The Basics of Blackjack

Blackjack is a game of chance and skill that involves playing against the dealer. The objective is to beat the dealer by getting a hand value of 21 on your first two cards or as close to 21 as possible. The game can be played in a casino, a private home or at a poker table. The game is very easy to understand and only requires a basic understanding of card values. The cards with numbers 2 through 10 are worth their face value while jacks, queens and kings are valued at 10 points and aces are either 1 or 11 points.

The dealer has a card facing up and the players have their cards faces down. When the player has their turn, they may choose to “hit” and receive additional cards or “stand” and keep their current hand. When all players have made their decisions the dealer draws for a hand of their own. If the dealer’s hand is closer to 21 than the player’s, the player wins and is paid their original wager. If the player and dealer have equal values it is a tie and no one wins.

A side bet called insurance is available in some blackjack games. This bet pays out 2-1 if the dealer has blackjack. The player must pay an initial bet of half of their original bet to take the insurance. If the dealer does not have blackjack, all insurance bets are lost.

Some rules of blackjack vary by region and even by individual casinos. For example, some casinos allow players to split aces but others do not. The rules of a particular game should be clearly stated before the game begins. It is also important to note that some tables have a rule against doubling after splitting.

While there are many variations of blackjack, most are similar in that they are played with a standard 52-card deck and the objective is to beat the dealer by getting

The Deal

Typically, the dealers will swipe the table twice during the game — once to open betting, and once to close it. The first swipe is usually a left-to-right motion and indicates it is time to place bets. The second swipe is a right-to-left motion and signals the end of betting.

A blackjack dealer is usually required to have a high school diploma or equivalent and must complete a casino dealer training program funded by the casino or in a vocational school. The program is generally six weeks long and teaches dealer skills as well as local laws and regulations regarding gambling. The average salary for a blackjack dealer is around $30,000 a year. The job has a below average career outlook with employment growth of only 0.6% over the next ten years. There are approximately 68,900 people working as blackjack dealers in the United States. In addition to being a profitable career, blackjack dealing is a fun and social activity.