Best Online Blackjack Sites for Real Money
If you are a fan of playing blackjack online, then your safety is our main concern. Here at CasinoSenpai we have found only the most secure blackjack casino sites. Every operator in our top list is regulated and fully licensed by the relevant authorities, so you can play with the peace of mind that you deserve.
- Top List: Online Blackjack Casinos 2021
- Advantages of Playing Blackjack Online
- How to Play Blackjack Online
- Best Live Blackjack Sites
- Bonus Types of Online Blackjack
- The Basic Rules of Online Blackjack
- Strategy in Blackjack
- Blackjack Words and Terms
- Online Blackjack Types & Variants
- Ways to Increase and Decrease the House Edge
- Frequently Asked Questions
Top List: Online Blackjack Casinos 2021
Advantages of Playing Blackjack Online
Blackjack is one of the most beloved of online casino games, and it is not hard to see why. The rules are simple and easy to follow and with some practice it is one of the games with the lowest house edge. More than almost any other game in the casino, with online blackjack, real money wins are not only possible but quite likely.
Although it is a game of chance and probability, when you play smart this game can be truly rewarding. Unlike a more complex card game such as poker, blackjack can be mastered fairly easily and is a good game even for novices. Blackjack can be played at home with friends, at a land casino or online. If you are interested in the online option, here are some of the pros and cons:
- Lots of different versions available
- Play in free demo mode to practice
- Find a blackjack bonus offer
- Use a strategy chart to help
- Play at home or on the go with mobile
- You cannot see the other players
- The cards are not dealt in view
- Requires fast and reliable internet connection
- The game is run by a computer algorithm rather than a real dealer
How to Play Blackjack Online
- Time Needed: 00:04
- Tools Required: PC, Mobile Device, Bank Account
- Supplies Needed: Time, Real Money, Internet
Best Live Blackjack Sites
If you prefer the idea of playing with a real live dealer, then you are in luck. With the help of some very sophisticated technology, live dealer tables are now available at many online casinos. Blackjack is ideally suited to online live casino, and is one of the most popular games to play with real dealers. The games are streamed live and direct to your screen from a special studio, with a professional dealer running the table.
Bonus Types of Online Blackjack
One of the biggest advantages of playing at blackjack sites are the bonuses. Because online blackjack sites have lower overheads than land casinos, the operators are able to give big and generous bonus offers to new and existing players. Some of these can double your money, sometimes even more, giving you extra playing time for the same amount of cash. Be careful though, this is not exactly free money. There are always restrictions in place to prevent the casino from losing too much money. Look out for the wagering requirements, which oblige you to play your bonus through a certain number of times before you can claim any winnings.
Some of the bonuses offered:
Welcome bonus: This is available for brand new players at online blackjack sites. A popular welcome offer is when the casino matches your deposit in bonus money, giving you double to play with. In some cases a deposit match is over 100%, but there is always a maximum cap.
No deposit bonus: A few blackjack sites give a small amount of free cash to new players before they make their first deposit. This effectively gives you the chance to play for free, while still having the chance of winning money. As with other bonuses, restrictions apply that ensure your wins will be modest at best.
Cashback bonus: One of the best value bonuses out there, the cashback bonus will return a portion of any losses to your casino cash account. This offer usually comes with very few strings attached, and certainly softens the blow of a bad run. Definitely one to look out for.
The Basic Rules of Online Blackjack
The card game blackjack is played against the dealer. There are four primary objectives when playing:
- Beat the dealer by getting a higher hand
- Hit or come close to 21
- Make the dealer go bust when their hand exceeds 21
- Avoid going bust by remaining under 21
In order to win the round at a 1:1 payout, simply make closer to 21 than the dealer. If you get Blackjack – i.e., an ace and a card worth ten – then there is a 3:2 payout.
The game is started when each player is dealt a pair of cards. The dealer deals two cards to themselves and shows just one to the players. After checking the cards, players decide how to proceed:
Stand – sometimes called ‘stick’ or ‘stay’, the player does not draw a further card.
Hit – the player asks the dealer for another card. This can be repeated either until the player is happy with the value of the hand, or until they go bust.
Double – based on the value of the initial two cards, a player can double their initial bet. They are then allowed one more hit.
Split – if both your two cards have the same value, you can choose to split the hand and make two.
Beyond the basic rules of the game, there are many different versions that have slight variations in the rules. Important to mention that the ace is worth either 11 or 1, and so any hand containing an ace is called a ‘soft’ hand because it can have two different values. Conversely, a ‘hard’ hand has a fixed value.
Some of the blackjack variations include:
Dealer stands on soft 17: After the players have had their turn, the dealer then plays and must hit until they reach 17 or just over. The dealer must then stand. The players that did not go bust then win.
Dealer hits on soft 17: Conversely, the dealer must hit on a soft 17 – i.e., one that contains an ace. Despite the chance of going bust, overall hitting on soft 17 results in a slight increase in the house edge. This rule is more common than the standing rule.
Surrender: If your initial two cards look like you have no chance of winning, then you can choose to surrender that round and get half your stake back. Some blackjack sites and games allow early surrender, before the dealer has checked their hand for Blackjack. More often, players must wait until after the dealer checks.
Re-split: In the initial deal, two cards of the same value can be split and made into two separate hands. If one or both of these new hands is also two cards of the same value, some games allow for the player to split again. Some different rules usually apply to split hands, for example players may not surrender and an ace-ten combination will not count as Blackjack.
Doubling after split: After splitting the pair and drawing to each, you can then choose to double the wager on either one of the new pairs. A strategy guide can help you decide when to double down after splitting.
Early surrender: Players are permitted to surrender and forfeit half their stake, before the dealer checks their second card for Blackjack.
6 to 5 blackjacks: This refers to the payout on a Blackjack, which is when the player gets an ace and a ten-value card in the first deal. Most games used to pay out at 3:2 – so a bet of $10 will win back $15. With 6:5, the same $10 bet will win only $12 for a Blackjack. That’s still not bad, but the best paying casino might give you even better odds.
Single deck vs multi deck: Blackjack can be played with anything between one and eight decks of cards. The number of decks in play affects the strategy that players will need to adopt.
One thing that never changes, no matter what version you are playing, is the value of the individual cards. The card values in all types of blackjack are as follows:
- Number cards 2-10 are worth their face value
- Jack, Queen and the King are all worth ten
- Aces are worth either one or eleven
Strategy in Blackjack
Although it is a chance game, you can improve your prospects at blackjack sites considerably if you adopt a basic strategy. This involves knowing what action to take – hit, stand, double, split and so forth – based on the cards that you have been dealt and on what card the dealer is showing. Playing without a strategy can increase the house edge up to as much as 5% or more. Luckily you can use our strategy cards to help you until you become confident enough.
Blackjack Words and Terms
As with any casino game, there are a number of words, terms and expressions to get to grips with when learning blackjack. We have seen a few of these already, but let’s take a look at some of the most common ones here.
Hit: Take an additional card from the dealer – you can hit as many times as you like until you are satisfied with your hand or until you exceed 21.
Stand: Stop taking any more cards because you believe that you have reached as close to 21 as you can without going bust, or because you have a natural Blackjack.
Double down: Double your original stake based on your first two cards – you must then be dealt one more card only.
Split: If you receive two cards of the same value, you can make them into two separate hands.
Surrender: Save half your stake by surrendering when you believe that you cannot beat the dealer with the hand you have been dealt.
Insurance: If the dealer is showing an ace, players can choose to take insurance so that they can break even should the dealer get Blackjack.
Bust: The value of a hand goes above 21 and the player holding the hand loses.
Push: This would be called a draw in other games, but in order to avoid confusion it is known as a push – player and dealer have the same hand value, including Blackjack, and no money is lost or won.
Online Blackjack Types & Variants
Blackjack is an endlessly exciting and engaging game, made even more fun by the many different variants on offer. Some of these have a higher or lower house edge, but all are equally enjoyable. Here we take a look at the variants that you can expect to find at the best blackjack sites.
This is a variant that specifically allows the early surrender move. A little like folding in poker, the player can opt out of the round and forfeit – or save, depending on how you look at it – half their stake before the dealer checks for Blackjack. This move decreases the house edge by up to 0.09%.
In this interesting variant, the player must make two equal-sized bets and draw two separate hands. They can then choose to trade the second card from each hand to make stronger combinations. In this version, Blackjack only pays out at 1:1.
Any variant that is played at a live online casino. These blackjack sites have real dealers streamed to your screen, and you play as though you are there in person.
Atlantic City Blackjack
This is one of the most popular of all the blackjack variants, because it has simple rules and a low house edge. Eight decks are in play, and the dealer stands on soft 17 and can take a look at the hole card in advance.
In the European version, two card decks are in play. There are also a few specific rules; re-splits are not permitted, double down is only allowed on hands valued at 9, 10 or 11, and splits can only be done with matching cards valued at 10.
The standout of this variant is the side bet known as Perfect Pairs. The game is played with multiple decks, and a player who finds themselves with a Perfect Pair – i.e., two cards exactly the same – will get a payout at 30:1.
Ways to Increase and Decrease the House Edge
When played well, blackjack has one of the lowest house edges of any casino game. This means that the return to player percentage over time is relatively high, making this one of the more potentially rewarding chance games.
Here are three ways you can beat the house edge in a game of blackjack:
Players keep track of the value of the cards played to determine the likely outcomes of the next deal. This is done by assigning a nominal value to each card, based on whether it is good for the player, the dealer or neither. Difficult to do and frowned upon, it is nonetheless not a prohibited technique.
In conjunction with card counting, shuffle tracking can be used to keep track of certain cards and sequences through shuffles. This can only really be done with manual shuffling – most players will not attempt it when a machine is used to shuffle.
Identifying concealed cards
This technique will not work at online casino sites for real money, since it relies on using identifiers for certain cards such as scuffs or bends. Sometimes the edge of a hole card can be partially seen to determine what class of card it is.
By now you should be well on your way to playing online blackjack. You can use the information on this page, along with our strategy guides, to perfect your technique and hopefully start winning. Remember that of course blackjack is just for fun, and wins are a bonus but never a given. If you would like to practice first, you can hone your skills at one of our recommended blackjack sites offering free demo versions. For any more information, take a look at our FAQs below.
Frequently Asked Questions
💬 Can I play blackjack for free?
Yes, simply choose from our blackjack sites and find one that has a free demo mode.
💬 Can you beat the house in blackjack?
You can never truly beat the house, but you can improve your chances with a good strategy.
💬 What is the return-to-player in blackjack?
The RTP varies depending on the type of blackjack and the strategies the player uses. Classic blackjack can have an RTP of more than 99%.
💬 Is it possible to count cards in online blackjack?
Not in virtual games, as these use a continuous shuffle algorithm. You may be able to at a live online casino game.
💬 Is there any recommended strategy in online blackjack?
Yes, there are lots. Consult our strategy guide sheets for more information.
💬 Where can I find good blackjack casino sites?
By choosing one from CasinoSenpai. We give you only the best blackjack sites with a full license, so you know that you are safe and protected when playing blackjack online.
- Sklansky, D. (1999). Sklanksy Talks Blackjack. Two Plus Two Publishing LLC.
- Jones, D. (2017). How To Play Blackjack. blackjackapprenticeship.com/how-to-play-blackjack/
- Roger R. Baldwin, Wilbert E. Cantey, Herbert Maisel & James P. McDermott. (1956). The Optimum Strategy in Blackjack, Journal of the American Statistical Association, 51:275, 429-439, DOI: 10.1080/01621459.1956.10501334