Yes! There are more player favorable blackjack rules for you to be on the hunt for. While the 2-1 payout is probably the best thing to look for in a blackjack game, it is not a common sight in casinos. But you can look for the other player favorable rules discussed in this series. While these other rules don’t lower the house edge as much as the 2-1 payout does, every little bit helps.
When building your blackjack strategy, it is important to know what rules of the game are good for you and which ones are good for casinos. This is a more passive portion of your strategy as opposed to learning a skill like basic strategy or card counting. The point of strategy is to work your opponent down through using their weaknesses combined with skill. Think of player favorable rules as their weaknesses and basic strategy and card counting as skills you learn.
That being said, the next blackjack player favorable rule for you to know to use in your overall strategy is doubling down on three or more cards.
We’re all used to doubling down on the two initial cards we are dealt. We also know that hand totals of 9, 10 and 11 are the best times to do this.
And while this is still the most common blackjack practice in regards to doubling down, there are some casinos now that are doing something different with their doubling down rules: they are allowing players to double down after hitting for more cards.
Let’s say that you are dealt a 2 and 3 for an initial total of 5. You would of course hit. Let’s say that you drew a 5 for a new total of 10. And the dealer’s up card is a 6.
With a hand total of 10 you would want to double down, but based on regular casino rules you won’t be able to because you had already hit for more cards. This newer rule would allow you to double down on that 10 even though it’s made up of three cards.
This blackjack rule significantly increases your chances to double down, and therefore to win more hands, which means more money. This rule also lowers the house edge by around 0.2%
Now let’s say that you have been playing perfect basic strategy in a blackjack game that allows you to double down on more than three. Perfect basic strategy can lower the house edge to 0.5%. Now subtract that 0.2%. The house edge with this rule can be lowered to 0.3%. See how it adds up?
Keep an eye open for Player Favorable Blackjack Rules—Part VI