# How to Beat the House Edge in Blackjack

Blackjack is the card game for intellectuals, mathematicians and people who like a real chance at beating the house. It is a game that relies on the power of numbers and the rules are well established, which means that players can use mathematics to predict what will happen in each hand.

In the game of blackjack, one or more 52-card decks are used; each card has a number value (from 1 to 9) and a face value (either 10 for a face card or 1 or 11 for an ace). The goal is to accumulate cards with a total closer to 21 than the dealer without going over. The player has the option to stand (refuse to draw additional cards) or hit (ask for more cards). Once a player’s total exceeds 21 they must stop drawing cards and lose their bet. If the dealer goes over 21, all remaining bets lose.

The dealer is dealt two cards, one face up and one face down (these are called the hole card and the up card). The player may decide to hit (ask for more cards) or stand based on their current hand value and the dealer’s up-card. The dealer will then reveal their hole card and if they have a ten underneath, the dealer has a blackjack, and all insurance bets are paid out (2 to 1 on your original wager). If the dealer does not have a ten, they will sweep any insurance wagers and continue playing their normal hand.

During the course of play, the dealer will draw more cards for their hand until they reach 17 or more. If their score is higher than the player’s, they win. If the player’s and dealer’s scores are equal, the round results in a push.

The player can also make side bets at the table in addition to their main wager. These bets can include betting on a specific pair as their first two cards, betting that the dealer’s up-card will be a particular type of card, and a variety of other options. These side bets can add up to significant amounts of money and are a key part of blackjack strategy for players looking to beat the dealer. The most common side bet is insurance, which can be placed for half the original wager and pays 2-1 if the dealer has a blackjack. Other popular side bets include a pair, the count, and the ace. These side bets can only be made during the initial deal, and not after the dealer has revealed their card. During this time, it is important to remember that the player must only place their bets once they have a clear understanding of all the rules and odds of each bet. This will help them make the best decision for their situation and improve their chances of winning. This is why it is important to read the rules of each blackjack game before playing.