The blackjack dealer deals the cards. This is all you need to know. Not.

  • The dealer will begin the game when all bets are in.
  • The dealer will deal one – not two – cards at a time.
  • The dealer will begin at his left, with the "First Base" and continue moving clockwise until he reaches the "Anchor".
  • The dealer will leave one of his cards face up, while leaving both of yours face up.

If there is a "shoe" on the table, the rules change.

  • In our article on the table, we wrote of a shoe that sits on the Blackjack table when more than one deck of cards are being used. In casino speak, this is a "shoe game". And you need to be aware of a few rules.
  • In a shoe game, the dealer will place both of his cards face down.
  • In a shoe game, you must not touch your cards. (Hint: this can be difficult to remember.)
  • If you are a new player, it is best to work your way up to the shoe game. Master the regular game and then saunter over to a shoe game.

If all cards are being dealt face up on the table, know this:

  • You must only touch your cards with one hand.
  • If you are dealt a card over the Blackjack table, you must keep said card.
  • If you say "hit me" and take a new card, do not add it to the card(s) in your hand but leave it on the table.

Insurance is what now?

  • If the dealer deals herself an Ace – so 11 points – she will ask you (and all other players in turn) for insurance.
  • Insurance costs 50% of your first wager. So, if you've put down a bet of $20, insurance will cost you $10.
  • If the dealer gets Blackjack, and you have taken insurance, you will lose your original bet ($20 in our example) but will be paid 2 to 1 for the insurance. (Or $20, in our example.)
  • If the dealer does not get Blackjack, you will lose your insurance and the play goes on.

Blackjack dealers are rule followers.

  • There will be rules posted about how the dealer will play. Read them: They are enlightening.
  • A standard rule is that the dealer will stand on 17. This is a useful bit of information for you. You know that the dealer is not going to go for the risky long shot. You also know that she is going to keep on going until she gets to 17. Without this rule, a dealer may wish to stand on 16 but will not.
  • Another rule that will greet you at many a Blackjack table is that the dealer will hit on a "soft" 17". Aha. A soft 17 is any combination of an ace and six points. If the dealer has an Ace/2/4 or an Ace/3/3 or so one, she will hit.
  • The "soft" 17 rule ups the casino's advantage and so is often avoided by clever bettors.
 Filed under: Blackjack, Blackjack, Dealer