Blackjack Rules

Blackjack is basically not a hard game to learn. Its rules are straight forward and simple. We have gathered all rules for you in a simple and reader friendly way. It will take you just a few minutes to get a hold of it. You can then start playing our free Blackjack game, or go straight to the big league and play for real money.

Usually the game involves a dealer, representing the casino and up to 7 players. You only play against the dealer and not against the other players.

You win the game if your hand reaches the closest number to 21 without exceeding it. If you exceed 21 you will BUST and lose the hand.

All cards in the deck are used except for the Joker. Number cards (2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10) are worth according to their values; Face cards (Jack, Queen, King) are always worth 10; Ace is worth 1 or 11, depending to the player's choice.

Face cards are all worth 10

To start the hand the player needs to place a bet on the table, in the designated area. The dealer will then deal two initial cards to each player, including himself. All cards are placed face up (up cards). Only one of the dealer's cards is placed face down (hole cards).

If the 2 initial cards add up to 21 (as a result of a combination between a face card or a 10 and an ACE) the player has a Blackjack. In this case he will win the hand. If the dealer also has a Blackjack with his two initial cards, a tie (PUSH) is announced and player keeps his money.

A blackjack consists of an ACE and a 10 value card
(10 or Face cards)

If the dealer's up card is an ACE, players can purchase Insurance for half their original bet. In that case, if the dealer ends up with a Blackjack, the player wins 2-1.

If the player or the dealer don't have a Blackjack, the game proceeds. The player then needs to make one of the following moves:

  • HIT: ask for 1 additional card. Player can HIT as many times as he wants.
  • STAND: remain with the two initial cards.
  • DOUBLE DOWN: Double the original bet and get only one additional card. In most cases this move cannot be used after HIT.
  • SPLIT: split two cards with the same value and play them separately. Creates two separate hands.
  • SURRENDER: to wave the hand, by paying half the original bet. available only in some casinos
A player may split if he gets two initial cards with the same value. Some casinos allow resplitting.

When making his moves the player must consider the value of his hand and the dealers' hand. He should always aim at receiving the value closest to 21 without BUSTING.

After players completed their moves the dealer's hole card is revealed and he makes his moves. His moves are played according to a set of predetermined rules: the house rules. The house rules are usually written on the Blackjack table, but not all of them. Read our rule variation article for more. Dealer must usually HIT until his cards reach 17 or higher. Some casinos require HITTING on a Soft 17 (a hand consisting of an ACE) or STAND on all 17s.

The house rules are usually written on the Blackjack table.

After the dealer completed his moves, the value of the hands is compared and the winner is announced. Payoff for winning is usually 1:1

You can now proceed to Blackjack terminology...