Blackjack for Beginners: Splitting, doubling, and side bets

Home » Blackjack for Beginners: Splitting, doubling, and side bets

In blackjack, the player has to make a set of 21 with the drawn cards from the unseen deck. The chances of drawing a high-value card like Kings, Jacks, Queens, or 10s are very high. If you end up with two high-value cards, you can stand for with your card. But you will lose the hand if the dealer has a better chance of drawing a blackjack. Here comes the splitting, doubling, or side bets, the basic blackjack betting options. Let us find out what these moves are and how you can use them in blackjack.

blackjack betting options explained

1. Splitting

splitting in blackjack

This is one of the most potentially useful ones of the several blackjack betting options. The act of splitting your cards into separate hands comes in handy when you are dealt a pair.

To use the split option, you must have two cards with the same value. Once you have two same cards (for example, two 3’s), the dealer will split the cards into two groups, each being the first card in its group. 

You can perform this move with the face cards. Even if you have a Jack and a Queen, you can split them into two groups since they both store the same value, i.e., 10. 

In a land-based casino, you have to put a second wager equal to your first wager, and your dealer will split your cards into two groups. Now you will be given two cards for each group. 

2. Double Down

If you have already made a hand of higher numbers but wish to take a chance to increase your payout, then you can use the double-down option. You must double your initial wager in this move, and the dealer will give you only one extra card. 

To tell your dealer that you want double down your wager, put a double wager on the left side of your original bet. 

Some casinos even allow double for less. However, it is not recommended to go for “double for less.” This means putting a less wager than your original amount. Before using this move, ensure your cards are worth your double wager. 

3. Side Bets

You can wager on these additional bets to save your original amount from losing. They increase your payout on winning, but it always comes with high risks. If you are eager to take a side bet, you should bet on an insurance bet. 

The insurance bet offers a payout of 2:1 to the original bet. Even if you lose the hand, it will return your original amount. There are also some other side bets with high payout ranges, but they are not worth the bet. Side bets like 21+3, pair square, and under/over 13 offer high payout ranges but has a higher house edge. 

Final Note

It would help if you learned these moves and bets while playing blackjack. They are part of the blackjack game, like hit and run. If you wish to master the blackjack game, then learning to use these moves at the correct time can double your winning amount.

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