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Blackjack Terminology and Basics for Beginners

Blackjack is one of the easiest games to understand, and there are proven techniques that can be used to maximize your chances of success. So, if you want to play blackjack for the first time, read blackjack terminology first to understand the basics.

How does the game start?

The dealer begins the game by dealing a card to each player in a clockwise fashion and a card for himself. He then deals a second round of cards to each player and deals himself a second card that is face-up. (Called up-card)

Card Values:

  • From 2 to 9: face value
  • The 10, Jack, Queen, and King are all valued at 10
  • An Ace can count as either 1 or 11
  • The suits of the cards do not have any meaning in the game

Blackjack Terms


This is when the value of the cards dealt equal 21 but is not a Blackjack. For example, a Nine of Spades, a Four of Diamonds, and an Eight of Clubs equal 21. Note: Blackjack always beats a hand with a value of 21.


This is when your hand contains an Ace and a card with a value of 10. It is the strongest hand and automatically Stands. It cannot be beaten, only matched.


If your hand value exceeds 21, your hand is bust. The hand is over, and you lose your bet.


The face value on the cards, Ace, King, Queen, Jack, and from 2 to 10. Note: A Jack, Queen, or King has a value of 10, and the Ace has the value of either 1 or 11.

Double Down

This is a side bet that your hand will beat the Dealer with only one more card drawn. You can Double Down on any combination. You are dealt with one card, and your hand automatically stands. Doubling costs the same as your original bet. If you win, you are paid double your total bet. This win amount is equal to four times your original bet.


When you request another card from the shoe because your hand is not strong enough to beat the Dealer’s hand, you are dealt one card.

Hole Card

The Dealer is dealt with two cards, one face-up and one face-down. The face-down card is called the Hole Card.


This is a side bet against the possibility of the Dealer getting Blackjack. You can take Insurance if the Dealer’s first card is an Ace. Insurance costs half your original bet


This is when your hand and the Dealer’s hand tie. You are paid your original bet.


You can split two cards with the same Denomination or Value, such as a Queen and a Ten, or two Fours. Your hand is divided into two separate hands, and a bet equal to your original bet is placed on the second hand. Therefore, your bet is doubled. A new card is dealt with each hand, and you play these hands as normal.


This is when you are satisfied with your hand’s value and do not want to draw any more cards. This ends the play of your hand. The Dealer plays their hand, and both hands are compared.


Fold your hand at the cost of half of the original bet. Not allowed in all casinos, but when available – use this option.


Value refers to the numerical value of a card.

Now, you know the basics of blackjack, you may start to play now. Choose a casino below.

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