On average, the odds of winning at blackjack range between 42% and 43%. Theoretically, that means you’re likely to win 42-43% of blackjack hands over an extended period of play.
That’s not to say the casino wins the rest (57%-58%) of the hands. A push is a third potential outcome in every round of blackjack, with around 8.5% of hands resulting this way. Put otherwise, your average odds of losing at blackjack are approximately 49%.
Understanding the Odds in Blackjack
Understanding the ins and outs of blackjack odds would be best if you want to make the most out of each playing session. As far as blackjack goes, odds are used to determine your chances of:
- Landing a blackjack, the highest possible hand, which is worth 21 points
- Bursting, which happens when your hand exceeds 21 points
- Winning by beating the dealer’s hand without going over 21
Blackjack odds are not set in stone, though. They’re pretty dynamic and can vary dramatically, depending on multiple factors, including:
- The variant or type of blackjack in play – For instance, Atlantic Blackjack has better odds of winning than European Blackjack and Regular Blackjack.
- The rules of the game – For example, a game with the late surrender rule gives the player better winning odds.
- The house edge – The odds of winning at blackjack are oppositely correlated to the house edge. If the game gives the casino a higher house edge, your chances of winning are lower. The opposite is true as well – a lower house edge translates to greater odds of landing a win.
- The number of decks in the shoe – You’ll notice that the majority of blackjack variants use a six-deck shoe. However, some variants use eight decks, while others utilize two or four decks of 52 playing cards. Your odds of winning at blackjack reduce as the number of decks increases. For example, your odds of hitting blackjack in a six-deck shoe are 4.532%, but that figure dips slightly to 4.527% when you switch to eight decks.
- Use of blackjack strategy – If you don’t use a basic blackjack strategy, your winning odds drop, and the house edge increases drastically. For example, the house edge of a regular blackjack game falls between 2% and 3% if you don’t use a strategy. If you utilize a basic blackjack strategy, you can reduce the casino edge to well below 0.5%.
The blackjack games offered at reputable online and land-based casinos usually payout fairly to players. They are not manipulated, fixed, or rigged. However, it’s essential to know your odds of getting a blackjack, going burst, or winning against the dealer, so that you can make better decisions for your play.
For example, if you know your hand has a high probability of exceeding 21, you will want to stand rather than hit. You will boost your odds of winning with this decision.
Moreover, applying a basic blackjack strategy is wise if you want to increase your odds of winning further. A good strategy will give you a better sense of when to stand, when to split, when to double down, and when to hit – just to name a few situations.
You will lose in the long run without a reliable game plan, even if you are fully aware of the house edge and your odds of winning. Meanwhile, advanced blackjack strategies will help you better manage your bankroll and boost your chances of winning.
Blackjack Odds Table for the Player
As we’ve already established, blackjack has one of the best odds for the player, beating other casino games like Roulette, Craps, slots, and some video poker titles. The player has a 42.22% chance of winning a particular hand. The probability of a push and a loss in every round of blackjack is 8.48% and 49.10%, respectively.
The house edge has the biggest impact on the player’s odds of winning. Luckily, you can reduce the house edge of an online blackjack game by simply applying a basic strategy.
Card counting and other advanced strategies can also dramatically boost your winning chance.
Unfortunately, land-based and online casinos have a few tricks up their sleeves when it comes to reducing the player’s winning odds. They can do this by lowering the blackjack payout, adding more decks to the shoe, and including restrictive rules. For instance, some casinos may not allow you to double down after splitting.
Knowing your hand’s probability of bursting and how it can affect your odds of winning at blackjack is crucial to reducing the casino’s advantage. It can minimize your losses on bad hands and maximize your profits on good hands.
We have listed a few examples of how to gauge the burst probability of some hands. This way, you can know when to hit and stand after you’ve been dealt a couple of cards.
The Player’s Odds of Bursting
|Player’s Hand Value||Two-Card Example||Odds of Bursting on Additional Card|
|11 and below||6-5||0%|
Understanding your chances of going burst is incredibly important. It helps you decide whether you need to stand or ask for another card. For instance, if you have a hand of 12 points, you would be better off hitting rather than standing because your probability of bursting is 31%, which is considerably low.
However, if you have a hand with J-Q (worth 20 points), the chances it’ll burst are very high at 92%. So, it makes sense to stand instead of hitting. It gets tricky when you have 15 or 16, as the odds of the player and the dealer are very close to call.
Blackjack Odds Table for the Dealer
In any round of a blackjack game, the overall odds of a dealer’s hand winning are 49.1%. That gives the dealer a slight edge over the player, whose chance of winning is 42.22%.
Thanks to the house edge, the dealer is more likely to beat the player. Going last is another significant advantage that the dealer has over players. But, the odds of the dealer can still vary, depending on the house rules, such as the soft 17 rule. For instance, if the dealer has to hit on soft 17, he is likelier to lose than a dealer who has to stand on soft 17.
The dealer’s probability of going burst also varies, depending on the value of his up-card (as shown below) and the house rules.
The Dealer’s Odds of Bursting
|Dealer’s Up-card||Odds of Bursting on Stand Soft 17||Odds of Bursting on Hit Soft 17|
Whether the dealer must stand or hit on 17s, they have the highest chance of bursting between 42% and 44% with a 6 up-card. This gives you the highest odds of winning, so it is the mathematically correct move to stand with a hard 12 here.
It also shows that the dealer has a slightly higher probability of bursting on an extra card when hitting on soft 17.
How to Win Tricky Blackjack Hands with the Help of Odds
Not all blackjack hands are straightforward. Some hands offer nearly the same odds for the player and the dealer. Although the dealer’s up-card can come in handy, it can sometimes create a tricky situation.
This section will highlight the most difficult combinations between the dealer’s up-card and the player’s hand. We shall also explain how understanding the odds of these blackjack hands can still help boost your probability of winning:
12 on dealer 3
If the dealer’s up-card is a 3 and you have a hand value of 12, you should consider hitting. However, according to the basic blackjack strategy, you must hit only once. The probability of a push here is 5%, meaning you’ll neither win nor lose anything.
If you hit only once, you have at least a 1% higher chance of winning with a 12, and the dealer is showing a 3. If the hand has a pair of aces, your next move would be different, as the basic strategy always calls for splitting the aces.
The basic strategy is clear: always split a pair of aces, never split a pair of 5s, and always split a pair of 4s on dealer five or six. Things become complicated if you’ve made a hand with other low pairs like 6s, 3s, or 2s.
Here are a few tips to keep in mind when dealing with low pairs…
- Always hit if you do not split a pair of 5s, 4s, 3s, and 2s, no matter what the dealer has.
- Split a pair of 2s, 3s, and 6s on dealer 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6
- Split a pair of 2s and 3s if the dealer is displaying a 7
- Hit if the dealer has 7 or higher and you’re showing a pair of 6s. You should split on dealer 6 or lower, hoping for them to burst
- If you split a pair of 5s on dealer 2-9, you should double down, as your probability of making a hand value of 20 is high
- You shouldn’t split 2s, 3s, and 6s in any other situation aside from the ones shown above
15 on dealer 10
15 is one of the weakest hands to have in blackjack if the dealer has a 10 up-card. No matter what you do, the dealer has a greater probability of victory over you. If you hit, you have a 22% probability of winning. Meanwhile, you have a slight chance of winning around 23% if you choose to stand. You may as well hit and let fate decide.
12 on dealer 4
As mentioned earlier, the dealer has a 40% probability of bursting if their up-card is a 4, meaning you have a 60% chance of losing or pushing when you stand. Meanwhile, you have a 31% chance of victory if you hit, with a 58% probability of losing.
Despite the slim advantage when you hit with a 12 on dealer 4, we recommend standing and hoping the dealer will burst out.
Player’s hard 16
How to play a hard-16 hand is highly debatable. Most players recommend that you stand no matter the dealer’s up-card. However, following the basic strategy, you must hit with a hard 16 on dealer 7 or 8.
The tricky part is when the dealer is showing a 9 or a 10. We advise that you surrender in this instance, as your hand’s probability of bursting is high.
Are blackjack odds better with more players?
No. Blackjack odds are not better with more players.
The odds remain the same, whether you’re playing alone or at a full blackjack table. The only mathematically correct way to alter blackjack odds is to change the number of decks in the shoe, use a basic strategy, modify the house edge, or alter the rules of the game.
How do I increase my chances of winning blackjack?
You can increase your chances of winning at blackjack by reducing the house edge of the game. We’ll cover some proven tips you can use to minimize the blackjack casino’s advantage and boost your chance of victory.
First things first – Understanding the house edge in blackjack
What’s a blackjack house edge?
It is the mathematical advantage a particular game of blackjack gives the casino over you (the player). This statistical advantage means the casino is more likely to win than the player, ensuring the house makes a profit from its blackjack tables.
The house edge arises because the dealer acts last in a round of blackjack. The dealer makes decisions per the actions of the player.
For instance, if the player busts on an extra card, the dealer wins the round despite not taking action.
Technically, the house edge is built into the blackjack pay table, which is why the casino always wins in the long run. In other words, the house edge tells us the percentage of money wagered that the casino is expected to keep as profit over an extended period of play.
The blackjack house edge varies from one variant to the next. It also differs based on the number of decks used, the game’s rules, and the casino’s payout rate.
Take a look at the house edge of the various common blackjack variants:
- American Blackjack – 0.50%
- Atlantic City Blackjack – 0.36%
- Blackjack Surrender – 0.39%
- Blackjack Switch – 0.16%
- Bonus Blackjack – 0.39%
- Classic Blackjack – 0.13%
- European Blackjack – 0.42%
- High Streak Blackjack – 0.42%
- Spanish Blackjack – 0.38%
- Vegas Downtown Blackjack – 0.39%
- Vegas Strip Blackjack – 0.35%
As you can see from the list above, Classic Blackjack has the lowest house edge. You are more likely to win when you play this variant. The 0.13% house edge means the casino is expected to retain $0.13 for every $100 the player wagers over a long playing session. If you bet $100 on Classic Blackjack for around 50 hands, you can expect to win $99.87 back.
When you use a basic blackjack strategy, the house edge usually ranges between 0.2% and 0.5%. You can drive down the house edge even further using the most advanced blackjack strategies, although it can never be zero. The ever-present element of chance in any casino game is the reason behind this.
Tips on How to Lower Blackjack House Edge to Increase your Chances of Winning
Consider the Return-to-Player (RTP) of the blackjack variant
RTP is closely related to the house edge in blackjack. It is actually the opposite – The statistical amount the player is expected to win back after playing many hands of blackjack. It’s expressed as a percentage of the expected return of all the money wagered by the player over a prolonged period of play.
For instance, a 99.5% RTP means the player would average a return of $99.5 for every $100 wagered over a long betting session. Both the house edge and RTP eventually influence your odds of winning at blackjack.
As with the house edge, RTP varies from variant to variant. Moreover, it’s influenced by a number of factors, including the number of decks in play and the rules of the game. Ideally, you can elevate your odds of winning by playing a high RTP blackjack variant. This will stretch your bankroll further and boost your chance of victory.
The table below shows the RTP of the most common blackjack variants:
- American Blackjack – 99.50%
- Atlantic City Blackjack – 99.64%
- Blackjack Surrender – 99.61%
- Blackjack Switch – 99.84%
- Bonus Blackjack – 99.61%
- Classic Blackjack – 99.87%
- European Blackjack – 99.58%
- High Streak Blackjack – 99.58%
- Spanish Blackjack – 99.62%
- Vegas Downtown Blackjack – 99.61%
- Vegas Strip Blackjack – 99.65%
As you can see in the list above, Classic Blackjack is the best option as it boasts the highest RTP of the bunch. Meanwhile, American Blackjack has the worst expected payback percentage, but that doesn’t mean the variant lacks its upsides. It’s widely available, easy to understand, and has favorable rules.
Incorporate card counting into your gameplay
Films about blackjack portray card counting as a highly complex ordeal. But card counting systems such as Hi-Lo are actually easy and straightforward to understand and execute. You have to take your time and practice often to master card counting.
The overarching principle behind card counting is simple. It helps you determine which cards are still in the shoe so that you can make better betting decisions. It tells you whether and when to deviate from your blackjack strategy.
Although most land-based casinos, especially those found on Las Vegas Strip, frown upon card counting, it remains one of the most effective skills and strategies for winning at the blackjack tables.
Understand rule variations and how they affect the house edge
To improve your chances of winning, it is important to learn and master the rules of various blackjack variants. Remember, gambling sites offer many different blackjack games with just a few subtle differences in the gameplay or rules. These variations are usually neglected but can wipe out your bankroll.
For example, in regular online American blackjack, the dealer can check if they have hit a blackjack by peeking at their down cards before the players take any action. European Blackjack has an opposite rule, allowing players to take their actions before the dealer checks if they have hit a natural blackjack.
There are multiple rules in blackjack that you need to learn and ingrain into your gameplay. They affect the house edge, return-to-player percentage, and your odds of winning at blackjack. The table below shows how changes in the rules of the game affect the RTP and house edge:
Influence of Rule Variations on Blackjack RTP and House Edge
|Rule Variation||Effect on RTP||Effect on House Edge|
|6/5 Blackjack payout||Reduces by 1.3%||Increases by 1.3%|
|Not allowed to resplit As||Reduces by 0.07%||Increases by 0.07%|
|Not allowed to hit after splitting As||Reduces by 0.18%||Increases by 0.18%|
|Not allowed to double down after splitting||Reduces by 0.14%||Increases by 0.14%|
|Dealer hits on 17s||Reduces by 0.21%||Increases by 0.21%|
|Switching an 8-deck shoe||Reduces by 0.64%||Increases by 0.64%|
Knowing how the rule variations affect the house edge will help you choose a good blackjack game. For instance, sticking to a game that pays a natural blackjack at standard 3 to 2 puts you at a better winning advantage than one with a 6/5 payout variant. This way, you will increase your chances of victory.
Practice regularly with free blackjack games
You should never waste your money on avoidable mistakes. Use free blackjack apps and games to sharpen your skills and practice basic strategy. It’s also a great way to explore new titles before you risk your real money.
Most online blackjack games allow you to practice in demo mode. In most cases, you don’t have to sign up or download any piece of software.
Beginner players can really benefit from free games, which often include betting tips, strategy charts, and tables. These blackjack games are identical to the real-money versions found at online and brick-&-mortar casinos.
Find and play blackjack games with the best winning odds for the player
Most casinos offer different variants of blackjack. They differ in multiple aspects, including the number of decks in the shoe, the rules in place, and the house edge. One of the most important things to look out for is the blackjack payout.
The rate at which it pays a blackjack (a two-card hand worth 21) determines the variant’s overall odds of winning for the player. The best casinos offer variants that pay a blackjack 3 to 2. So, if you hit blackjack with a $50 bet, you will get paid $75 in winnings for a total of $125.
Others pay a blackjack 6 to 5, which essentially increases the house edge. In this case, you will get $60 in winnings. Clearly, you should avoid variants that offer a 6/5 blackjack payout.
Never split a 20
A 20 is regarded as a solid blackjack hand, whether it’s made up of a pair of 10s, jacks, queens, or kings. It has a 92 chance of either winning or pushing. Some players mistakenly think splitting a 20 hand will result in two hands of the same value. The reality is that splitting a pair of 10s or Ks will give you worse blackjack odds, even if the dealer has a high probability of bursting.
Skip insurance bet
Gambling sites know that newbies like playing blackjack side bets and hope they will take insurance when given. But an insurance bet is one of the worst side bets in blackjack unless you’re a good card counter.
Insurance bet pays 2 to 1, yet the dealer’s odds of hitting a blackjack is only 9 to 4. Considering the high house edge of online blackjack games that use six decks, taking insurance is disappointing. Learn from the professional blackjack players and avoid such side bets almost always.
Find the most lucrative online casino bonuses and loyalty programs
Gambling sites usually offer a wide array of bonuses and promotions to get you on board and gambling. Most have also set up loyalty programs and VIP schemes to ensure you stay loyal to the platform. You can take advantage of these offers and loyalty schemes to boost your chances of winning at blackjack.
As a rule of thumb, only sign up with legitimate online casinos that offer the best and most lucrative rewards for your style of play. Use these freebies and offers to build out your bankroll and use free credits to play blackjack on the house. Even if you lose, you will still win something and make the most out of your play.
How do you win blackjack with $100?
There are many ways you can win blackjack with $100, even without having to count cards…
Use a blackjack strategy card
Standard blackjack strategy charts are designed to help you make the best decisions on each hand. The bad news is that some land-based casinos may not allow you to put your strategy card on the blackjack table. But that is not a problem with live blackjack, online blackjack, and brick-and-mortar blackjack tables with liberal rules.
You must take your time to study the strategy card so that you avoid mistakes and errors that can wipe out your bankroll. More importantly, you should stick to your strategy even when things are not going your way.
Place conservative wagers
The minimum bet is the lowest amount you can wager at the blackjack tables. Depending on the casino, it can range from $1 to $100 per hand. But since you’re playing blackjack with a $100 bankroll, you must be economical with your bets. You should always bet conservatively, if not the minimum bet.
You will expose your bankroll to the lowest risk by betting a minimum on each hand. On the other hand, if you place a large bet, such as $50 per hand, you might lose your entire bankroll of $100 in just two rounds. Conservative wagers will increase your chances of hitting a blackjack with a payout of 3 to 2.
Set a win and a loss limit
The only way to win at blackjack with $100 is to know when to quit. Because of the house edge, you will eventually lose money if you keep playing for an extended period. On the other hand, if you run into a bad losing streak, you should walk away from the table after reaching a specific loss limit.
Can you consistently win at blackjack?
No, it’s tough to win consistently at blackjack, even if you use a perfect strategy. That’s because blackjack has a house edge like all casino games.
This mathematical advantage ensures that the casino always wins in the long term.The only way to win consistently is by being a perfect card counter.
Is blackjack skill or luck?
Blackjack is part skill and part luck. The element of chance arises from the fact that you need some luck to get the right combination of cards. However, you also need the skill to count cards, apply the basic strategy, and make the right decisions for each blackjack hand.
What are the best odds in blackjack?
The single-deck variant delivers the best odds in blackjack. It has a house edge of 0.13%, meaning the player payback percentage (RTP) is a whopping 99.87%.
What is the average probability of winning blackjack?
The average probability of winning blackjack on a single-deck shoe is 4.83% or 32 out of 663 hands. That’s roughly once in every 20 blackjack hands.