Tag Archives: online blackjack

Blackjack Types Around the World

BlackjackBy R. G.

Blackjack is usually considered the easiest online casino game to grasp. Be that as it may, the game has multiple variations, which you must be aware of. Before you play online blackjack for real money, you need to understand how each variation works. This will help you decide which one gives you the best value for your money. 

Popular Blackjack Variations

As mentioned earlier, there are several forms of blackjack. This piece will focus on five of the most popular game variations. They are also the ones that are primarily played on online casinos globally.  A bit of caution:  Don’t play games that only pay 6 to 5 on a blackjack.  The correct payoff should always be 3 to 2.

American Blackjack

American Blackjack, also referred to as Classic Blackjack, is the most widely played game variation. Here, the dealer gets both the cards right away, with one face up and the other face down. The card with the face down is usually referred to as the hole card. 

The objective of this game is to beat the dealer and/or get as close to 21 as you can. In American Blackjack, peeking is permitted for the dealer if their up-card is a face card, a ten, or an ace. Unlike European Blackjack, you will be allowed to avoid increasing your wager in situations where the dealer has a natural blackjack. The game lowers the house edge by 0.05% in such a case. Besides that, the game is based on the standard blackjack rules and strategies. 

European Blackjack

European Blackjack is another popular blackjack variation, especially in the United Kingdom. This variation of the game puts more restrictions and limitations on the players. It also promises players a house edge of around 0.39%. It usually uses six decks, allows splitting aces, but does not let you split 4s, 5s, or ten valued cards.

The fundamental difference of this blackjack variant is that the dealer does not get his hole card until the player has made a playing decision as per the cards he is dealt with. European Blackjack does not allow dealer peek or surrendering. 

Vegas Strip Blackjack

The Vegas Strip is also a popular blackjack variation among many online casino players. It gets its name from where it was originally played. The Vegas strip is a four-mile stretch of South Las Vegas Boulevard where you will find many hotels and casinos. 

This blackjack variation is very similar to Classic American Blackjack where the game’s main objective and rules are identical.  Vegas Strip Blackjack’s main difference is that the dealer will stand on soft-17, you can double after splitting a pair, surrender is not allowed and the number of decks used is usually 4 decks.

Blackjack Switch

This blackjack variation is unique because it allows players to place two identical wagers plus a side bet. The player bets on two hands first, then the game allows them to switch the second cards with one another if they want to. 

Geoff Hall, a respected casino games architect, created Blackjack Switch. The variant is prevalent in many top-rated online casinos. Besides the opportunity to switch, the game has one other prominent feature. That is, Blackjack Switch does not consider a dealer’s hand of 22 a bust. Instead, the game counts it as a push or draw, except when a player already has a natural blackjack, not prompted by a switch or split.  However, a player blackjack pays even money in this game.

Blackjack Perfect Pairs

Blackjack Perfect Pairs is an excellent example of a side bet growing as popular as a variant itself. In this Blackjack variation, the first two cards a player gets form a pair. The game has three types of pairs having different payout odds. 

So, what’s a pair? A pair consists of two cards having the same numerical value between 2 and 10 and the same face value for the face cards and aces. As a player, you have to decide whether you want to place the Perfect Pairs side bet before the cards are dealt. After that, it will be settled before the main game is played out as per the casino rules.   

How Do Blackjack Games Differ?

Dealer’s Move on Soft 17

A soft 17 is a 17 that comprises an ace. Some blackjack variations compel the dealer to hit on soft 17, while others require that the dealer stands on soft 17.  It is better by 0.2% for the player if the dealer stands on soft 17. 

Doubling Down Limitations

Several variations restrict the cards players can double down on. For example, European Blackjack only allows players to double down on totals of 9, 10, or 11. 

In other variations, players can increase their wager by 100%, while others allow more flexibility regarding how much you can up your bet by. Additionally, other Blackjack variations restrict doubling down on post-split hands.  

It is obviously better for the player if you can double on any two cards and have the ability to double after splitting a pair.

How Many Times You Can Split

You will encounter differences in the number of times you can split when you try different blackjack variations. For example, American Blackjack lets you split up to three times in the game. This means that you have up to four hands to play. On the other hand, European Blackjack limits splitting to only once per player per hand. 

The best games a player can play are those that have the fewest restrictions and the best rules. 

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10 Technology Predictions for the Near Future

By Jenine Wing

One has to be pretty clued up to predict what the future holds for technology as it’s moving faster than light. If you look at the trajectory of tech developments and how they sped up in recent years, it’s exhilarating. You can only imagine where it’ll be and what it’ll offer humanity five years from now.

Fifteen years ago, nobody anticipated that online blackjack at FanDuel Casino would be available to every person with a phone. And look at us now after the Android Market hit the scene in 2007! Future tech predictions are sure to blow us away even more.

Jenine, the author here, shares her insights about what we can expect from near-future technology.

Technology Predictions for the Future

Top 10 predictions for 2022 and beyond

5G Will Go Global

Although this technology is already tangible in some countries, it’ll forever change the way we handle online activities globally. The most significant changes will be in the delivery time of information and responses in the Cloud.

The global economy will experience unprecedented growth, and it’ll create new business opportunities like never before. As the CTO of Ensono, Gordon McKenna, recently said: “5G will enrich our lives to such an extent that an entirely new generation of infrastructure is required.”

Devices Will Need Increasing Security to Protect it from 5G

5G isn’t as hard to understand as it may seem. Every device that can connect to the internet will gain access to the 5G Cloud instantly. Almost everything and everybody will be connected. You can control any computerized equipment remotely, opening new doors for hackers to increase risks.

VR & AR Will Become Part of Everyday Life

AR can change remote teaching, visiting your family overseas, and boardroom meetings as we know it.

Virtual Reality

Virtual Reality (VR) creates an entirely different environment based on the developer’s purpose. You’ve most probably seen it used for video games already. Augmented Reality (AR) uses your immediate surroundings and adds virtual images. You can sit in your living room and have coffee with your dad, who lives 2000 miles away, and it’ll seem as if he’s next to you.

Quantum Technology Solutions Will Skyrocket

Quantum computing’s full usability to the everyday consumer is still far from perfect. It’s undeniable that it’ll always develop and contribute to solving everyday problems. Countless industries can apply them in many different fields, including gaming, healthcare solutions, financial markets, and cybersecurity.

Artificial Intelligence Will Become Affordable for All

AI is already firmly integrated into your daily life, believe it or not. App developers incorporate it into developments, and as you use it, it gathers information about your preferences and how you use a site. AI is why Facebook knows that you enjoy slots, and you find regular advertisements for it on your news-feed.

Remote Teams Will Replace Office Personnel

It’s become more cost-effective for large corporations to have their people in the field. With modern technology such as video calling and time-tracking software, it’s easier to employ staff in specific regions than sending someone from HQ.

Government Agencies Won’t Be Able to Afford Proper Cybersecurity

The high demand for top-class cybersecurity is running at an all-time high. The private sector is paying to get the best, and government agencies most probably won’t offer them enough to retain their expertise.

The Basement Techies Will Join the Boardroom Discussions

The days when the company technicians hide away in a dark corner of the building are over. It’s more likely to see the men and women responsible for keeping it all together around the boardroom table. Technology is driving all industries, and it needs a seat at the table to stay at the forefront of an organization’s growth.

Innovation Will Accelerate Due to Advanced Encryption

Encryption is a slow process, and the race is on to perfect homomorphic encryption software. It’s cryptography that enables data to remain coded while being analyzed. The time and overhead on the current generation are massive, and as new tech advances, innovation will accelerate.

Big Names Will Populate Smaller Cities

As the big corporations embrace more remote teams and virtual assistants, it’ll make sense to move their operations to smaller and more affordable cities.

Conclusion

You have to agree that future technology predictions for 2022 are fascinating. It’s also enough to keep you nervously edged on your seat. It might seem that every time you blink too long, you’ve lost track of it all. You’re not alone, and the whole world is waiting in anticipation daily for the next huge breakthrough.

Fortunately, all of these advances also make life easier. As tech advances, it becomes easier for the general public to utilize its applications. Instead of worrying about being left behind, embrace technology, and enjoy all the excellent benefits to everyday life.

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Top 5 Advantages of Playing Blackjack in Online Casinos

By Mark Knight

Gambling online is one of the favorite hobbies of millions of people worldwide. This industry has blossomed in the last few decades. Ever since people were given the opportunity to play online, their choices have expanded – and the interest has grown at the same time. Right now, you don’t have to go to a brick-and-mortar casino to do some betting on your favorite games. All you need to do is choose a good online casino, pick one of their offered games, and gamble from any location.

If you are a fan of Blackjack, you’ll be happy to hear that this game is frequently found at online casinos. Not only that, but you can find many variants of it. The numerous Blackjack options given to online gamblers provide them with endless fun. Most of these cannot be found in land-based casinos. Even if you can find some Blackjack tables in traditional, offline casinos, chances are you’ll get more Blackjack options if you bet online. As a matter of fact, if you play at the best bitcoin casino in Canada, you can find dozens of choices, as well as get more choices in terms of depositing your money.

As you can imagine, there are tons of reasons why online gambling on Blackjack sites is popular nowadays. Let’s take a look at the top 5.

1.    Convenient and Accessible

This is one of the best things about playing online – you get easy access from any place, at any time. Thanks to online casinos, you can now gamble on Blackjack tables without dressing up or traveling to a casino. With a good Internet connection and your phone or your desktop, you can enjoy an immersive experience with the opportunity to win real money.

As a matter of fact, thanks to live dealer tables and casinos that offer these, you can even enjoy real-time gameplay. Gamblers love this option because it resembles to gambling at a traditional casino without the burden of having to go there in person. You can play with others, as well as watch the dealer in real-time, from any location, and whenever you want.

Playing Blackjack on a Laptop

2.    Anonymous Play

Many gamblers prefer playing online instead of in traditional casinos because this way, no one will see them or can keep track of their spending. You can simply do this from your work desk, at home, or while moving around town on your phone.

Even the live dealer versions are anonymous since you can see the dealer, but others cannot see you. You can basically sit at home in your pajamas, drink a cup of coffee, and bet on a live blackjack table.

3.    Amazing Bonuses and Special Offers

One of the biggest differences between brick-and-mortar and online casinos is that the latter offer huge bonuses to players. Yes, in traditional casinos you’ll get free drinks, maybe some snacks, and if you are a VIP player, some other perks like a room in the hotel that the casino owns. But, they don’t offer you thousands of dollars as a match for your deposit, or some free spins just because you decided to sign up on their site.

This is what you get when you gamble online – various bonuses on different occasions. The best sites around have huge welcome promotions and packages, as well as numerous occasional and regular deals.

For example, you might get some free spins as a thank you without requiring a deposit, a big match on your amount that goes up to thousands of dollars, weekly or weekend reload bonuses and cashback offers, and so on.

The VIP programs are even more amazing online. Gamblers get bigger bonuses, huge rewards such as tickets to vacations, vehicles, invitations to parties, and much, much more!

4.    Numerous Blackjack Games

Before online casinos, gamblers had one, two, or maybe a few choices for a Blackjack table. Most featured traditional variants of the game, some with higher and some with lower wagering options.

Today, at online casinos, gamblers can choose between dozens of Blackjack games. They can play all sorts of automated games or gamble on numerous live tables. You’ll be spoiled with choice on top-rated websites that offer over 20, 30, and even 50 different live dealer tables with different variants of the game. This can hardly be found at land-based casinos because, after all, they are more limited in terms of space.

5.    Tons of Banking Options

When you gamble online, you’ll be given at least a few options for betting and withdrawing your money. You won’t be able to use just cash, or need to go to the ATM when you run out of money. Even when you win money, you can get them directly in your account without having to go to the bank.

Online casinos have increased their banking options over the years. The list might have included bank transfers and some cards in the past, but it has expanded a lot in the last couple of years. Some of the best-rated websites offer their players a plethora of choices. These choices include, but are not limited to:

  • Credit and debit cards – Visa and MasterCard are accepted in almost every casino worldwide.
  • E-wallets – These are very popular nowadays thanks to their increased security, privacy, as well as the fast withdrawals. The most popular options today are PayPal, Skrill and Neteller.
  • Prepaid cards and vouchers – Used only to deposit in most cases, these require no banking information to be entered on the site.
  • Cryptocurrency – In a time when digital currency is more used than ever, you can literally bet with your BTC or Ethereum money.

Online Gambling

Final Thoughts

Gamblers all around the world are enjoying casino games on their phones, tablets, and desktop. They do this from home, while going to work, while on their work break, and at any time when they feel like it. Gambling is more accessible and rewarding than ever thanks to online sites that offer bonuses and instant play at any moment. If you are a fan of Blackjack, one of the best games offered today, you’ll be spoiled with choices any time you want to gamble!

Photo Credit: unsplash.com
Photo Credit: unsplash.com

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Is Blackjack Available at PA Online Casinos?

Online BlackjackBy Lars Holmström

Online blackjack is available in most Pennsylvania (PA) online casinos. In fact, it is one of the most popular casino games in the state.  Being a game that balances skill and luck, it appeals to both new and loyal players.

Following the gambling expansion bill, both visitors and residents can now enjoy various blackjack games within the state lines. Other popular casino games in the state include craps, baccarat, and roulette. 

Is Online Blackjack Legal In PA?

If you are 21 or older, you can legally play online blackjack in Pennsylvania. In addition, you can get into any of the land-based casinos. The Pennsylvania Gambling Control Board overseas gambling activities in the state. It demands fairness and transparency from all operators. Whether you choose to play free games or for real money, you have plenty of options. 

PA Laws and Blackjack Games

In January 2010, during the expansion of the 2004 Gaming Act, tables were included in live casinos. The table games tax rate was set at 16 percent. Although the number isn’t as high as with slots, it is pretty impressive. Based on the PGCB rules, blackjack games need to have a low house edge. They should also be friendly and fair. 

After the opening of PA’S first online casinos, online blackjack wasn’t immediately legalized. In October 2017, Gov. Tom Wolf signed the Gambling Expansion bill. A licensing process for PA online casinos kicked off and the initial sites were live by mid-2019. Find some of the best PA online casinos rated here.

Free Online Blackjack in Pennsylvania

If you are new to the game, you’d be wise to check a few options out before risking your money. Luckily, PA has plenty of free online blackjack games. They are just as fun as money games. 

You will find a few blackjack games in almost all PA online casinos on demo mode. You may receive a no-deposit cash bonus when checking out new games. Usually, demo mode is available through software-based games. Although you can access live dealer games, you can’t place bets for free. Free games are perfect for the casino lover who wants to have fun without risking their money. 

Real Money Online Blackjack

You will find real money online blackjack in all Pennsylvania online casinos. They come with lucrative welcome bonuses and regular promotions. If you make the leap to real money games, you have the chance to have some fun and potentially make profits. The secret is to choose games with the lowest house edge. 

The best blackjack games have a smaller number of decks. The best bet is to play single-deck games. In addition, find games with splitting rules, liberal doubling, and a soft 17 dealer stand.

Do not go in without a basic strategy. It could improve your playing experience and increase your chances of winning. If you go in blindly, you will be handing your money to the casino every time. 

Take advantage of side bets as well. They add some excitement to the game, and you could win huge profits. Although the house edge can be high, it is worth the risk. 

Before making a deposit, check to ensure that you are using the safest payment options. The popular ones include PayPal, MasterCard, and Visa. Bank transfers are pretty popular as well. 

The best PA casinos for real money blackjack include: Unibet Casino, SugarHouse Casino, and Hollywood Casino. SugarHouse has partnered with Rush Street Interactive to bring you the best blackjack games. 

Unibet works with Meadowlands and Hollywood Casino teams with IGT to bring you blackjack and other popular casino games in PA. 

PA Live Blackjack

Thanks to the PGCB, PA live blackjack is governed by special rules. The games are generally immersive and player-friendly. The average RTP is 96.6 percent. You can enjoy side bets like; Royal Match, 21+3, Lucky Ladies and Kings Bounty, and Match the dealer. They are perfect when you hope to win huge profits.

Types of Blackjack in Pennsylvania

Since blackjack has been popular for such a long time, it is no surprise that there are so many variations. Even the most minor changes from the basic rules can alter the game significantly. For example, some variations allow you to surrender your hand, but others don’t. 

Most PA online casinos have the basic game. They may have a few variations as well. The most popular ones include Interlock blackjack and Spanish 21. All PA sites must follow the rules that apply to land-based casinos. The main difference is in European and US blackjack:

  • In European games, the dealer will get just one visible card. After every player has acted, the second card is dealt.
  • In US games, dealers can peek at their hidden cards when the up-card is an ace or 10. If they have a blackjack, the hand doesn’t continue.

Blackjack Odds

The best thing about blackjack is that your success isn’t entirely up to chance. It is also dependent on your skill. Even when the odds are against you, your skill could give you better winning opportunities. 

The odds in blackjack vary depending on the number of decks in the game. Every variation uses a different number of decks, and it is important to do your research before playing. Here is a look at the number of decks and how they may affect your odds:

  • Eight decks: 0.65 percent
  • Six decks: 0.64 percent
  • Four decks: 0.60 percent
  • Two decks: 0.46 percent 
  • One deck: 0.17 percent 

Online Blackjack Rewards and Bonuses

Since there is so much competition among PA online casinos, they are always coming up with new bonuses and rewards. The casinos give both new and loyal players incentive to keep playing, from free bet bonuses to generous welcome bonuses and reload bonus deals. 

Usually, the play-through requirement for blackjack bonuses is weighted. You may need to wager your bonus a few more times than in slots thanks to the low house edge. Most casinos have a points collection system to reward their loyal players. The longer you play, the bigger your bonuses become. 

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Your Guide to the Casino House Edge in Blackjack

By Jasmine Jones

There is a truism that very little in life is free. You do not get free food; you must pay for your automobile, and no one except your parents allows you to live rent-free.

The same can be said of casino gaming. Should casinos be expected to let you play if they cannot make a profit? While you might think that is the fair solution, when you dwell on it a while longer, you will conclude that casinos would not exist if they did not make a profit.

And with no casinos, where would we go for our gaming entertainment?

With all this in mind, you can now come to accept two things. Firstly, the casino needs to make money, and, secondly, introducing a house edge to all games is the way to go about it.

Online Blackjack
Evolution Gaming’s live dealer blackjack

What is the House Edge?

The house edge is the percentage amount that you are expected to lose on any particular casino game. When we say expected, it’s based purely on the odds of you winning and the statistical probability of you actually doing so.

It’s based on a long-term assumption that the house edge is the number that would be realistic if you played an infinite number of blackjack hands – even if you read all the blackjack books – or infinite spins on the roulette wheel. Of course, in the short term, the variance will come into play. You might, for example, have one spectacular roulette session and walk away a winner, or you could get lucky and pick up a big jackpot win on the slots.

But, statistically speaking, you will not win in the long run. The exception to this rule is if you won a multi-million dollar jackpot on a slot machine, you would not put this all back in the machine again unless you were a terrible gambler.

The house edge is displayed as a percentage. It will differ from one table game or slot to another, which is why, if you care about these things, you should choose to play games with the lowest house edge.

Baccarat, for example, has a house edge of only around 0.5%. This means that for every $100 you bet on baccarat, you are expected to lose 50 cents. That does not sound a lot, and it isn’t. If you are playing in a live Las Vegas casino like The Mirage, you might be getting free cocktails on the house while you play – suddenly losing a small amount over time doesn’t seem too bad.

House Edge in Blackjack

Blackjack is an interesting example because, unlike other casino games, you can influence the house edge. In European versions of the game of roulette, it is 2.70%, but in American roulette, where you have an additional double zero segment, it goes up to 5.26%. No matter how skilled a roulette player you think you are, you cannot alter those numbers. The game is purely down to luck, and the balance of probabilities will not shift.

But with blackjack, you can improve your odds by playing the basic blackjack strategy. Doing so introduces enough skill into the game to reduce the odds by quite a lot. Sadly, not enough to give even a good player the edge, and this applies live or online at platforms like STS Casino.

The books say the casino has a house edge in blackjack of around 2%, but by applying some strategy to your game, you can bring it down to as low as 0.5%. That’s not as hard as you think. The easiest way to improve is to download one of the many blackjack hand charts free from Google.1)Or, of course, you can review the basic strategy charts right here on BlackjackReview.com.  Also, the rules of the game affect the house edge so you should always be looking for games with the best rules. When you do, you will see the optimum play to make in any given situation, whatever your two cards are in relation to the dealer’s up-card.

You will see when it is optimal to stand, to take another card, to double down, and to split. When you play in this manner, and the house edge comes down to a wafer-thin 0.5%, the balance of probabilities dictate you have a far better chance of walking away with a profit after any single or couple of sessions. The trick, like it is with all forms of gambling, is to walk away from the table when you are ahead; it’s the only sure-fire way of banking a profit.

Apart from baccarat, which we mentioned earlier, the only other casino game with a slender house edge is video poker. It’s also close to 0.5%, and you can play long sessions without necessarily losing sizeable amounts. And that is why shrewd casino bosses embed video poker machines in the bar tops – punters will happily sit for hours, gradually losing money while buying drinks from the bartender!

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Footnotes

Footnotes
1Or, of course, you can review the basic strategy charts right here on BlackjackReview.com.  Also, the rules of the game affect the house edge so you should always be looking for games with the best rules.

Do You Know The Differences Between Blackjack And Texas Hold’em?

By SA Bal

Of all the card games you can play, Texas Hold’em and Blackjack easily stand out as the most popular. Poker has seen the most mainstream success while offering the best luck-to-skill ratio of any card game.

Blackjack is more of a beginner’s game, which requires little time to learn and can be exciting to watch.  So if you’re looking to play one of these games but don’t know where to start, why not start by considering their differences first.

Blackjack

Difference in Rules

Blackjack

The game’s objective is for players to get as close to 21 points as they can without going over. All players will be playing against the dealer, who can sometimes use a deck of 416 cards to keep card counters guessing. Before the dealer starts, players will place their bets.1)Blackjack can be played with as few as one deck or as many as 8 decks or more.  In practice, casinos tend to use either 1, 2, 4, 6 or 8 decks.  In general, more decks give the casino a higher house edge.

If a player gets 21 points on their first 2 cards, the house now owes that player 1.5 times their original bet. And if the house wins, it will collect the bets that players made. If the player and house get the same hand value, the round ends in a tie, allowing the player to take back their chips.2)Yes, the correct payoff for a player blackjack is 1.5 (or 3 to 2).  In many casinos this rule has been changed to a payoff of 1.2 (or 6 to 5).  It is highly advisable to NOT play in games with the 6 to 5 rule.

Texas Hold’em

Each player receives two hole cards faced down for him or her alone. After receiving their cards, the two players to the dealer’s left will set the small blind and the big blind. Once both players have set the stakes, the first round of betting can begin.

During this round, players can choose to raise the stakes (raise), match the current stakes (call), or exit the game (fold). If a player raises the pot, that will become the new stake that the following players must meet. The dealer will burn one card and then place another three on the table (called the flop) after the betting phase is over. After placing three cards on the table, the second round of betting can begin.

Once the second round closes up, the dealer will place a fourth card (the turn), starting the third betting round. After all the players make their bets, the dealer will place the final card (the river) and initiate the last round of bets. Following the final betting phase, the showdown can begin. Players will compare their hands, and the one with the best combination of five cards wins the pot.

Other Key Differences

Mind games

When playing Blackjack, you can work out the odds of everyone’s chances of winning. You can even look at the cards that the house has drawn, letting your chances of winning come down to luck. That is unless you are counting cards or someone else on the table is. 

On the other hand, playing poker offers much more unpredictability. Unlike Blackjack, you will be playing against other people who have varying levels of experience and skill. Therefore, you can never get a proper handle on whether they will fold, raise, call, or check.

Prize Pools

Blackjack is a simple game to understand, and people usually do not have any trouble playing for the first time. But since it’s easier, it also offers fewer rewards in terms of its prize pools. The highest that you can win in a game of Blackjack when playing with standard prices is $750 if you bet $500.3)This is not entirely true as Blackjack also allows players to double or split their hands depending on the rules of the house.  This effectively increases the risk to the player but also increases the prize pool if won!

Texas Hold ’em, however, has a pot system with a winner takes all approach. So if you win, you can get more than three to four times what you originally put into the pot and possibly more if it is a no-limit game. While it can be more complicated to play and there are many more factors to consider, it can be more rewarding.

Game Speed

While Texas Hold ’em can be a more rewarding game to play, it can also take a lot more time to play. There are four rounds of bets along with the setup in the beginning to start the game. Good players are often very patient and take their time before getting involved in a pot. 

Conversely, Blackjack rounds are usually very short, as players can complete their hand in just a few seconds. It is rare that this game can get boring as a player bet is required on each round.

Enjoyment

The best thing about playing Blackjack is that you do not need any prior experience to start playing. Instead, you can usually learn the rules in a matter of minutes and start having a good time. But when playing poker, just learning the rules can feel overwhelming. And even when you learn the rules, you might not know how to bluff properly or how to keep a poker face.

Final Thoughts

Here you have some of the key differences that make Blackjack and Texas hold’em two completely different games. You can enjoy both games online or on land based casinos, but always make thorough research before betting anywhere. Also, remember to wage responsibly.

In case you want to learn how to play Blackjack or improve how you play, click here to try it out: www.bovada.lv/casino/blackjack-games  

Get hands-on experience of playing Blackjack with real people from home.

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Footnotes

Footnotes
1Blackjack can be played with as few as one deck or as many as 8 decks or more.  In practice, casinos tend to use either 1, 2, 4, 6 or 8 decks.  In general, more decks give the casino a higher house edge.
2Yes, the correct payoff for a player blackjack is 1.5 (or 3 to 2).  In many casinos this rule has been changed to a payoff of 1.2 (or 6 to 5).  It is highly advisable to NOT play in games with the 6 to 5 rule.
3This is not entirely true as Blackjack also allows players to double or split their hands depending on the rules of the house.  This effectively increases the risk to the player but also increases the prize pool if won!

Types of Blackjack Games Played at Online Casinos

Playing BlackjackBy Titus Kamunya

The number of online casino players is on the rise. This is probably due to numerous games at online casinos that offer the chance to make real money. Among these games is blackjack, one of the most popular online casino games.

Blackjack offers various variants that provide gamblers with an exciting and thrilling twist of the traditional version of the game, allowing you to make more money while enjoying yourself. Let’s discuss some of the different variants of blackjack that online casinos have to offer.

American Blackjack

American Blackjack, also referred to as classic blackjack, is the most widely played game. This game is preferred mainly by gamblers for good reasons. American blackjack is straightforward, has a low house edge, and is more social compared to poker.

Although the house edge can be as low as 0.5%, which is appealing, it does not mean that you will be taking advantage of it in its entirety. The good news is that it isn’t tricky to learn the optimum moves, otherwise known as blackjack basic strategy.  All it takes is a little practice. It even gets better if you can take advantage of the available offers like the DraftKings sign up bonus, as you won’t spend a lot of money when learning the ropes of this game. 

European Blackjack

The main difference in this version of online blackjack is that dealers do not check for blackjack when they are showing an Ace or 10.  The problem with this is that if you double or split your hand you will lose your total bet if the dealer has blackjack.   There are often some rule changes in European blackjack such as not being able to split 4s, 5s or 10-valued cards and restrictions for when you can double. 

To play optimally, the player will often have to change the basic strategy for this game slightly versus American blackjack.  Overall, the house edge is often similar or slightly higher than American blackjack.

Blackjack Switch

This is the latest and creative twist variant on blackjack. The action point of this game is that the player gets to play two hands rather than one. If you receive your two deals, you can switch cards from one hand to the next to improve both hands if possible.

Obviously, it is advantageous for the player to be able to switch cards from one hand to the next. Therefore, most of the other rules are skewed toward the dealer. If a dealer gets a 22, all player hands, including 21, are pushed.  Also, player blackjacks only pay even money.

Spanish 21

This is a game that has found a home in most online casinos. Spanish 21 is said to be the most popular alternative to classic blackjack.

The key element that makes Spanish 21 stand out is that there are no 10s in the deck. As a punter, you might think that this is aimed at boosting the house edge, but the truth is that the rules are tilted in the player’s favor. Spanish 21 is also one of the most player-friendly games you will find in an online casino. Bear in mind that the game’s rules vary from one casino to the next, but most follow a standard procedure.

Spanish 21

Face Up 21

In this version of blackjack, players have a great deal of power as some of the house advantages are removed. When this game is played, both cards of the dealer are dispensed and shown face up. This offers players terrific insight into how they should be playing during the hand.

Unfortunately, when it comes to these games, it is not all good news. For instance, the dealer hits on soft 17 and the dealer wins all ties except blackjack.  Also, blackjacks pay even money.  Just like in European blackjack, players can also only double down on 9, 10, and 11.

The house edge of this version can vary (between .5% to over 1%) depending on the established rules of the casino.   The basic strategy for this game is also more complicated.

Perfect Pairs Blackjack

For gamblers who think an outstanding betting strategy is more important than an excellent playing strategy, this blackjack variant presents a perfect chance to win big.  However, be aware that most, if not all, blackjack side bets have a large house edge.

Perfect Pairs blackjack has similar rules as classic blackjack. The difference comes in because this version has a twist. A player has the chance to make an extra side bet at the beginning of each hand. This bet is a wager on if the first two cards you are dealt will be the same number or not.

If you want to spice things up while playing online casino games, blackjack is one of your best bets. Not only does it offer the chance to make real money, but it also comes in different variations. Try your hand at a few and see if you can experience your luck.1)For more information on blackjack and the many variants and side bets this game offers be sure to check out the entries in the Encyclopedia of Blackjack.

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Footnotes

Footnotes
1For more information on blackjack and the many variants and side bets this game offers be sure to check out the entries in the Encyclopedia of Blackjack.

5 Reasons Why Blackjack Is Such a Popular Table Game

Playing BlackjackBy Cynthia Madison

Playing casino games is a thrilling and exciting experience. No matter your preferences, with the emergence and popularity of the online gambling industry, you can enjoy a comprehensive portfolio of games from the comfort of your own home. Alternatively, you can download mobile casino apps and enjoy any type of game from anywhere you are.

Among some of the most famous casino games, particularly table games, there is blackjack. Whether you choose to play at online casinos or land-based ones, you will definitely come across this popular table game. Its fame hasn’t decreased, especially since online versions can be just as good.

If you are an experienced player, chances are you don’t need to hear the reasons why blackjack was and continues to be the best table game in 2021, as you know them by heart already.

This article is aimed at beginners who might feel intimidated by this game, not sure where to begin or whether to start playing due to inexperience. The truth is you can quickly learn how to play this exciting game.

So, here are five reasons why blackjack continues to gain popularity:

1.      Uncomplicated rules and easy to play

Blackjack is popular among experienced players and amateurs alike, thanks to its ease of play. The fact that it doesn’t have any complicated rules and is easy to play makes the game appealing to any gambler, no matter their level of experience. Plus, it can be quite thrilling to immediately see the results of your decisions whether you win or not.

When playing blackjack, the one rule you need to keep in mind is that the object of the game is to beat the dealer — NOT to get the closest to 21.  You can beat the dealer by getting a hand that is higher than the dealer OR by standing on a lower value hand and letting the dealer bust.

Depending on the cards shown on the table, the players choose between hitting, standing, doubling, splitting or surrender (if allowed).  If you hit your hand you will get another card.  If your total goes over 21 you bust and lose the hand immediately.  If the rules allow it, you could also double or split your hand by placing an additionally equal wager.  Surrender is allowed in some casinos which allows you to forfeit your hand and receive half of your wager back.  To learn the best way to play your hand you should study the basic strategy for the game.

2.      A low house edge or good odds

Another reason why blackjack continues to enjoy popular demand is its low house edge. What this means is that blackjack is a table game with good odds for the player. This differentiates blackjack from other table games, such as roulette or three-card poker.  Typically, blackjack will often have the lowest house edge of any table game in the casino.

The simplicity of blackjack and the fact that the house edge is often under 1% are two of the main reasons for this game’s fame.  Blackjack can often be the best bet in the casino and can give the player his or her best chance of winning some money.

3.      The game is fast-paced

Compared to other table games such as poker, blackjack does not take long hours to play. It is pretty interactive and definitely fast-paced, making it the ideal casino game to play when you don’t have a lot of free time on your hands. With it being available online, individuals can play quite a few rounds for a small amount of time before moving to a different game or taking a break. But truth be told, you might not want to.

Indeed, nowadays, there are many casino games available online. So, no matter your preferences, you can choose from an all-inclusive catalog and play slots, roulette and blackjack at online casinos. As a beginner, it is understandable that you may want to try as many games as possible. Obviously, online casino operators provide the proper environment to do this.

4.      Winnings can be considerable

Because blackjack is a table game with a low house edge, winnings can often be quite frequent. While a game such as three-card poker favors the dealer more, in blackjack, you have better chances at winning the amount you bet on. This makes the game extremely appealing to both experienced players and amateurs.

What’s more, when playing blackjack, you often have the chance of increasing your bet when the odds are in your favor by doubling or splitting your hand. Therefore, it is a highly interactive game, unlike other table games where you place a bet, and then you become a mere spectator to see whether it was your lucky day or not.

5.      A highly social game

Historically, blackjack dates back to the 17th century in France. It probably started as a game to bring people together at social gatherings. There is no denying that blackjack instantly became popular among individuals. Given the fact that more and more individuals enjoy playing it nowadays, it is certain that its fame is nowhere close to decreasing anytime soon.

Whether you play it in land-based casinos or online, social interaction still is a massive part of this table game. If you choose to play it online, casino operators provide a chat feature where players can interact with each other. Moreover, you can also interact with the dealer and get instant replies. So, the interactivity of blackjack is definitely not lost if you choose to play it online without leaving your home.

Image Credit: Dusan Kipic

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Pro Tips & Tricks On How To Win At Blackjack

Online BlackjackBy Dan Dubey

Blackjack is one of the oldest casino games and has a pleasingly low house edge, but it’s also challenging to master. Here are some pro tips to improve your chances of coming out on top and winning at blackjack.

Don’t be Short-Changed

This is more of a casino selection point than a game-playing tip but it does fundamentally alter how profitable the game can be, so it is worthy of inclusion on this tips list. Blackjack (the hand) should pay out at 3:2, or 150% of your stake. And it usually does. But sometimes a casino will try and steal a little of the player’s blackjack profits by reducing the rate to 6:5 (120%). Just be aware that can happen, and avoid games like that.

For a comprehensive guide that also features the top Canadian sites that are free to play at, simply click our link to review the top free Blackjack casinos where card sharks have a broad range of regular and live games from which to pick.

On a similar note, and there are variations in the rules and these tend to increase the chances of the house finishing ahead. Because blackjack is an ancient game it has a lower house edge than the vast majority of casino distractions, and one way the house tries to increase its edge is by adding small tweaks (the most obvious of these actually happened in roulette with the double zero version that substantially increases the house edge). Simple and straightforward games are the best way to go.

Doubling Down

Doubling is a slightly different method of advancing your hand because it means the player gets one more card (and one only) but can double their stake. Obviously, this can mean twice the loss, but the player does have the knowledge to make an informed decision and, in the right circumstances, it can be a smart move.

With a hard (no ace) 10 or 11 doubling down is almost always a good idea (for the dealer having 2-9, and, versus hard 11, a 10 as well). The hard 9 also has a variety of doubling opportunities, from 3-6. And if you have a soft 17-18 then doubling should occur if the dealer has 3-6.

As with all the advice offered here, these tips are based on mathematical averages. In common with all betting, good or bad luck can rescue poor positions or mean even the smart play leads to a loss. So do not be discouraged, or get too giddy, if you find yourself with a streak of luck, whether good or ill.

Hitting With an Ace – Aye or Nay?

Hands with aces (where that ace can stand for 1 or 11 either way) are considered soft, which can make it tricky to choose whether to stand or hit. However, aces do make things more flexible (you’re much better off with a soft 13 than a hard one).

Whether soft or hard, everyone should hit on 11 or less as there’s no downside. But there are some soft cases where hitting (or doubling in some cases) makes sense, but doing so when hard would be foolish.  On soft 17 or less it’s always worth at least hitting. And if the dealer has a 9, 10, or ace face up then a soft 18 is also worth hitting on.

Insurance: Just Say No

In most walks of life (especially when it comes to the home and car), insurance is not merely a good idea, it is a necessity. And the name implies a certain measure of putting safety first, a prudent hedging of bets. In blackjack, insurance is offered by the dealer when they have a face up ace, allowing players to make a side bet in case the dealer has blackjack. For the player, that’s an automatic defeat (unless fortunate enough to also have blackjack).

But the numbers do not stack up. If you buy insurance at each opportunity then, over the course of a session, the player will end up losing more than they win. If you are going by the numbers, then insurance in blackjack is something you should never opt for because it will decrease your chances of finishing ahead.

When to Split, or Not

Splitting is sometimes the most obvious thing in the world, and sometimes incredibly tricky. Aces and 8s, for example, should always be split. Given how many cards have a value of 10, the odds of getting 21 are pretty good if you divide aces. Fives, by contrast, never should be, because you are likely to replace a strong three-card hand with a pair of inferior two-card hands. (Hopefully, this need not be said, but 10s likewise should never be split).

However, often the decision to split or not cannot be made solely by contemplating your own hand. The dealer’s hand must be considered as well. Is the dealer likely to go bust? Do you already have a pretty good hand (a pair of 9s, for example)? As always, basic strategy gives us a useful indication of when to stick with a pair, and when to split it (in those circumstances when the answer is not obvious).

When the dealer’s face card is between 2 and 6, then players with pairs of 6s, 7s, and 9s should split (for 9s, players should also split facing an 8 or 9 from the dealer, and for 7s if the dealer has a 7 that should also be cause to split). A pair of 4s should only be split if the dealer is showing 5 or 6, and a pair of 2s or 3s should be split when facing 2-7.1)This discussion of pair splitting assumes a multi-deck game where double after splitting is allowed.  Also, any discussion of basic strategy will depend on the number of decks and the rules of the game.

Manage Your Bankroll Calmly

Last on our list of tips is something that applies to betting generally and certainly is important for wagering on blackjack. Players should not get carried away or despondent and should exercise financial discipline when betting. If you jump in betting 20% of your funds as a starting stake you can quickly lose the lot. Make modest wagers, perhaps a percent or two of your bankroll, so there’s some resilience if luck’s against you.

Also, do not fall into the trap of pursuing a Martingale style strategy. This involves doubling the stake whenever a loss is incurred (and doubling again if another loss happens). While this does decrease the odds of finishing behind, the fatal flaw with this approach is that any loss that is suffered is monumental. And any win is small (just one stake).

Blackjack’s a great game to play, straightforward enough to get the gist in a first session but complicated enough that making the right call can be surprisingly difficult. Follow these tips, and things should go a little more smoothly for you.

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Footnotes

Footnotes
1This discussion of pair splitting assumes a multi-deck game where double after splitting is allowed.  Also, any discussion of basic strategy will depend on the number of decks and the rules of the game.

Top 10 Most Popular Online Casinos For Blackjack

By Dan Dubey

Easy to learn but hard to master, blackjack has been one of the top casino games for a very long time. It also has the lowest house edge, making it a popular choice for mathematically-minded players.  Here are the top 10 places to play the game online.

Online Blackjack

LeoVegas Casino

LeoVegas Casino has a fittingly leonine mascot and tawny color scheme, and, for blackjack fans, having 56 regular table games and more than a dozen blackjack games among them is a good start. Better yet is the live casino, where card sharks can take their pick from 47 different tables (with a dozen or so blackjack games plus roulette, craps, poker, and gameshows). In addition, there’s an exclusive live casino section with 15 extra blackjack tables. And if you feel like taking a break from cards there are hundreds of slots from NetEnt, Play’n Go, Microgaming, and more.

Spin Casino

Another top place to consider for fans of blackjack is Spin Casino, which has not only regular games but a healthy live casino section as well. Players can access these games, and the many slots available, both from a traditional desktop and from mobile platforms, whether playing on an Android or iOS device. Banking options include e-wallets, cards, and Interac, and there’s even a sports section, so if you like to combine spectating with betting you can do both (and play blackjack) at Spin Casino.

Be aware that the rules can be a little different from one variation of blackjack to the next, so always be sure to give them a quick once over just to ensure you don’t end up falling foul of the rule-book.

Sports Interaction Casino

While sports betting (including live wagers) are on the menu at Sports Interaction Casino, this site also has a very healthy array of casino games. Blackjack fans can sate their appetite for 21 with both regular and live dealer formats of the game, with some tables exclusive to the casino and 24 tables in total. Baccarat, roulette, and video poker are also accessible, as are many slots. Banking options are numerous and include pre-paid methods Neosurf and Paysafecard, iDebit, credit cards, e-wallet ecoPayz, and Interac.

Mr Green Casino

Mr Green Casino has a fantastic array of slots from multiple developers, and it’s also a fun place to play table games whether via desktop or iOS/Android app. Regular blackjack games are available in multiple forms (including Perfect Pairs and First Person), with just over a dozen games in total. Meanwhile the live games number 37, with tables provided by both Pragmatic Play and Evolution Gaming (with poker, baccarat, gameshows, and roulette also available in the live casino). And because Mr Green Casino is regulated and licensed by the UK Gambling Commission it’s a place that you know you can trust.

Finding out more information about the best Blackjack casinos that are highly recommended by Blackjack players is easy – all you need do is click our link for extra detail if the concise reviews here have whetted your appetite and you want to know even more about the best places to play blackjack online.

Casino Lab

Players intrigued by experimenting at the Casino Lab will find no fewer than 29 regular blackjack games, which is one of the most extensive selections on this list. When it comes to the live casino offering there are 43 tables, which is also pretty good (and, of course, there’s baccarat, roulette, game shows, and poker to play too). Players taking a break from cards have great slots such as NetEnt’s Starburst and Microgaming’s Thunderstruck II to spin. The financial options range from standard fare with debit cards and e-wallets such as Skrill and Neteller to the likes of Apple Pay, Boku, Trustly, and Paysafecard, plus PayPal, MuchBetter, and MiFinity.

All British Casino

While Evolution Gaming is the biggest player in the live dealer market, it isn’t the only show in town for card sharks keen to combine the convenience of playing from home with that real world atmosphere. All British Casino has over a dozen tables in its live casino dedicated just to blackjack, powered by Pragmatic Play. In addition to that, the live section has baccarat, roulette, and gameshow type distractions (some by Evolution, some by Pragmatic).

Licensed by the UK Gambling Commission, the site also has plenty of slots from multiple software developers, including ELK Studios, Thunderkick, NetEnt, Barcrest, Microgaming, and more, and financial options including major card companies, e-wallets, and pre-paid methods.

888 Casino

Players interested in live and regular blackjack games can find both to play at 888 Casino. There are 10 different varieties of the regular game, including American and Low Stakes, while the live casino has well over 100 live tables (the vast majority are in English but other languages, such as German and Italian, are available). The casino also has slots by the likes of NetEnt, Red Tiger, Play’n Go, and Playtech, plus roulette, poker, and baccarat in both live and regular formats.

888 Casino is also notable for the substantial array of payment options available for transferring funds into and out of the site, so you’re almost certain to find a banking method to your liking.

Both sports and casino betting are bigger than ever which means it’s very much a player’s market. Because of this, it’s important to take your time picking the right site for you, whether that’s down to promotions, banking methods, or just whichever casino has the most blackjack tables.

Betway Casino

Another top place to play for card sharks is Betway Casino, which has a dedicated blackjack section featuring 16 types of the games (such as Vegas Downtown Blackjack and Multihand European Blackjack). The live dealer section is a little smaller but does offer eight separate games from both Evolution Gaming and Pragmatic Play, in addition to dice games, poker, roulette, and baccarat (as well as game shows). Betway Casino is licensed and regulated by the UK Gambling Commission, and also has sections for betting on regular sports and esports, so if you like to bet in a wide range of areas this might be a good pick.

PlayAmo Casino

If option paralysis is not a problem and you just want a huge array of tables then PlayAmo Casino is the perfect place to play as there’s an incredible 142 blackjack tables available within the sizeable live casino. There are 46 separate software developers contributing to the casino’s games so there’s a gargantuan assortment of slots to play as well. There’s a similarly enormous list of supported banking methods (in excess of 20), including multiple varieties of cryptocurrency, cards, pre-paid options, e-wallets, and nation-specific choices like Interac for Canada.

Casumo Casino

A great all-round casino is Casumo, which has an astonishing set of games that exceed 2,000 in total. These include classic slots such as NetEnt’s Starburst and Play’n Go’s Book of Dead, as well as the live dealer section which, naturally, features various types of blackjack (there are a total of 23 regular and live blackjack games altogether). The live casino is also home to Lightning Roulette, craps, baccarat, and more. The site is licensed and regulated by the UK Gambling Commission, one of the foremost licensing authorities within the online gambling world.

Regardless of which casino or table you opt for, it’s always smart to employ the best basic strategy which maximizes your chances of finishing ahead. Couple this with the fantastically low house edge of blackjack, and it’s very hard to find a better chance of finishing in the black.

Blackjack is available at almost every online casino, but some places have more tables and better banking methods than others. Take your time browsing, and you might also find some great promos to take advantage of.

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