How to Beat the House Edge in Blackjack


Blackjack is a game of strategy, not luck. This guide to the game shows you how to beat the house edge using mathematical analysis and basic strategy. Never take Insurance as this bet has a negative expected value for the player.

If your hand is closer to 21 than the dealer’s, you win; if it is equal to 21, it is a push and neither side wins or loses.

Basic strategy

Blackjack basic strategy is a set of guidelines that may help you determine when to request another card from the dealer (Hit), when to stick with the cards you have (Stand) and when to double your bet (Double down). These guidelines are based on mathematical probabilities, so they will never guarantee you a winning hand.

The game of blackjack isn’t pure luck, but you can significantly lower the house edge by following the right blackjack betting strategy. You can download our free blackjack cheat-sheet, which will help you make the best decisions at any blackjack table. Just don’t use it while drinking alcohol at a casino table, as this can decrease your inhibitions and increase the likelihood of risky play. Also, avoid side bets, as these bets will not improve your chances of winning.


When it comes to blackjack betting, there are many different options for players to choose from. One option is to use flat-betting, which increases your chances of a win but also limits the number of wins. Another option is to use positive-progression betting, which increases your bet after every winning hand. This type of betting system can maximize your payouts and protect your bankroll from a long losing streak.

However, if you use this type of betting system, it’s important to know that the odds do not change with each new hand. It’s also not a good idea to chase losses because they will deplete your bankroll quickly. Another strategy is to use a bankroll management strategy, which is not a betting system but can help you avoid costly mistakes.

Dealer’s face-down card

A dealer is dealt two cards, one face up and the other face down (known as a hole card in European blackjack). After each player has played their hand the dealer checks the hidden card. If it is a ten or an ace, players may place a side bet of up to half their original bet that the dealer has a blackjack and will win. This is known as insurance.

When making a decision in blackjack, it is important to communicate your intention with the correct hand gesture. This will make it clear to surveillance and the dealer what you intend to do. It will also help you avoid misunderstandings. In some cases, a misunderstanding can lead to a big loss. This is why it is important to know the right hand gesture for every move you want to make in blackjack.


Surrender is an option that some blackjack tables offer players. This move improves the player’s return by reducing the house edge. However, this move should only be used in specific situations. Gamblers should only surrender their cards if they are certain that any other move will guarantee them a loss.

Optimal surrender is influenced by the number of decks and dealer rules, so it’s important to switch between different games when playing online. In general, players should only surrender when their hand is a stiff total of 14-16 against a dealer’s face-up ten. However, players should always consult basic strategy before making this decision. In addition, the early surrender rule is not common in casinos these days and has been replaced by late surrender.