5 Really Bad Blackjack Blunders

What makes Blackjack such a popular casino game?

We’d like to think it’s because casino newbies feel like it’s the easiest table game to pick up and play. Unfortunately, what they don’t realize is although the gist of the game is simple, it’s not a simple game to master; and they unknowingly make some fairly ugly errors in judgment at live and online casinos.

What are the worst mistakes a Blackjack player can make? To ensure you don’t make any bad Blackjack blunders we give you the top five.

Not Doubling Down on 11
You’ll never see any sober Blackjack vet make this mistake. Newbies sometime avoid doubling down on 11 because they don’t want to risk the extra money, but what they fail to realize is this is probably the worst time to avoid risking more cash. Every Blackjack strategy chart says you should double down in this situation regardless of what the dealer is showing.

This is one of the rare opportunities where you will win extra money a good portion of the time. Don’t let it pass you by.

Playing “Third Base” without Knowing the Rules
What a lot of new Blackjack players fail to realize is that there are certain positions at live tables that can affect the rest. And the position that has the most influence is the last player dealt, aka “third base”. If the third baseman is not playing properly, many times he could steal the dealer’s “bust card” or somehow negatively affect the outcome of the game.

If you’re still learning and want to stay on everyone’s good side, we suggest trying “first base” – the position that’s dealt first. What the first baseman does from this position affects the rest of the table the least.

Not Splitting Those 8s or Aces!
Learning the game of Blackjack is fairly easy. However, once a player gets down the basics they need to nail down the game’s optimal strategies. One rule that might go unnoticed without practice is when to “split” your cards. The most obvious time that new players should do it is when they have a pair of 8s or Aces. Having an 8 or an Ace alone is a great place to start a Blackjack hand, having a pair of each, not so much. That’s why strategy says to always split those cards up.

Getting Drunk at the Table
This one’s a bit of a no-brainer. Unless your strategy is to actually get drunk and not make money, players should never get hammered at a Blackjack table. We’re not saying you can’t have a drink or two, but if you want to make some serious cash you can’t be seeing a pair of aces when you only have one. Also we doubt other players at the table appreciate having to deal with your slurred speech and stories that go nowhere.

If you really want to get drunk while you play we suggest drinking while playing slots. At least there all you’re doing is pushing a button.

Not Tipping the Dealer
Although they deal with plenty of cash all day, Blackjack dealers don’t make much of an hourly rate. Like bartenders and waitresses most of their money is made by tips. So please, don’t be a cheapskate, throw them a fin every once in while (more if you have deep pockets). You’ll avoid dirty looks from the dealer and other players if you do so.