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How to Play American Blackjack



American Blackjack

American blackjack is the most popular version of the card game in the world. There are several reasons you should choose to play American blackjack over the European variant, including that it has far better odds than the latter.

Most blackjack card games feature the same basic rules, but each variation has subtle differences that distinguish it from the next. Find out what makes American blackjack the best variation to play in our guide. We also list some online casinos that allow you to play the game for real money.

Play American Blackjack at Online Casinos

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American Blackjack Links

Differences Between American Blackjack and European Blackjack

Even though there are several blackjack variants, American and European blackjack are the two most popular at online casinos. Although the games are played slightly differently, the goal in both is the same: to beat the dealer’s hand.

You win if your hand is closer to 21 than the dealer’s. But here are the differences between the two versions of the game:

  • The most apparent difference between the American and European blackjack involves how the cards are dealt. In European blackjack, the dealer gets a single card at the beginning of the round. The dealer only gets the second card after the player has received their hand.
  • In American blackjack, players are dealt two cards at the beginning of the round. Players get one card face up, and the other is face down (the hole card). The dealer then gets two cards, one facing up and a hole card. The dealer will discretely peek at the hole card to see if he has a score of 21. If he does, the game ends immediately.
  • The number of decks of cards used in each variation differs. In American blackjack, the dealer uses between six and eight decks, but only two decks are used in European blackjack.

Basic American Blackjack Rules

The rules of American blackjack are easy to follow. You need only remember the basic principles of online blackjack. These sets of rules are critical to winning because they differ from other variants:

  • The dealer peeks at the hole card on 10s, face cards, and aces.
  • The dealer is required to stand on a soft 17.
  • Players can double down on any hand.
  • You can split a hand up to three times. This rule changes if you have Aces. You can only split Aces a single time.
  • Players can surrender late in the game.
  • You can make insurance bets (although we advise that you avoid side bets.)
American Blackjack Casinos

Best American Blackjack Strategy to Win

Gambling experts worldwide have always advised players to exercise some form of strategy when playing blackjack to ensure they don’t leave things to chance. We’ve scoured the net looking at blackjack forums to compile the best American blackjack strategy to win big.

Here are some of the tips we suggest you keep in mind while playing online:

  • As a rule of thumb, you should be more aggressive when playing American Blackjack, especially in splitting and doubling down. It increases your chances of winning. This the opposite of European blackjack, where you need to apply more restraint.
  • The face-up card the dealer draws should dictate whether you bet more conservatively or you press on in splitting and doubling down. This is especially important when the dealer’s face-up card is an Ace or a 10-value card.
  • You should stand if you’ve got a score around 12 and 16, and the dealer’s hand is comparatively low. Chances are the dealer will bust in such instances.

American Blackjack FAQs

Check out our other blackjack guides:

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