European blackjack, also known as single-deck blackjack, is a version of the card game blackjack that is played with a single deck of 52 cards. The game is played with the same basic rules as other versions of blackjack, with the objective being to get a hand value of 21 or as close to 21 as possible without going over.
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There are many visitors at online casinos that ignore the bells of whistles of the pokie machines. Instead, they turn to the table games that are offered at these casinos. European Blackjack is one of the table games that people are playing. Blackjack or 21 is by far the most played casino table game and a popular online casino game.
European Blackjack or 21, is similar to regular Blackjack, however, in European Blackjack, the dealer does not receive a second (hole) card until after the player has made all his decisions, including doubling and splitting. The objective of European Blackjack is for the player to come as close to 21 without going over, while still having a higher total than the Dealer.
Before receiving any cards, the Player must place a wager. Once the wager is made, the player is dealt two cards face up. The dealer is dealt one card face up. If the total value of the Player’s cards is closer to 21 than the Dealer, the Player wins as much as was wagered. The Player also wins if the Dealer goes over 21 and the Player has not busted. If the Player’s total goes over 21, the Player loses the amount wagered.
How to play European Blackjack
The game is played using six decks, which are reshuffled after each hand.
- Play one hand per round.
- Dealer stands on soft 17.
- Double on hard totals of 9 to 11.
- Split up to three hands.
- No surrender.
- Split aces receive only one card.
- No re-splitting of aces.
For betting click on a chip to place a bet, additional clicks on the chip interface will add to the wager. To remove a bet, click on the chip in the betting circle. Minimum amount to bet is $1 while the maximum is $500.
Other rules that may be used in European blackjack include the following:
- Players may only split a hand once (i.e., create two separate hands from a pair of cards with the same value).
- Players may only double down on a hand of 9, 10, or 11 (i.e., double their bet and receive one additional card).
- Players may not surrender their hand (i.e., give up half their bet and fold their hand).
European Blackjack Card Values
Card suits are irrelevant. Cards 2 to 10 have face value. Jacks, queens, and kings are worth 10. Aces have a value of 1 or 11. The Player wins when achieving a score that is 21 or less, but greater than the Dealer’s final total. Achieving a score of 21 or less when the Dealer’s final score exceeds 21.
An ace and any ten-value card on the initial deal are called a Blackjack. Blackjack pays 3 to 2, providing that the dealer does not also have Blackjack. A Player and Live Dealer Blackjack on the same hand results in a tie, known as a push. If the Player’s total is over 21, or if the Dealer achieves a better score, the Player loses. Any winning score of 21 after a split is paid 1 to 1.
European Blackjack Strategies
There are as many strategies for European Blackjack as there are players. The goal of the game is basic. Get as close to 21 without going over. Make sure that your hand is higher than the dealer’s. The methods to get there are vast. Some players will keep their bet the same while others will vary their bets depending on whether they think the deck is to their advantage or to the dealers. It is important that whatever strategy is used, be used consistently.
Anyone playing European Blackjack at the online casinos will lose some hands. The key to a good strategy is to find the one that allows you to win more hands than you lose.
There will be some blackjack players that wonder if these games are truly fair. They will think that the computer sometimes is not dealing with a real deck of cards. While they may think this, it is not true. The European Blackjack machines are designed to replicate a real table game experience and the chance to win is dependent on the skill of the player and the luck of the cards.
European Blackjack Tips to Play and Win
Here are a few tips:
- Always hit on a hand of 8 or less and stand on a hand of 17 or higher. This basic strategy will help you to play optimally and reduce the house edge (the advantage that the casino has over the player).
- Double down on a hand of 9, 10, or 11 when the dealer’s upcard is a 2 through 9. This can be a good way to increase your winnings when you have a strong hand and the dealer is likely to bust.
- Split a pair of 8s or aces. These hands have a high likelihood of winning, and splitting them into two separate hands gives you a better chance of hitting a winning combination.
- Avoid taking insurance. Insurance is a side bet that is offered when the dealer’s upcard is an ace. While it may seem like a good way to protect your hand, the odds of the dealer having a blackjack are relatively low, and the insurance bet has a high house edge.
Keep in mind that while these strategies can help to improve your chances of winning, blackjack is still a game of chance, and there is no foolproof way to guarantee a win.