Blackjack Basic Strategy

Simple Blackjack Basic Strategy

Basic strategy can be intimidating to learn for a beginner, especially if you’re using one of those color blackjack strategy charts. I present here a streamline, simplified strategy that provides you with a very easy to learn set of rules that still cuts the house edge to 0.9% Using this simple blackjack basic strategy will make your trip to the casino that much more fun, because a game with a 99.1% payout is one of the best bets in the casino.
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There are five situations you’ll need to know how to handle in order to use this simplified blackjack basic strategy.

The first is easy, because it’s a blanket statement. Never take insurance. Insurance is a side bet as to whether or not the house has a natural blackjack, and it’s a negative expectation, sucker bet.

The rule for splitting pairs is also easy. Always split aces and eights. Treat all other pairs as a hard hand.

The rule for doubling down is simple to remember too. Double down if you have a 10 or an 11, but only if your total is greater than the dealer’s upcard.

Nothing difficult to remember on soft hands either. Always hit a soft 17 or less, and always stand on a soft 18 or better.

Hard hands are the only ones that are remotely complicated at this point, and the rules for handling hard hands are still simple:

  • Always stand on 17 or better.
  • Always hit 11 or less unless you’re doubling down.
  • On 12 through 16, hit if the dealer is showing a 7 or higher, and stand if the dealer has a 6 or lower.

That’s about as easy as it gets, the simple blackjack strategy shouldn’t take you long to learn, and it still gives you a payback percentage of 99.1% or so. An average blackjack player will play about 80 hands per hour, and if you’re playing at $5 per hand, your expected loss per hour is only $3.60. In my opinion, that makes blackjack one of the best games in the casino, and certainly a great value for your gambling dollar.

Be sure to visit the following pages for more information about blackjack and blackjack odds:

  • Blackjack Online – An article about the best places to play blackjack online.
  • Blackjack Tips – Some general tips to help you improve your blackjack game and put the odds in your favor.
  • Blackjack Odds – An article about putting the odds of a blackjack game in your favor.