Online Blackjack NZ Guide

In this complete online blackjack guide, we are going to explain in great detail how online blackjack works, what special rules there are, and we will provide you some tips so that you can get the most out of your online blackjack experience.

By Amelia Smith - Updated 16/04/2024 - Estimated reading time: 19 minutes.

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Online Blackjack NZ Guide

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How icon

How does online blackjack work?

Online blackjack or actually blackjack in general, works very simply. The object of the game is to get as close to a hand value of 21 as possible. However, if you go over 21, you are bust. You always play blackjack against the dealer, who represents the casino. The dealer is trying exactly the same as you and also tries to get as close to 21 as possible. The dealer also loses when he or she goes over 21.

You are dealt two cards and then have the choice to take another card (hit) or stand on your current hand value. All cards are worth as much as they indicate, face cards have a value of 10 and aces can be worth 1 or 11 points, whichever suits you better.

Furthermore, if you are dealt two of the same cards, for example two eights, you can split them. Your original hand will then be split into two separate hands of eight each, where you will be dealt an extra card for each hand. Keep in mind that after a split you will not be allowed to receive more than a single card.

Also, after being dealt your first hand, you may double. You can only do this once and after that you get no more cards. The dealer may not double and must draw cards to a minimum of soft 17 or other hand values, depending on the type of blackjack being played.

Below we will explain step by step how online blackjack works exactly.

How icon

How do you play online blackjack?

While it obviously sounds pretty easy to get as close to 21 as possible, there's a few things involved. We therefore recommend that you read all the rules carefully before you start playing blackjack online for real money.

1

Take a seat at a blackjack table

First, you log into your online casino account and choose a blackjack table of your choice. You can filter these on minimum and maximum bets, but also on types of blackjack. You also have the possibility to play live blackjack. In this case, you simply choose a dealer you prefer and take a seat at the table.

2

Determine your bet

Before the dealer will deal you cards, the betting phase takes place. Here you decide how much you want to bet on the next hand. Once you have decided this, the dealer will deal you two cards. Also, the dealer will deal him or herself two cards, one of which you can see and the other remains face down.

3

Decide if you want to be dealt another card

Look at the two cards dealt to you by the dealer and decide whether you want to hit, double, or stand. Since the aim of the game is to get as close to 21 as possible without going bust, it is wise to add one or more cards to your hand if you have a low total hand value.

However, it is not so smart to take an extra card at 19 or 20, for example, because you will most likely go over 21. It is also useful to look at the dealer's upcard. If this is a face card or ten, you would do well not to settle for a hand value of 16 or 17.

If you don't want to take any more cards, click on the stand button in online blackjack. When playing blackjack in a real casino, you tell the dealer that you stand and indicate that he or she can move on to the next player.

4

Check your new hand value (if you took a card)

If you chose to take another card in the previous step, now is the time to review your new hand value. If you are not over 21, you are still participating and you could possibly ask for another card.

5

The dealer shows his or her cards

Once all blackjack players have decided that they are happy with their current hand, the dealer will show his or her cards. It is often the case that with a hand value of up to 17, the dealer will have to draw an extra card, but this rule can differ from casino to casino and from game to game.

6

Who's Closest to 21?

At the end of a game round it is checked who is closest to 21 with his or her hand. If that's you, you'll get your wager back plus how much you wagered on top of that. Is it the dealer who got closer to 21? Then you lose your bet.

When you have a ten or other face card and an ace, you have blackjack. In this case, your current bet will be paid out in a 3:2 ratio. So if you bet 10 NZD, you will receive 25 NZD when you get blackjack.

Blackjack Table

Online blackjack table

Blackjack icon

Basic Blackjack Rules For Beginners

Now that you know how to play blackjack, let's take a look at some basic rules and blackjack terms that are important to remember while playing.

Normal Payout

If you get closer to 21 than the dealer with your hand and don't go bust, you win. You will then be paid out twice your original bet.

Blackjack

When you have exactly 21 (with a ten or face card and an ace, you have blackjack and you get paid in a 3:2 ratio.

16 and below

At 16 and below, the dealer is always oobliged to draw a card. As a player you can respond well to this by in some cases not taking any more cards while you have a somewhat lower hand value.

Hit or stand

You have two basic choices when playing blackjack: hitting or standing. If you hit you get an extra card and by standing you stay on your current hand value and you are not dealt any extra card(s).

Splitting

When you get two identical cards, you have the option to split. Your original hand is then split into two separate hands, giving you two chances to beat the dealer. Keep in mind that by splitting you also double your bet. So if you play a hand of 10 NZD and split it, it becomes two hands of 10 NZD each.

Doubling (Double)

You can choose to double whenever you want. You then double your current bet and get one extra card. After that you don't have the option to take another card, split or double again. If you have a hand value of 10 or 11, doubling is statistically the best play.

Rules icon

Advanced Blackjack Game Rules

In addition to only the basic blackjack game rules, there are also some more advanced game rules that are especially interesting for experienced blackjack players. Still, it doesn't hurt to delve into this as a novice blackjack player.

Insurance

If the dealer's face-up card is an Ace, all players will be asked if they want to take out an insurance. By taking out an insurance, you don't lose your entire bet if the dealer's other card turns out to be a ten or face card, giving him or her blackjack.

Surrender

In some cases, you have the option to surrender if you don't like the cards dealt to you. You will then lose half of your bet instead of your entire bet. Note that you can only do this action before taking another action (hit, double or split) and that not every casino offers this option to its players.

Soft 17

A soft hand is a hand that contains an ace. It is called a soft hand because the ace can be worth either 1 or 11, depending on the other cards in the hand. At most online casinos it works that the dealer has to hit on a soft 17, while at some casinos it is the case that the dealer has to stand. Always check the rules of the casino where you want to play blackjack.

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Increasing Your Odds While Playing Blackjack

We at OnlinecasinosRealMoney naturally want our visitors to win as much as possible when they visit an online casino to play blackjack. For this reason, we will tell you exactly how to increase your chances of winning.

First, it is never wise to take out insurance. While this option may seem tempting at times, it is statistically not in your favor to do so. So always refuse insurance and hope the dealer doesn't have blackjack.

The second tip we want to give you is that it is very unwise to split face cards or tens. Many novice players sometimes do this because they think it can make more profit. Statistically, however, it is not wise to do this and it is better to just stay at 20.

Also, what you should always remember is that it's best to split eights and aces in any case. You don't want to be on 16 with two eights and being on 2 or 12 with two aces is not the most favorable situation either. So be wise and always split when dealt eights or aces.

tips icon

Our Best Blackjack Tips

Of course, you don't want to lose your hard-earned money by making wrong moves while playing blackjack. If you follow our tips, you will master blackjack in no time, making you a more profitable player in the long run.

For this reason, we will give you a few more blackjack tips that we believe every blackjack player should follow.

Don't bet money you can't afford to lose

While this tip may seem quite logical, many players play blackjack for more money than they would like. Agree on a playing budget with yourself and stick to it. At all legal online casinos it is possible to set deposit, loss, wagering and playing time limits for your casino account.

Never bet more than half of your money on a single hand

If you do, you're just playing recklessly. It is much smarter to apply what is called bankroll management. You only bet 1% or 2% of your total playing budget per hand. In this way you can play with your money for a very long time and you do not risk losing everything in a very short time.

Stay calm

While playing blackjack you sometimes receive a lot of bad hands in a row. This is also known as a cold streak. However, we at OnlinecasinosRealMoney recommend that you stay calm and don't start betting recklessly simply because you haven't gotten a good hand in a while.

Always apply the basic blackjack strategy

To keep your chances of winning as high as possible, it is smart to always apply the basic blackjack strategy. If you are not yet familiar with this blackjack system, we will briefly explain how it works below.

Strategy icon

The Basic Blackjack Strategy

While blackjack is basically one of the less complex casino games, there are certain strategies you can employ to maximize your chances of winning. There are Martingale and d'Alembert systems that allow you to better determine your bets and there are even techniques such as counting cards in blackjack. Below we will discuss these in great detail. We will also provide you with a blackjack cheat sheet that will increase your chances of winning even further.

Splitting Pairs

Have you been dealt a pair of identical cards, but you aren’t sure whether it is wise to split them? Then use the table below to see what is statistically the best move to play blackjack optimally. The values in this table show the smartest moves you can make by applying the basic blackjack strategy.

Dealers card/ Your cards2345678910A
2/2SplitSplitSplitSplitSplitSplitHitHitHitHit
3/3SplitSplitSplitSplitSplitSplitHitHitHitHit
4/4HitHitHitSplitSplitHitHitHitHitHit
5/5HitHitHitHitHitHitHitHitHitHit
6/6SplitSplitSplitSplitSplitHitHitHitHitHit
7/7SplitSplitSplitSplitSplitSplitHitHitHitHit
8/8SplitSplitSplitSplitSplitSplitSplitSplitSplitSplit
9/9SplitSplitSplitSplitSplitStandSplitSplitStandStand
T/TStandStandStandStandStandStandStandStandStandStand
A/ASplitSplitSplitSplitSplitSplitSplitSplitSplitSplit
Card icon

Blackjack Card Counting

Card counting in blackjack is one of the most frequently discussed casino strategies. The idea behind card counting is that you use math to figure out whether the next hand you will be dealt will be favorable or not. Knowing this, you can, of course, adjust your bet accordingly.

You count cards on the basis of how many low and high cards have already been distributed among players and the dealers and try to estimate with this information how many high and low cards are still in the deck and can therefore be dealt. By successfully counting cards at blackjack, you can completely eliminate the casino's house edge and even gain a statistical advantage over the casino.

Card Counting in Blackjack with the Hi-Lo Technique

The Hi-Lo technique is the most commonly used card counting strategy in blackjack. With this system you give a value of -1, 0 or +1 to cards that are visibly dealt by the dealer. The higher the score or count, the bigger the advantage of the player. The lower the count, the more advantage the dealer has. With a high count, you bet more, and with a low count you lower your bet.

Low cards, i.e. 2, 3, 4, 5and 6 are valued +1. These cards are in favor of the player.

Mediocre cards such as the 7, 8 and 9have a value of 0. These cards are not that interesting.

High cards such as tens, face cardsand acesare given a value of -1. The more of these cards that are dealt, the greater the dealer's or casino's statistical advantage becomes.

By keeping a close eye on all card values, you can find out which cards are still in the deck and whether or not you will have an advantage the next hand. However, it is made very difficult for you at real casinos because they usually use 6 to 8 decks per blackjack table.

How Should You Count Cards in Multi-Deck Blackjack?

Although counting cards in blackjack is made quite difficult by the casino, it is still possible. You just start calculating with the normal count as if you were only playing with a single deck of cards.

Then you divide the number you arrive at by the number of decks used. The value you arrive at is called the true count. In this way you can still see, although to a lesser extent, whether you are statistically ahead or behind.

Strategy icon

Blackjack Strategies

The blackjack strategies we will discuss below all assume that you will be playing multiple rounds of blackjack and that you are applying risk management by betting only a few percent of your total playing budget per hand or round of play. Professional blackjack players use these betting strategies to maximize their winnings while playing both offline and online blackjack.

Martingale System

With the Martingale system, you always double your bets per hand when you lose. Although you will always win a hand in the end, the amount that you have to bet to achieve this can become very high very quickly when you are dealt several losing hands in a row. You may also have to deal with table limits that prevent this strategy from working. Therefore, only try it on tables with high betting limits.

The Martingale betting strategy works like this:

1. Bet 1 NZD on your next hand.

2. If you lose, you bet 2 NZD on the next hand.

3. If you lose again, you bet 4 NZD.

4. If you win this time, you have lost your 3 NZD loss and 1 NZD profit.

5. You start the betting cycle all over again and start betting 1 NZD.

You repeat this indefinitely or until you no longer feel like playing blackjack.

D'Alembert System

When you apply the D'Alembert system, you don't double your bet every new round when you lose, but you bet exactly once more the amount you bet the previous hand.

In this case, you bet as follows:

1. You start with a bet of 1 NZD during your first hand.

2. If you lose, you bet 2 NZD on the next hand.

3. If you lose again, you bet 3 NZD.

4. When you win this hand, you break even and you restart the betting cycle with a 1 NZD bet the next hand.

Fibonacci System

The Fibonacci betting system is a bit more complicated compared to the Martingale or D'Alembert system. This betting technique uses so-called Fibonacci numbers. In a fibonacci number sequence, the next number is always formed by adding up the two previous numbers.

So when we start at 1, a fibonacci sequence looks like this: 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, etc. As a betting system, it works that in blackjack you always bet the next number from the series when you lose:

1. You place a bet of 1 NZD on your first hand.

2. You lose. This time you bet 1 NZD again.

3. Unfortunately, you lose again. This time you bet 2 NZD on the upcoming hand.

4. It still doesn't work and you lose again. This time you bet 5 NZD on your next hand.

5. This time it does hit. You win and now have 1 NZD profit. You now restart the betting cycle at 1 NZD.

1-3-2-6 System

This betting system is also known as the split strategy. Here you bet on your blackjack hands as the name of the system suggests: 1, 3, 2 and 6 units. You only bet more per hand when you lose. If you win a hand, you start the betting cycle all over again.

Example 1-3-2-6 system:

1. You place a bet of 1 NZD on the first hand.

2. You lose. This time you bet 3 NZD.

3. Unfortunately, this time you lose again and you are now 4 NZD down.

4. The next round you bet 2 NZD, but unfortunately you lose again.

5. You now have a total loss of 6 NZD, but you will bet 6 NZD on the next hand.

6. This time you win and break even again. The next hand you start the betting cycle again with a bet of one NZD.

Types icon

Types of Online Blackjack

Although not many blackjack variants are played offline, modern technology allows us to play all kinds of new types of blackjack via the internet. Below we will briefly name the most popular different types of online blackjack and explain what the differences are compared to normal blackjack.

Classic Blackjack

This is the "normal" blackjack as it is also played in land-based casinos. Both the player and the dealer are dealt two cards, of which only one of the dealer's cards is exposed. The object of the game is to get as close to 21 as possible without going over it. In the case of a blackjack (a ten or face card and an ace), the player is paid out in a 3:2 ratio.

Progressive Blackjack

This type of online blackjack actually works the same as normal or classic blackjack, but with this variant you still have the option to place an extra bet on a jackpot. This extra bet is called a side bet and the jackpot is progressive, meaning it increases the more players play to fill this jackpot.

Blackjack Switch

This type of online blackjack works a bit differently. Both the player and dealer are dealt four cards in total, from which they can exchange the cards to form the best possible two hands.

Spanish Twenty One

In Spanish twenty-one, all tens and face cards are removed from the decks. The player also has the option of doubling up to three times.

Pontoon

Pontoon is actually a casino game in its own right, but most casino players consider it a blackjack variant. Also in Pontoon, the goal is to end up with a hand value that is as close to 21 as possible without going over.

However, at Pontoon you can double before you hit, you win if you have been dealt a total of 5 cards and have not yet gone over 21 and you get paid more with a blackjack, namely in a 2:1 ratio instead of 3: 2 as in normal or classic blackjack.

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Live blackjack

Just like the game of roulette, you can play blackjack live. With the live version of blackjack you can play against a real dealer that you can see and hear using a video connection. The rules of the game are pretty mutch the same.

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Online Blackjack Games – Conclusion

Once you've read our online blackjack guide to this point, you know the basics to start playing. You can play blackjack for free on our website to practice a bit or immediately play for real money at one of the best Kiwi online casinos.

Frequently asked questions about Blackjack

💡 How do I play online blackjack?

You play online blackjack at the best New Zealand online casinos. On our site you will only find casino sites that are in possession of a valid gambling license and that have built up a good reputation among players.

💡 Can I count cards in online blackjack?

You can count cards in online blackjack, but this does not make much sense. You do not know whether 6 or 8 decks are being used and, moreover, random number generator software is used.

In the case of live blackjack, the casino may use certain software that allows them to check whether you adjust your bets based on card counting. If they do this and find out, they can deny you access to their online casino.

💡 When should I hit and when should I double in blackjack?

If you're not sure what exactly is the smartest thing to do while playing online blackjack, you can use our blackjack cheat sheet above.

💡 Is online blackjack a scam?

No, as long as you play at legal Kiwi online casinos, online blackjack is not a scam. All blackjack games offered at these casinos meet the highest standards and always pay players nicely. In addition, the fairness of these blackjack games is tested annually by external testing agencies such as eCOGRA or iTech Labs.

💡 How do I bet in online blackjack?

You bet in online blackjack by dragging the chips under the playing field to the middle of the playing field with your mouse or by tapping on the desired chips on your smartphone or tablet and confirming this afterwards.

Author: Amelia Smith

Amelia Smith

Amelia Smith knows a lot about different areas of gambling. She's been our main writer for most things since 2019. She spoke at a big conference in London in 2022 and has been recognized at several industry events.

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Article published 02/01/2022

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