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Blackjack Odds Explained

Blackjack Odds Explained
Blackjack is one of the most popular casino table games out there. Players from all over the country play both in-person and online versions of this classic game in casinos large and small. If you want to know where you can play Blackjack for free, check out our list of casinos with the best no deposit bonus offers!

The odds and the house edge can be kind of confusing if you are a new player. Even if you are experienced, there may be aspects of the odds and house edge that you may not have been aware of. Here is a guide for those odds from both the dealer and player perspectives.

Player’s Odds

One of the most basic strategies in blackjack is reducing the house edge. The house edge is the percentage in which the house – or casino – is favored. House edge can vary from casino to casino, especially with certain dealer rules in place.

There are some more intricate and advanced techniques out there like card counting (which is frowned upon in real-life casinos) that can potentially improve the overall return to player (RTP) percentage. There are likewise things that the casino can do to reduce the player’s odds.

Live and brick-and-mortar casinos do this with extra decks in the shoe, restrictive blackjack rules, and lower payouts. The bust probability drastically increases as the hand value increases with there being an 85% chance of busting out at 19 or higher.

Dealer’s Odds

The dealer is going to be the more likely winner in a game of blackjack. That is due to the advantage of going second as well as making decisions based on the player’s position. That said, dealer odds can change depending on what the house rules for the game are.

For example, dealers that must stand on a soft 17 are more likely to lose than a dealer who has to hit when given a soft 17. The percentage for dealers is not about the chances of busting but of the probability that they will stand on 17. Their odds can vary greatly, decreasing between 7 and 10 but being their highest between 4 and 6.

What are the Odds of Winning at Blackjack?

So, it all comes down to what the odds of winning a hand are. There is no simple number. The odds of winning can be as high as 42.22%. This does not, however, necessarily mean that the house wins 57.78% of the time. This is largely due to the possibility of a push.

As far as the odds of pushing, the average odds are roughly 8.48%, which means that losing is at 49.10% at the least. Odds fluctuate though, sometimes considerably. It all depends on the variant of blackjack, the dealer, the rules, and the player’s playing style.

Those who don’t employ a strategy will generally see their odds fall at a drastic rate. It’s why the most successful players have a pre-determined strategy that they take with them to the table.

Having even a basic blackjack strategy can improve the odds of winning. It can also provide a greater sense of clarity as to when hitting and standing are best. There are a plethora of blackjack tips out there that can help beginners or those with no strategy improve their odds of winning.

Winning Tricky Hands with Blackjack Odds

There are some hands in blackjack that are substantially more difficult to win than others. This is partially due to the odds between player and dealer being so close. The dealer has an upcard can be quite helpful, but it can create some tough situations.

Let’s take a look at some of the tougher situations at the blackjack table and the strategy you should employ:

Hard 16: The hard 16 is a hand that is divisive among blackjack players. Many say you should stand but the basic strategy states that you should hit if the dealer shows a 7 or 8. That said, consider surrendering if they are showing a 9 or 10. The chance of busting would be quite high but it is lower than the dealer finishing with 17 or higher.

12 vs Dealer 4: In terms of sheer odds, this is one of the closest hands in blackjack. It is also not a good position for the player to find themselves in. When the upcard for the dealer is a 4, there’s almost a 40% chance that they are going to bust. This means that you are going to lose around 60% of the time if you stand.
Choosing to hit, the odds are a little better, with a 58% chance of losing and a 2% chance of it resulting in a push. The advice of basic strategy would be to stand and hope the dealer busts.

15 vs Dealer 10: Perhaps the least favorable of all blackjack hands. No matter what you do, the dealer has a much higher percentage of winning. Hitting means a 22% chance to win while standing is a 23% chance. It basically does not matter what the decision is, the odds are not in the favor of the player.

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