Blackjack Strategy

Blackjack Strategy

In this section of our fully comprehensive casino guide, we’re going to talk about all there is to know about strategies. As you know, blackjack is indeed a game of chance, but it is one that requires the player to know the rules of the game, have a set of skills and a good winning blackjack strategy.

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The Basic Strategy for 4 to 8 Deck Blackjack at Canadian Casinos

So, first things first. So before we Let’s dive right into a short history lesson behind the mother of all blackjack strategies. The basic blackjack strategy was invented by none other than the mathematical genius blackjack legend – Julian Braun. At the time of this discovery, he was working as an expert programmer at IBM. He first started to explore the basic blackjack strategy when he started reading Edward O. Thorp’s book Beat the Dealer. As many casino enthusiasts know, this bestselling book made blackjack history.

Once he finished reading the book, Braun contacted Thorp to see if he can have a copy of his computer program. He decided to put his programming knowledge and blackjack skills in a groundbreaking strategy that revolved the blackjack strategies mentioned in Thorp’s book. In fact, he not only clarified the aforementioned strategies, but he also improved Thorp’s Hi-Lo and basic blackjack strategy. Julian Braun invented the blackjack basic strategy with one scope in mind – to work out any mathematical advantages that you encounter during your gameplay. To do this, he used computer simulations to display probabilities that can improve your odds and well as decrease the house edge.

Thorp was extremely intrigued by this. In fact, he decided to republish his book that featured Braun’s take on the blackjack strategy in the 1966 edition of the book. Without a doubt, this generated a lot of excited in the blackjack community. In fact, Braun expressed a desire to continue exploring new techniques and methods including a blackjack strategy for counting cards. This created more hype to the point that more authors decided to update their books with Braun’s ideas. Some examples included Lawrence Revere’s Playing Blackjack as Business and Lance Humble’s The World's Greatest Blackjack Book.

Eventually, Braun decided to write his own bestselling book on the basic blackjack strategy. How to Play Winning Blackjack was published in the year 1980. Compared to other books, this one focused on the mathematics behind both the blackjack strategy as well as card counting. Without a doubt, Julian Braun deserves to be known as a blackjack legend. His remarkable work was acknowledge by many, and he even earned a spot in the Blackjack Hall of Fame in 2005.

So, let’s recap a little. In short, the basic blackjack strategy is a set of rules that tells you how to play every hand that is dealt to you once you know your hand and the dealer’s upcard. In essence, the blackjack basic strategy comes in handy due to the fact it can either increases your winnings or lessens the losses. Additionally, it is the mathematically correct way of doing things since blackjack is a mathematical game that has a set of fixed rules. In fact, it has been proven that it can better your odds, as advanced strategies are only backed up by myths or legends unless the blackjack strategy in question relates to card counting.

Thanks to Braun’s simulation, players now have a better idea when to Hit, Split or Double Down for each of the cards dealt by the dealer. Bear in mind all Canadian players can use the basic blackjack strategy in any 4 to 8 deck blackjack games at Canadian online casinos.

When to Stand, Split, Double Down or Quit in Blackjack

Now that you have a general idea of the blackjack strategy, it’s time to delve into more detail. Canadian Blackjack players don’t just decide to make any move. It’s all part of the winning strategy that holds the key to winning the jackpot. So, the question is; when should Canadian players stand, split double down or quit in blackjack? As you already know from the blackjack cheat sheet and other sections of this blackjack online guide, these terminologies play an important role when dealing with the basic blackjack strategy.

On that note, we’re going to take a closer look at how each of these aspects can affect the final outcome of a blackjack game. We’ll be looking at the different hands Canadian players can place, when cards can be split and what they moves they can make to have the upper hand. As you will see below, we’ll be playing close attention to when these moves can be made. Without further ado, here are some tips and tricks that are used by both casual and professional blackjack players.

Hard Hand (Neither of the Cards is an ACE)

In short, a hard hand is neither of the two cards that are dealt is an ace. That said, you can still have a hard hand total if you have an ace whose value is 1. If you decide to hold a hard total, you have to double down on 8, 9, 10 or 11.

As far as doubling down is concerned, you will be given an extra card, but you also have to double your bet. Bear in mind that you can only do this once to better your odds. Here’s what you need to keep in mind with regard to specific bets and how to use the basic blackjack strategy in these scenarios:

CardsAction
If you have a total of 8 or lessAlways Hit
If you have a total of 9Double your bet if the dealer has cards 3 through 6. If not Hit.
If you have a total of 10Double your bet if the dealer has cards 2 through 9. If not Hit.
If you have a total of 11Double if the dealer has cards 2 through 10. Only hit if the dealer unveils an Ace.
If you have a total of 12Hit if the dealer has cards 2 or 3. Stand if they hold 4, 5, or 6. If not, Hit.
If you have a total of 13 to 16Stand if the dealer holds cards 2, 3, 4, 5, or 6. If not, Hit.
If you have a total of 17 or higher(till 21)Always Stand

Soft Hand (One of the Cards is an ACE)

A soft hand total is when one of the cards dealt is Ace during the first card deal. In this scenario, the ace is valued at 11. Here’s what you have to keep in mind:

CardsAction
If you have Soft 13 (Ace, 2)Double your bet if the dealer has cards 5 to 6. If not, Hit.
If you have Soft 14 (Ace, 3)Double your bet if the dealer has cards from 5 to 6. If not, Hit.
If you have Soft 15 (Ace, 4)Double your bet if the dealer has cards from 4 through 6. If not, Hit.
If you have Soft 16 (Ace, 5)Double your bet if the dealer has cards from 4 through 6. If not, Hit.
If you have Soft 17 (Ace, 5)Double your bet if the dealer has cards from 3 through 6. If not, Hit.
If you have Soft 18 (Ace, 7)Double your bet if the dealer has cards from 2 through 6 and hits against 9 through Ace. If not, Stand.
If you have Soft 19 (Ace, 8)Double your bet if the dealer has a 6. If not Stand.
If you have Soft 20 (Ace, 9) Always Stand

Pairs (Two Cards of the Same Value)

As the name stands, Pairs is a situation in blackjack wherein the two cards that are dealt on the initial deal are of the same value. As you’ll see in the table below, splitting cards is a great tip to keep in mind when using the basic blackjack strategy. Not only can splitting improve your odds, but more importantly the house edge is also lessened. That said, you need to keep in mind when you should split your cards:

CardsAction
If you have a pair of aces or 8sAlways Split
If you have a pair of 2s or 3sSplit your cards if the dealer has 2 , 3, 4, 5, 6, or 7. If not, Hit.
If you have a pair of 4sSplit your cards if the dealer has 5, or 6. If not, Hit.
If you have a pair of 5sSplit your cards if the dealer has 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, or 9. If not, Hit.
If you have a pair of 6sSplit your cards if the dealer has 2, 3, 4, 5, or 6. If not, Hit.
If you have a pair of 7sSplit your cards if the dealer has cards 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, or 7. If not, Hit.
If you have a pair of 9sSplit your cards if the dealer has cards 2, 3, 4, 5, or 6, and 8 or 9. Stand if the dealer has cards 7, 10 or an Ace
If you have a pair of 10sAlways Stand

Blackjack Basic Strategy Chart for Canadian Casinos

As you journey further into this exciting venture, you’ll find that the blackjack strategy and blackjack basic strategy chart go together. In essence, they complement each other. In fact, if you learn how to use the blackjack strategy correctly, you will memorize the chart in no time.

It’s very easy for Canadian players to find this chart by doing a quick google search. You can just click on the one you like and you can download it straight to your desktop and mobile devices. Keep in mind that there are two blackjack cheat sheets here. One is for when the dealer stands at 17 and the other for when the dealer hits on 17. On that note, we strongly advise you to memorize both charts well. We understand memory work is tough, but with a bit of effort, you can master both charts in no time. Remember, the chart can help alter the odds in your favor, so why not take that chance?

Advanced Blackjack Strategies, do they work?

So, let’s talk about something different now. As your gameplay progresses, you may be looking for other betting strategies to beat the house. Casino games like Poker and Roulette feature advanced strategies such as the Martingale Strategy, the James Bond Strategy etc. In this case, you may have heard of the advanced strategies such as the Progression Strategy. In this case, it is something that players do by practice and eventually, they start thinking that they can have the upper hand or avail from an insurance against their original bet. This is completely bogus.

Remember, blackjack is based on luck. That means the odds of winning lie the cards – there is no connection between one game and the other. The same reasoning applies to those who decide to raise the stakes after suffering a huge loss. Without a doubt, that is not a winning strategy – on the contrary, you may be very well in for more losses with that way of thinking.

Apart from the basic blackjack strategy, the only advanced strategy that is mathematically proven to work is card counting. Nevertheless, it still won’t work if you’re playing online. For starters, all online blackjack games work with the Random Number Generator. This means that all games are completely random and you simply have no way of knowing every sequence and outcome.

Similarly, card counting isn’t viable on live blackjack games since you can’t know if the dealer is going to opt for a standard deck or a multiple decks. What’s more is that the shoes are changed on a regular basis, so essentially, you cannot ‘beat the house’ even the casino doesn’t know you’re trying to do so. On top of that, you will be removed from the blackjack table and most likely banned from ever enteringthe brick-and-mortar casino in question if the dealer catches you card counting. Essentially, it is cheating at the end of the day.

Bottom line -always stick to the basic blackjack strategy. Our number one tip is to not complicate things. Use the aforementioned tips, play blackjack variants with low decks, never take the insurance bet and choose to surrender if you really have to. In the long run, this method ensures a high chance of securing more wins. Best of all, make sure you take advantage of a generous welcome bonus or timed offers that you can use on your favourite blackjack games. (Subject to Terms and Conditions).

Blackjack Strategy FAQs

⚡ What is Blackjack Basic Strategy?

Julian Braun invented the blackjack basic strategy with one scope in mind – to work out any mathematical advantages that you encounter during your gameplay. To do this, he used computer simulations to display probabilities that can improve your odds and well as decrease the house edge. In short, the blackjack basic strategy is a set of rules that tells you how to play every hand that is dealt to you once you know your hand and the dealer’s upcard. In essence, the blackjack basic strategy comes in handy due to the fact it can either increase your winnings or lessen the losses. Most of all, it’s the mathematically correct way of doing things since blackjack is a mathematical game that has a set of fixed rules. Thanks to Braun’s simulation, players have a better idea when to Hit, Split or Double Down for each of the cards dealt by the dealer. Bear in mind all Canadian players can use the basic blackjack strategy in any 4 to 8 deck blackjack games at online casinos.

🧐 Do Advanced Blackjack Strategies Work?

Simply put, the answer is a flat out no. Remember, blackjack is based on luck. This means the odds of winning lie the cards – there is no connection between one game and the other. The same reasoning applies to those who decide to raise the stakes after suffering a huge loss. Without a doubt, that is not a winning strategy – on the contrary, you may be very well in for more losses with that way of thinking. Although card counting is mathematically proven to work, it doesn’t make sense to use it in an online scenario. For starters, all online blackjack games work with the Random Number Generator. This means that all games are completely random and you simply have no way of knowing every sequence and outcome. Furthermore, you won’t know how many decks the dealer is going to use in a live blackjack game. Bottom line - always stick to the basic blackjack strategy. Our number one tip is to not complicate things. Use the aforementioned tips, play blackjack variants with low decks, never take the insurance bet and choose to surrender if you really have to. Best of all, make sure you take advantage of a generous welcome bonus or timed offers that you can use on your favourite blackjack games.

🏩 How does playing blackjack online differ from land-based casinos?

As far as the rules go, the main objective remains the same. You need to battle it out with the dealer and form a hand that doesn’t exceed 21. That said, the perks and benefits you can get online are infinitely better. Whilst nothing can beat a casino trip to a Las Vegas casino, blackjack online offers a whole new different ball game. For starters, you can choose to play for free or for real money. This means that if you’re feeling a little uneasy, you can opt to play for free without spending a single dime! Of course, you cannot win any money at this stage but look at it this way, you’ll have plenty of time to master the rules before you play for real money. Once you transition to real money blackjack games, that’s where the fun starts. In fact, you can win bonuses or claim free chips that you can use on a plethora of blackjack games. Best of all, you can really take things to the next level by playing live blackjack. It’s an immersive experience that simply takes the cake from start to finish.

You can learn more tips and tricks about online blackjack right here: