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Blackjack Advice

Blackjack Advice: Beginner Mistakes to Avoid at the Blackjack Table
by Jason Green of Predictem.com

Blackjack is the table game that is the most popular because it is fast, simple to learn, and is great for beginners because the tactics are easy to understand. When playing Blackjack there are some things you should not do. If you stick to the things you should do, you can have a good time employing a good strategy, but you can also be sure that other players at the table will not get annoyed with you.

Here some beginner mistakes to avoid when you are playing Blackjack:

- Hit on less than 16 and stand on 17 to 21. This seems logical considering that the dealer seems to win a lot. The main thing is that it does not factor in an important aspect of Blackjack, which if you bust and the dealer busts you will still lose the hand.
-Standing when you have a soft 18 when the dealer has a 9,10, or Ace with their show card. This is common sense for a lot of players, but generally 18 is not going to beat the dealer showing a 9,10, or Ace, since the chance of them getting better than 18 is very good.

- Standing with a pair of 8's when the dealer is showing a 10 with their up card. It is hard to split and put more money down when the dealer is showing a 10 or face card, but if you split you will have a couple of starting hands with an 8, which is better than only one hand with a 16. If you have a big bet on the table and this happens and you are hesitant to lose another big bet by doubling down, you may want to stand and just take your chances.

- Standing on a soft 17. A lot of beginner Blackjack players stand on a soft 17. You should stand if you have a hard 17 but never stand if you are dealt a soft one, no matter what the dealer has. You will never bust with one more card, and you never know you can get a low card and vastly improve your hand.


- Taking a hit on 12-16 if the dealer is showing a 2 through 6 with their up card. This is basic Blackjack strategy, but many beginners do not know this. You think you have a weak hand but if the dealer is showing a 2 through 6 there is a very good chance that they will bust. This is the hand that can get you in trouble with other players. For example, you think your hand is weak but take another card. You get a 10-value card, which is a good possibility, and the dealer is the next to play. You should have not hit and the dealer would have to getting the 10-value card and everyone at the table wins.

- Never sit at third base if you are a beginner. Just like the example above the third base position will be the last to play. If you are a beginner you will make mistakes that may help the dealer out and hurt other players at the table. If you are a beginner Blackjack player sit either in the first base position or just to the right of it.

- Splitting a pair of 10's or face cards when the dealer shows either a 5 or a 6. A lot of people like splitting a pair of 10-value cards if the dealer is showing a 5 or 6. If you are playing the odds you will win many more hands by standing with two 10-value cards than splitting them. You will win double some of the time, but the chances are good you will lose one of the hands. Stand when you have two 10-value paired cards.

- Taking the insurance option if you have 20 or Blackjack. Many players take insurance no matter what they have, as they do not want to lose their hand to an automatic Blackjack. In the long run this will cost you money. If you have a good hand, stick with it. Never take insurance when you have Blackjack, as if you win the hand you will be paid 3:2.

- Never using the double down option if you are holding a soft hand. You can double down on any other hand if you choose. If the dealer is showing a 5 or 6 with their up card you have an advantage on taking the double down option on every soft hand from 13-18, instead of hitting. This action will allow you to win more in the long run rather than just hitting.

- Doubling down on bets because you think you are due. Many beginners think that considering the game of Blackjack is close to 50/50 they are due to win a hand if they have lost a few in a row. The next hand has noting to do with the last hand in how the odds play out. Because of this never try to chase or hedge your bets by trying to win more back with one big bet. This is how many beginning gamblers lose a lot of money. Just because you think you are due to win, the odds say that is not the case. A good rule of thumb is if you are hot bet a little more, if you are cold bet the same or a little less. The chances of you losing more money are greater than winning your money back in one hand when chasing a loss.

- Not knowing the table rules. Before you sit down to a Blackjack table make sure you know that specific table's rules, as they will vary. Not knowing the table rules can cost you money.

These are some basic beginner mistakes to avoid. If you avoid these basic mistakes you can increase the chance of winning and you will also decrease the chance of other players getting annoyed with you by making rookie mistakes.

If you liked this aritcle, you may also be interested in checking out:
How to Play Your Ace-5 vs. the Dealer's 7
How to Play Your Aces vs. the Dealer's 10

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Interesting Facts

Did you know... that the chances (probability) of being dealt a blackjack is .024%, which equates to one BJ approximately every 42 hands dealt?