one. Be aware that it’s a pretty challenging game though!
All bets placed during splitting or doubling down are protected. It means, you don’t have to wager additional money for these actions, but in the case of a win, you will get a double prize. However, the dealer’s 22-valued hand pushes all other hands except 21s here.
This one introduces extra side bets. You can wager on getting a mixed pair (just numbers), a colored pair (numbers and colors) or a perfect pair (numbers and suits).
Obviously, the game features only one deck of 52 cards. It’s easier to count them and the game itself is more profitable as it has the lowest edge among all versions.
In Blackjack Switch, players get two hands and can exchange two upper cards within them freely. Similarly to Free Bet, the dealer’s 22 push other combos except for blackjacks.
Suggestions for Beginners
Extending our introductory section, we would like to give some general hints to newbie online gamblers. If you are a seasoned punter, feel free to skip this part and proceed to advanced strategies.
The very first hint is simple: don’t play for money if it’s your first blackjack run. There are hundreds of casinos which offer demo plays with virtual tokens, so try them to get the idea. Learn about the rules, terms, strategies, and features.
House edge is probably the most essential concept to be aware of. It defines how much money the casino gets from each bet on average. For instance, the game with a 5% edge means that the website wins $5 from each $100 bet. Despite the number is rounded and each particular bet can bring different return to a casino, we recommend choosing projects with the lowest edge to guarantee the maximum potential profit for you.
Check some of the blackjack features and how they affect payouts:
● Extra splits. If you can split the already divided hands, you will decrease the house winnings. ● A number of decks. The fewer of them are used, the lower the casino return will be. ● Payouts. The 3:2 scheme is a safer choice, because 6:5 or even 1:1 options increase the edge. ● Split aces. This one also boosts your revenue and reduces the casino’s one. ● Surrender. This feature increases your payout significantly.
At the end of the day, choose games with a few decks, options for splitting aces and surrender. Combined, these features can increase your odds by a few percent. Respectively, avoid unfavorable payouts, side bets, and exotic rules, especially if you haven’t mastered the game yet.
Advanced Tips and Tricks
Now, it’s time to look at more advanced blackjack strategy types. Undoubtedly, they will be useful for newcomers and experienced players alike, so we suggest that you check them carefully. As was mentioned above, blackjack results depend on both luck and skill. You can’t control luck, but you can still improve skills. By mastering blackjack in land-based or Internet casinos, newbie gamblers evolve into real professionals. Still, mindless plays are destructive.
If you want to figure out when it’s better to hit and when – to surrender, explore the next sections.
Put simply, there are two categories of card combinations:
● Hard hand. Generally, any pair of cards without an ace. Hard hands with aces occur only when these cards are counted as 1. ● Soft hand. A combo of an ace and any other card. In this case, an ace can be counted as 1 or 11, so soft hands are more flexible than hard ones.
You can choose various strategic moves, which we will reveal a bit later. For instance, soft 19s and 20s require standing almost all the time. It’s better to receive a soft hand because you have more options with it but hard alternatives can also be beneficial as they have related moves, too.
Experienced blackjack players know that there are cool things called cheat sheets. They highlight how you should move under a specific scenario. You can find multiple guides for different game versions but the structure is always the same. While cheat sheets are intuitive, we have prepared some instructions on how to read them.
In any cheat sheet, you will see the “Dealer” title with numbers under it. This row represents the dealer’s visible card, where 10 also stands for face cards. You will also see “Your Hand” with all possible combinations. Pairs mean two-card combos, while single numbers show sums. At the intersection of the dealer’s cards and your scores, there are suggested moves which include standard hit, stand, double, split, and surrender, as well as extra points like surrender or hit, split after a split or hit, and so on. In general, you should just compare hands and do what the table says.
If used appropriately, cheat sheets can boost your game results significantly. For classic versions, they can reduce the house profit by 4-5%. That’s a lot.
Here, we don’t want to dive in too complicated mind games, so we will list four popular strategies. They work fine for real money games.
1. Wait for the dealer’s hit if he/she has 4, 5 or 6. The mentioned cards are pretty risky because they leave enough space for an extra hit. Most of the dealers with soft hands will attack trying to get close to 21. Note that you can double at this moment and earn more in the case of the dealer’s bust. 2. Split aces and 8s, but don’t split 10s. There are no exceptions. Always split aces and 8s because they are great basic cards for winning combos. Instead, never split 10s because they work better together. And of course, follow your gut feeling and look at the dealer’s cards. 3. Stand in the case of your own hard 17. With it, winning chances are relatively low as you are far enough from 21. Nevertheless, it’s not worth risking and grabbing extra card because math layouts aren’t in your favor. 4. Never insure. Some blackjack versions support the insurance feature. It allows participants to protect their bet if the dealer has an ace. If the house wins with 21, all insured bets will be returned. However, stats reveal that such outcomes are rare and you will only lose the price of insurance.
Plus, more strategic moves like Hi-Lo or Hi-Opt can be found in pro cheat sheets available on gambling websites.
Another advanced hint is related to bets. First and foremost, play when you are sober, calm, and positive-focused. As you play for money, you should realize the risks and know what to do exactly. Such an approach can protect from dangerous addictions or significant losses during the gambling rush.
Also, try to develop a solid plan and stick to it. For example, set a money-loss limit to stop gambling after reaching it or take breaks regularly. You can also choose more complex strategies: betting schemes called Martingale, Fibonacci or Paroli but be warned that these strategies will not give you an advantage and can be dangerous to your bankroll if used to the extreme. Their efficiency isn’t proven but they may help if you need some guides.
Choosing the Best Blackjack Casino
Blackjack is a simple game and it can be mastered quickly with enough practice and proper strategic plans. The critical question related to online gambling for money is built around platforms to use. The market is now jam-packed with web-based and mobile casinos, so it’s difficult to find the most suitable one or, at least, a reliable one. Remember about these three primary indicators and you will be able to spot the best online casinos.
Read, reread, write down, bookmark, send to friends, print, and add to reminders the following info: you should gamble via licensed casinos only! It’s really important as gambling facilities without licenses or certificates can host rigged games and steal your money or credentials. Always check the footer of the main page or “About” section to find current licenses which are marks of trustworthiness.
Usually, famous casinos have certificates from:
● The United Kingdom ● Malta ● Gibraltar ● The Isle of Man ● Belgium ● Denmark ● Estonia ● Costa Rica ● Curacao New Zealand, Canada, the United States, and South Africa also have local commissions so you should check their rules.
In addition, there’s a global organization called eCOGRA. It issues certificates, which prove that the games and RNGs are unrigged. The combination of a national license and an eCOGRA paper is a solid proof of reliability.
The second thing you should consider relates to games. The chosen casino has to list at least one variation of blackjack with certain platform compatibility. Usually, there are three options:
1. Desktop. Install the casino’s client with a set of games to enjoy them from PC. 2. Instant play. Access games directly using Flash, Java or HTML5. 3. Mobile. Get games downloaded on your phone/tablet.
Make sure to choose the best gameplay mode. Also, pay attention to the types of games as not all casinos list the same versions, so you can be disappointed with the lack of your favourite Switch or 21 Spanish. Finally, check the quality of software to know that blackjack rooms are stable and you will not face a painful disconnect at the pure 21.
Last but not least, if you want to play real money games, you need to know how deposits and withdrawals work. These options vary across countries and casinos, so check the allowed money systems on official gambling websites. The most popular ones are:
● Bank cards ● Global transfers via the likes of American Express ● E-wallets ● Cheques ● Cryptocurrency
For different banking methods, casinos set different deposit/withdrawal limits – per transaction, per day, per month, etc. Be ready to pay fees, which also vary with the chosen method. Usually, the fastest options feature the highest fees and vice versa.
Insights into Blackjack Bonuses
Bonuses are a convenient tool, which casinos utilize to attract players. For example, you can multiply money with the deposit bonus, and get some free cash or free entries to tournaments. At first, it seems that bonuses are great for newcomers, who don’t have enough money to play big. Let’s say, you can deposit $50 and get a 100% bonus with an extra $50 for free. Some sites even reward new users with totally free money.
Still, all bonuses have a catch called ‘rollover’. After agreeing to the offer, you will have to bet significantly more money to be able to complete a withdrawal. Thus, the mentioned free $50 with a 40x rollover would require that you wager $2,000 before cashing out. Moreover, blackjack has a low edge, so casinos impose even stricter requirements.
Examples of the Leading Casinos
Finally, we are ready to introduce the best places to gamble online in 2019 where you can enjoy real money blackjack. The section is divided into two parts dedicated to desktop casinos and mobile applications. You might have already heard about one of the most popular blackjack casinos – Bovada Casino. If you are a newbie, it is worth checking it first. Here, we will list other big brands and give some characteristics.
Top-Rated Online Websites
Without further ado, enjoy the list of trusted casinos for desktops! They provide both classic and live blackjack games.
1. Betway Casino
A number of blackjack games: 68. Maximum starting bonus: $1,300.
2. Jackpot City
A number of blackjack games: 31. Maximum starting bonus: $1,600.
3. King Billy
A number of blackjack games: 56. Maximum starting bonus: $1,130 + 200 free spins.
4. Mr Green Casino
A number of blackjack games: 13. Maximum starting bonus: $115 + 200 free spins.
5. TonyBet Casino
A number of blackjack games: 49. Maximum starting bonus: $10 without a deposit.
Additionally, you may be interested in mobile blackjack apps, so check them now! Some of these projects offer sports betting, too.
1. 888 Casino
A number of blackjack games: 5. Maximum starting bonus: $100 without a deposit.
A number of blackjack games: 15. Maximum starting bonus: $400 + 200 free spins.
A number of blackjack games: 26. Maximum starting bonus: $800.
4. Royal Panda
A number of blackjack games: 5. Maximum starting bonus: $115 + 10 free spins.
5. William Hill Casino
A number of blackjack games: 14. Maximum starting bonus: $400.
Running Your First Game
After you have chosen the best casino for online blackjack, you can actually start playing. Good research will point you towards reputable online gambling platforms with quality games, so make sure that you have spent enough time on it. Here’s a quick reminder on the key steps for running your first game.
Register and Set Preferences
Find a tab called “Register” or “Create Profile” to become a new user. Enter contact information in the required fields, set banking methods, and check available bonuses. During this step, check the data several times because typos may lead to issues with withdrawals later. If possible, turn on 2FA to increase safety and be sure that your account is protected.
Unless the casino has provided free money as a bonus, you will have to deposit some money to start playing. Go to your profile and find a section dedicated to transfers or deposits. Here, you can link bank cards/accounts or wallets, set permissions, and perform first transactions. Extra confirmations for money deals are desired, too.
Choose the Game
To start playing blackjack, simply find this game on the website. Check which types are available and which ones are your favorites. Normally, blackjack rooms are located in “Card Games” or “Table Games” category where you will find various versions from Classic Blackjack to multiple 21 variations.
Ideally, you will end up with some winnings. While it’s possible to leave the money in your casino account and continue playing blackjack, a lot of gamblers prefer to cash out a certain portion. For this, return to your profile and open the tab with money transfers. If previously connected banking methods support withdrawals, just make a transaction. Otherwise, you will need to add another option for cash-outs exclusively.
Other Noteworthy Hint
Check some useful hints to succeed in blackjack games:
● Look at the dealer’s card to understand how to act. ● Avoid first seats as there you will have the least time for thinking. ● Start with small bets to check how the game is going today. ● Don’t analyze other players’ actions as you don’t compete with them. ● Set time and money limits to avoid huge losses. ● Never gamble when overwhelmed with emotions or drunk.
A Word About Responsible Gambling
For the final section, we have prepared some info related to responsible gambling and, particularly, responsible blackjack plays. Most likely, you already know that the gambling industry is full of scammers, fraudulent websites, and rigged games which allow underage gamblers and insolvent users. These casinos have spoiled the reputation of the whole industry, so we beg to avoid them.
Play via trusted websites or use reliable applications. Remember about social responsibility. Just think how difficult it is to earn real money online and how easily illegal gambling platforms can steal it! It doesn’t take a lot of time to check licenses and read users’ reviews, but it can protect you and your close ones from potential huge losses and even addiction. Consider gambling as a hobby to enjoy it without harm.
Phew! It’s a pretty comprehensive guide, isn’t it? Feel free to bookmark it and return later to reread major takeaways. Firstly, make sure that you know the rules and have enough experience to gamble for money online. Then, choose a reputable casino with licenses and suitable banking methods. Lastly, remember about bonuses, their requirements, and gambling algorithms. Following these simple rules, you will be able to enjoy blackjack and earn money without issues. Good luck!