Hit, stay, or bust?
Do you know how to speak blackjack lingo? Going to a casino for the first time is an amazing experience, yet it can also be intimidating.
If you’re new to the casino scene, you’re not alone. Every year almost 50 million people flock to the casinos, and many of them are going for the very first time.
If you want to get the most out of your experience, you’ll need to know how to play blackjack in a casino. Blackjack is one of the best games for beginners to play because it’s simple to learn and incredibly fun.
Read on to find out how to play blackjack like a pro even if you’re a beginner.
How to Play Blackjack in a Casino
To learn how to play blackjack in a casino, you have to first start by understanding the main goal of the game is to beat the dealer.
Here’s are the different ways you can beat the dealer:
- Have a hand value higher than the dealers
- Let the dealer draw a hand value higher than 21
- Draw a hand value of 21 right away
Once you’re an advanced player you can start learning about strategies like doubling down and placing blackjack side bets.
Knowing Your Hand
First, the dealer will give everyone at the table 2 cards, including themselves. Yet, the difference between the dealer’s hand and yours is that one of the dealer’s cards will be face down.
Looking down at your cards, you’ll need to calculate how much your hand value is. The goal is to have a hand value higher than the dealers, yet not higher than 21.
Here’s how to calculate your hand value:
- Numbers = number value
- Face card = 10
- Ace = 1 or 11
If you want to raise your hand value, you’ll have to ask the dealer to “hit” you.
When To Hit or stay
When you tell the dealer to “hit” you they will give you another card to raise your hand value. If you tell the dealer you want to stay, then they won’t give you any more cards.
Dealer Stops at 17
Both you and the dealer will have the option to “hit” or add more cards to raise your hand value. The main difference though is you can choose to hit or stay as much as you like. Yet the dealer always has to continue “hitting” until they at least reach 17.
Be careful though, if you ask the dealer to “hit” you too many times, you could go over 21 and automatically lose. Going over 21 is called a “bust” in blackjack.
How To Signal the Dealer
If you want to look like a pro at the casino, you should know the hand signals to communicate with the dealer. Here are the different ways to show whether you want to “hit” or “stay”:
- Hit: tap table by cards
- Stay: wave hands over cards
The dealer will make eye contact with the players when it’s their turn, and players will usually silently signal if they want to “hit” or “stay”.
Practice Makes Perfect
Now you know more about how to play blackjack in a casino like a professional. Yet if you want to have a successful experience at the table it can help to have a little practice under your belt.
Go ahead and buy a deck of cards, invite a few friends over, and try the game out first hand. Your brain will start to automatically calculate your hand values, and you’ll begin to develop strategies for knowing when to hit or stay.
Remember though that no matter how much you practice, blackjack is still a game of luck. While you’re at the casino, don’t focus on winning every hand. Instead, make sure you’re having fun and enjoying your first-time casino experience.