Double with Blackjack

When you play a game of blackjack at an online casino, you will have the ability to make many decisions that can have an effect on the outcome of the game. This is why you should always take time to learn game rules and strategies, and even take some time to master your own style of playing to reduce risk. Online blackjack does offer some amazing chances to win huge payouts in sports betting and there are some features offered with the game that can be quite beneficial. If you have ever played blackjack in the past, you will already be familiar with the term doubling down.

By Amelia Smith - Updated 24/10/2023 - Estimated reading time: 10 minutes.

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Double with Blackjack

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Double down with blackjack

The ability to double when playing blackjack in a casino is one of the exciting features of the simple game and it is one that is often used by those at the tables. When you double, you have the chance to win a great profit and the option provides some added excitement to the game. Even if you are a beginner, you can make use of the double option and walk away with payouts, provided you know when to make use of the option and when to avoid it during real money play to reduce risk.

In order to take advantage of the double with blackjack option, you need to know how to use proper blackjack strategy, which will tell you when to double on blackjack and when to avoid this option so that you have the best chances at winning.

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What is double down in blackjack

Double down bet in blackjack means doubling your bet in the middle of a hand so you can be dealt more cards. A player doubles their original bet in a casino after receiving the first two hands in exchange for committing to stand after receiving one more card. To do this, the player places their initial bet at the beginning of a hand. After receiving the initial two cards, there is an option to double down bet if the player has a hand value of 9, 10, or 11. These values have a higher probability of drawing a 10, Jack, Queen, and King. Likewise, there is a greater chance of making a strong hand of 19, 20, and 21.

When a player chooses to double down in blackjack, they place an extra card bet that is equal to the original bet next to their wager. In effect, the routine doubles the total bet for that hand. After choosing to double down in blackjack, the player receives one more card from the dealer and must stand on the final total.

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Double down rules in blackjack

The actual rules that apply to doubling down in blackjack will vary per casino as well as per game variation. Be sure to review the rules of each game before placing chips by making use of the free play mode that is featured. In most casinos, you will be allowed to double any of your two original cards. You may even find the option to double down on a blackjack. There may be some sites that will restrict you from doubling on hands that are 9, 10 or 11 unless your initial two cards equal these amounts.

After splitting a pair, many players still have the option to double down in blackjack, but this is also a rule that will be set by individual sites and casino games, so you need to be aware of this rule to win. Once you make the decision to double, you will have to place an additional wager, and you will also want to make sure your budget supports this type of play.

After the additional wager has been placed, you will receive one card and will not have any further action on the hand. The total hand value will be that of the first cards and the double card. You will not be allowed to hit after doubling, so be sure you are making the right decision, as this option will end the game.

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When should you double down in blackjack games

The best time to double down is when you can’t go bust or in a likely position to finish with a high hand. The common three situations where this is possible are:

When the cards total 11

There is a high chance of receiving a 10 on the second card. With this, you have an advantage to reach 21 and earn a blackjack point. Even if you don’t, whatever card you get will move you close to 21 without going bust.

When you have a hard 9 or 10 against a dealer's low cards

A hard means there is no ace in your hand. As a result, there is a higher chance of drawing a higher number than a lower one. Double down if the lower dealer card is 2 to 6, provided you have a reasonably high card. Unlike you, they have a good chance of getting a lower total or going bust.

When you have a soft 16, 17, or 18 against a dealer's low cards

A soft hand means you have an ace. Hence, it counts as either 1 or 11. A player who is dealt a lower-value card has a high chance of moving close to 21 or getting a blackjack for a win. Not only this, but receiving a card with a higher value still brings you close to 21, either way. Double down when the dealer is showing 3-6 in their hand.

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When not to double down in blackjack

Double down is not a fail-proof blackjack strategy. If you use it too often, chances are that you will end up with more losses than wins. Pay attention to the following instances where it is a bad idea to double your bet:

When the dealer has an ace

An Ace is a power card in blackjack, and the odds of hitting a blackjack or getting close to 21 are in the favor of whoever holds it. So, never double your bet when the dealer is showing an ace or you will lose your money. Instead, stick with your initial bet and let your hand play out.

When your hand total is more than 11

Your chances of going bust increase exponentially when your hand exceeds 11. We recommend you request an additional card without raising your bets or stick to a lower card total and hope the dealer will go bust.

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How to double down

The rules to double-down vary between offline and online casinos. Hence, the first thing is to confirm if the operator allows it before you start playing. In land-based casinos, push a stack of chips that is the same value as the original bet value next to your initial wager. Do this right after you've dealt your first 2 cards. Alternatively, tell your dealer and point one finger to ask for one more card. After receiving the third card, your hand is settled. In other words, you cannot hit or split that hand. Most online casino tables have a double-down button you can click.

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The option to double in online blackjack at NeonVegas casino.

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Tips for doubling down in blackjack

Generally speaking, before attempting to double down in an online casino, you must be familiar with the basic blackjack strategy. Examples of the best-known bets include when to hit, stand, and double down based on the dealer’s face-up card and your hand total.

Follow these tips to make the most of the strategy:

  • Double down on 9, 10, and 11 as a rule of thumb.
  • Double down when the dealer’s face up card is 2 through 6.
  • Pay attention to specific game rules at the table you are playing, whether you can double down on certain values or any two-card total.
  • Doubling down in blackjack leads to larger wins or losses. Likewise, you risk twice as much money. So, manage your bankroll so you don't overextend yourself or lose your winnings.
  • If you can count cards, double down when high-value cards are left in the deck and the count is favourable.
  • You cannot double down after splitting or hitting. Splitting is when you receive original two cards of the same value and are allowed to divide them into two separate hands and receive two new cards from the dealer. In contrast, hitting means taking another card.
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Doubling strategy

Most blackjack players believe they should always double if they have a total of 11 in their hand. When you do this, you will have a pretty good chance of receiving a ten-card, which will make your hand worth 21, often leading to a win. However, this may not always be the right way to go about playing. If you are able to count cards, you will know there is never a guarantee with blackjack, but this counting strategy will surely help you decide when to double, as you will have a better idea of how many ten cards remain in the deck.

Should the deck have a negative count, risk doubling can lead to great losses. In this case, there are more low cards in the deck, so your chances of winning are reduced. When the count is positive, you should take the chance of doubling, as you will have a much better opportunity of drawing a ten card or one of high value that can leave you with a strong hand.

In regards to strategy, if you are a card counter, always have an accurate count and double when the count is positive. If you are just a casual player who does not count cards, you can follow a few easy rules that will tell you when to double. These include:

  • Doubling with a hard hand total of 11
  • Double a hard hand of 10 when the dealer shows a 4, 5 or 6
  • Double with a hand total of 9 when the dealer is showing a 5 or 6

With these basic rules, you will have some great success with the double option and will be able to increase your profits as you engage in this exciting and rewarding casino card game.

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Double Down in Blackjack: FAQ

Can you split and double down?

Many casinos allow you to split a pair of cards like two eights and double down on one or both split hands. Doing this lets you increase the wager on each of the hands. However, some casino games permit you to split a pair of cards but not double down on the hands.

Do you double down on 11 against a 10?

Yes, you can double down on 11 against a dealer’s card. The likelihood of drawing a 10-value card is high, and you can increase your bet size and winnings.

What is the etiquette for doubling down at a table?

Verbally announce your intention or use hand signals per the dealer’s instruction or the casino policy. That said, never touch your chips without permission from the dealer once it is placed.

What happens if you double down and receive a lower card?

When you receive a 2 or 3 after doubling down, your final hand may be lower than expected. The best practice in a casino is to stand on the total bets, even if it is not strong.

How many cards do you get when you double down?

You will receive an extra card in a casino after you’ve been dealt your initial bet of two cards. After this, your hand is settled, and you must stay on the final total or dealt cards.

Can you double down after hitting?

No, the dealer will not allow you to hit. The reason is that it gives the player more edge over the casino. Besides doubling down, you cannot split or get insurance after you hit.

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 08/02/2020

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