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How to Play Blackjack

The most popular game in the United States, and one that we love here at Three Rivers Casino, is blackjack. Blackjack is also known as 21—the magic number of this game. Read on to find out why as you learn how to play blackjack.

For many people, blackjack is more fun than other casino games because the chances of winning are higher—even for players without much experience. As long as you know a few key rules, you’ll be able to win a game of blackjack in no time.

First, let’s start with the basics. Blackjack is played with one or more standard 52-card decks, and casinos will usually play with a few. Each player is playing against the dealer, and the objective is to reach as close to 21 points as possible without going over.

Every card holds a point value. Cards numbered 2-10 hold their face value. Kings, queens and jacks are all worth 10 points, and an ace can be used as either 1 point or 11 points.

Now, let’s talk more specifically about how to play blackjack. After the initial round of betting, the dealer will give each player at the table two cards, which are left face down. Then, one at a time, the dealer will go around the table asking players if they choose to hit or stand. Hitting means you’ll be dealt another card, and standing is choosing to stick with your current hand. Remember, you want to get as close as you can to 21 points without going over.

The rule of thumb in this game is to hit if you are under 17 and stand if you have 17 or more. But, you also have a couple other options. A double down is when a player increases the bet by up to 100% and will stand after being dealt exactly one more card. Also, at the beginning of the hand, you can split; this means that if you are dealt two cards of the same value, you can choose to split these cards and play them as two separate hands.

In blackjack, players use hand motions to signal their choice about whether to hit or stand. Click here for a list of hand signals used in blackjack.

If you’ve never learned how to play blackjack, this is a start—but there is certainly more strategy in this game. Stop by our casino and ask one of our friendly dealers for tips about how to master the game of 21.

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