Blackjack rules

Blackjack has been played at several casinos in America, Europe and Asia for decades, providing hours of entertainment for many more gamblers around the world. Typically, this casino classic, played on brick and mortar casinos, is played on a semi-circular table which usually allows seven players to play.

In recent years, many casinos have chosen to create multiple digital variants of the game to make the casino classic accessible to gamblers from the comfort of their own homes. Each variation has its own rules, so before you go ahead and play for real money, our players who have become experts at CasinoSite will definitely read up on the rules as each variation tends to blend in with its original counterpart.

Info to Blackjack Rules

  • The best possible hand is Blackjack, which is Ace 10. Then the closest, but not above, 21 is the best.
  • Making the best choices greatly increases your theoretical repayment.
  • Playing strategically or following a strategy form is important in Blackjack.

Learn Online Blackjack Rules

For now, you will find that most online casinos offer the game in both its classic form as well as several other new age variants that all have their roots from the game’s original version. If you want to play Blackjack Online, you should know that you need to learn the rules properly to win the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. So go ahead and choose your favorite blackjack variant and start learning the rules today!

Choose one of Blackjack’s Popular Variants

  • Classic Blackjack Rules
  • Blackjack Switch
  • Free Bet Blackjack Online
  • Blackjack Surrender
  • Pontoon
  • Spanish 21

Other Blackjack variations:

  • Blackjack Double Exposure
  • Blackjack 5 Hand
  • Blackjack Single Deck
  • Multiplayer Blackjack
  • Progressive Blackjack Online
  • Caribbean 21 Blackjack
  • Face up 21 Blackjack
  • Super Fun 21 Blackjack
  • Match Play 21 Blackjack

Classic Blackjack Rules

Classic blackjack

Like the original version of Blackjack, this version of the game probably has rules that are probably known by most gamblers of all ages. This game offers the house an advantage of about 5% and allows players to win huge amounts of money, provided they follow the rules to a point. If you are interested in playing this game, you will find that Blackjack in its classic form is offered both live and on the desktop. Interested in learning the rules? Take a look at them below!

How to Play Classic Blackjack Online?

  • The Blackjack Classic is played using 1-8 decks with 52 cards.
  • An ace usually equals 1 or 11 points, while 10s / Jacks / Queen / King counts as ten points and cards marked 2-9 are rated according to their beep value.
  • The value of a hand is equivalent to the sum of the total cards.
  • A “blackjack” is considered to be the highest hand, which usually consists of two cards; an ace and a king / queen / jack, which would equal the number 21. The second highest hand would be a “21”, consisting of three to five cards worth 2-9.
  • In the first phase of the game, the dealer gives two cards to each player, as well as himself after each as the gamblers place their bets
  • In a typical blackjack game, the dealer will display one of their cards for gamblers to see while the other, known as the “hole card”, will be displayed with the image side down.
  • All players will lose if the dealer has a Blackjack (except insurance). But if you manage to turn your cards around first and see what you have managed to get, you will beat the dealer and the winnings would go to you.
  • If you as a gambler manage to get a “21” and the dealer also has a “21”, this will result in a push and you would neither win nor lose. In this case, the dealer will only return the amount the player has wagered.
  • The dealer will always issue cards to the player on the left first. Take a look at the options you as a player can choose to implement below:
Blackjack moves stand

STAND: Blackjack player chooses to stick to their weapons with his / her card.

Blackjack moves hit

HIT: The player requests a new card from the blackjack dealer. Note that if the sum of the cards exceeds the score of 21, you will go bust, so if you happen to be a new blackjack player, check out the Blackjack Strategy chart in our Blackjack Online Guide to decide when to hit.

Blackjack moves doubledown

Double Down: Player chooses to double his / her stake and receive one card. If you choose this option, you will only get this one card.

blackjack moves split

Split: Assuming you as a player have a pair or two 10-point cards, you will be able to double your bet and separate the cards into two individual hands. The dealer will then hand out one card for each of the two hands. The player can then hit, stand, or double normally. Still, keep in mind that if you choose to split ace, each ace will only receive one card.

Blackjack moves surrender

Surrender: Player retains half of the bet against losing hand. Essentially, this option is only available when you receive your first two cards. You should also be aware that sometimes the casino does not offer surrender as an alternative.

Blackjack moves insurance

Insurance: You have the option to play with insurance against a possible blackjack at the dealer. If the dealer’s open card is an ace, this insurance will be offered to the player. If you accept the insurance you will be playing for half the bet you started with. If the dealer actually has blackjack, then you win! The payout is here at 2 to 1.

  • After each player has had his turn, the dealer will then turn his hole short to reveal his total. Provided the dealer has a total of 16 or less, he will then draw a card. 
  • If the dealer accumulates a score of over 21 points and you have not busted, you will win the game as a result.
  • On the other hand, if the dealer does not bust, the higher points total between the player and the dealer wins. 
  • Ultimately, a winning effort will make it run around, going up in the up. This is with the exception of a winning blackjack game, which will pay 3: 2. However, if you are thinking about playing Blackjack Online, you should be aware of the fact that some online casinos have short pay, ie have small payouts on blackjack which substantially increases the casino’s house edge.

Blackjack Switch

Blackjack Switch rules originate from the traditional game of blackjack that has been played for decades at casinos. Therefore, if you want to play this variation of the game, we suggest you first learn how to play the original. Assuming you already know how to play the game you should take a look below to learn the unique rules of the Blackjack Switch.

Blackjack Switch Rules

  • All rules associated with playing Blackjack Switch are based on the classic form of this game unless specified below. Refer to the Classic Blackjack Section to learn the rules.
  • In this variant, there are 6 to 8 decks commonly used.
  • Each player must bet two equal amounts; one for each hand given by the dealer.
  • The dealer hands out 2 hands instead of one dealt face up.
  • Provided the dealer has a real blackjack, all the other players will lose. But if the player has a real blackjack, this will result in a push.
  • Players are allowed to perform the classic cheating maneuver called to swap cards between their hands if they wish. Note that this only applies to the other card that has been dealt to the player.
  • One player can double on all 2 cards.
  • A player is also allowed to double after a split.
  • A player can choose to split up to four hands again.
  • If the player gets a real blackjack, the payout will be the same money.
  • Suppose the blackjack dealer gets 22, this will result in a push against any player with a total of 21 or less. Still, a player’s blackjack will result in a win even if the dealer has 22.

Free Bet Blackjack Online

“Free Bet Blackjack” offers a fantastic twist to all blackjack players who choose to play this variant of Blackjack. The twist to this variant is that the player is not required to risk his / her own money when doing a split or doubling. If you choose to play this variant, you will be pleased to know that real blackjack pays 3 to 2 and has a relatively low house advantage of 1.02%.

Free Bet Blackjack Rules

  • The game is based on the original version of Blackjack, where 6 decks are used.
  • Generally, only double on two cards is allowed, and double after split is also allowed.
  • You can choose to re-split pairs of up to four hands that also include aces.
  • Like its classic cousin, Free Play Blackjack does not offer a surrender opportunity.
  • In “Free Bet Blackjack”, you have the option of a “Free Doubles” on hard totals of two cards that have a total score of 9, 10 or 11. With a “Free Double”, the original bet will be matched using a “Free Games” button. You as a player will automatically receive an extra card. Furthermore, in this variation of the game, you are also still allowed to double the regular two-card hand.
  • If the dealer appears as the winner, the player will only lose his original bet.
  • Provided the hand results in a push, the player will only regain his original bet.
  • On the other hand, if the player appears as the winner, he / she will receive his original wager plus the winnings which will be equal to twice his / her original wager.
  • Players are allowed to bet on all pairs except a pair of “10s”. In relation to a “free split”, the cards will be split into two hands consisting of one card each. During the game, the player’s original bet is placed with the first one and a “free play” button is then placed on the second hand. You as a player will be allowed to play each of the hands you have been dealt one at a time. Furthermore, you will be eligible for a “free double” or “free split” on both hands. In those cases where you have managed to generate a win, the “free bet” button will be replaced with real chips that are similar to the original bet. On the other hand, in cases where hands result in a player’s loss or push, the dealer will withdraw.
  • Provided the dealer gets a total score of 22, this will result in a push. However, if the player has had 21 or less in this particular situation, the player’s bet will result in a push.

Pontoon

Pontoon is the British cousin of the classic Blackjack game. Although the roots of this variety originate from the UK, this game is played at an international level, especially in Australia. Usually the house advantage in Pontoon about 1/3 less.

Pontoon Rules (Australian version)

Blackjack pontoon rules
  • This variation of the game uses four to eight decks. Each deck consists of 48 cards instead of 52 cards. What is clear in this game is that there are four tens less. Therefore, this game is one that favors the dealer instead of you as a player. In Pontoon, players usually get big bonuses and far more favorable rules than the classic variant of blackjack, due to the fact that the game has quite unfavorable odds.
  • Pontoon players are allowed to perform the traits of the classic variant of the game, such as hit, stand, split and buy. Nevertheless, these maneuvers are referred to under different conditions. These are as follows:

Twist (hit) – You should choose this maneuver when you want the dealer to give you another card.

Stick (stay) – This feature should be used when you do not want the dealer to give you more cards.

Buy (double) – You should choose to use this maneuver when you want to double the bet.

Split – If you have ended up with 2 cards that are the same, split your pair into two separate hands. Every time you choose to share, you will be asked to place an extra bet equal to your ante.

  • The best hand in Pontoon is 21, which consists of 2 cards. These should be an Ace and a 10’s / Jack / Queen / King. The second best hand after Pontoon is a Five Card Trick consisting of five cards totaling 21 or less. Any hand that consists of three to four cards that give a total score of 21 beats everything else except a Pontoon or Five Card Trick. Furthermore, while hands that give a total score of less than 21 are ranked in order of their total value, “busted” hands with a total score of over 21 are considered worthless.
  • After an initial effort has been made, the bank will then hand out one card face down and the other face up. As a player you will be allowed to look at your cards, but the dealer will not be able to look at his / her hand.
  • In this version of the game, you are allowed to double the bet. However, you should note that it is only possible to double on a 9 to 11. Still, if you choose to double on a soft hand, aces would be forced to count as a 1. Furthermore, you are also allowed to “buy” after a split in Pontoon.
  • While playing Pontoon, you will have the opportunity to take a “lazy surrender”. Provided the dealer has a 10’s or ace up – a marker indicating “surrender” will be placed on your bet. In case the dealer manages to get a blackjack, the player will lose the entire bet.
  • During Pontoon, you will also be able to “lazy surrender” after purchasing. This is known as “double down rescue”. In this case, the player will be required to forfeit his / her original bet. The surrender will then be formally sentenced immediately, so in this case it’s like an early surrender.
  • In terms of payout, a 5-card 21 pays 3 to 2, a six-card 21 would pay 2-1, a seven-or-more card 21 would pay 3 to 1. But bonuses will not be paid if you choose to “buy” and double the bet. In cases where a 6-7-8 or 7-7-7 of different colors is obtained, this will pay 3 to 2. However, if the cards are all one-color, you will receive a payout of 2-1, with the exception of one-color save cards which pays 3-1.
  • 7-7-7 cards that are the same color when a dealer has a seven face up pay $1000 for bets of $5- $24 and $5000 for bets of $25 or above. Furthermore, all other players will receive a $50 “envy bonus”. However, this does not pay after doubling or splitting.

Spanish 21

Since its introduction, table games such as Spanish 21 have managed to thrive in the casino world. Essentially, this variant of Blackjack is based on the original counterpart, but this version of the game includes several different rules and catchy twists. Therefore, to play this variant of Blackjack, which is often found at the online casino, you must be familiar with the rules of Classic Blackjack. Read the rules below before trying to play the game for real money.

Spanish 21 Rules

  • Typically, Spanish 21 uses 6 to 8 decks. Each deck consists of 48 cards; the usual 52 cards minus the four 10’s cards. One thing you should definitely note is that this game favors the house rather than the player due to the removal of the 10 cards from the deck.
  • If you choose to play this version of the game, you will find that late surrender, doubling after a split as well as re-splitting aces are always allowed.
  • In Spanish 21, the player’s score is 21, and any real blackjack acquired during the game always beat the dealer’s hand.
  • While playing Spanish 21, you will be able to double as many cards as you like. Furthermore, you can also choose to hit and double after splitting your hand.
  • As a player in Spanish 21, you will be able to choose to surrender after doubling. This maneuver is known as “double down rescue” and the result of the move would be to lose the amount of your effort.
  • In Spanish 21 where a five-card 21 pays 3 to 2, a six-card 21 will pay 2-1, a seven or more 21 would pay 3 to 1. Bonuses are not awarded after doubling or splitting.
  • Different hands that also include 6-7-8 or 7-7-7 pay 3 to 2, while the same color hands pay 2-1 with the exception of hands consisting of the same color save cards.
  • When a dealer has the face up, a single-colored hand consisting of three seven-card cards pays $1,000 for bets of $5- $24 and $5000 for bets that are $25 or above. Furthermore, Spanish 21 offers all its other players a $50 “envy bonus”. However, this bonus is not paid after doubling or splitting.

Blackjack Surrender

Old cards

If you feel that you are a gambler who often has Mrs. Fortuna’s evil twin sister on your side, but would like to play Blackjack anyway, Blackjack Surrender with its relatively low house advantage may be for you. As the game’s name, players are given the opportunity to surrender, which would cause them to lose the game. Still, if you choose to perform this maneuver, you will be allowed to keep half of the amount you have wagered as a result of this move. To learn more about this variant of the casino classic take a look at the Blackjack Surrender Rules below.

Blackjack Surrender Rules

  • In general, Blackjack Surrender is played at a regular blackjack table and involves the use of 4 – 6 decks at online casinos.
  • When the game starts, the dealer gives the first two cards to himself, as well as two cards for you as a player, just like in the classic version of the game.
  • The maneuvers that can be used throughout this game are pretty much the same as those in the original version of blackjack; Hit, Stand, split and double. The primary difference between Blackjack Surrender and his classic cousin is the fact that you are dealt a very bad hand 
  • In the Blackjack Surrender, the dealer is allowed to take a look for a blackjack.
  • In this variation of the game, the dealer stands on a soft (soft) 17 hand.
  • As a player you will be allowed to double on the first two cards even after splitting.
  • Provided you have managed to get a pair of cards, you will be able to split the pair. But one thing to note is that splitting is only allowed once throughout the game. Thus, the player will not be allowed to split again and form 4 hands.
  • In Blackjack Surrender, if the player or dealer goes above 21 as a total score they will both bust.

Combine Blackjack Rules with Strategies

Essentially, without knowing the rules and strategies involved in playing Blackjack Online, you would be left completely out of control – no matter which variant you choose. If you’ve read up on your favorite blackjack game and want to learn about the strategies you can implement while playing the game, take a look at our Blackjack Strategy page.

Ever since its launch, Blackjack Online has taken the world by storm. Many gamblers consider this classic casino game to be their preferred game of choice, due to the fact that it is not only based on luck but also based on the general knowledge of the rules of the game as well as the strategies you choose to use. If you find yourself excited to start your iGambling journey, check out our comprehensive Blackjack guide as well as our best Blackjack Casino list to find a great casino to play today!