Blackjack Rules That Help You Reduce the House Edge

One reason so many players transition from slots to blackjack is because the RTP on most blackjack titles is over 99%. Therefore, if you want to try your luck at something different aside from slots or roulette, blackjack is perhaps the most consistent table game out there!

Although blackjack tables come with a high house edge, you still need a strategy. Before you begin grinding on the felts, we recommend reading about ‘basic strategy’. It is a mathematical system that helps blackjack players play according to those amazing RTPs of 99%+. Now to put some perspective on how important basic strategy is, not using it means you could end up giving away as much as 2% house edge/RTP in favour of the house!

FYI: We also have a few other blackjack blogs you might be interested in:

·        5 Tips to Help You Win at Blackjack

·        Blackjack Side Betting Options

·        Free Bet Blackjack – Free Double Downs & Splits

In this article we are going to expand on the above recommended blackjack articles by introducing you to another trick/strategy blackjack players use to increase their ROI when playing blackjack.

Seeking Out Liberal Rules

While basic strategy will help you play according to the house edge, you will also want to find a table that offers the highest RTP or lowest house edge. Blackjack players do this by looking for what blackjack players call ‘liberal rules’. Now not many people realise this, but the rules of blackjack are not strictly defined.

Casinos can change certain elements of the game to give the house or player an advantage. Below we are going to look at some of the most common rule changes and how they affect your RTP.

Double Down Total Rules

The most liberal ‘double down rule’ a casino can offer is ‘double down on any’ + ‘double down after splits’. It basically means you can double down on any total and if you split your cards, you can double down on your new hands.

However, some casinos restrict these rules which can reduce your RTP, which ultimately means the house edge is increased. Also, there is the famous double down after splits allowed rule.

How do double downs affect House Edge/RTP

·        Double Down 9, 10 or 11 Totals: +0.09%/-0.09%

·        Double Down 10 or 11 Totals Only: +0.18%/-0.18%

·        Double Down on 9 Totals Only: +0.21%/-0.21%

·        No Double Down After Splits (NDAS): +0.14%/-0.14%

Dealer Stands on Any 17

Another rule seasoned blackjack players look out for is how whether the ‘Dealer Stands All 17s’ or ‘Stands on 17’. They look the same, don’t they? Yet there is a key difference!

Dealer Hits ‘All 17’: When the table reads ‘All 17’ this means the dealer must hit a ‘Soft 17’, which are hands with an ‘Ace’. For example, A-6, A-3-3, A-A-5, A-2-2-2, and so on. As the ‘Ace’ can change its value from ‘11’ to ‘1’, this counts as a soft hand. 

This rule is known as (S17) and it gives you a 022% advantage over the house!

Insurance Bets

It is surprising to see so many blackjack guides recommend the insurance bet. Yet, in Vegas it has the nickname ‘the suckers’ bet. It is a losing bet because the odds are stacked up between 5.89% and up to 7.39% in favour of the house. That’s way above the average RTP of any blackjack table.

Number of Decks In The Shoe

Our final tip is more a challenge than something that seems possible with today’s modern blackjack tables. Now the cardinal rule is that the fewer decks there are in the shoe, the lower the house edge. Today most casinos use 6 to 8 decks and this enables them to offer some of the liberal rules above. However, single deck tables will not use liberal rules. This is basically the casino balancing the odds!

·        2 deck shoes give the house a 0.34% advantage

·        3 deck shoes give the house a 0.45% advantage

·        4 deck shoes give the house a 0.5% advantage

·        5 deck shoes give the house a 0.53% advantage

·        6 deck shoes give the house a 0.55% advantage

·        7 deck shoes give the house a 0.56% advantage

·        8 deck shoes give the house a 0.57% advantage

Here you have 4 excellent tips that will help you master the blackjack tables. We will be back with more blackjack tips on our blog so we can help you become a more efficient player!