What Are Blackjack Charts and How Are They Used?

Blackjack charts are helpful tools that allow players to play blackjack optimally in order to maximize the amount of money they win from the game. The charts are easy to read and tell you exactly how you should play each round of Blackjack based on the cards you and the dealer have been dealt.

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Why Are Blackjack Charts Used?

Blackjack is a highly mathematical card game that offers one of the highest payout percentages among casino games. It usually comes with an RTP of 99.50%. In comparison, most games have an RTP of around 96%. This means that you’re 87.5% more likely to win in Blackjack than in the average casino game. It also means that for every ₹100 that you bet, you would win ₹99.50 on average.

If you use a casino bonus as you play, you could possibly get an edge over the casino. Thus, you would flip the scales and win more than you lose on average.

However, to play with an RTP of 99.50%, you must play blackjack perfectly. As mentioned, this is a highly mathematical game. Every decision made in it will affect your RTP. If you play poorly and make the wrong moves, you could easily end up with an RTP of 90% or even lower.

In the game, you have to stand, draw, split a pair and double down only when it’s mathematically right to do so. This is where blackjack charts are helpful. Thanks to computers that can simulate millions of hands and instantly calculate odds, it is well known today what the best way of playing blackjack is. Based on this, charts have been created that are easy to use for players.  

Basic Strategy Chart to Play Blackjack Perfectly

Basic Strategy is the name of the most popular blackjack chart that players use to play blackjack perfectly. Below is an image of this chart and a description of how it’s used.

Blackjack Basic Strategy sheet

To use the blackjack chart, follow these steps:

  1. Identify the hand you have been dealt. Is it a pair, a soft hand (a hand with an ace) or a hard hand (a hand without an ace)?
  2. Locate your hand on the left side of the blackjack chart. Note that with hard hands you need to add together your two cards. For instance, if you’re dealt 6 and 7, the hard hand is 13.
  3. Identify the card the dealer has been dealt.
  4. Locate the dealer’s hand at the top of the blackjack chart.
  5. Find the position on the chart where your hand and the dealer’s card meet. This tells you what decision you should make. S means Stand, H means Hit, DD means Double Down and SP means Split Pair.

The chart should not only be used for your first decision in a hand but it should be used on every. For instance, after you have hit a hand or split a pair, you must calculate what your new hand value is and once again locate it in the chart.

Here’s an example.

You are dealt a pair of 6s and the dealer is dealt a 4. Checking the chart, this says that you should split.

You split your 6s to get two new hands of 6, 9 and 6, 2. Checking the chart, 6, 9 is a hard hand with a value of 15. Against a dealer’s 4, the right decision is to stand.

With the 6, 2, the hard hand value is 8. Against a dealer’s 4, the chart tells you to hit.

You hit to receive a 10 and your hand is now 6, 2, 10, which is a hard hand with a value of 18. Checking the chart tells you that the right decision with 18 against a 4 is to stand.

More on Charts

Not all blackjack is the same. These days, there are many blackjack games that can be played online which have rules that are quite different compared to traditional blackjack. It is important to note that the above-listed blackjack chart cannot be used for these games, but these require game-specific charts.

Even with traditional blackjack, rules can vary slightly between different tables. For instance, some blackjack tables allow you to double down after you have split a pair and some don’t. To play perfectly, there are charts created specifically for different rule variations.

However, the vast majority of players use the above-listed basic strategy chart as it is correct most of the time. There is only a small advantage to be had using a rule-specific blackjack chart over this.

If you want to play blackjack online, you will find the best blackjack sites here. You can also check out the best online casinos in India here, all of which offer some form of blackjack.

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